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Tuesday, July 19, 2016

#TuesdayTreasures Guest Post by Katherine Fleet!

Good Morning Friends,

You may recognize our guest, Katherine Fleet, today as she shared some thoughts with us on June 16th and we spotlighted her book on May 28th. This time Katherine is sharing something she treasures with us!

Hi everyone! I’m so excited to be here today on Pam’s site. My debut YA, The Secret to Letting Go, from Entangled Teen, is about family and community and what it takes to really feel like you belong. So for Tuesday Treasures, I picked something that reminded me of my family and my roots – a computer memory stick I recently received from my dad. It may seem like an odd thing to treasure, but if there was a fire, it’s one of the first things I’d grab. Why?

Over the winter, my dad spent many, many hours scanning ALL of our old family pictures and slides, including the black and white pictures from when he was a boy. He scanned over five thousand images and labelled them all with dates and names of people in the photographs. This was a pretty impressive feat for a man in his late seventies with very limited computer skills!

When he finally finished, I shared them with my husband and kids for the very first time. It was an amazing experience to see these pictures again and even more special to provide my kids with this glimpse into my family. The photos reminded me of what a great childhood I had and, like a time machine, they brought back memories of days and trips I’d long forgotten about. Some of the images were grainy or scratched, but it didn’t diminish their impact or importance.

It also made me realize how nostalgic I’d become about my past. When I was a kid, I was always looking forward. Somewhere along the way, I’ve started to place more value on looking back.

In The Secret to Letting Go, the main character, Clover, loses all her pictures and personal belongings in a hurricane:

The thought of Mama’s typewriter and my books, pictures, and writing buried in mud, cut through me like an ax. A part of me, that part anchored to Mama and the only good memories I had, had been hacked away. It hurt so much to think of it even my teeth ached. I wrapped my arms around my belly and swallowed back the bitter taste. I knew I should be thankful. Caesar and I were safe, but hadn’t I already lost more than my share?

The hero, Daniel, tries to comfort her with the adage that belongings can always be replaced, but people can’t.

Yet, some belongings can’t be replaced – especially those with sentimental value, and I see that the older I become, the more value I place on sentiment. I know I should try to live fully in the present moment, but it’s hard to ignore the pull of the past…

I’d love to hear your thoughts. Are you the sentimental type? Are there things that remind you of your past, that you can’t imagine living without? Thanks again to Pam for hosting me and thanks for reading. 

You are SO right, Katherine, that is definitely something to treasure!

Originally from Newfoundland, Katherine Fleet gave up the cold winters of Eastern Canada for the year round warmth of the Caribbean. The slower pace of island life has given her time to pursue a long-time goal—becoming an author. When she’s not writing, she spends her time baking, chauffeuring her three amazing, talented kids around, and having sun-filled adventures with her husband and wonderful friends in Curaçao. 

She is also a very thankful breast cancer survivor. In 2007, she joined RWA and has enjoyed the support and camaraderie of the YARWA and OIRWA writing communities. She’s participated in NaNoWriMo since 2012 and is an active supporter of the associated Young Writers Program. 

Katherine writes Young/New Adult fiction. She is represented by super-agent Carrie Pestritto of Prospect Agency. The Secret to Letting Go is her debut novel. You can connect with her at her Website (be sure and sign up for her newsletter!)Also be sure to like/follow/etc Katherine on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and Good Reads. 

Purchase The Secret to Letting go at Amazon, B&NITunesKoboAmazon UKAmazon CA and directly from the publisher.

I hope you enjoyed today's treasure as much as I did and I certainly hope to see you each week for Tuesday Treasures, Thursday Thoughts and Saturday Spotlight.

Until next time, take care and God bless.


Ashantay said...

Congrats on your debut novel! Wow! The paragraph you shared displays a beautiful writing style, as does your post Per your question- I never consider myself sentimental until I go through my closets and storage bins and have difficulty even thinking about letting family stuff go. And I've got things I've been dragging around, move after move for over thirty years! Even my mother tells me she doesn't know why I've kept what I have. LOL.

Susan Coryell said...

There's something about aging that leads to nostalgia, I think. We recently converted all our videos and home movies to digital so they can be easily shared with our growing family. Especially precious is footage involving family members who have passed away. Thanks for a thoughtful post and good luck with your new book!

M.J. Schiller, Romance Author said...

Nice post! Nostalgia definitely has its place, but there is something to be said for simplicity and lack of clutter, too. (This coming from the woman with ten large Rubbermaid containers with Christmas decorations. Two for Halloween!) My triplets went to college this fall, though, and we've been going through rooms and scaling down and I have to say, it feels and looks good. So much junk we have, and when it's six people under one roof it is all the more worse! Thanks for sharing and best wishes for THE SECRET TO LETTING GO!

H.A. Fowler said...

Congratulations on your book!

I'm very nostalgic myself. Your post reminds me: my mom has never been much for the digital age, so our family pictures are in boxes and boxes stashed here and there all over the house. I need to start scanning them.

My own pictures before the turn of the century are all in albums as well. But if there was a fire, I could at least grab my laptop, which has all of my more recent photos in digital form.

Cat, laptop. The two most important things in my house! :)

marilyn leach said...

It does seem times were simpler back then. There's no harm in enjoying the good that can be derived from shuffling through memories. It can even light up the present. Cheers

Alicia Dean said...

Oh my gosh, a treasure indeed! I would love to have something like that. If I ever get time...hahahaha...I'll try to do that too. Your book sounds wonderful!

Katherine Fleet said...

Hi Ashantay, thanks so much for dropping by and for the kind words on my book! I know what you mean about dragging things around. We moved from Canada to the Caribbean and left a bunch of stuff in my mom's basement. After almost ten years, she is anxious to be rid of it, but I keep telling her to hold on to it until I move back to Canada:) I just can't get rid of it yet.

Katherine Fleet said...

Hi Susan, I did the same thing. We had some video tapes that we'd made only going back for the past 12 years. When we converted them to digital, we discovered that my husband had recorded my sister's wedding. She was SO excited, because something happened to the official recording, so she thought that it was lost forever. I can only imagine how fun it would be if we'd owned a video camera even earlier!

Thanks so much for dropping by and commenting!

Katherine Fleet said...

Hi M.J., My sister is ruthless at purging the clutter. She even purges her digital photos ruthlessly:) I can't do it myself, but I am envious of her tidy living space. Sometimes it does feel like all the stuff I have around weighs me down physically. One day, I will learn to prioritize or just take pictures of all the things that I am nostalgic about and then let them go! Thanks for dropping by:)

Katherine Fleet said...

Hi H.A., That sounds like a great priority list. The funny thing is that a few years ago, I was in a hotel in Tampa. The fire alarm went off and everyone was required to evacuate. Turns out that there actually was a small fire which started in a drier. Only when I was standing out in the parking lot of the hotel that I realized I never grabbed anything (including my purse or my laptop) which would have been very easy to grab! My brain just wasn't working that day...Thanks for stopping by!

Katherine Fleet said...

Hi Marilyn, So very true:) Thanks so much for stopping by and commenting!

Katherine Fleet said...

Hi Alicia, Trust me...it's not something I would have ever had time to do. So I am very thankful that my dad tackled this mammoth task. He was so cute, because I had to spend hours on the phone with him, explaining how to cut, copy and paste files! Thanks for stopping by and for the kind words about my book:)

Carole Price said...

Your post reminded me that I have boxes of slides to be scanned. As I've aged, nostalgia has increased. Not sure when it started, but when my mother got sick I asked her to please identify the boxes of old black and white pictures. She started on it but unfortunately wasn't able to finish it before she passed on. Thank you for the reminder to take care of this.

Diane Burton said...

Congratulations on your new release. Best wishes.