What I’m Grateful for this Thanksgiving

This week is a personal favorite—on Thursday, it’s a family day and a break from the moving chaos I’ve had—still buried in boxes and fingers crossed … the turkey gods have hinted that I may have a bathroom with the master bedroom before the weekend is over! So I’m grateful for Ventura and Rufijio as they help with moving massive amount of boxes between painting, putting cupboards up, knocking out walls and rebuilding our new home to our needs and specs–everything is being altered! Not a room has been untouched.



We have games, football, family, and food. For me, I have the Macy’s Parade in the background for the kid in me and the National Day Show, wondering “which one” will get the grand prize—I don’t own a dog now, but I love those sassy pooches as they parade around.

I’m grateful for the freedom we all have and too often assume it’s ours– in my home hangs an oil painting of  a still life of flowers; a gift on my 50th birthday from a dear friend, Nicole Schapiro and her mother. As a pass it several times a day, it’s a reminder of our freedom. I have no idea what the value of the art … yet the story of is one that should never go silent. WW II … It was stolen by the Nazis from her home: Nicole’s parents were taken to the concentration camps; infant Nicole was rescued by a nun and taken to a convent. The family’s art disappeared. Her father died, her mother survived and eventually was reconnected with her young daughter. Some of the art was brought back to the family. Both Nicole and her mother knew how I loved flowers. On my 50th, Nicole came to dinner with a brown wrapped item. Within it was what now hangs in my home for all to see.

monumentmenAs I unwrapped it, in awe followed with tears as Nicole said, “We wanted you to have this. The Nazis took everything, this is one of the pieces we recovered. In the lower left corner is a blacked out section. Underneath it is the name of the artist that the Nazis covered and painted in another name on the right side (it reads Drew). You can take this to a restorer and have the name removed to find out who the artist is if you like.”

I listened to her words and immediately knew that I would never do that. I have no idea if there is a monetary value to the piece. What I do know is that it is priceless and I’m eternally grateful for Nicole and her mother for this extraordinary gift that I think of each day. And an everyday reminder that Nazism was not long ago. Be grateful for your freedom to do what you do … it … can … be … lost.

I’m grateful for all the wonderful publishing colleagues I get to work with every day; for the fantastic guests that appear on my podcasts; for the daily support I get from two amazing virtual assistants: Kelly Johnson and Leah Dasalla; and definitely the fun that I have every Author Mentoring Monday with Michele DeFlippo and the many authors who call in.

I’m grateful for wonderful friends who were there when I so needed help in this massive move that we undertook last month.—HUGE thanks to Andi Philipps and her drop ins with food and muscles to carry boxes that my broken arm can’t do and to her Mom, who helped put goodies into our file cabinets that were finally in place; to Susie Scott who came two days in one week and started the conference room clearance; to Bobbi Boldon who rolled up her sleeves, lined up bottles of water, and started the physical push around of furniture in an attempt to start turning chaos into a home; to Ron Beach who cheerfully hauled boxes and even showered off dusty plants—ready for the move; to Andrew and Susan Planck who dug in and packed up much of my kitchen; to Mara Purl who attacked the library and the dishes I had hidden in the cupboards below many books; to her hubby Larry Norfleet getting ready for knee replacement surgery yet managing to pick up lunch for all on Sunday and then set up a sitting area at the new, being gutted home for us to relax for a few minutes; to Peggi Ireland who carefully wrapped up the china hutch and then arrived to start putting books out in the newly completed conference room; to Jill Christensen and Lori Hanson and who showed up on a Sunday ready to pack and all things that weren’t attached—Jill’s a master at ladder climbing and pulling everything down. Friend Derrick Laughlin showed up two evenings after work to bring boxes in before we had the first snow. Jake Williams arranged for a discount at Macy’s for our awesome new sofas–perfect for the “good room”. My daughter Shelley Briles was awesome in showing up to a variety of times and she and other daughter Sheryl Thomson put together the new kitchen chairs to my delighted surprise when I came home my evening.


I’m grateful for the relationship I have with my kids—that my youngest daughter Sheryl made it through her health crisis that took me to Mexico at the drop of a text and for John mending from a fluke accident three weeks later when a worker fell on top of him, breaking his back; I’m grateful that I can work with hubby John all day and actually like to sit down over dinner with him in the evening; I’m grateful for the silly TV shows I allow myself to indulge in once in a while; I’m grateful to the many clients and authors that I’ve had the pleasure to touch since my first book was published in 1981; I’m not grateful for the fall I took last September, breaking my right upper arm in three areas but I am grateful I can now sleep in my own bed and finally take a shower–I am healing.

AND, I’m grateful for all of YOU.

We are living in a bit of chaos right now … it will end and we will have a beautiful new home and neighborhood. It’s been the year of the slough … old things, old ways, old strategies, old skin are falling away, with new promises and new skin forming. Good things.

treat1For a very SPECIAL treat here’s a short video (2 minutes) that makes me smile everything time I think of Buster the dog … you will too! I promise:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sr6lr_VRsEo




   Wishing you a wonderful day with your family and friends,   

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Ashography Event Photography

Judith Briles is a book publishing expert and coach. She empowers authors and is the Founder of Author U, a membership organization created for the serious author who wants to be seriously successful. She’s been writing about and conducting workshops on publishing since the 80s. Judith is the author of 35 books including Author YOU: Creating and Building Your Author and Book Platforms (ForeWord IndieFab Book of the Year), Snappy Sassy Salty: Wise Words for Authors and Writers and a speaker at publishing conferences. Book #35 was published this fall: The How to Avoid 101 Book Publishing Blunders, Bloopers & Boo-Boos. Get your copy now.

Each summer, she holds Judith Briles Book Publishing Unplugged, a three-day intensive limited to a small group of authors who want to be seriously successful. In 2017, the dates are June 22-24th.  Her audio and workbook series, Creating Your Book and Author Platform is now available. Join Judith live on Thursdays at 6 p.m. EST for “AuthorU – Your Guide to Book Publishing” on the Toginet Network at bit.ly/PublishingShow .

Follow @AuthorU and @MyBookShepherd on Twitter and do a “Like” at AuthorU and Judith Briles – TheBookShepherd on Facebook. If you want to create a book that has no regrets, contact Judith at Judith@Briles.com.

header-logo1.pngAuthor U is a non-profit membership organization dedicated to the author who wants to be seriously successful. Monthly education programs delivered face-to-face and online, The Author Resource ezine, BookCamps and the annual Author U Extravaganza are tools designed for authors pre, during and post publishing of their books. Join AuthorU.org today.

 If you are looking for FREE author and book coaching … call in to Judith’s Author Monday Mornings at NOON Eastern each Monday. The number is 218-632-9854; Access Code 1239874444 … have your questions ready–there’s a full hour to ask and listen



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