Everybody loves a winner

May 11, 2011

And I just happen to have two on my hands.

Glowing congrats to Barry Petersen for his Silver Medal Independent Publishers Award (IPPY) and a Finalist in the International Book Awards (kinda like a silver) for Jan’s Story. Working with Barry on his edits was especially difficult because I felt like I was constantly ripping off a very soft scab. Every chapter was wrought with boxes of Kleenex – for both of us – and he couldn’t get done editing fast enough. But I was a perfectionist, and because I loved this book so much, I kept hammering away until I felt it was ready. I’m sure he was ready to kill me.

But the hard work was worth it. He’s a Denver Post bestseller, and now he’s an award-winning author.  I couldn’t be happier (or prouder) if I was twins.

Kim Michele Richardson’s book, The Unbreakable Child, also won a Finalist (silver) at the International Book Awards. Kim’s book has special meaning for me because I had made promises that I couldn’t keep due to the ineffective, pathetic, scandalous treachery of our former “distributor.”

After everything that Kim had already been through with her life, and then the implosion of her first publisher, I wanted nothing more than for Kim to feel safe, that she had a forever home with us. When our “distributor” screwed us over, my heart bled for Kim. She didn’t deserve this. We were damned if we were going to let her suffer any further. We got one of the best distributors in the country, and just this past week, got the chance to blab our hearts out to our sales reps in New York about what a fabulous books TUC is, and to make this backlist title a priority.

At long last, Kim will have what she deserves. And now, she can add award-winning author to her bio. Brava, Kim. I’m proud to know you and be a part of this worthy project. There is no book like TUC because this is about, not only Kim’s horrific life, but the first-ever monetary settlement paid by Roman Catholic nuns in the US as compensation for decades of institutional abuse at an orphanage. The icing on the cake is her open letter to the Pope and the ensuing reply.

Whenever one of our authors win awards or fabulous reviews, I always feel a warm spot in my heart, and remember the long journey from manuscript to blessed finished book. In some ways I feel like a momma bird, watching her babies find their wings and take to the air. Only then can I sit back in my nest and say, “Oh hell yes…we did it.”

God, I love this biz.

Pope Convenes Cardinals On Response to Sex Abuse

November 11, 2010

It’s been a whacked out couple of days. Yesterday saw the triumph over evil when Amazon did the right thing and removed Mr. Pedophile’s sick book from their cyber shelves. Long live an outraged consumer.

That said, I read the headlines in the newspaper the other day, and it made me think long and hard about responsibility – owning up to doing the wrong thing and taking the proper steps to make it right. What I read felt more like the Pope embroiled in a CYOA move (Cover Your Own Ass) than accepting his role in covering up sex abuse within the Church.

It bothered me a great deal because I’ve lived up close and personal with Kim Michele Richardson and her amazing story of triumph and forgiveness for the decade of abuse she suffered – beginning at infancy – at the hands of the clergy and nuns of her Kentucky orphanage. Kim’s personal coup of success and joy is her revenge.

I wanted to get Kim’s feelings on this article because no one knows this world better than this beautiful, articulate woman.

Apology, Action and Accountability.
by Kim Michele Richardson

Pope Benedict XVI worldwide meeting of cardinals to discuss the Vatican’s response to sexually abusive clergy. Anytime a serious global topic such as clergy child abuse can be brought out into the open it becomes a positive step.

Pope Benedict XVI needs to set the stage by first disclosing and revealing his own records with abuse and cover up cases before he was promoted to pope. And, Barbara Blaine, president of SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests, says it best here:

“Before any hopes get raised, let’s remember that it’s likely that every man in the room next week has ignored and concealed clergy sex crimes or is doing so right now. The prospects of substantial reform happening next week are therefore pretty slim.”

If  justice is to be met and satisfied and the Roman Catholic Church is to begin the long-needed healing process for thousands and thousands of victims and survivors globally, the Church must also invite government officials, prosecutors and law enforcement officials into these meetings. Men that concealed these most heinous crimes and those involved in silencing the victims of abuse should not be allowed to solve and absolve alone. Because equally, as bad as the perpetrators — the nuns and priests who raped and robbed innocent children, and who’ve left them forever locked in tormented childhoods, are those who hid and allowed decades of predatory Catholic Clergy abuse.

Long overdue is our own government’s involvement on the national level. Throughout the years since the historical Boston and Kentucky Catholic clergy abuse cases, news media have reported on many more abuse cases throughout the US. Now is the time for the US government to form a commission that would investigate and study the entire scope of the tragic American clergy abuse cases, more importantly the most horrendous of clergy abuses crimes which were perpetrated against those without family or protection – United States orphans. This much-needed study would reveal the magnitude of the problems and the countless numbers who have been victimized along with exposing the many predator clergy. Further insuring the safety of vulnerable children. We as a society know that the strongest weapon against child abuse is to arm ourselves with information and education.

Our country has just gone through an election process. And numerous times we’ve heard US citizens say they wanted a more open and transparent government. Just as Americans want and deserve a more open and transparent government, victims of clergy abuse around the world want and deserve the Church’s hierarchy to finally become more open and transparent concerning the identities of predator priests and nuns. These should include those criminally convicted in courts, had lawsuits brought against them, or were just moved from one jurisdiction to another because of sexual abuse allegations.

And just as each state in the US has created their own convicted sex offender registries which list those convicted in their respective state, the Church’s hierarchy should also create a list of all convicted or suspected predator priests/nuns for each country in the world.

The Roman Catholic Church needs to let the world know the mistakes they’ve made. And to be able to show they are trying to right a wrong, they then need to re-affirm the steps they have taken and policies they’ve put in place.

Survivors of clergy abuse live with devastating and debilitating emotional scars throughout their lives, it is only fair that the Church also live with emotional scars by providing a list of every suspected predator clergy in the world both current and past. And while the central theme of my book, The Unbreakable Child is forgiveness, forgiveness is not justice, nor excuse or exoneration; it is a process toward moving forward and to heal – just as every child who has ever suffered in silence and self blame deserves and should be allowed to heal and be protected against further clergy abuse. This begins with the Church disclosing and revealing.

I am a survivor of clergy abuse. Abandoned to a Catholic orphanage as an infant, for nearly a decade I, along with countless were exposed to unspeakable abuses by Catholic nuns and a Catholic priest. For decades the Roman Catholic Church abandoned true Christian values and subjected myself and others to unspeakable horrors.

I’ve worked with and have spoken to countless clergy abuse survivors, and with each one I hear the same sentiment: What is needed from the Roman Catholic Church is apology, action and accountability. Certainly not excuses. … Like the letter sent to me from the US Embassy to the Holy See, which is documented in The Unbreakable Child’s new edition.


Kim Michele Richardson is the author of The Unbreakable Child, the first book of its kind in the US mainstream publishing world which confronts the brutal abuse inflicted on countless US orphans by a Roman Catholic priest and nun, and which also mirrors and bookends the endemic Irish tragedies. The Unbreakable Child documents the first US court awarded justice where Kim and former orphans won a settlement from a Roman Catholic order of nuns, arising from decades of institutionalized abuse in a US Roman Catholic orphanage. The Unbreakable Child is on the cutting edge for speaking out on what is now a Humanity Crisis with the Catholic clergy, and a very important part of history – so that history does not repeat itself.

To see Kim’s request for Apology and Accountability, please visit her Huffington Post article

Go, go, go Kim Michele Richardson

November 3, 2010

There is a wonderful review of The Unbreakable Child over at Story Circle Book Reviews.




Happy sigh.

Congrats to Kim Michele Richardson

October 15, 2010

Yesterday was Kim’s launch day for The Unbreakable Child, and Carmichael’s was so kind to show off Louisville’s newest literary star. Go. Buy. Read. Learn. Appreciate.

Kim Michele Richardson – The Unbreakable Child

October 11, 2010

Kim Michele Richardson had a fabulous interview on Oct. 9. Watch. Learn. Listen. Buy.

Happy Launch Day, Kim Michele Richardson

October 1, 2010

Happy Launch Day to a beautiful woman! Kim, you are an inspiration to many who are still struggling with issues of forgiveness and being stuck in the past.

You and your book blow my doors off.

Wahh…totally unfair

September 23, 2010

I normally love being a West Coastie, except when I have an author who’s an East Coastie and lives closer to my printer than I do. Reason being is that they get their books before I do. So I’m left with wailing like a two-year-old at not being able to see the final print run while my author and our distributor get to wag their tongues at me.

Kim tells me the final print run is lovely. I don’t get the run delivered to us until Monday.

Le sigh.

Beagle, fire up the blender so I can drown my sorrows.

Kim Michele Richardson – The Unbreakable Child – in HuffPo

September 20, 2010

The Huffington Post has a powerful message from Kim to the pope. Wow.

Go. Read.

And this is why I lurve this biz

September 18, 2010

Big huzzah to brilliant author Kim Michele Richardson on her fabulous Courier Journal review of The Unbreakable Child, which comes out October 1.

For you Kindle lovahs, you can buy your copy now. This book is utterly unputdownable.

A warm and hearty welcome to Kim Michele Richardson

June 13, 2010

When Kim Richardson’s lovely agent contacted me about her story, The Unbreakable Child, I was prepared to reject it. I really wanted to because it went against everything I don’t do – child abuse and previously published books.

Stories of child abuse tears my blackened, shriveled heart clean out of its housing. I can’t imagine the sick and twisted depravity required to brutalize an innocent child, let alone a whole orphanage. Sorry, but I believe child abusers should be put to death – the more painfully done, the better. There is no middle ground for me, and I remain unapologetic for my views. I don’t care what kind of childhood they had, nor do I care that they’re “misunderstood.” They’ve ripped the innocence from a child in the most heinous and atrocious manner. It’s the reason I don’t do abuse books. I have absolutely no objectivity.

“Yah,” sez l’ agent extraordinaire, “I know all that. Shaddap and read it.” As one who usually does as she’s told when uttered from agents she respects, I dropped what I was doing and read it.

Holy. Good. Jumpin’. Frogtails.

My heart exploded and rested on my sleeve for the duration. Kim was one of many orphans who were subjected to unspeakable abuse at the Sisters of Charity of Nazareth at the St. Thomas/St. Vincent Orphanage in rural Kentucky. Her story goes back and forth between her time in the orphanage and the resulting class action lawsuit nearly forty years later. Kim’s journey is nothing short of incredible, amazing, unbelievable, and heroic.

Heroic, you ask? Oh yeah. While many buckled under the weight of what befell them by those twisted carrion who hid behind their rosaries, Kim stood resolute and knew that her soul would never be broken. She stood strong and managed to accomplish the improbable:  She survived and thrived. And forgave.

What impressed me about Kim’s book is that it isn’t an angry book. It’s a book about forgiving the unforgivable. It’s about redemption.

As much as I didn’t want to read this book, there was something about it that kept calling to me. Every lunch break I took, I found myself curiously eager to whip out my Kindle and read more pages. My lunch breaks got longer and longer, which irritated the beagle because it forced her to cover the phones. I can’t explain the power this book had over me.

I finished and knew I had to have it. This book is HUGE and vitally important – especially in light of the fact that the lawyer who successfully prosecuted the orphanage is the very one who is suing the Vatican. Survivors need to know that this horrendous blemish on the Catholic Church isn’t going to go away – no matter how long the Pope dodges issuing a proper apology to those who suffered for so long.

So I did a very uncharacteristic thing. I changed my mind. I called and insisted that the agent was right – this belongs with us.

So, a warm and hearty welcome, Kim. You’re a brave, beautiful, brilliant woman who has one hell of a story. I’m only too honored to be a part of it, and I bow before your amazing life. I know, sounds schlocky, but it’s true. What you’ve been through is the stuff nightmares are made of, yet you punched out on the other side. This is a big inspiration to those who feel they’re still drowning.

I’m honored to be your  forever home for your amazing book – which is due out in October.

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