iUniverse author Sandra Scheller talks about Try to Remember – Never Forget, her book about the childhood Holocaust experiences of her mother, Ruth Goldschmiedova Sax. Sandra also mentions the excellent accolades she has received for her work!
Please briefly describe your book . . .
Try To Remember — Never Forget is a book about my mother’s child holocaust experiences. She survived 3 concentration camps with one word: HOPE. The book also details who my mother is today and how she lives.
And can you tell us a little about yourself?
I was a professional mime and dancer back in 1980, including Reading Rainbows and appearances on Sesame St. My education is from San Diego State University and credentialing at UCLA. I taught theater arts in the high schools and then taught community college classes. In 1999 I started working for Vilen Golovko of The Flying Cranes, a flying trapeze company based in Russia. Having been part of Ringling Brother’s Circus was life changing. For 8 years I also worked for Cirque Du Soleil while continuing to assist Vilen as I do today. In 2008-2010, I performed at the Amargosa Opera House as a mime/dancer because famed Marta Becket broke her hip and the shows needed to continue. Each weekend I would drive across Nevada to Death Valley Junction to perform a one-woman show called If These Walls Could Talk that I created based on Marta’s Armagosa Opera House. Marta recovered and returned to her stage. 5 years ago my father passed and I knew that my mother could not be alone. 2 years ago I thought she was going to pass so I asked her a simple ‘how far back could she remember’? As she told me about being 3 years old, I started to write about her life and holocaust experiences. She got stronger telling me stories about her life. Nothing is more gratifying than to hand someone a book that you wrote about.
Do you have any particular literary influences that have helped you develop in your genre, subject, and style? What inspired you to write your book?
I only listened to my mom and what her thoughts, stories, ideas and philosophies were. Of course I enjoy Elie Wiesel because of what he went through. Eckhart Tolle is another great author. I read so many different things that even an article in the newspaper can be inspiring.
What is the one message you would like to convey to your readers?
HOPE. Never ever give up.
Are you working on a sequel to your book?
Actually yes. I found a suitcase of my mother’s love letters between her and my dad and how they planned on getting married. The letters are quite something. We just opened it up last week for the first time since they got married in 1949.
Are there any events, marketing ideas or promotions planned for your book? Please feel free to mention any accolades you have received.
I received a letter from president Obama thanking me for writing this book, spoke on KNPR morning edition, received a proclamation from the Mayor’s office in Chula Vista, was honored with Sandra Scheller Day on April 9, 2017 and given an appreciation award for speaking to the FAIO- CIA (Foreign intelligence officers), and also have spoken to synagogues and libraries. I’ve also just won the McCandliss Arts Literary Award, given by the Cultural Arts Commission of the city of Chula Vista.
This is an article in yesterday’s paper:
My Facebook page Try To Remember Never Forget has everything posted.
What was your favorite part of your publishing experience, overall and with iUniverse?
My favorite time in publishing was seeing the final product. Writing a book reminds me of having a baby. It is a lot of hard work but the final product is so rewarding. There were so many people to thank at iUniverse. I am so grateful to the people I worked with.
Finally, what advice would you give to aspiring authors?
Never give up. EVER. Get a proofreader and then reread what they did for you. Don’t take anything for granted, never assume anything and remember if you make a mistake, it can be fixed. Relax.