When you go to Kelly Corrigan's VOICE Bio, you find what you see here. All of it is true and if you don't know who Kelly Corrigan is, this may get you started, while I may ask, "Where have you been?"
Kelly Corrigan is the author of The Middle Place, a New York Times bestseller. She is a YouTube sensation whose beloved “Transcending” video was sent woman-to-woman to more than 4 million viewers. She is also a contributor to O, The Oprah Magazine and Good Housekeeping, and is the founder of www.circusofcancer.org. She lives outside San Francisco with her husband and children.
When you go to Kelly Corrigan's personal website, you will find this about Kelly in her own words and you start to know her a little better. I also thank that website for use of some of the photos and graphics.
Some things you wouldn’t know about me from my books:
I’m working on a screenplay, a comedy about an old storybook theme park near my house. My friend, Betsy Barnes, is writing it with me and my other friend, Tammy Stedman, is consulting (she won an Oscar for a short film she produced the same year American Beauty won for Best Picture.) We’ve been at it since the summer of 2008 and some days, it seems like it’s almost finished. (Others, it feels like making beds and putting away dishes…just another thing I need to do every day.)
I love live performances of almost any kind, especially music but also lectures and readings and plays. Some favorites: Spring Awakening, American Idiot, Amos Lee, Patty Griffin, Mike Errico and listening to Anne Lamott or Marilynne Robinson read anything.
I worked in non-profits for ten years. That decade created my worldview, which goes: people are struggling; make yourself useful. My big project is Notes & Words, a series featuring musicians and writers on stage together to benefit Children’s Hospital of Oakland, where my daughter was treated for Meningitis.
I went to three great schools: Radnor High School, where Dr. Mary Anne Capa showed me what actual scholarship looks like; The University of Richmond, which was a whole lot of fun and introduced me to some of my all-time favorite people; and San Francisco State University (for a Masters in Literature) where I was humbled by 1,000 page-a-week reading assignments and floored that for $600 a semester, I could sit in weekly seminars with professors like Michael Krasny (host of KQED Forum) and Bruce Avery.
Greenie is still Greenie, glad-handing, coaching lacrosse, clicking his heels. He turns 80 on March 30 and my brothers and I are planning the mother of all parties. The fact of his survival is something I can never quite get over.
Other projects I’m a part of are:
Notes & Words, a series of events featuring musicians and writers on stage at The Fox Theater to benefit Children’s Hospital of Oakland. (If you’re local, please save May 6.)
Y Scholars, a program to help highly motivated high school students go to college.
www.circusofcancer.org a web site to teach you how to love someone through cancer
www.greatergoodparents.org a web site to help us all be more deliberate and informed parentsInteresting and perhaps you learned something new about Kelly. However, it is when you read Kelly Corrigan's books, THE MIDDLE PLACE and now LIFT that you really meet Kelly Corrigan. When you watch her videos, and I have included two of my favorites, you know her better still. I am not ashamed to say, although I have never met her and only read her books and reread her books and given them as gifts, that I respect, admire, and actually even think I love Kelly Corrigan for all that she has given to me and so many others!
I say that because her words always bring me back home. They bring me to being me and stopping and enjoying a moment in life and remembering what is really important. After you read about Kelly's books and my reviews, and hopefully win or buy copies of both, I'd be interested to see if you don't feel much the same way about this phenomenal woman. Thank you, Kelly, for all of this. Thank you, Molly, from Hyperion and VOICE, for the help and books to give away, and the chance to say something special about a very special author.
Kelly Corrigan is a natural-born storyteller, a gift you quickly recognize as her father’s legacy, and her stories are rich with everyday details. She captures the beat of an ordinary life and the tender, sometimes fractious moments that bind families together. Rueful and honest, Kelly is the prized friend who will tell you her darkest, lowest, screwiest thoughts, and then later, dance on the coffee table at your party.
Funny, yet heart-wrenching, The Middle Place is about being a parent and a child at the same time. It is about the special double-vision you get when you are standing with one foot in each place. It is about the family you make and the family you came from—and locating, navigating, and finally celebrating the place where they meet. It is about reaching for life with both hands—and finding it.
MY REVIEW OF THE MIDDLE PLACE:
THE MIDDLE PLACE is a story that Kelly Corrigan has shared with everyone who is fortunate enough to have read it. It is a story about what family means to her. The title is one that made me think as I hadn’t thought about my life in this way before. That middle place is where you are in life when you still are your parents’ child but at the same time you are a wife to your husband and mother to your child. You can easily slip into either role until something happens to change that delicate balance. In Kelly’s case, it came regrettably in the form of cancer.
With Kelly finding a lump on her breast and all that went along with it, as it did indeed turn out to be cancer, she needs to be her parents’ child and soak in the love and care she will need. However, she doesn’t realize that she will not be alone in this battle as her father also has a serious form of cancer that recurs more than once. Suddenly, Kelly and all the Corrigans find their lives in a very different place.
Although Kelly recounts the battle that she and her father shared, this isn’t really a book about cancer. Rather it is about relationships and family and particularly the special interaction between Greenie, as Kelly’s dad is known, and Kelly. Lovey, as Kelly’s mom is called, is the staunch support system for them both. Throughout the shared battle, Kelly contemplates life and focuses much of her effort on being sure her dynamic and beloved father gets the best care as she deals with her own treatment. At some point in here, the middle place shifts, as it does with us all, and the child becomes the parent.
Kelly is surely her father’s daughter as both are exceptional storytellers, and throughout the book, she also shares entertaining stories of growing up from her first boyfriends and early travels to the time she met and married her husband, from her efforts to be a success in her business and as a writer to the birth of her children. And so this treasured book about relationships and family, THE MIDDLE PLACE, shows us that bad things can happen to good people but they are still that person and still need their parents, their friends, and their family to encourage and support each other. Kelly Corrigan has done all that and more and with this book, she graciously shares it with us all.
Written as a letter to her children, Kelly Corrigan’s Lift is a tender, intimate, and robust portrait of risk and love; a touchstone for anyone who wants to live more fully. In Lift, Corrigan weaves together three true and unforgettable stories of adults willing to experience emotional hazards in exchange for the gratifications of raising children. Lift takes its name from hang gliding, a pursuit that requires flying directly into rough air, because turbulence saves a glider from “sinking out.” For Corrigan, this wisdom—that to fly requires chaotic, sometimes even violent passages—becomes a metaphor for all of life’s most meaningful endeavors, particularly the great flight that is parenting. Corrigan serves it up straight—how mundanely and fiercely her children have been loved, how close most lives occasionally come to disaster, and how often we fall short as mothers and fathers. Lift is for everyone who has been caught off guard by the pace and vulnerability of raising children, to remind us that our work is important and our time limited. Like Anne Morrow Lindbergh’s Gift from the Sea, Lift is a meditation on the complexities of a woman’s life, and like Corrigan’s memoir, The Middle Place, Lift is boisterous and generous, a book readers can’t wait to share. MY REVIEW OF LIFT: THANKS TO MOLLY AND THE GOOD FOLKS
Kelly has written a book to her daughters, Georgia and Claire, and it comes from her heart and will go straight to yours. It is written like a love letter to the girls so that they may look back at it throughout their lives and understand how it helped to make Kelly who she is as their mom and what she most wished for them as her children. It is a short book but filled with wisdom, emotions, amusement, and even sarcasm as she tells of the things she so wants for her girls and why she did some of the things she did as they were growing up. After battling cancer, Kelly has taken this on in what may be an effort to be sure that no matter what happens, her daughters will have memories to treasure when perhaps the little events while growing up are forgotten.
LIFT is filled with simple tales of wit, passion, sincerity, and emotion. With examples such as this one that I especially loved when she writes to the girls how “my default answer to everything is no.” But, then she confesses by telling them, “What you probably wouldn’t believe is how much I want to say yes.” These are the types of things that Kelly wants her daughters to know and be able to look back on. It is a marvelous idea and one that every parent, especially when they are still young enough, could do for their children.
Two important memories of Kelly’s, and for her daughters, are the ones she records about Meg and Kathy. Meg is single and the dearest and best person Kelly knows. Meg would be a great mother and Kelly tells about how she helped to make Meg aware of this and to try and fulfill the desire of being a mother even if it is a single mother. Kelly tells about what Meg went through and in the end of the book, we find out what happened. And with Kathy, a friend who lost her son Aaron in a car accident, Kelly explains how Kathy wants to talk about Aaron and keep his spirit alive because he was such a life force and deserves to be remembered for all he did. Kelly writes about Aaron so that her daughters can learn from it and “because I want you to live longer than he did.”
The title, LIFT, relates to hang gliding. When Kelly’s friends talk about the thermal lift with the turbulence that can be deadly, they go on to explain that it happens to be “the only way to get altitude”. And so, Kelly is able to share with readers that our lives will always involve risks but when we find the patches of “turbulence” we will get through it and be able to fly even higher than before.
AT HYPERION BOOKS AND VOICE, I HAVE
TWO SETS OF KELLY CORRIGAN'S BOOKS
TO GIVE AWAY. SEE HOW YOU CAN
WIN BOTH BOOKS BELOW!
--NO P. O. BOXES
---INCLUDE YOUR EMAIL ADDRESS
IN CASE YOU WIN!
--ALL COMMENTS MUST BE SEPARATE TO
COUNT AS MORE THAN ONE!
HOW TO ENTER:
+1 MORE ENTRY: COMMENT ON EITHER LIFT OR THE MIDDLE PLACE AND WHAT YOU LIKE ABOUT THE BOOK FROM WHAT YOU READ ABOVE IN THE DESCRIPTION AND/OR MY REVIEW. IF YOU WISH TO COMMENT ON BOTH BOOKS, ENTER SEPARATELY AND YOU WILL RECEIVE TWO ENTRIES!
+1 MORE ENTRY: COMMENT ON EITHER THE VIDEO OF LIFT OR THE VIDEO OF THE MIDDLE PLACE AND WHAT YOUR THOUGHTS WERE ABOUT THE VIDEO. IF YOU WISH TO COMMENT ON BOTH VIDEOS, ENTER SEPARATELY AND YOU WILL RECEIVE TWO ENTRIES!
+1 MORE ENTRY: ENTER TO WIN THE LUMBY SERIES OF BOOKS BY STARTING HERE SO YOU CAN BE SURE AND ENTER IN ALL THE REQUIRED PLACES. IF YOU HAVE ALREADY DONE THIS, STATE IT HERE OR ELSE COME BACK AND COMMENT AFTER YOU DO.
6 PM, EST, APRIL 30!
Written as a letter to her children, Kelly Corrigan’s Lift is a tender, intimate, and robust portrait of risk and love; a touchstone for anyone who wants to live more fully. In Lift, Corrigan weaves together three true and unforgettable stories of adults willing to experience emotional hazards in exchange for the gratifications of raising children.
Lift takes its name from hang gliding, a pursuit that requires flying directly into rough air, because turbulence saves a glider from “sinking out.” For Corrigan, this wisdom—that to fly requires chaotic, sometimes even violent passages—becomes a metaphor for all of life’s most meaningful endeavors, particularly the great flight that is parenting.
Corrigan serves it up straight—how mundanely and fiercely her children have been loved, how close most lives occasionally come to disaster, and how often we fall short as mothers and fathers. Lift is for everyone who has been caught off guard by the pace and vulnerability of raising children, to remind us that our work is important and our time limited.
Like Anne Morrow Lindbergh’s Gift from the Sea, Lift is a meditation on the complexities of a woman’s life, and like Corrigan’s memoir, The Middle Place, Lift is boisterous and generous, a book readers can’t wait to share.
MY REVIEW OF LIFT:
THANKS TO MOLLY AND THE GOOD FOLKS