- Do you think Ben, at the core of his being, is a good man, or a con artist?
- Do you think there are times when it's okay to lie to loved ones, or at least, shade them from some of the harsh truths?
- If this were your birth-father, would his alcoholic / bank-robbing past prevent you from ever trusting him? What could he do to earn your trust? … and so on.
A final note that I have obtained some very interesting (and not all flattering) proof of information in his letters. I don't want to spoil the surprise, but I'll be sure to include it in the book. I am close to completing the book and hope to start submiting it to agents and publishers later this year. If you like what you've read so far, please spread the word. Perhaps a friend of a friend's cousin's stepmom's niece knows someone in publishing who would LOVE this story. :) Thanks for your support.December 24, 2005 Kids keep giving to hurricane relief... and they cannot stop! They have willed the creation of a new non-profit called "RandomKid." RandomKid's mission is to empower kids to realize the infinite value of who they are right now and their unique power to make the world a better place because of it. For an example of how we do that, be sure to check out our first RandomKid to be anointed a "RandomRockStar"! (on our website http://www.randomkid.org/) I'm telling you this, because I'm the founder... so while I fill out my "80-hours" (quoted by the federal government) worth of 501C3 paperwork and meet with potential board members, etc., my book will have to be put on pause. I can't thank you enough for all of your emails and well-wishes. I WILL finish this book one day. I can't wait for you to learn about how everything turns out! Quite a few twists and turns (including some very interesting revelations as noted below). Happy holidays to each of you! I wish you lots of Blessings in 2006! With Gratitude, Anne November 4, 2005 Wow! This kids-movement to help hurricane survivors (mentioned below) was quite a ride! We're still bringing in the numbers, and hope to be making a big announcement sometime later this month. The huge success of this movement is just another thing to add to the list of: "Would all this have happened had I not been born or adopted?" Pretty wild! P.S. You might be interested in reading others' correspondence. As part of the kids' hurricane relief movement, we had children who wanted to help shop for and write to children who survived the hurricanes. I was blessed to be able to hand-deliver these gifts and letters to children in a shelter in Baton Rouge. I helped them write back. Some of their letters are here. There are some cute pics of kids across the country who pitched in and helped here. And you may also find links to stories that ran on The Today Show, MSNBC, CNN, NPR, etc. here. October 1, 2005 I have revealed my identity to my biological family. I want to tell you more about it, but I can't right now. I am THRILLED to be working on a campaign designed by kids to empower kids to make a HUGE impact in helping hurricane survivors. Here's our website: http://www.halloweenhelpers.blogspot.com/. A ten year old in Des Moines, IA came up with a plan... and the grassroots effort has caught fire across the nation. Even the world! (We just had our first donation from Israel). We have raised over $100,000 in one week. Our goal is to raise one million dollars by November first (this all ties in to Halloween). The story is going national this week as we launch the "You've Got a Friend in Me" campaign to connect kid FUNdraisers with kids who survived Katrina and Rita and need the FUNds. I'll get back to this project in November. There are a gazillion ways you can help with this Kids' campaign: See "Help Spread the Word" , our kids' job board, and T.L.C.'s Wishlist for starters. Thank you for your continued support! September 26,2005 While my "real job" has kept me very busy, I've found some time to work a little on this book. I was thrilled by an outpouring of enthusiasm on my latest work from an International Writers group. I'm hoping to have the final touches done soon and start submitting to agents by the end of the year. We'll see. I don't want to rush it. I'm still working on confirming the wild possibility below. No news yet. Frankly just the IDEA of it is pretty unbelievable. Stay tuned! September 6, 2005 Any of my spare time this past week has been dedicated to helping Katrina victims. It is so overwhelming. So devastating. And yet, I believe each of us can make a difference. I've already found one family a place to stay. It's only one family out of thousands, but it felt good. A friend of mine and I have been organizing a variety of efforts, and it's amazing to see how quickly our little ideas have snowballed into something much bigger than ourselves. Right now I'm working with a Louisiana Colonel in charge of citizen volunteers to try to coordinate a number of my friends to come down and pitch in. When I first talked to him, I asked if he could use some man power for up to a week. He said, "Ma'am, we'll take anything we can get." Thankfully, among our group of willing helpers, is a registered nurse. On a happy note, I am thrilled that adoption e-week magazine has decided to publish another excerpt from this book-in-progress. This time, it's a poem written by Ben. Spoiler Alert: If you read the poem in the magazine, the tag at the bottem gives away something that happens in the story. Here's the link to "November Skies." August 25, 2005 I'm looking for ideas. I have been researching various charitable organizations for a while now. If this book ever takes off, I want to direct some of the proceeds to help with alcohol and drug rehabilitation programs in and out of prison. I have talked to a few groups, but haven't settled on anything yet. If you know of an organization that has a great program, please let me know. Thanks! August 1, 2005 The Internet can be a strange and wonderful thing. A published author, and mother to a whole clan of published authors (we're talking "Diagnosis Murder," "Monk," and one of her sons was recently up against Scott Turow for the L.A. Times Book of the Year!) wrote to me saying how much she loved my blog. We started emailing and developed a fast friendship. Next thing I know, I'm getting tidbits of advice from her whole family! I don't know what I did to deserve this, but as I told her, I'm glad to know her now and to call her a friend. The fact that she and her family are well-versed in the publishing business is just an added bonus! Anyway, these seasoned veterans of the writing biz have been offering me sage advice. I have some exciting changes in the works. I need to shorten some of the narrative, and get to the letters faster, among other things. They said, "We want to read your mail!" :) So while I'd like to spend time cleaning up previous posts on my blog, I need to dedicate what precious little time I have to cleaning up the actual manuscript. Therefore I probably won't have any huge new excerpts out for a little while. But you never know. :) In the meantime, you may be interested to read the comments sections on each page. There are some interesting messages and "conversations" that are developing. And here's a link to my new friend's blog: http://jancurranevents.typepad.com/jan_curran_events/. Thanks again for all of your support. Please keep those comments and questions coming! -Anne June 3, 2005 I just got back from the Book Expo America Writers' Conference. It was outstanding! I learned a lot from some of the best in the business! I was thrilled to not only hear Noah Lukeman speak, but he signed my copy of The First Five Pages (a great book, I highly recommend to writers)! As you may have noticed in the past, I had been advised to remove previous posts. But at the conference, several top people in the publishing industry suggested I put the information back up. It may take me some time to get it to where it was, because I'm thrilled to report that four agents I met with at the conference have asked me to submit Anonymous Daughter to them when it's ready. In the meantime, I hope you enjoy what is back up already. Please keep your questions and comments coming. Your feedback opens new doors of inspiration to me as I continue to write this memoir. Thanks so much for your support! A reminder: An excerpt from this book has been published in the May 10, 2005 edition of Adoption Week e-magazine. If you would like to read it, please visit Adoption Week e-magazine and see My Special Day by Anne Parker. Please feel free to email me anytime at email@example.com. I look forward to putting a positive adoption story on the bookshelves in the future.