I lost my mom a couple of years ago to breast cancer. She was 68. I wish I could say that she was a great artist, that she created beautiful works and she had used the wonderful gifts God gave her. As it is, all I can say about my mom (besides that I love and miss her greatly) is that she had untapped raw artistic talent and a desire to use it. She would often talk about how great it would be to take her art to a professional level, but she never did. That’s not to say that she didn’t try. She tried painting in many mediums, did stained and fused glass art, put artistic scenes inside eggs (it’s pretty cool if you haven’t seen it before), drawing, and even did wood carving. She showed promise in all of these mediums and was often told to take it to the next level, but she never did. She would try her hand for a few months, puttering around her art studio and even making some respectable pieces of art, but nothing that would be considered “next level”. She died without ever knowing how far she could take her art.
I began writing many years before any of us knew she was sick so I can’t claim that my mom was my inspiration for my writing. I can use her as a cautionary tale for others, however, and often do.
I wrote my book because I love writing and I would write even if I only ever did it for myself. Working towards publication, however, is a different beast and that took work – lots and lots of damned hard work. It is an achievement that I look back on with pride and even if I never am published again (I hope this is not the case), no one can take away this achievement from me. I did something that I consider to be great, to be brave – something that took everything in me to get done. I’m not that much of a go-getter. I enjoy the comforts and confines of home and being comfortable. Writing is not comfortable. Publishing is even worse. But I did it and that can never be taken from me.
What I tell my family, friends and kids after my experience with getting published is that we’re all going to die someday. Humans rate of survival is ultimately 0%. As I’m looking at the foothills of fifty, I’m beginning to realize that I’m closer to the end of the race than I am to the beginning, possibly a lot closer. But if I were to go tomorrow, I can say that I did something great. If I have any advice to give to all, it’s to do the same. It doesn’t matter what you consider great. It may be a one time event like sky-diving or training for a triathlon or writing a book; just do something before your time card is punched that you can look back from your deathbed and smile.
My mom died peacefully, but with dreams unrealized, with her one moment of greatness left to nothing but the desire to have made it so. Figure out what your “greatness” will be and begin now to leave your mark.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
A native of Tacoma, Washington, M.D. Moore worked as a therapist in Washington State’s most acute psychiatric hospital. Moore currently serves as a rehab director at a long term care facility serving veterans and their families. A member of the Pacific Northwest Writers Association, M.D. Moore lives in Gig Harbor, Washington with his wife and sons.Waiting for the Cool Kind of Crazy is his debut novel. Visit M.D. Moore online at: www.mdmooreauthor.com.
About the Book:
Title: Waiting for the Cool Kind of Crazy
Genre: Fiction/Family Drama
Author: M.D. Moore
Publisher: Black Rose Writing
Purchase on Amazon
An extraordinary debut novel, Waiting for the Cool Kind of Crazy introduces protagonist Harmon Burke. The son of a schizophrenic mother, Harmon is haunted by three decades of his mother’s “un-cool” craziness and the mistakes of his own past. Caught somewhere between his past and present, Harmon is trying to navigate and survive the detritus of his life—a life littered with personal failures, strained relationships and life-threatening health issues.
When Waiting for the Cool Kind of Crazy opens, Harmon’s mother Cece is on her way back to the psychiatric hospital after another psychotic episode—an episode that nearly lands Harmon in jail for his third and final strike before lifelong incarceration. Landing an unusual lucky break, Harmon cashes in a literal “get out of jail free card” with one caveat: in order to avoid serving jail time, he promises to seek help for his issues.
Harmon starts to see Boyd Freud, an eccentric ex-convict and unorthodox counselor with a wry sense of humor, and a penchant for strong coffee and unusual theories. Somehow, the no-nonsense and rough-around-the-edges Boyd manages to convince Harmon to confront the trials that have dogged his past and present. But everything changes when Harmon’s high school sweetheart Emmy shows up on his doorstep. Pleading for help escaping her abusive husband Frank, Harmon’s childhood nemesis and lifelong adversary, Emmy reopens a chapter in Harmon’s life he thought long closed. But Frank—a cruel and vindictive bully intent on righting a past wrong—will prove a dangerous and complicating force for Harmon and his family.
With Boyd’s help, Harmon begins to make sense of the past and heal. But in order to help Emmy, find peace with his mentally-deteriorating mother and discover redemption from his past and current failures, Harmon will have to return to the trials of his youth to find answers and discover truths long buried. Along the way, Harmon will realize that making sense of the past might lead him to see the possibility of a future he’d given up on long ago.