Today we are excited to have a Q&A with New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Brenda Novak, author of more than fifty books, including This Heart of Mine. A four-time Rita nominee, she has won many awards, including the National Reader’s Choice, the Bookseller’s Best, the Book Buyer’s Best, the Daphne, and the Holt Medallion.
Brenda also runs various fundraisers for diabetes research. To date, she’s raised $2.4 million.
Since my son was diagnosed with diabetes at the age of five, I’ve been compelled to do something to help him and all people who are fighting a similar battle. Every year, I orchestrate a big fundraiser. This year, I’ve curated three box sets, Sweet Dreams, Sweet Talk, and Sweet Seduction, that I’m selling to raise money for research.
It’s Important to Give Back: Q&A with Brenda Novak
Q: How did you come up with the idea—fundraising for diabetes—in the first place?
A: My youngest son was diagnosed with Type 1 at five years old. When that happened, I knew enough about the disease to realize that he’d need constant care and that care wouldn’t be comfortable for him. But I didn’t realize the number of terrible side effects that go hand-in-hand with this dreaded disease. I don’t think a lot of people are familiar with that aspect (I had a friend tell me, right after he was diagnosed, that it wouldn’t be a big deal—I just had to give him insulin). Once I knew what my son was up against, I decided I was going to do all I could to protect him—to fight back in an effort to improve my son’s life and the lives of all those who are suffering as he is. So for ten years I ran Brenda Novak’s Annual Online Auction for Diabetes Research at brendanovak.com, through which I raised (with the help of all those who supported me) $2.4 million.
Q: What made you turn the focus from an auction to a book sale?
A: With nearly 2,000 items being auctioned off every year, my annual auctions were big events. They had a lot of moving parts and required a great deal of coordination—not to mention that it wasn’t always easy to go back to my friends and associates, year after year, to ask them to donate an item I could put up for bid. Now that the digital age has come into its own, other options—options that require much less time yet have just as much or more potential—are now available to me.
Q: You decided on boxed sets—three of them. What was your thinking behind this choice? [Read more…]