Skip to main content

Help a Writer in Need

I know it's been a long time since I wrote on this blog, but I wanted to come back 'live' to post about a writer who really needs our help.

Lori Hall Steele is a freelance writer. She has had a long and flourishing career -- in fact, you can read one of her essays published in the Washington Post by clicking here. Read that essay first, then continue on.

In September 2007, Lori lost the ability to move her feet. The paralysis then spread to her arms and legs, and she was eventually confined to a wheelchair. Then she could no longer move her hands, which meant that she could no longer work. Freelancing is how she supported herself and her seven-year-old son, Jackson.

You can guess that the story does not improve from here. She's now confined to a hospital bed and depends on a Bi-Pap breathing machine, and doctors surmise that the cause is ALS (Lou Gehrig's Disease). Her medical bills -- which the insurance company says are not their responsibility -- are already at $50,000, and are expected to go up to $120,000. She is days away from foreclosure.

Lori is a member of Freelance Success, a writing group that is the main reason I am sitting here in my home, a successful, published writer. We're a very tight knit writing community, even if we live all over the world. All of us who have blogs are writing about Lori because she needs help. The American Society of Journalists and Authors, of which Lori is also a member, has already maxed out on how much we can give her from the organization's fund for writers in need. So if you have any change to spare, please click on this link and donate what you can via paypal. Everyone in our organization is giving at least $25. If we can all get one more person to donate to the fund, we'll help out a wonderful person and writer, and her son.

Comments

Tommie Jo said…
That is sad news. I just got laid off or I would surely pitch in.
Congratulations on your book! Is there any advice you can pass on to an aspiring writer on getting published? Thanks!

Popular posts from this blog

Book 12 of 52: Persepolis: The Story of a Childhood by Marjane Satrapi

Marjane Satrapi is an author and graphic novelist who grew up in Iran and, as a tween and teen, lived in the country through  the Iranian Revolution before her parents sent her to Europe for school, and for her safety.  As an adult, she wrote Persepolis: The Story of a Childhood ,  a nonfiction graphic novel, originally in French. I read the English translation, which was published in 2003, three years after the original. It was a critical success, won a slew of awards, and became a movie . I haven't read the sequel, Persepolis 2 , but I hope to (you can also  buy them in a set . I found Persepolis  in a Little Free Library, or I'd have bought them combined).  In the tradition of Art Spiegelman's  Maus , which is about the author's father talking to him about the Holocaust,  Persepolis  is a memoir of trauma told through a mix of images and words that when combined, combust into powerful, beautiful and soul cracking art.  For example, Satrapi portrays the 1978 Cinema R

Book 11 of 52: The World Without Us by Alan Weisman

In my travels, I've accumulated photos in what I call the "Plants Where They Shouldn't Be" series. They're of weeds, flowers and trees growing in places that look uncomfortable: poking out of lava that's OK to walk on but warm enough to generate steam, growing around a mile marker on the road, sprouting on the back of a parking sign - that kind of thing. On the cheesy side, they're reminders that we can flourish in the most unlikely circumstances. On a more realistic end, they show that humans are constantly battling back nature, and that someday we'll probably lose the fight. I thought about those photos when I read  book 8 of 52 Station Eleven  (and watched  the HBO Max adaptation ), which show a world without 99.99 percent of our current human population. The story focuses on people, of course, but set them in a world where the things humans have created - electricity, internet, buildings, bridges, roads - are being taken back by nature. A Jersey Sh

Book 16 of 52: Meditation for Fidgety Skeptics by Dan Harris

I have generalized anxiety disorder and, on and off, dance with depression. I have done a lot of work to be able to not just function but live a full and rewarding life, including but not limited to therapy, medication, and running for hours at a time . However, in early 2020, COVID broke over those dams. I write about science and medicine, and I had panic attacks while interviewing doctors. That early March, I screamed at my dad to not get on a plane to Texas, and for my mom give up her tickets for the Philadelphia Flower Show - and then catastrophized when they did those things anyway. My friend said that I was a Casandra: shouting about the terror to come with no one believing me, until it was already here. In a gasp to find some relief, I tried meditation, first through the Calm app , and then Dan Harris book, 10% Happier: How I Tamed the Voice in My Head, Reduced Stress without Losing My Edge, and Found Self Help that Actually Works   (quite a subtitle). I would sit at my dining r