I hope the warming days find you well. And I mean that. With the spread of Covid-19, our lives have changed quite a bit, and I’m sure yours have, too. After two years of planning, we had to cancel a trip to Portugal, where I was going to work at the American International School in Lisbon. A lot of other work has been cancelled, too. This is a trying time for all of us, and as someone who sees many people in many places, I’m very aware of how interconnected we all are. The virus is a kind of wake-up call – a reminder that what happens to one of us might happen to any of us. We truly live in one world.
In this issue:
Wash Your Hands – video and free download
In 2013 I recorded a video with Rhode Island Public Television of my song “Wash Your Hands (Lavate Las Manos)”. It’s still played on RIPBS, but with the Coronavirus, is more important than ever. You can watch it here, and if you wish, download a free copy of it from us. I’ve heard from people and schools all over the country and beyond, that they are watching and listening to it. Please share widely.
It took me awhile, but we’ve finally managed to put a collection of my work on Spotify, Apple Music, Pandora, and other streaming services. We’ve created a “new recording” of previous released songs and stories called Just Kidding. Sorry it took a while. More will follow. Please spread the word, and if you put together a playlist, it would be great if you included some of my work on it. Check out my Spotify page here.
I’m happy to let you know that the last book in my Charlie Bumpers series, Charlie Bumpers vs. the End of the Year will be out in paperback April 1. You can order all seven of the books from your local bookstore and online stores, or directly from us. If you order from us, I’m happy to personalize them.
A New Book on the Way!
I’m so happy to let you know that Peachtree Publishers, with whom I’ve worked for the past fifteen years, will publish my latest book, tentatively titled “Path of Totality” in the fall of 2021. The book, about a fifteen-year-old girl driving across the country with her nine-year old brother the summer of 2018, during the solar eclipse, is an exploration of identity, tolerance, and coming of age. I’m really happy with this book – all my readers have been really enthusiastic about it. I am too. More about it as it comes closer.
I’m also really happy to let you know that August House is releasing a paperback edition of “Bear’s All Night Party” – my story about a bear who has a faith in the unseen. It’s always been one of my favorite stories to tell. August House has recalibrated the colors and the pictures jump off the page. I’ll also be doing a reading of it, along with the song the bear sings. As Bear says, “You never know what might happen.” And this is a delightful surprise. More when it comes out.
Hippocrates said, “Life is short, art long, opportunity fleeting, experience treacherous, and judgement difficult”. I think he meant that the art you create may outlive you. But to me, it’s always meant that creating takes a long time.
So has the podcast. We’re trying to get all the ducks in a row, eggs in a basket, cows in the barn, whatever – this includes making all the technology work, figuring out how to promote and distribute it, and how it’s going to get paid for. And also, creating episodes. Meanwhile, I’ve got my hands full with other stuff.
But we’re closer – and everyone at Round River – Michele and Debbie and I – are pretty excited about it. More soon. I hope. Unless art is even more longer and life is even more shorter.
Last month I went to a memorial service for a really good man – Rob Deblois – a wonderful educator who started and ran an alternative middle school for at risk kids. During the service, the pastor repeated, several times, Micah’s admonition to “Do justice, love mercy, and walk humbly with your God.” I find myself coming back to those words again and again. Just trying to keep my head on straight. Hope you can too.