I’m still going strong with my books. I have had the privilege and pleasure of handing out copies to veterans wherever I go. Recently, I ran into a publishing problem that gave me pause. The company I use to produce the books raised the cost significantly. They are approximately double the cost they used to be. I searched around for other companies that could publish the books for a better price but none of them had the ability to create custom text and photo boxes the way Shutterfly does. I called and wrote them, hoping that I could appeal to them to keep my cost for the books the same as they’d always been. I explained that the project was created for our veterans and that I bear all costs myself since the books are gifts to the recipients. I thought they might have a special program for projects like mine but alas, they don’t. I was disappointed, however, for the moment, I will continue to use Shutterfly. I just won’t be able to distribute as many copies.
I’m pleased to report that I’ve gotten some nice, new letters and I will post them here over the next few days. If you, or someone you know wants to include a letter in Words For Warriors, please touch base at email@example.com. This is a living project and it grows and changes for the better all the time.
This is just a little update. I haven’t stopped in to add anything here in a while but that doesn’t mean I’m not still publishing and handing out copies of Words For Warriors. As a matter of fact, I just got a new letter from an adorable 10 year old girl that I included in the latest printing.
If you want to add a letter and a photo or two to for the website and/or book, please submit it to firstname.lastname@example.org. This is a “community” project and additional participants are always welcome.
*By the way, I’m looking for a few good Army Rangers! I want to give a couple of books to Ranger veterans specifically, so if you’ve got a suggestion for someone to send a copy to, I’m all ears.
I’m pleased to report that I’ve been able to set aside enough money to print another batch of books. I’m extremely happy with the Second Edition but I think it would be nice to collect some new letters to be included in the next printing. Now that I know approximately when I’ll be publishing additional books (mid-July/early August), I will see about soliciting some fresh letters and photos. It’s nice to have a target date nailed down for the next phase of this project that I love so much!
As you go about your day, please keep the Words For Warriors Project in mind. Let your friends know what we’re doing here and how they can participate. This book is a collaborative effort and I’m extremely proud of what we’ve created so far.
I’ve just sent out the last copy of the current edition of Words For Warriors to an Army veteran. That means I’ll start thinking about placing an order for additional books in the near future. First, I need to re-fill my cookie jar and have some jobs lined up to accomplish that goal. In the meantime, I’m going to use this lull to re-configure this website. I like some aspects of the way it looks, like the sliding banner across the top but I don’t like some of the other visuals. I’m going to play around with it…try on some new clothes, if you will, to see if I can find a template that I like the look of.
As always, I’m happy to have new letters for the next editions of the book I put out. Please contribute a few lines and a photo or two. If you’ve already written a letter, let your friends know about our project. It’s an easy and fun way to make a positive contribution!
I haven’t posted an update for a while but that doesn’t mean I haven’t been working on this project. I got the second edition of Words For Warriors published and have distributed many copies. Actually, I’m down to my last few. I have committed to give some of those to a wonderful organization that helps veterans seeking employment.
I’ve handed out the majority of the newest edition to veterans I run into in my daily life. Just a few days ago there was a small group of people collecting donations for a charity outside my local grocery store. They asked if I would contribute. I wished them luck but told them I save all my extra pennies for our veterans (this project in particular). Turns out the woman seeking donations was married to a Navy vet and her son (who was there with her) was home on leave. He’s a Marine. I went back to my car, got two of our books, gave one to her son and asked her to give the other to her husband. That’s the fun part of accidental meetings. It’s a pleasure to have something tangible to hand to those who have served (and who are still serving).
Speaking of things that please me, I was able to hand a copy of our book to a Marine veteran named Michael Golembesky and his teammate/friend J.J. Michael recently published a book called Level Zero Heroes about his experiences as a Marine Special Operations man in Afghanistan. It’s a powerful book and one you might be interested in reading. Couldn’t be happier about being able to give he and J.J. a tangible “thank you” from all of the people who contributed to Words For Warriors.
As always I continue to ask people who would like to participate in this project to write letters of their own to be included in subsequent editions of Words For Warriors. It’s a great way to show appreciation for all of the hard work our military members put in. Remember, thinking kind words is great but writing them down and passing them on means so much more…
Even when I’m not posting often, rest assured I’m working diligently to see that our book gets to as many veterans as possible. If you have helpful ideas for me, contact info for people you think would like a copy or a letter you want to submit, please send it along. I’m always available at email@example.com
I’m delighted to say that the second edition of Words For Warriors is now ready to go to the publisher. I will be double checking everything this weekend and I’ll send it off on Sunday evening or Monday morning. I like the way it shaped up. I am, of course, still happy to have any additional letters people want to send. This will be the last order of books for this year but I will publish more next year (after refilling my cookie jar) and I’ll include any new letters in the next printing. As you go about your day and you run into people who might be willing to contribute, please let them know about this project! I’m very grateful to those of you who have already taken time to pen a few lines to our very deserving veterans. Thank you.
When I post letters I do so because it allows readers to see what is in the books I hand out. It’s also an opportunity for veterans who might not be in my immediate sphere to read the letters that have been written to them by all of the contributors to this project. The internet posts convey the meaning of the letters but they do look much more impressive when I put them into the book with proper layout. I recently posted a letter from Logan C. He included many great photos with his letter so I had enough between the text and the pictures to create a two page layout. This is what it looks like.
I’m diligently working on the second edition of Words For Warriors. It’s shaping up quite nicely and just in time! I had the opportunity to send 9 copies to a group of Army Rangers who were getting together for a summer party. I’m now down to the last couple of copies of the first edition available to distribute. Some of the letters from the first edition will appear in the second edition but many new letters will be included. I still have August 15th as my target date to send the new edition off to be printed.
The second edition cover will look like the first edition cover with the exception of the color and a little notation on the spine indicating that it’s a subsequent edition. I liked the original red cover and I think the blue looks great as well.
Remember, if you know anyone who might like to contribute a letter to the Words For Warriors Project, it’s not too late. Please encourage them to do so! It doesn’t take much time to write a few words and you never know…it might make somebody’s day!
Jack Dawson is an artist who has been producing wonderful work for over 30 years. He has created many lovely pieces using various types of media. He says his “principal purpose has been to spread the message of Jesus Christ through his work.” He and his wife, have a website at http://www.jackdawson.com where you can go and see his art.
I’m delighted to say that they have made a very generous donation of notecards to the Words For Warriors Project. The notecards depict one of my favorite paintings of his called Heart of a Warrior and I will be tucking them into the copies of Words For Warriors that I send out. Very happy to have them. I think the recipients of the books will enjoy the little extra surprise nestled amongst the pages.
Many thanks to Jack and Nancy Dawson for their generosity!
A copy of Words For Warriors now has a new home at a Fisher House in Ohio. Thank you Major J. Navarra for making sure the book made it safely there…very much appreciated! It’s always great to have photos like these!
This project is a testament to the fact that I believe so strongly in the power of words to affect those who read them. It’s not supposition. I know this is true from my own life. There have been countless times I’ve been pondering some question or another and the next thing I know, I open a book and there is the answer. I have found illumination, comfort, camaraderie and encouragement from words left for me by others in books my entire life. There are times books have been my best company. That is why I’m so passionate about the Words For Warriors Project. You never know who needs the words you have to offer. It doesn’t matter if they’re fancy or as simple and plain as they could possibly be. When they come from the heart, they are understood by the heart.
It was my pleasure to be able to send a copy of our book to a friend (we met through our mutual interest in fitness/bodybuilding…who woulda thunk it?) He sent me the following yesterday
“Thank you so much! received!! awesome work…really great. People worldwide appreciate this caring and respectful gesture!” (F.T. Army Veteran)
Here are a few more words we’ve gotten back regarding this project.
“I received your book a few days ago. I apologize for being so tardy in letting you know, but I’ve been immersed in the volume, and I have to tell you that I love it. That this book is truly a labor of love for you is quite evident by the content. At times, I was moved to tears. Thank you for giving me a copy, and thank you, thank you, thank you for the kind and beautiful words you inscribed on the inside cover. I am deeply touched.” (A.E. USMC veteran)
“Dear Dr. Lynn, Just wanted to thank you so much for the book. I was quite surprised to receive a copy so quickly. Susie gave it to me on Monday, and my son’s birthday was on Tuesday. I gave it to him on Thursday. He and his wife were speechless, and thought it was very cool. This is a wonderful project.” (A.H. Mother of a USMC veteran. I sent her the book to give to him).
Here is another from a USMC veteran and USAFR friend who liked the book so much he submitted a letter for the second edition. “I received the Words For Warriors book this week and I have read it front to back, twice! I enjoyed each and every story. Very moving, emotional and gratifying! My favorites dealt with the appreciation by civilians for those who have and who continue to serve and also for those who gave the ultimate sacrifice. Thank you so much for this publication but more importantly your friendship and exceptional caring for military personnel. You can count on me to spread the word about this book.” (M. Davis)
One more….”Lynn, We met briefly and talked briefly about hiking when you brought the books into the CBOC on Monday. Thank you for supporting the veteran with time, effort AND ink! (Administrator at the VA where I left some copies of the book).
WHAT YOU HAVE TO SAY MATTERS!
Please let friends know about our project. I’m collecting letters for the second edition and as always welcome participation from anyone who wants to show our veterans some appreciation.
Yesterday I got some very nice feedback on our book. I thought I would share it here. I want you to know that the people who receive Words For Warriors really like and appreciate the book. This came from a veteran (Army Ranger).
“I got the book today. Thank you so much. I’ll put it in a special place to display and share with my friends. Read it from front to back already. Outstanding, incredible, emotional but motivating and uplifting! Thank you so much!”
“OK, my table is a cluster, but it’s my cluster! This is where everything has a meaning including the rocks. I will keep it snug against another important book of mine.”
Well there you have it! If you’ve contributed to the Words For Warriors Project, you know your letter was definitely appreciated. If you’re considering contributing to the second edition, please take a few minutes now to pen a few lines. You don’t have to write like Hemingway, just a few lines from the heart is all it takes!
I’ve been busy this Memorial Day weekend, thinking about our fallen, thinking about my love for this country and for those who have given so much to protect our liberty and I spent the day yesterday doing what I could to show “thank you” to those I can reach. I started out in the morning with a pile of books, my older son and the little lady in the GPS to guide our travels.
I’m happy to report that the books now have a presence in 13 States. I also scraped together the money to do a second edition printing when I’m ready with more letters. Please spread the word. If this project speaks to you I welcome your participation. If you don’t want to write a letter but know someone who might be interested, let them know about the Words For Warriors Project. Make it a point to stress that this isn’t a writing contest or an exercise in perfect grammar, it’s a place for people to offer a few honest words from the heart to those who have given this country so much!
May you have warm words on a cold evening, a full moon on a dark night and a smooth road all the way to your door. (Irish Blessing)