The Reason I’m a Writer

When I was little – maybe 7 or 8 – I learned about poetry in school. Later, sitting at the counter in my Nunnie’s (grandmother) kitchen, I told her that I was going to write a poem about her. I don’t remember much about that poem. I know it was indeed about my Nunnie and that I wrote it very quickly. And I’m fairly certain I rhymed the words pink and think.  

But the big thing about this moment in my young life is that Nunnie took one look at that poem and declared that I was a writer. She thought it was truly an amazing feat of literary proportions. Think James Joyce meets Jane Austen.

Nunnie called my mom and my two aunts and informed my entire family that I was a writer. That was it. Based on this little poem, I had the talent of writing. So I always believed it too. After all, Nunnie said it was true, so it must be. In fact, this belief in my ability as a writer is the one and only thing in my life that I have never questioned. (Even during my darkest Debbie Downer-I just got rejected moments.)

Nunnie passed away on Christmas morning at the age of 97.

I’m at an interesting place. Obviously, I have a lot of feelings and memories and emotions swirling around right now. But in terms of writing, this crazy talent I apparently have because Nunnie said so, makes my path seem clearer than ever. Nunnie never got to see a published book with my name on the cover. I think I might always regret that.

So I am now moving forward with my writing. I have a finished manuscript and I am putting all of my effort into getting it published. Because Nunnie was right: I am a writer!

26 thoughts on “The Reason I’m a Writer

  1. In Sister Act 2 Whoopi Goldberg tells Lauryn Hill “If you wake up every morning and the first thing you think about doing is singing, then you’re supposed to be a singer, girl.” She bestows this advice paraphraising Rilke’s “Letters to a Young Poet.” I’ve never met anyone who thinks more about writing than you do, Ker. You’re great at it and it will happen for you. Just keep at it – Nunnie knew!

    RIP Nunnie.

  2. I added a ‘gosh darn it’ on the end there too :). Nunnie sounds like a prophet. I think you are a writer too – but I don’t know your Mom’s number to call her.

  3. You have a talent that was spotted at a young age by a women who speak about with nothing but the highest regard and your face lights up when you mention her name – just the picture above. I am confident you made her proud during her time on this earth and she will continue to be proud of you, and your writing endeavors, for the remainder of your lifetime.

  4. You can always know in your heart that Nunnie is watching down on you and all of your future accomplishments! You are a writer! I am proud of you also! Keep it up!

  5. So very true!!! You are a great writer and Nunnie was very wise. I mean, anyone who recommends warm milk and whiskey ranks high in my book. Plus, I know Nunnie will always be cheering you on in spirit. Don’t forget that she lives on in you and especially in what you write. Hug!!

  6. Aww sweetie I am so sorry about your Nunnie. She obviously believed in you all your life. So follow your heart honey and get this done!
    I am so glad you had someone like her in your life so long.
    I can’t wait to see your name on that book! Your Nunnie will be there all along cheering you on!
    Big hugs!

  7. I think Nunnie gave you the most precious gift of all — belief in yourself. Thank you for sharing such a lovely story with us. Nunnie sounds like a very special woman, and may she rest in peace.

    1. I have to agree with P.H. Believing in oneself is often a very hard thing to keep up over any length of time. Especially as a writer, with all the ups and downs. It says a lot not just about Nunnie that she made such a lasting impression with those simple words all those years ago but also on your gigantic, expressive, beautiful, fearless heart that you’ll never let her down.

  8. Beautifully stated, and what a blessing to have had her support for all those years. And here’s to seeing your first book in print and on my iPad in 2012! Hugs!

  9. Never underestimate the power and belief our Nunnie’s have for us to pursue our dreams. Continue to use her as your Muse in knowing she will see your work in print–because she’s still there to help you put the words in your heart and the heart in your words.

    Bless Nunnie!

    1. God bless her, we all need a Nunnie somewhere in our lives. How fortunate you were to have those words said so early. The act of doing so is the great gift that writers all yearn for: belief. You can never lose it, just hold it close and remember that Nunnie always told the truth.

  10. You guys are all the best! Thank you so much for all of the wonderful words and thoughts and prayers. It really touches my heart! 😉

  11. Kerri,
    As everyone else has said, Nunnie will always live on. She might show up as a loving aunt in one of your books or a beloved grandmother in another. But, I think you’ll always weave parts of her personality into different characters, and your readers will love them. They’ll love the little things that made Nunnie special. Even if it’s just that one special person to help your main character believe in herself. 🙂
    You were so lucky to have such a wonderful bond with her, and she was a wise, wise woman. I, at least, have one thing in common with her: I also believe you’re a talented writer.
    Here’s to dedicating your first book to Nunnie!

  12. Ahhh.. Kerri. Thinking about Nunnie makes me smile so stay focused and your dream will be a reality. Can’t wait to read it

  13. Kerri Mermaid – You were so blessed to know your Nunnie as an adult. I was fortunate to have my Papa and Granny into my late 30’s and it was a wonderful to know them as adults, to talk to them about stuff and learn from them.

    It doesn’t matter if you write forever and never sell a book or (as I believe) one day have your books on the bestseller list along with Nora – your Nunnie will be proud because you are following your heart, your passion, and your bliss.

  14. Oh Kerri this is such a wonderfully written tribute!!! Nunnie definitely knew what she was talking about, as early as your first rhyming poems:) We will be requesting signed copies of your book some day soon!!

    ps- simply amazing pic!!

  15. Ahhhh – thank you all so much again! All of this love and support just means so much to me!!!! Big smoochies! 😉

  16. That is such a sweet story. What better reason to be a writer than because someone you love believes in you. I’m so sorry for your loss. I have a feeling you’ll be carrying her spirit on with you and weaving it into words she would be proud of.

  17. What a lovely tribute to Nunnie. It touched my heart to read all of the moving comments. Of course I know you are a talented writer (as well as gorgeous) because Nunnie told me so..and she had ‘a funny feeling’ that some day a lot of people would be reading your books. Keep following your dream.

  18. Kerri, this goes to show that children ARE influenced by the power of suggestion & persuasion. Negative or Positive input can change a childs’s destiny so we better learn this & begin to influence a new generation for the good of mankind, POSITIVELY!!!!!!!!!!

  19. Kerri, I think Nunnie saw in you what we all see–what a wonderful, special, talented person you are. And you are definitely a writer, through and through. It doesn’t matter if you never get published, Nunnie will still know how talented and gifted you are, but I feel sure that one day soon she will be looking down and see your name on the cover of your first published book. And when she does, I hope she realizes that she is the reason you learned to believe in yourself at such an early age.

  20. A beautiful story. Nunnie was a wise woman. She believed in you and inspired you to believe in yourself. What a gift. Of course you are a writer, a good writer and one that will be published.

  21. What a great relationship with your grandma. She was very wise because from what I’ve seen of your work, you do write wonderfully. Go girl with that manuscript, and I agree with your Nunnie…it will happen or self publish it. Sorry for your loss also and big hugs.

  22. Kerri, You will always carry a part of Nunnie in your heart(so will I). She was a special Lady & I’m proud to have known her. I heard about how proud she was of you, almost every day. I’m sure you will succeed at whatever you try.
    I will be watching for that book. Best of LUCK!!

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