Thanks to all you for attending the West Coast hybrid book launch for Never the Same Again on September 25th, 2022 held at Village Books in Bellingham, WA. I emceed the event that had close to 70 attend via Zoom and about 20 in person. Conducting a hybrid event was a technical challenge, but we pulled it off without too much chaos. Thank you to our wonderful readers/authors who joined us from across the nation via Zoom:
- Dorothy Wrase Hares, upstate New York, reading “Greetings”
- John Miller, Athens, OH, reading “Peace Corps Man”
- Susan Greisen, Bellingham, WA, reading “Beyond War”
- Joan Safran Hamilton, Vancouver, WA, reading “My Heart Sings”
- Barbara Burke, Birmingham, AL, reading “The Richness of Life”
- Max Sines, San Jose, CA, reading “Peace Corps Goals and Liberian Ways”
- Karen Lange, Takoma Pk, MD, our co-editor for telling us her role in Liberia and beyond.
At the end of the event a woman stood up and said “I was born in Liberia in the 50s and left when I was 17. I was taught by Peace Corps volunteers in Sinoe County near Greenville and am currently in touch with one who lives on the east coast. I attribute my personal success to the Peace Corps and am so happy to be at this event and reconnect with FOL.” We welcome Shirley Dujardin.
She now lives just one hour from me in Washington State and was so moved by our event. She hugged me tightly as we departed and wouldn’t let go as she wept. We exchanged information and we will be getting together again soon. What an emotional and touching ending to our event. Yes, it is all about human connection – a connection that is not easily forgotten. Fifty three years later, Shirley never forgot.
Thank you again to all those participated in making this book a success. I encourage all our readers of this fabulous anthology to spread the word about our book, suggest it to your book club or bring it to your schools or libraries as examples of how to be a global citizen. I will keep posting more on my website and sign up below if you would like periodic blogs about Liberia. Or join FOL and donate to our humanitarian programs in Liberia at FOL.org.
7 responses to “West Coast Book Launch Success”
It was so thrilling to listen to the different stories read during the book launch of “Never the Same Again”… Though i never directly experienced civil war during my Peace Corps days in the 1960s as the people of Liberia did, the readings reminded me of all the coup d’etats that occurred. But so com-mon place as they were ,the citizens regarded these as a fact of life. Only later did one affect me dearly. Thus, a memoir is being written. I ‘ll always retain good, fond memories of my Peace Corps life in the Chapare, Bolivia.
Susan, We all owe you a HUGE thank you, just as we owed Dontae much gratitude. I am so grateful for your many efforts to get Never the Same Again published and into the hands of readers.
What you’ve accomplished, Susan! You reached out to people, you provided hours and hours of workshops, tedious editing – over and over again. You encouraged, you made tough decisions.
You, Karen and Susan packaged the book brilliantly.
And then you’ve worked behind stage and on-stage to promote and launch Never the Same Again. All the while encouraging us as ‘authors’. I say Thank You A Thousand Times, Susan!
You mentioned during the book launch that you had not met us, but we have met each other. We have all come to know you as a deeply committed author, teacher, Peace Corps promoter and proven editor. On this journey, you have practiced joy and that has been contagious!
BIG, BIG thanks for that, Susan!
I spoke with some of my contacts who attended the Bellingham launch virtually, and they felt a sense of community through the event and the readings.
Like you, I’m eager for The Peace Corps to see a renewed interest here in the U.S. I am certain FoL will continue to thrive and surely be greatly boosted as a result of your efforts in bringing Never the Same Again to life!
Many, many thanks, Susan.
Wishing you an abundance of success. Keep up the great work, Susan.