Forest Grove author back in 'Chicken Soup for the Soul'
A Forest Grove author has become a regular contributor to a famous short story collection.
This summer, Mason K. Brown saw her 10th work published in the "Chicken Soup for the Soul" series. It's a short story called "The Wedding Photo," and it appears in the latest book in the series, "Chicken Soup for the Soul: Attitude of Gratitude."
Brown hasn't been an author all her life. She worked for years as a letter carrier, eventually taking to writing later in life.
"At first, it really can be scary to submit your work. You're making yourself very transparent and very vulnerable, and it is difficult to be rejected. You have to develop thick skin," Brown said.
Brown had her first short story published in the "Chicken Soup for the Soul" series in 2010.
The latest short story collection, "Chicken Soup for the Soul: Attitude of Gratitude" was released in August. It contains 101 stories about counting blessings and being thankful.
Brown said her story, "The Wedding Photo," was inspired by seeing a photo of her mother — and seeing herself in it, too.
"It's a story about realizing I looked like my mother, which is not something I ever wanted to do," Brown said.
She explained, "The wedding photo was a picture of both her and I. I was standing behind her."
At first when she saw the photo, she recalled telling her husband it must be a double exposure.
"What I saw was two gray-haired women whose heads were stacked together like a totem pole," Brown said.
She was in front. Her mother was behind her. To her, at first sight, it looked like the same woman twice.
"I really couldn't tell the difference (between us)," Brown said.
Her husband, she remembers, handed the photo back to her and said, "Well, you better look again."
Brown said all of her short stories are drawn from her own life experiences.
"My stories are all very personal, and all my stories in the Chicken Soup books are true," Brown said.
Her motivation is simple.
"I sort of have an obligation to share the things I've learned in life," Brown said.
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