Well, actuarially “at last” was twenty years ago in September!

Goodale Hill Press has decided to celebrate this 20th anniversary of  From May Sarton’s Well ‘s publication by Papier-Mache Press. We are offering a copy of the book free to each of the first 20 people who request one! We’re making this easy–all you need to do is go to “Contact” at the top of the homepage and fill out the form. I will autograph your copy. If you would like a dedication, please state what you want me to write in the message block. Then hit “Send”.

It took my son Nick Schade’s recent blog announcing the 20th anniversary of his website,  to remind me that the actual publication of From May Sarton’s Well by Papier-Mache Press happened twenty years ago last month!

On September 26, 1994, I wrote the following in my journal. “May just called me to say the book has arrived! She is thrilled. Says ‘It is stunning!’ She said “it’s a very nice letter’ I wrote in the forward. (Phew!!! I was a little worried about that—though even more about the Afterword—which she didn’t mention). She ended, ‘Blessings on you.’”

Needless to say, I was thrilled with May Sarton’s reaction. I felt that, no matter whether the book is successful in the marketplace or not, it was worth all my work. However, I was still waiting impatiently for those early copies to arrive in my mailbox. They arrived the next day, both the hard and soft copy editions. I had to pinch myself to realize they were actually real!




FMSW-Papier-Mache Ed1994 saw the birth of From May Sarton’s Well:Writings of May Sarton, Selections by Edith Royce Schade. The book was published by Papier-Mache Press in September of that year,  with a copper colored cover. This second decade since its publication has sent me to musing about what happened during that year and what I thought about it all.

What an  exciting time it was for me. It followed a long gestation period that began with my reading of May’s Plant Dreaming Deep in 1971.

On February 3, 1994 I wrote the following in my journal:

“I sent “the book” to Papier-Mache today!

“I feel as if I am sending a child off to college in some ways. She is likely to change a lot. She is in other hands. How will she be seen by other people? Will she speak to them? Will they understand her? I have very little influence on her now. But I care a lot. Like a child, she is more than me. I gave her birth, and tried to nourish her, but she took off and grew on her own. She is herself. I don’t understand everything about her. Many will see her very differently than I. How fortunate I have been to nurture her. I am proud of her, but I cannot and must not take full credit for her. She is a gift.”

I was thinking especially of the photographs I had made for the book. I didn’t even mention the major role of May’s writing in these thoughts I’d jotted down. But I realize now even more than I did then, that “she”–From May Sarton’s Well–was a gift to me. I think it has been a gift to readers too, though, and hope that will continue as long as books are read.