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How paranoia made my wildest dreams come true (and enter to win a copy of the dream!)

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It’s a long running joke in my family that I wrote a book because I somehow convinced myself that it would save my child’s life. When I had to return back to work, the sound of my daughter’s ear piercing cries would still ring in my ears hours and hours later. I would remember how my mother and sisters and in-laws and husband and I would pass her around and around, each taking a turn at trying to get her to be comfortable, to fall asleep, all of us praying to the gods that she’d give her poor larynx and our ears just one minute of rest. Just ONE.

It was okay that she cried when it was amongst those that loved her. But when she had to go to day care, I imagined the worst happening in the company of people who were only taking care of her because it paid slightly more than minimum wage. I was always waiting for that phone call from the day care’s director, telling me that Miss Sherry was removed in a strait jacket with her ears bleeding while my child was being extricated from the bottom of a dumpster. It drove me crazy. And in my state of crazy, I convinced myself that MAYBE I could write a book and become a stay-at-home-mom if I was just diligent enough.

I went out and bought a couple of “How to write a novel” books. I eschewed the idea of sleep and dedicated at least three hours each night to my task. I made lots of promises to St. Anthony. And I told myself that, for Toni’s safety and well being, I wouldn’t give up.

Well, she’s now eleven going on TWELVE. Not only did Miss Sherry not kill my little girl, but neither did Miss Burris or Ms. Romero or Mrs. Parker or Mr. Dalton or the countless other teachers and day care providers whom I’ve entrusted with the safety and well being of my slightly high maintenance child. The payoff for all these years of diligence is that now I can say that I’ve written a novel. It’s called Rosetta Stones, and it’s now available for pre-order from Amazon. So yay for crazy!

If you are a reader who enjoys throwing your name into virtual hats to receive free stuff from bloggers, let me know in the comments. I will have my sweet daughter Toni randomly select two people to receive a free signed copy.

This is a taste of what you’ll be getting: It’s a story of four close friends who witness a terrifying crime when they encounter a psychopathic killer in the remote Gila wilderness of southwestern New Mexico. In the chaos that follows, two entities-one good and one pure evil-fight for control of their souls as they struggle toward a terrifying climax that will change their lives forever. At turns frighteningly violent and nearly sublime, Rosetta Stones is a coming-of-age story that transcends the divisions of race and culture through the power of friendship and redemptive love.

So, tell me, has mental illness ever worked to your benefit?


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  • comment avatar Amber Johnson April 15, 2009

    So, so so thrilled for you! Dreams *can* come true!

  • comment avatar JoAnn, The Casual Perfectionist April 15, 2009

    Oh, Catherine, I’m so happy for you!! Writing a novel is my dream as well, so when I see someone I “know” do it, it gives me hope, too!!

    I can’t wait to read your book!

    Oh, and Crazy has *always* worked for my benefit. Ha!

    But, in the event that it doesn’t, my husband has promised to find me a facility with WiFi. 😉

  • comment avatar Lori in Denver April 15, 2009

    I am so proud of you and your craziness! You have followed through and made your dream happen, in spite of (and because of) your daughter’s overactive larynx.

    I would love to one day read Rosetta Stones with my daughter (and son).

    Now, if I can just put my own insanity to good use…

  • comment avatar Catherine April 15, 2009

    JoAnn, the only advice I can offer is DON’T GIVE UP. If I can do it, you most certainly can as well.

    Lori, I am thrilled at the idea of you reading my book. But before you sit down with your children and read it, be forewarned that if this were a movie, it would probably be rated PG-13 for strong language and what Hollywood would call “intense violence.” (I let my insanity get out of hand in this story.)

    Thanks, beautiful ladies.

  • comment avatar Gretchen White April 15, 2009

    Congratulations, Catherine! I am beyond excited for you and I wish you all the best as your book is launched into the world.

    Our daughters are the same age (mine will be 12 in July) and I know how many years have passed. What a labor of love, all-around.

    Congrats, again.

  • comment avatar Wendy April 15, 2009

    Sounds great. I always look for new writers as I am a writer, also. Congrats!! And, yes, mental illness always works!!

  • comment avatar A mom in the burbs April 15, 2009

    Woot! How FABULOUS! Congrats!

    My middle child is the one I worry about. When caregivers tell me she was great, I kinda give them the eye, like, suuuuuure–you’re just so happy I came back! 🙂

    I grew up in NM (mmm, green chile) so I look forward to reading your book!

    May congrats, again!

  • comment avatar Parker Mom April 16, 2009

    How fantastic for you! Being able to be a stay at home Mom for my girls was the best thing to commit to. I was a nutty Mama too. When my youngest went to Kindergarden on the bus for the first time, I followed the bus, hid in the bushes at the school and videotaped my daughter to make sure she was going to be ok! I know.. crazy mom stalker! She walked up to the spot her teacher had told her to recognized a few kindies who apparently hadn’t been paying attention that day and got them all that she recognized from orientation, gave them a hug and explained how to line up properly. Gee.. I guess she was more ready for school than her MOM was!
    I learned website design online to be able to stay home and started this community site that’s now 10 years old.

  • comment avatar Melissa Taylor April 16, 2009

    What is it about? I really like the cover and title!

  • comment avatar Russ April 18, 2009

    As one of Catherine’s co-workers I was one of the first to get a copy of this wonerful novel. I thoroughly enjoyed “Rosetta Stones”! Cathy (as I know her) has a wonderful imagination and a remarkable talent to put that imagination into print. I would highly recommend this novel to anybody who enjoys reading “thrillers” or “mysteries”. I know Cathy is working on another novel and I can’t wait to read it.

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