My article in the September 2016 issue of American Quilter is the article that started it all. In the fall of 2015, Nancy Ottaviano, owner of Love Quilting, said she wrote an article that was very personal to her but she had submitted it to magazine after publication after magazine and was rejected from every single place she’d submitted it to. She asked me if I would take a look at it and see if I could rewrite it and submit it around to see if it would get published.
It wasn’t because I was somebody in the professional world of quilting or had been published – I just happened to be the one she chose to share her article with. Admittedly, her education and career leaned toward technical writing and not more journalistic writing. So when I say I looked at her article and nodded my head throughout the entire thing, it meant I could definitely tell why her article was rejected over and over again.
To say the least, I was intrigued. I was willing to see what I could do with the article and how I could use it to enrich the lives of those who read it. The first thing I did was to send out a call to my Facebook friends, asking for people I could interview regarding ovarian cancer. One lady was a friend from Utah (we lived there for seven years) and one was a cousin who had an aunt who would be happy to talk to me.
Once I had all of the parts and pieces together to write my article, it came together in a matter of minutes. In fact, what took the longest was sending the article back and forth to the three ladies to make sure I had their ‘voice’ correct!
Approval was granted and I submitted the article to JUST. ONE. MAGAZINE – American Quilter. No rhyme or reason for choosing that magazine and no rhyme or reason as to why I didn’t submit it to more than one publication. I just did what I felt was right.
The magazine’s submission page says it takes about a month for approval or rejection. Frankly, after a month, I didn’t think about it – didn’t cross my mind again. UNTIL. And that is a huge UNTIL because I DID finally think of them a couple of months later…when I received approval for them to publish my article!!! I cannot tell you how excited I was but the emotions that came through from my email to and from Nancy will be forever part of my memory. She was so excited that her mother’s memory would grace the pages of a quilt magazine, she cried. She said she pinched herself more than once, just to make sure it was real. And I felt extremely blessed that *I* was the one to help make this happen for her. For all three of my contacts, one who passed away of ovarian cancer before her voice was heard by the quilt community.
I get so very tickled when I see a new issue of American Quilter magazine show up in our mailbox! My articles in them for 2016 are all written toward a personal passion of mine. The July issue’s “Year of Giving” article focuses on “No Foster Child Left Behind.” As many of you may know, I was a foster child from the age of 11 until I turned 18. There is no better reason to jump in and make quilts for foster kids – they need them, they treasure them, they provide them with a sense of security and they are *always* cherished and loved. I pray my fellow quilters can join the cause to leave no foster child behind.
I haven’t said this enough but I am truly honored to have my articles for some lesser-known charities in each American Quilter issue in 2016. Overjoyed. Blessed. Humbled. And not just my voice heard but the voices of all of those who represent the work that they do for others.
In the May 2016 issue of American Quilter, I am the voice for our four legged critters. Cats. Dogs. Pets. They deserve love as they love us so unconditionally. My reward? A ton of wet slobbery moochies from our two family canines. They deserve belly scratchies, for sure!
As part of my American Quilter “A Year of Giving” series of articles throughout AQ’s 2016 magazines, I have had the distinct pleasure of communicating with some wonderful quilters about the charities they represent. I have also been humbled when those charities ask *me* for a contribution toward drawing in more quilters by designing quilt blocks for their volunteers.
My March 2016 article focused on “Quilting for Multiple Sclerosis.” While I have vowed that I will not speak of the struggles I (and my family) have faced personally from my MS, it still remains a subject that is near and dear to my heart. And definitely worthy of my time to pursue as a charity.
For my “Quilt Blocks for MS” (a Facebook Group) contribution, I designed a quilt block using my own Sew n’Slash™ quilt method to make my “MS Pillars of Strength” quilt blocks. Orange is the predominant color because that is the color associated with MS. But purple and green are also colors we associate with MS so those were the three main colors I stuck with for my quilt blocks.
MS Pillars of Strength Quilt Block
MS Pillars of Strength Quilt Block
You can download my free pattern for this quilt block by clicking on either one of the photographs above.