Vision and Voice

Hello Guys and Gals!

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Last week I had the great pleasure of serving on a panel discussing publishing options today -- from self-publishing and vanity productions, to small independent presses and traditional Big Five publishing. For those of you who have been bopping around town with me for some time, you, undoubtedly, have heard my story. For those new to the blog, Veronica's Grave: A Daughter's Memoir, was published first by She Writes Press, an independent publisher dedicated to women's writing, before being picked up by Harper Collins Canada and brought out as Missing Mother.  As someone who has experienced two very different publishing models, I was invited to share my publishing journey.

The following video was created by  Universal by Design, a firm offering social media management and marketing services for writers. If you are a writer looking to publish or perhaps someone curious about current-day options in the rapidly changing world of publishing, click on the video below. Hope you enjoy it!

What's more, you can read a bio and get a brief overview of each author's work below. Check it out, and I'll see you back here next week when I'll have the coffee ready. Jusque là mes amis...

Vision & Voice Discussion Panel – Publishing Today

Join us as Publishing Experts Barbara Donsky, Charlene Jones, Linda Strader & Deb Brandon Share Their Experiences

Get to know our panelists


Charlene Jones

Want to know more about how your brain works? Want to learn to work with your mind, instead of against it? Ever think about those images from dreams, from when you read a really good book or just from daydreaming? Ever wonder what those images mean? GET THIS BOOK! Here the seams between our experience of mental visualizations (we use Tibetan icon Medicine Buddha as our example) and what the latest in Neuroscience has to say about images, join in easy to read, simple language. Excerpt from the book: “Whenever we speak, act, or even think, untold numbers of dendrites light up, stoking an electrical charge that runs along a neuron and since neurons like to chat with their neighbors, other neurons join in. These others are especially encouraged to join in whenever the same action, the same speech, the same thought occurs.”

Bio: Charlene Diane Jones, M.Ed/M.A., Meditation Teacher, Psychotherapist, Author, Writing Coach, Science Explorer, Mother, Grandmother, Mate. After 45 years of meditating with Tibetan Vajrayana (in simple terms Tibetan Visualization), 45 years of knowing each meditation session helped her just that bit more toward clarity, joy and non-clinging awareness, she stumbled on Neuroscience. Immediately she recognized here was the answer to HOW Visualization works to create a stronger, more coherent psyche.

Visit Charlene’s website Soul Sciences


Deb Brandon

When Deb Brandon discovered that cavernous angiomas―tangles of malformed blood vessels in her brain―were behind the terrifying symptoms she’d been experiencing, she underwent one brain surgery. And then another. And then another. And that was just the beginning.But My Brain Had Other Ideas follows Brandon’s story all the way through to long-term recovery, revealing without sugarcoating or sentimentality Brandon’s struggles―and ultimate triumph.

“Deb Brandon’s clear-eyed approach to her story will hook you from the first chapter and remind you what it means to live life full on. Her refusal to be circumscribed by angioma is a reminder of the power of hope in all of our lives.” Lee Woodruff, NYT Best-selling author and journalist.

“Told in poetic and exacting language, Deb Brandon’s intimate account of life with a damaged brain is equal parts hypnotizing, harrowing, and inspiring.” – Michael Paul Mason, author of Head Cases: Stories of Brain Injury and Its Aftermath.

“But My Brain Had Other Ideas is a courageous story, one that rings with the truth of living through trauma that robs us of what we take for granted—a functioning brain and body, a sense of normalcy and trust in life itself. Deb Brandon’s chronicle of her journey through the life-threatening brain bleeds of a cavernous angioma, the surgeries, rehab, and the long slog to adapt as a brain-injury survivor offers a beacon of hope for all coping with a disability of any sort.” – Susan J. Tweit, speaker and award-winning author of Walking Nature Home.

To find out more and read Deb’s blog, visit her website


Barbara Donsky

Barbara Bracht Donsky is the International best-selling author of Missing Mother, the Harper Collins Canada reprint of the 2016 award-winning memoir, Veronica’s Grave: A Daughter’s Memoir.


A reading specialist with a former private practice for children in Oyster Bay, New York, Dr. Donsky served for many years as president and capital campaign coordinator of the Boys & Girls Club of Oyster Bay–East Norwich. A magna cum laude graduate of Hunter College, with an MS from Long Island University and an EdD from Hofstra University, she has written numerous articles and short stories for journals around the world. She lives with her husband in New York.


Linda Strader

Originally from Syracuse, New York, Ms. Strader moved to Prescott, Arizona with her family in 1972. In 1976, she became one of the first women on a U.S. Forest Service fire crew in the Santa Rita Mountains south of Tucson.

A naïve twenty-year-old in the mid-1970s, she discovers fighting wildfires is challenging—but in a man’s world, they became only one of the challenges she would face. Battling fire is exhilarating, yet exhausting; the discrimination real and sometimes in her face. Summers of Fire is an Arizona to Alaska adventure story that honestly recounts the seven years Strader ventures into the heart of fires that scorch the land, vibrant friendships that fire the soul, and deep love that ends in devastating heartbreak.

Summers of Fire: A Memoir of Adventure, Love and Courage is her first book, scheduled for publication on May 1st, 2018 by Bedazzled Ink Publishing. She is currently working on a prequel.

In addition to writing, Ms. Strader is a landscape architect, certified arborist, and watercolor artist. She currently lives in the same area where her Forest Service career began. She can be contacted at

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Beth Beauchamp