I have a predicament of sorts: I would like to publish an academic book on exemplar texts and arts integration using the Common Core State Standards. So what is the problem, you may ask? Well, the market for educational academic texts is currently cornered by, well, academics. That’s right, in order to find a reputable publisher in the educational realm, you need that omnipotent doctoral degree. I happen to be one degree short, as I only possess a master’s degree. I have seriously researched doctoral programs, only to discover that: 1) They carry a hefty expense, and 2) I have no desire to go into school administration, so the expense would not pay off in the end. Blessed be the excellent and hardworking school administrators, but I am a proud librarian.
So what’s a librarian to do?
My husband has suggested that I write children’s books. This would be a fabulous idea, if the children’s book publishing market was not in the state of decline which it is currently. Your odds of having your children’s book published may, in fact, be less likely than being struck by lightning or winning the lottery jackpot. So that’s a no.
The last type of book that I would be interested in writing is of the creative nonfiction genre. That’s right, a personal narrative. My first thought was, “Who on earth would want to read a book about my life?” I’m a wife, librarian, scrapbooker, reader, teacher, daughter, and friend. All of these topics have been written on a thousand times over. So those are out.
Yet, hold that thought, the one topic that I have been searching for several months to find guidance and personal advice/information/relief is quite scarce. That is, the conversion to Reform Judaism. Firsthand accounts are rare, except for a spattering of blog posts and titles concerning conversion after marrying a Jewish spouse. But what about a firsthand account of coming to Judaism, meeting/coming into a congregation, practicing Judaism in an overwhelmingly Christian South, and the list goes on and on? Even if published anonymously, this type of text would be a great respite to those beginning their journeys or seeking to connect their experiences with that of another layperson.
So, here I am. I’ve already written my chapter headings and have so many things to say. I believe this book will flow from me easily, and, hopefully, help my fellow converts who feel called to Judaism. I hope it is an inspiring text, an honest, raw, and spiritual text that lets others know that they are not alone.
And so I begin to write…