Friday, 14 January 2022
Stella Duffy joins NOTATS book!
Happy New Year! (I basically plan to say this to anyone I haven't seen yet until roughly Valentine's Day. Maybe if I say it enough, it will come true!)
We have reached 40% of our crowdfunding target less than a month in, which is utterly thrilling. You absolute legends! Thank you so bloody much! You look incredible by the way. May all your clothes have pockets!
Second, I am delighted to say that Stella Duffy OBE (playwright, author, award-winning short story writer, comedian, yoga teacher, therapist, co-founder of Fun Palaces, queer icon, ultimate multi-hyphenate) will be writing a piece. Her blog is filled with casually wonderful pieces about her experience of infertility after chemo, and the double loss of her wife, Shelley Silas, also experiencing failed IVF. I particularly love how Stella often puts 'failed' in inverted commas. Such a loaded word, that one.
40 and Christmas jumpers
This very glamorous and heavily Lit To Hell look was taken just before I launched the book: I wore this Christmas jumper to my last meeting (second pic) with our (dreadful, unempathetic, utterly ghastly - thank goodness we only met him once) fertility clinic consultant in May 2019 after our IVF cycles 'failed' (thank you Stella!), and when we took the lovely staff boxes of Cadbury Heroes (he did *not* get one thank you) and put a picture of Rick Astley in one of the unused photo frames because if you can’t rick roll your brand new fertility clinic on your last day, having paid £5k for the privilege, I ask you when can you! I did a podcast episode about this with Nell Frizzell, author of The Panic Years, which you can listen to here.
I didn’t wear the Christmas jumper for the launch video in the end because I thought it was a bit on the nose, but I wanted you to know very clearly how grateful and thankful I am for every pledge you have made, every share or like or general supportive comment. Crowdfunding this book - and especially, collecting experiences from brilliant writers - means getting it made by the community it is being made for: and once it is, it will be there in bookshops for the next people who find themselves in hard situations, feeling hard emotions and generally wondering what the hell has happened to their lives. Thank you.
40% is also a big number for me because I turn 40 this year, and I’d be lying if I said I didn’t want to hit that milestone with this book fully funded, written, and on the way to the shelves.
I have until November - so this week, I’m making some plans and doing some maths. I recently wrote about the Pope's comments about childless people and pet owners for the Telegraph, which got a nice mention of the book in there: https://www.telegraph.co.uk/family/pets/dog-helped-cope-agony-infertility-animals-can-get-us-darkest/ (also screencapped on my Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/p/CYbIifconEQ/)
I would love to reach 50% funding by the end of January, but then I would also love to get straight out of bed in the morning without going back to sleep at least twice. If it happens, it happens! (I know, you’re just *waiting* for me to say it’s fully funded so I’ll stop talking about crowdfunding, and if you’re feeling this way, please enjoy these pictures of the small cat, Genevieve, hero of the virtual dog walk/cat chat reward, appearing at my back politely requesting dinner: the feline equivalent of raising £20,000.)
Have a wonderful weekend, and whatever you're doing, may it be fabulous.
Remembering our children
- A first-edition copy of the book, with your name in the back among the list of supporters.
- Note: we will get in touch with you if the project funds to confirm the name and tribute you would like included, and to offer guidance on space.