Commemorating And Celebrating

Someone once said that you should do at least one thing that scares you every day. As we approach Halloween, it strikes me that I did a very scary thing last Saturday.

Last Saturday, I celebrated the launch of my newest book. Puppies, Guppies, and Letting Go is the story of my mother. It is the story of a woman who made her own choices and built her own joy. It is the story of my relationship with her. It is the story of maturation and change. It is the story of relationship, aging, support, and grief. It is the story of living with loss. This book is the most personal thing I’ve ever written. It exposes the most tender parts of me. As part of the event, I planned to read a chapter from the book. The thought terrified me.

I thought my anxiety and nerves and general busyness in preparation for the event had to do with worry over things like having the right amount of food, the right flowers, and a good internet connection for Zoom. I did notice that the overplanning and overworry turmoil that I have worked so hard to overcome with my life coach came roaring back over the week prior to the launch party. As I journaled out my feelings, I could sense the pitch squeaking ever higher and the volume shrieking ever louder until I reached a crescendo on Thursday evening. I texted my little group of helpers with a minute-by-minute, blow-by-blow schedule of what I expected to happen on Friday and Saturday. I had my furniture set-up, my decoration set-up, my cake delivery, my food and drink presentation, the Zoom initiation, my welcome, my reading, the door prizes, the toast, the cake, and book sales all slotted into convenient artificial timeslots. It was clear to me that I was certifiable. My friends were charitable enough to ignore the insanity and just follow the plan to the best of their ability.

Everything turned out beautifully. Just as I knew in some deep, dark, muted place in my brain- there was no need to sweat the small stuff. However, sweating the small stuff enabled me to avoid thinking about the big stuff.

Reading a piece from my book that discussed a facet of my mother’s long journey towards death was the big stuff. The book is me. The emotions are mine. The longing and the wistfulness I experienced at the time the incident in the piece happened is still blistering, even though the incident happened over five years ago. As I read the words I wrote, my voice broke, and the terror monsters kicked the inside of my gut with cleated feet. I had difficulty looking up from the page of swimming words. In some ways, I felt like my audience did not exist. I was reading for myself- as if I had not already written and felt the words. In other ways, I was acutely aware of the audience. I knew they were prepared to love my work, but I also knew they might hate it.

A few days later, with Todd’s help, I realized that my panic before the party and the piercing emotions during the party had nothing to do with the food or the flowers or any of that silly stuff. It had to do with my very unsilly fear of rejection. The way I write, the way I feel, and the way I conduct my relationships pretty much defines me. As I offered my words, my love, and my relationship with my mother to this group of people, I was asking them to accept who I am. The people listening could very easily have said no. Intellectually, I realized that it was unlikely that the people in the room listening to me would reject me. After all, I’d stacked the deck. The people who came to the party love me and accepted me long ago. They would not have come otherwise. However, a huge part of the scarred heart I carry around in my chest was sure this was going to be the time when those people did reject me. My brain occupied itself with silly stuff as the party approached out of fear that the party guests and other readers would decide that I was the silly stuff.

Nobody thought I was the silly stuff. I think the people listening were genuinely moved. I think people who came from far and near believed the time they invested in the launch event was time well spent. Even more importantly, I felt it was time well spent. I commemorated my mother with some people who knew her and introduced her to the people who love me but never got to know my mom. I dedicated my book to everyone who loved my mother and everyone who loved me. That would include all the people in the room on Saturday. We commemorated the woman my mother was on Saturday, and we celebrated the woman I am becoming.

Celebrate you today!

Terri/Dorry 😊

Puppies, Guppies, and Letting Go is available on Amazon in kindle and paperback editions. If you would like to purchase a signed copy, please contact me at and I will arrange to send you one. The cost would be $15, plus $4 shipping.

Coming Attraction!

Monday, August 22, was my mother’s birthday. She would have been 91 years old. In celebration of her birthday,  I thought this week would be a good time to announce I have a new book coming out on October 22. The book, Puppies, Guppies, and Letting Go, is all about my mother. It is the story of how she built her own life in a world where she was just a little ahead of her time. It is the story of her view of family and motherhood. It is the story of her end-of-life journey. It is the story of what it was like for me to accompany her on that journey… and it is the story of what it is like to live in a world she no longer inhabits.

Puppies, Guppies, and Letting Go is joyous and wacky. It is funny and inspiring. It is sad and thought-provoking. I know anyone who knew my mother will enjoy it. However, I hope its appeal will be more universal. My mother was the kind of person that everyone enjoyed knowing and everyone loved. If you did not know her in real life, I think you will love getting to love her through Puppies, Guppies, and Letting Go.

The book will be available on in both paperback and kindle editions on October 22. I am publishing this book, as I have the past two books, under Terri’s “real name,” Dorry Curran. I will be hosting a launch party on that day. If you are local and would like to come, I’d be happy to have you. Please just let me know. I will also be broadcasting part of the event on Zoom. If you are not local but would still like to be part of the fun, please send me an email and I’ll send you an evite to the party.

Wouldn’t you love to attend the launch party, either virtually or IRL? Please share your perspective by leaving a comment. If you would like to attend, please email me at so I can send you the information.

Happy Partying!

Terri/Dorry 😊

A Day To Par-tay!!!

I recently told you that my book, Changing My Mind: Reinventing Myself In Retirement, would soon be making its world debut.  I’m happy to announce that you will be able to order your very own copy starting on May 19, 2018.  You can get your hands on this hot commodity by visiting my direct-to-reader sales website.  I will give you the address when the website is up and running. The book will be available in paperback and electronic editions.

You can also get the paperback and electronic versions at the Amazon and Barnes and Noble websites, but I hope you’ll go to my direct-to-reader site and order there because then I get to keep more of your money!  I have spent a lot of time trying to think of a graceful way to say that, but, as you can see, I have failed.  In addition to my greed, the other good reason to go to my direct-to-reader sales page to buy this masterpiece is because I will be offering you, my far-flung blog friends, a special discount code to use when ordering.

My book release is a momentous event in my life and I want to celebrate.  More specifically, I want to celebrate with you. I will be hosting a launch party on Saturday, May 19, 2018, and would like you non-local folks to join us virtually.  The event will be from 4:00pm-5:00pm EDT.  If you would like to join us, please send me an email at  I will provide you with the information you need to call in and celebrate with us. I also plan to have my lovely assistant take photos during the party and send them out to you in real time.  Please let me know in your email if you are okay with me providing your address to said lovely assistant so she can include you in the photo frenzy.   I have some activities planned that everyone in the room and everyone on the call should enjoy.  There will also be an opportunity to win a fabulous prize.  Well, kind of fabulous.

There will be limited phone lines available for the virtual party, so please email me your interest as soon as you know you want to attend.

I hope that you will be able to participate.  Please stay tuned to my blog for the website and discount code to use when ordering book copies.  Because I am incredibly socially awkward and insecure, I will be offering an extra discount for those people who attend the launch party.  I am sure that will incentivize crowds of crazed fans to participate! Or, maybe, at least one or two people who are mildly fond of me.  Either way, I’m good.

As always, thank you all for your support and encouragement.  In addition to celebrating the launch of Changing My Mind, the party will celebrate all my friends- all of you- because, even if you are miles away, you are all close in my heart!

What do you think about the idea of a virtual launch party?  Please share your perspective by leaving a comment.  In the alternative, you can email me at  If you would like to attend the virtual launch party, please email me soon to receive the call-in info!

Have a day worth celebrating today!

Terri/Dorry 🙂