Jennifer Simpson posing in front of a bunch of books she has NOT written
  1. I’m writing this book** because I want to memorialize my mother who died when I was 13.
  2. I’m writing this book because I need to chronicle this delayed journey through grief.
  3. I’m writing this book because I want people to know who I am.
  4. I’m writing this book because I want to know who I am.
  5. I’m writing this book because pretending everything was fine didn’t work for me.
  6. I’m writing this book because I want people to know it’s okay to feel sad, hurt, pissed off at the world, and even sometimes happy.
  7. I’m writing this book so that others who have suffered loss will not feel so alone.

What I don’t say: 

  1. I’m writing this book because unemployment ran out and I have to say I’m doing something.
  2. I’m writing this book because I’ve gotten this far—226 pages and 3 drafts—so I might as well finish.
  3. I’m writing this book because my sister keeps telling everyone I’m writing a book.
  4. I’m writing this book because my grad school adviser say’s I can.
  5. I’m writing this book because I want to believe him.
  6. I’m writing this book because I want to prove to myself that I can actually finish a project.
  7. I’m writing this book because what the hell else do you do with an MFA in creative writing?

**Jennifer is currently writing a memoir,  Reconstructing My Mother, which recounts her journey to get to know her mother who died when she was 13.

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