My book, “Parkland Speaks” was released yesterday. I was so excited all day, knowing that people would be seeing, reading and buying the book I’d worked so hard on for so many months. I collected the pieces, edited, worked as a go-between with Random House and the contributors, and I wrote two pieces myself. This was my summer job, along with having an actual summer job. It was a labor of love, and I couldn’t wait to hear what people thought about it.
Tonight was a panel and book signing at the Coral Springs Barnes & Noble.
I walked in to Barnes & Noble to see the space set-up for the panel. There were already people sitting, waiting. I moderated the panel and lead the Q&A that followed. There were six panelists with me, five students and one of the teachers. The event was standing room only. My husband, children, parents and brother were there; there were also students, former students, and friends in attendance. I meant so much to share our process, talk about what the book means to us, what we hope it means to others. It was nice to talk about what happened at school without getting overly political. It was about our experience in sharing our writing, art, photography, as related to 2/14.
There were several news stories that ran.
I’m always happy to talk to the press. I’m not looking for 15 minutes of fame. I’m looking to spread the word about what happened to us, so that it won’t happen again. I’m looking to talk about the book we made, which has proceeds going to ShineMSD, and organization that began at school and promotes healing through the arts. I will talk even there is no one left to listen. What we did in this book is important, and like a yearbook, encapsulated a moment in time and shows the world what it’s like to survive a school shooting.
“Parkland Speaks,” published by Random House, is available online and wherever books are sold.