My book, My Daughter’s Eyes and Other Stories came out in July. It is a collection of fourteen interrelated stories about young women in the Bronx. The book started with one story written in 1995 which became another story and another until by 2001, I had 14 stories.
I then had the courage to submit all of the stories to the Curbstone Marmol Prize for First Latina Fiction in 2002 (made finalist), 2003 (made finalist), 2004 (made finalist), in December 2005, after editing and revising, editing and revising, I got a call from Sandy Taylor in April 2006 that I had finally won.
So, it’s 2005, then it’s 2006 and finally it is July 2007 and the book arrives. The day it arrived it was as if a stork had delivered a baby. I was struck by it’s reality, but it takes such a long time. Writing is a solitary activity. An activity with little encouragement from others. It takes time, determination, persistence and faith. When family and friends, and colleagues at work see the book, they say “How did you do this in between work and all that you do,” as if the book was spun out of magic one day in between lunches and conferences.
I work full time.
I use my time wisely. I love my family and friends deeply and this love gives me the strength to allow things to grow within me. And, then I am a therapist, and I am the Director of the Counseling Center at Lehman College. To top it all off this year I also accepted a very prestigious fellowship at Columbia University, The Charles Revson Fellowship. This takes me away from all that I love to do, work, writing, family and friends. I am not sure if this is a blessing or a hindrance.
I’ll know in the end – May 2008.