Wednesday, December 06, 2017

The Happy Sad Giveaway Project

This is the season of long nights and short days, and it is also the season of gloom in weather and spirit in Oregon.

...but rainbows help.

I've learned that I need to deliberately choose light, just to survive. Today, when the sun was shining in grand fashion and the sky was blue, I went on a walk and also sat on the porch with the sun full in my face.

I also try to choose light in my spirit. As I wrote in my column for this month, to be published on Sunday:

Giving becomes a personal form of light as well, dispelling the inner 
shadows. ...

Almost every winter, I host a giveaway online. I invite my blog readers 
to nominate people who have had a difficult year, so I can mail them a 
free book. The emails land in my inbox and I sit there in tears, reading 
of cancer, sick babies, terrible car crashes, spouses abandoning their 
families, and a dozen other incomprehensible tragedies.

A book of mine will never make everything better, but I like to think it 
will feel like a little shaft of comfort, showing that someone cares.  

Ok, so I sent that off yesterday, and in a lovely bit of timing and affirmation, I got this note today:

A little more than 4 years ago, we had just buried our 31 year old brother-in-law after he drowned and I was really struggling with knowing how to deal with the grief myself not to mention how to help our eight children. I remember so well the day your book came in the mail. It felt like a light was handed to me in the middle of a very dark tunnel. That certainly wasn't the end of the struggles but several things gave me hope-your delightful writing and the fact that someone cared about me.

I cried, of course. And decided it's for sure time to post this giveaway again.

I've decided to call this almost-annual event the Happy Sad Giveaway Project, because it is always the oddest mix of tragedy and joy.

As mentioned, I sit at the computer and weep as the emails and stories roll in, but it is glorious to know that this is a little tiny actual thing I can do, and the nominating, helpless, concerned friends can feel like they are doing something tangible as well.

It's also a way of showing my gratitude for the fact that people have been buying my new book, totally of their own volition! I always find that amazing.

This is how it works:

You write an email ( or a letter (31148 Substation Drive, Harrisburg, OR, 97446) and tell me about someone in your life who has had a rough year and who might be encouraged by a book from me. If you like, you can specify which book to send, or tell me which ones they already have.

You also tell me the person's name and address.

I reserve the right to decline. But if I feel this is a qualifying recipient, I mail them a book.

A few rules: I'll mail them only within the USA. You can nominate someone in another country only if you provide a US mailing address.

Sunlight Through Dusty Windows is not eligible.

You can't nominate yourself!

The deadline is December 20.

Also: don't count on this to arrive in time for Christmas, because I'm busy with other book orders and events, and also I use Media Mail, which is slow and unpredictable at this time of year--but also much less expensive.

A list of titles is right here

One, two, three, GO! And be blessed!


  1. Dorcas because I'm an airhead and probably am looking at the info, but when's the deadline to nominate someone?

    1. Nope, I'm the airhead! I'll go back and include it--Dec. 20.