Cathy’s Press Packet

Download Press Packet for Cathy’s Book

 

Author Contact Information

 

Catherine Elizabeth Dana

cathydana@gmail.com

510-523-7853

2064 Santa Clara Avenue

Alameda, CA 94501

https://cathyedana.wordpress.com/

 

 

Book Specifications

 

My Dad Believed in Love

Poems and Stories by Catherine Elizabeth Dana

Released February 11, 2016

Sugartown Publishing

1164 Solano Avenue, #140

Albany, CA 94706

http://sugartownpublishing.com

137 Pages

Author Bio and Photo

cathyimage1

 

Cathy Dana is a firewalking hypnotherapist with a black belt in aikido and holds a Master’s Degree in Counseling. President of Alameda Island Poets, Cathy has won Grand Prize in the Dancing Poetry Festival and 1st prizes in the Benicia Love Poetry Contest and California Federation of Chaparral Poets contest. A longtime Alameda resident, she teaches Creative Writing and facilitates the Mighty Pens Poetry Club at Alameda Community Learning Center. She sees herself as a guardian of the creative spirit. If she were an animal, she would be a Golden Retriever.

 

Testimonials

“I invite the reader to come with me” Cathy Dana writes, and indeed, she takes our hand and leads us through intriguing, endearing, and poignant reminiscences of her father. She reawakens experiences that we too may have had with our own fathers. Through Cathy’s storytelling, on every page a new hologram emerges and he seems larger than life. We become immersed in a mix of tender memories and regrets — from Cathy’s perspective and in dad’s words as well . . . Cathy asks, “How do we make meaning of it all?” Clues to an answer for each of us are found throughout the pages of this compelling book.

— Elayne Savage, Ph.D., practicing psychotherapist, workplace coach, professional speaker and author of Don’t Take It Personally! The Art of Dealing with Rejection

 

Cathy Dana’s poems are lyrical and touching. A loving tribute to her father and to the pain of watching him slip away. The beauty of her words triumphs over the bleakness of the nursing home and the profound sadness of her loss.

—Elliot Aronson, Ph.D., author of The Social Animal and Nobody Left to Hate

 

When I started to read My Dad Believed in Love, even though I was late getting to a group meeting — I couldn’t put it down until I finished — it was so moving and expressive. Still today I read those pages again and was once again drawn into their sharing of a daughter’s lifetime experience with a father who lived so richly. I found myself in tears as I finished. Thanks so much for those delicate yet powerful words.

— John Phillips, Doctor of Divinity

 

Cathy Dana brings lyrical prose to life with her evocation of a father-daughter relationship “ deeper than bone marrow, softer than skin, more fiery than the sun.” She takes us through childhood memories, her own and her father’s, his experiences in World War II, his injured leg, his parenting, his aging and his dying. Cathy carries her father lovingly, “in a blue blanket,” wrapped in her love. The tenderness is clear: “Thanks to my dad, I am not skinny. I am willowy.” She praises the natural world’s beauty while her father slips away from it: “It’s beautiful outside, the shimmering estuary, the cormorants and wild geese, the blue sky and warm sun. I wheel him outside and he likes it, this moment of beauty.” With such loving kindness, Cathy shares an intimate view of an adored parent who passed his wisdom to her, and a love of family and of words. The depth of Cathy’s love is apparent on every page.

— Julia Park Tracey, Amaryllis: Collected Poems, Alameda Poet Laureate

 

Tears are not a problem for us if we allow that our hearts are always moving out to others. . . Cathy Dana’s “Lang” is a complex man who expresses his complexity in action, in the pure physicality of movement, though he has an intellectual side as well and, importantly, a deep sense of compassion: a school psychologist, “Into your eighties / you defended the defenseless.” Here he stands, not sentimentalized (he had two wives: each left him) but caught in the deliberate eye of love and tenderness.

— Jack Foley, poet, radio show host, and author of EYES: Selected Poems

 

Cathy Dana’s My Dad Believed in Love is a moving portrait of a close father/daughter relationship from the time her dad is “the Teacher,” “the Expert,” “the Knowledgeable One,” the “Warrior for Justice” to the moment he lies dying in a nursing home. Dana explores the depth of their love as both have to endure helplessness — his physical, hers emotional. She teaches us that communication with a loved one is as simple and difficult as storytelling, presence, and touch. Her poems help us acknowledge the mystery and task we all face confronting the death of a beloved parent and eventually, of ourselves.

— Judy Wells, author of The Glass Ship, Call Home, and Everything Irish

 

The poems and essays in My Dad Believed in Love constitute a moving tribute to the author’s father, Alfred Langdon Dana, known to his friends and family as Lang. The book not only honors and celebrates Lang but shows why Dana loved her father and how we can find our way through the labyrinth of grief.

— Lucille Lang Day, author of Married at Fourteen and Becoming an Ancestor

 

When I started to read My Dad Believed in Love, even though I was late getting to a group meeting — I couldn’t put it down until I finished — it was so moving and expressive. Still today I read those pages again and was once again drawn into their sharing of a daughter’s lifetime experience with a father who lived so richly. I found myself in tears as I finished. Thanks so much for those delicate yet powerful words.

— John Phillips, Doctor of Divinity

 

Everyone loves their dad. Through Cathy’s memories and emotional connection we have the opportunity to relive and again experience our own relationships. This book is simply a treasure.

— Patricia Fripp, Past President, National Speakers Association

 

AL Catherine Elizabeth Dana (2)

 

Local Pens First Book

Sun Staff Reports

Thursday, February 25, 2016

Courtesy photo

Cathy books inc

 

Alameda resident Cathy Dana recently released her first book My Dad Believed in Love, at Books Inc., Feb. 11, to a packed house of more than 110 people. Above, Dana (center, with headdress) and her “ukulele orchestra” asked the audience to sing along with “Oh Susanna,” one of her dad’s favorite songs. The ukulele group meets Thursdays, 1:30 p.m., at Trinity Lutheran Church, 1323 Central Ave., and welcomes all to come play and sing.

 

Alameda writer to present her first book of poetry

By Nanette Deetz
Correspondent

Posted:   02/03/2016 04:43:57 PM PST | Updated: 5 months ago

 

ALAMEDA — It is rare to discover an artist who deftly weaves healing into their chosen art form. Alameda poet, writer, and teacher Cathy Dana does this seamlessly in her first book of poetry, “My Dad Believed in Love.”

Dana will read from her new book of poetry and prose from 7 to 9 p.m. Thursday at Books Inc., 1344 Park St. in Alameda.

Cathy Dana is the current president of Alameda Island Poets, leads two workshops (“Express Yourself” and “Conscious Embodiment”) at the Home of Truth, and facilitates the “Storytelling Swap” at Frank Bette Center for the Arts. She also teaches creative writing at the Alameda Community Learning Center, where she began the Mighty Pens teen poetry group, as well as the first poet laureate program at ACLC.

Dana holds a bachelor’s of arts degree in humanistic psychology from UC Santa Cruz and a master’s degree in counseling psychology from Cal State Fullerton.

“My first book of poetry combines the two strands of my life and two themes, the expressive arts and the healing arts,” she said. “This is probably a natural thing since I’ve been a certified clinical hypnotherapist for 28 years, and have been writing poetry for 20 of those years.

“I began this book when my dad had a very serious heart attack and we moved him from Southern California to Water’s Edge in Alameda. Several weeks before he died, something told me to write down everything that happened. Sometimes it came out as a poem, at other times, observations and memories that later became poems. These became poems about the end of life, my own memories of childhood, and stories about my dad’s childhood and experiences in World War II,” she continued.

Dana’s poems also explore the relationship between her father and her mother.

“In this book, I strove to paint an accurate picture of my dad, including his shadow side,” she said.

The poem entitled, “The Ratcheting of Rules,” expresses her dad’s need for control and its effect on her mother.

“He loved her, valued her opinions, but he loved being the expert, the teacher, more,” Dana writes. “In time, their bond cracked and peeled, the gap between them widened into a ditch, then a chasm. All that was left was a rubble of rules.”

In “My Dad Believed in Love,” Dana gives the reader a multifaceted picture of her father’s personality and her relationship to him with honesty, love, and compassion.

The book is edited by Alameda poet and writer Selene Steese and published by Sugartown Publishing.

 

 

 

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