UPDATE: We're so sorry, but we've had to cancel this event due to illness.
Rocky Callen, editor of Ab(solutely) Normal: Short Stories That Smash Mental Health Stereotypes, is coming to Cellar Door along with short story contributor (and our friend!) Isabel Quintero on Monday, October 2nd at 6:00 pm!
This book is life-changing!
A teen activist wrestles with protest-related anxiety and PTSD. A socially anxious vampire learns he has to save his town by (gulp) working with people. As part of her teshuvah, a girl writes letters to the ex-boyfriend she still loves, revealing that her struggle with angry outbursts is related to PMDD. A boy sheds uncontrollable tears but finds that in doing so he’s helping to enable another’s healing. In this inspiring, unflinching, and hope-filled mixed-genre collection, sixteen diverse and notable authors draw on their own lived experiences with mental health conditions to create stunning works of fiction that will uplift and empower you, break your heart and stitch it back together stronger than before. Through powerful prose, verse, and graphics, the characters in this anthology defy stereotypes as they remind readers that living with a mental health condition doesn’t mean that you’re defined by it. Each story is followed by a note from its author to the reader, and comprehensive back matter includes bios for the contributors as well as a collection of relevant resources.
To attend, you can register below, purchase a book bundle, or purchase the book in-store and we'll add you to the guest list.
Rocky Callen, the daughter of an Ecuadorian immigrant, has long lived a life of service ever since she was a 13-year-old advocating for the undocumented immigrants in her community. She interned at NASA at 12 years old, started lobbying congress at 13, and wrote and produced student radio stories at NPR at 14. She was a behavioral therapist for over ten years. She received an MFA from Vermont College of Fine Arts and lives outside of Washington, DC with her husband, daughter, and baby boy. Rocky founded the Bleed Ink Foundation, a creative hub and resource center for writers, and the HoldOn2Hope Project, which unites creatives in suicide prevention and mental health awareness. She is the author of A Breath Too Late (Macmillan) and Crashing Into You.
Isabel Quintero is an award-winning writer and the daughter of Mexican immigrants. She proudly lives and writes in the Inland Empire of Southern California. Gabi, A Girl in Pieces (Cinco Puntos Press), her first YA novel, was the recipient of multiple awards including the Tomas Rivera Award, California Book Award Gold Medal, and the Morris Award for Debut YA Novel. She is the author of the chapter books, Ugly Cat and Pablo (Scholastic, Inc.) and Ugly Cat and Pablo and the Missing Brother (Scholastic, Inc.). In 2016 Isabel was commissioned by The J. Paul Getty Museum to write a non-fiction YA graphic biography, Photographic: The Life of Graciela Iturbide (Getty Publications), which went on to be awarded the Boston Globe Horn Book Award. Most recently, My Papi Has a Motorcycle (Kokila), her most recent book, earned the Southern California Independent Booksellers Association Award, Pura Belpré Illustration Honor Award, the Tomás Rivera Mexican American Children’s Book Award, and many other recognitions. Her books have garnered many starred reviews and have been included in multiple best of lists including NPR’s yearly Book Concierge List, NYPL’s best of list, and the New York Times Best Books list.