I am once again thrilled and honored to have one of my written pieces being published in the annual anthology called “Visible Ink”, published through Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, more importantly, written by the patients and survivors of MSKCC, of which I am one. This is my 5th year in a row having a chapter submitted to this anthology. Last year I was honored among 15 other authors/patients in having last year’s piece performed live in Manhattan. All of my submissions over the prior 4 years can be found on my “pages” of this blog. To see the actual performance from last year, titled “My Dad Was Just Like Me,” go to this link:
Visible Ink was such a wonderful opportunity for me, as it is for many others patients and survivors. It is hard for many to understand how hard it is for us as patients and survivors to convey our feelings. To be honest, we can accept that a lot of people are just uncomfortable talking about cancer. And many times, it is not enough just to talk to our doctors, nurses, therapists, and anyone else involved in our care.
Visible Ink is a volunteer peer writing program that assigns each writer a professional writing coach, who assists us in writing not just submissions for this anthology, but for any writing assignment that we choose to take on. We can be as active or inactive as we choose to be. But each year, most of us will put together a special chapter that will appear in this annual anthology, much like the “Chicken Soup” books. Not every chapter is written about cancer either. Some chapters are about experiences that many of us have had following cancer, things we might now have ever had the chance had we not beaten our cancer. While those who read this book may feel inspired, hopeful, for the writers, this opportunity is therapeutic.
I have enjoyed writing nearly my entire life. I took a looooooooonnnnng break from recreational writing (I wrote many opinion columns for newspapers), and several years ago, I was introduced to Visible Ink which I write for, along with “Paul’s Heart”. As a 25 year cancer survivor, I can still be inspired by all of the stories that I read in this book. And each year, I get to meet so many of the authors either in person, or just over the internet, but the reaction is still the same, I am inspired.
No clue as to what this year’s chapter is written about, as I will wait until the book is released at the beginning of April. If you would like to find out how you can buy the book, or any of the previous books, feel free to contact me, or go to Visible Ink at the MSKCC web site, or better yet, if you go to the gift shop, I know that they carry each book from the previous years.