Writers often have to reach out to strangers for helping getting the details correct while we're writing about things out of our personal area of expertise. When I wrote The Christmas Phoenix, I contacted a local ice sculptor who not only answered all my questions about his craft, but also sent me videos of a show he and his crew had appeared on so that I could SEE how he worked. That went a long way toward helping me create the ice sculpting character, and it's no coincidence that the hero of the story has physical traits similar to him.
So when I started working on a story about a quilter who suddenly starts to lose her sight, I contacted Diane Rose, who had been featured in a video interview uploaded on YouTube. Diane is the creator of almost a thousand quilts - all sewn without the ability to see. You can watch the video here:
As you can see, Dynamo Diane doesn't let an "inconvenience" like blindness stop her from living her life to the fullest and doing the things she really wants to do! She gives motivational speeches and appearances, and shows people how they can do so much more than they think they can! Unfortunately, health problems have curtailed her speaking engagements, and thus her income, for the first part of the year, and she is now in the process of healing. But she would sincerely like to reach out to people, and is looking for venues to speak, especially in the Detroit area, during the second half of June.
I've had the pleasure of speaking to Diane personally, and I'm excited at the possibility of meeting her personally this summer! We're looking forward to meeting when she comes to Michigan. She is in need of venues to spread her message of inspiration and empowerment, so if you belong to an organization that would like to hear her, be sure to contact her via her website (http://theamazingquilter.com), or leave a comment below.
There are other ways you can help. Diane's website lists materials she needs to continue her quilt ministry. She is always looking for donations of fabric and thread.
Right now, I'm headed downstairs to pack up some of my fabric stash to send her.