Uncomfortably Numb — my medical memoir about the life-altering impact of a multiple sclerosis diagnosis — has been transformed into an audiobook.
I can’t tell you how odd it is to have this intensely personal story about my health and ultimate MS diagnosis, which occurred months after my 65-year-old mother died from a fast-moving cancer, read aloud by somebody else.
When I was first approached about having the memoir professionally narrated, I was excited but also concerned. How could anyone possibly use the emphasis I intended, the specific tone of voice that was in my head when I wrote those words, I wondered.
Well, in the trusted hands of narrator Erin deWard, I fret no longer.
Pioneer Valley Radio’s Bernadette Duncan recently interviewed me about all things Mr. Clark’s Big Band. We discussed how I was inspired to write the book, what the research process was like and about the reception it has received from the community:
“Her book is a touching real life story of pain, courage, friendship and growing up that chronicles the feelings and lives of the young members of a middle school music band who had to cope with the unexpected death due to illness of one of their classmates and bandmates. Bernadette Duncan interviews Westfield-born writer and journalist Meredith O’Brien who will be at Bay Path University’s Writers’ Day on October 15th discussing her latest book Mr. Clark’s Big Band: A Year of Laughter, Tears and Jazz in a Middle School Band Room (Wyatt-MacKenzie Publishing, May 2017).”
I’ll be helping to celebrate the magic of music by signing copies of Mr. Clark’s Big Band before and after performances by Brass Venture, the brass ensemble featuring Jamie Clark, the music teacher (Mr. Clark) featured in the book.
Brass Venture is slated to perform on Wednesday, July 5 at 8 p.m. at the Bar Harbor Congregational Church, 29 Mount Desert Street, Bar Harbor, Maine. The group will be playing music by Aaron Copland, Leonard Bernstein, Alan Hovhaness, and John Philip Sousa, as well as premiering a piece by Jeffrey Kaufman. Brass Venture will also be participating in the Young Audience portion of the festival, performing earlier in the day on July 5 at 1 p.m. at the Bar Harbor Congregational Church.
I will be on hand at both events signing copies of Mr. Clark’s Big Band. And since Jamie Clark will be around, you could get him to sign your copy as well.