Today is Launch Day for The HerStories Project!

photo-2 I am very excited to announce that today is Launch Day for The HerStories Project: Women Explore the Joy, Pain, and Power of Female Friendship, and that that I am one of 50 contributors to this new anthology, including a foreword from Jill Smokler of Scary Mommy! This collection of essays about women’s friendship, compiled by the wonderful and talented Jessica Smock and Stephanie Sprenger, is a reflection of just how important these relationships can be.

Jessica and Stephanie share their thoughts on their book: "All women’s friendships tell a story: these sacred bonds define us, and contain our history within walls that are both fragile and powerful. The girlfriend who held your hand during a time of intense grief. The best friend who broke your heart. The woman who helped you find your footing and retain your sanity as a mother. The friendship that turned toxic. The person you don’t think you could survive without. The bonds of female friendship are among the most essential and distinct of all relationships. The friendships in the life of a woman serve as mirrors, reflecting who she was, how she has evolved, and revealing what she needs and craves in her life. In this book, 50 women writers paint real pictures of friendship; in addition to paying homage to the beauty and power of their relationships, they share the gritty details of bitter friendship breakups and uncomfortable life transitions."

My journey to become a contributor to this powerful book on friendship came about because of newly developed friendships that I have formulated since staring my blog eight months ago. Little did I know that I would find myself in an incredibly supportive community of women writers and bloggers. I met Jessica Smock through local writer, fellow contributor, and most importantly, friend and mentor, Nina Badzin. Nina introduced Jessica and I through twitter, and we proceeded to connect through email and phone conversations. We hit it off right away as we shared several parallel life experiences, as well as us each having a desire to write a book. Not long after we "met," Jessica asked me if I would like to submit a story about friendship for a website that she and her friend, Stephanie Sprenger were in the process of developing. Stephanie also reached out to me in an authentic way, and I could tell that these two women were the real deal. I immediately jumped at the opportunity to be a part of something they were working on, and began thinking about powerful friendships that I have had/have in my life.

I sent the following email to Jessica:

“Jessica, thank you. I am honored that you asked me. The stories [that you and Stephanie have already posted] are amazing and I am not sure that I have a friendship story as powerful as those you have gathered but I will work to write something meaningful. The first thing that comes to mind is: My younger sister (and only sibling) is my best friend. Hands down. She knows me inside and out and loves me anyway. We were not very close growing up. I once threw a rock at her head…”

And Jessica responded,

“Hi, Julie. You DEFINITELY have a great friendship story.  (You're practically written it already!)  I have had a similar experience with my sister…”

And that is how my contribution to this book, “You and Me,” came to be, and how my friendship with Jessica continued to grow. I am honored to have my piece included in this compilation, and to be among the 50 women writers, many of whom I have had the opportunity to connect with via our blogs, twitter or facebook. I am beyond thrilled for Jessica and Stephanie, who have worked tirelessly to pull our voices together in this meaningful collection.

Please consider purchasing this book (or e-book) as a gift for the women in your life this holiday season. To learn more about the Her Stories Project and to purchase a copy of the book, head over to the The HerStories Project website. If you click on the CreateSpace purchase button and use this promo code: HK5T27Y3, you will receive $2 off each book you purchase.