Monday, April 15, 2013

Indoor Plant Décor Goes Live!

Today is the day. The major project that co-writer and friend Jenny Peterson and I undertook last May is out there in the world.

Indoor Plant Décor is available on Amazon and Barnes & Noble.

When we began our quest to write a book together, we knew very little about the process. We talked with a couple of publishers who wanted us to write, but they both wanted us to write about something different. But we had a goal in mind and we were elated when Paul Kelly, owner of St. Lynn's Press said yes.

After a lot of phone time and much discussion on the direction our book would take before he even offered us a contract, last May we signed on to do it.  At the exact same time we began writing our book, Jenny discovered she had breast cancer.

There was a lot of contemplation about what to do - should we put off writing the book or should we go ahead with it?  What was best for everyone? I wanted to do what was best for Jenny, and Paul was supportive of whatever we decided, so when Jenny determined that she could - she would - do this, it was on.

That doesn't mean it was easy. We both had some physical issues that not only occurred at the same time, but they came at a crucial time in the book writing process. Add a week without power and shuffling from one offspring's home to another to stay cool in the 100-degree heat of July while trying to secure and upload photos to meet a deadline and things got a little scrappy there for a bit.

But with that part over with, and the rest of the book before us, it was Jenny that had to persevere through chemo and radiation, all the way up to the end of December, when we were submitting our final material. I'm here to tell you right now, I'm pretty sure I could not have done what she did, let alone do it as well as she did it.

To say she was inspirational leaves a lot unsaid. I saw the scars. I was there during some of the tearful times - the ones that she wanted the world to know happened, but didn't particularly want them to see.  She didn't want people to think she was Wonder Woman, but she didn't think they necessarily wanted to see the not-so-nice part of it all either. In the end, what we all saw was a beautiful soul who handled what life dealt her with grace.

Today Jenny is cancer-free and one of my closest friends.  When I first took a look at the finished Indoor Plant Décor, I saw a nice-enough looking book.  I'm uncomfortable saying I'm proud of anything I've done, but I am proud of it, and not for the reasons you might think.

When I look through its pages, see the photos, and read the words, I see all the months of phone calls, personal visits, the shared laughter, anguish, and yes, tears.  I see two friends who now share this special kind of bond, represented to the world as a book about houseplants, but that will always be so much more to the two authors who wrote it.

Jenny and me, at the Bailey Nurseries photo booth in Tucson, Ariz,
while attending the Garden Writers Association annual meeting in October 2012.


Preppy Pink Crocodile said...

Congratulations! What a wonderful accomplishment!


Pam/Digging said...

Beautifully expressed, Kylee. Congrats to both of you on your achievement, and especially to Jenny on persevering through a very difficult time with such grace and courage. You should be proud of what you've both accomplished!

Mary Anne said...

Congratulations to both of you! I agree, what an accomplishment.

Louise said...

I'm so excited about the new book that you girls have done. So nice to see these simple little garden girls being recognized for their hard work writing about what they love. I'm glad that I could be a small part of it.

JennyP said...

Thank you, Kylee! I couldn't imagine going through this without you--we had so much fun with our shenanigans, and it was also very moving to share the more difficult times with you as well. I love you like a sister--and I'm proud of our book! Cheers!

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