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How Did You Get…
From There To Here?

The publishers of New Mobility magazine are seeking essays from people with spinal cord injuries for a new book called “From There To Here: Stories of Adjustment to Spinal Cord Injury,” to be co-edited by Gary Karp and Stanley Klein.

Your experience can be a source of insight for people in the early stages of adjusting to a spinal cord dysfunction – the ones who are “There.” They want to know how they will get “Here” – a place of adjustment and acceptance.

As you know from your own experience, looking at a future life with a disability is a daunting, uncertain place to be. Through your essay, others will be able to connect to their own experience and gain insight into what path might lead them to feeling whole and confident in their life.

  • Please carefully consider the following guidelines as you write your essay:
  • Be brief in telling the actual story of how you acquired your spinal cord injury. How it happened should be only the foundation of your essay. Focus instead on the internal experience of how you adjusted to your disability.
  • Describe how living with a disability has been different than you imagined when you were first disabled.
  • What specific attitudes or assumptions have changed for you since your injury? Was there some event or person that was the catalyst for your new point of view? Tell us how that took place – not just the fact of it.
  • Are there ways that you have gained a deeper sense of your own identity as a person through your experience with disability?
  • In what ways did rehab contribute to your adjustment? Take care here not to simply describe what you did in therapy – your readers will already know what happens there. Focus on the specific effects it had on how you’ve since accommodated your disability.
  • Don’t try to be “inspirational.” People are not looking for a pep talk. They want to hear about your deep, inner experience so they can find their own thoughts and feelings in your essay.

Should your essay be accepted, either Mr. Karp or Dr. Klein will work with you to refine and finalize the piece. Authors of accepted essays will receive a one-time payment of $125, plus discounts on the finished book.

Gary Karp is the author of “Life On Wheels: For the Active Wheelchair User” and “Choosing A Wheelchair: A Guide for Optimal Independence.” and has been on wheels since his T-12 spinal cord injury in 1973. Mr. Karp is a highly regarded, international speaker. www.lifeonwheels.org

Stanley Klein, Ph.D., is a clinical psychologist with over 35 years experience working with children with disabilities and their families. He is the co-editor of “You Will Dream New Dreams: Inspiring Personal Stories by Parents of Children With Disabilities.” Dr. Klein is Education Director for Abilities Expo, and Series Editor, People With Disabilities Press, and a popular public speaker. www.youwilldreamnewdreams.com

Please submit your draft essay of no more than 2000 words by e-mail (preferred), fax, or postal mail by February 28, 2003. Please include your date of disability, present age, level of injury, e-mail address, and/or telephone number.

Gary Karp
From There To Here
128 Golden Hinde Blvd.
San Rafael, CA 94903
gary@lifeonwheels.org
fax 415.491.4363

Read a sample essay.