The other day Nyel came home from Physical Therapy with the news that there is another writer ‘out there’ named Sydney Stevens who lives in either California or somewhere on the East Coast. A friend of Victoria’s (the Queen of PT on the Long Beach Peninsula) is reading a book by her (or possibly, him).
So, I Googled Sydney (and Sidney) Stevens (and Stephens) in various combinations, but didn’t come up with the right (write) person. There are several of us who share this name and who surface when Googled – among them a singer from Los Angeles, a physician from Palm Desert – but no other writer that I could find.
However, I did find several sites about myself that weren’t on the web the last time I checked. (If you’ve never Googled yourself, it’s an interesting experience. It’s a little bit like listening to gossip about yourself; sometimes you’d like to correct ‘the record’ but you realize the futility of such an endeavor.) Most interesting was a review of my 2007 book, Dear Medora on a site called “Book This” which bills itself as “Assisting Northwest authors, book stores, libraries and book clubs to promote and interact with people who love to read.”
The review was fabulous – the best I’ve ever seen! It was posted on March 4th of this year purports to have come from Coast Weekend. If it’s the freebie insert Coast Weekend that comes with every week’s Chinook Observer, I certainly missed the review the first time around. In any case, I commend it to my readers and fans. It can be found at: http://bookthis.eomediagroup.org/2013/03/04/book-reivew-oysterville-author-resurrects-a-slice-of-local-history/
The part of the review that especially caught my eye was the next-to-last sentence of the final paragraph: Ask the author and she will speak to that strange relationship that often skips the natural arbitration of time to bind distant people together. Certainly this is the case for Stevens. She is more than a caretaker of family memorabilia. She has brought back beloved Medora. Getting to know the young lady is the greatest strength of the book. Stevens has brought us home to a goodness so often lost or overlooked in the current charge of modernism. This book is a must for teenagers. For the rest of us, it is a joyful rendezvous with our pioneer ancestors,
It is the “teenagers” comment that strikes a resounding chord for me. When WSU Press was planning their initial marketing strategy for Dear Medora, they suggested that it should be presented as a book for Teens or Young Adults. I adamantly (and, in retrospect, no doubt wrongly) insisted that it be marketed for the general reading public.
Dear Medora has been anything but a run-away best seller. I wonder if things might have been different if I hadn’t been so headstrong. And is it way too late to be eating crow?