August 10th is a day that sticks out in my memory. Six years ago today I got a phone call from WFNS saying that my manuscript The Year Mrs. Montague Cried had won first place in the Y/A category of the Atlantic Writing Competition. Four years before I was getting ready to take a trip across the country to visit my daughter. I was driving across with two close friends. Another friend was at home turning my youngest son’s bedroom into my office. I was about to begin a deferred leave,taking the coming school year off to write the book that had been forming in my mind since the awful date of April 18th,1999. I painstakingly wrote that book in 10 months and then spent the next four years trying to find a publisher. That phone call on that August day opened the door to the publishing contract I had a few weeks later with Acorn Press. Today 25 more copies of the book I probably still sell the most of, arrived on my doorstop. As I opened the box and placed the Atlantic Book Awards Winner sticker on each cover I couldn’t help but think back to that phone call. I was thrilled but as I the received the news my inner voice told me what I had known all along , ‘if I took the excruciating journey to write it it would someday take shape as a book I could hold in my hands’. This book will always hold a part of my beloved son and I accept each copy and where it has taken me as a gift beyond measure. Love you Zac!