What? He’s Not Dead?

No, much to the chagrin of ninja assassins and malicious banana peels everywhere, I’m not dead.

Behold! I have arisen from a long blog slumber to bring you tales of joy and merriment. ‘Tis the season and all that.

Yes, it’s been a long time since I’ve posted on the blog. I’ve been busy, lazy, disenchanted and lazy. I’ve probably also been lazy but I’m too lazy to confirm or deny this.  However, I recently received an email that made me wake up and possessed me to share it. That email is copied below:

Dear Mr. Crisden

I want to let you know what a huge and wonderful impact you have made in my life.  
I developed a love of reading as a child that only continued to grow as I became an adult.  In fact, I was one of those book “snobs” that REFUSED to join the world of technology and even touch a kindle or any other type of book reading device.  It was heartbreaking to me to think about not holding a book in my hands, turning the pages, and being able to put it on the book shelf, until the next time I could steal time to read again.  Part of my love of reading was being able to picture in my head, my own interpretation of the writer’s story.  
Last November, I went totally blind in my right eye. I have spent over a year fighting to keep vision in my left eye.  I have had multiple surgeries that I was rendered totally blind during the recouperation  periods afterward, for months at a time.  In fact, 3 of the surgeries required that I be faced down, 24 hours a day, except for 15 minutes per hour.  
I am a senior operations manager who went from working and running 80 hours a week to doing absolutely nothing for months.  With your experience in the corporate world, I am sure that you understand.
My youngest daughter suggested to me that I might like to try an audio book.  I was not big on the idea however, I didn’t have anything else to do and couldn’t see to read, watch tv and wasn’t able to sit up.  I gave in to her and one of your narrations was the first I listened to. It was the greatest gift to me.
Mr. Crisden, I do have to admit that listening to one of yours first was not the smartest move!  You have kind of ruined it for the rest of the narrators out there. 🙂  
You are so talented and gifted.  Your voice helped to keep me sane during months of darkness  and give back to me,  a love and passion for reading that I thought was lost to me forever.  I listen on my tablet, getting books through Audible and Kindle apps.
As my sight has slowly returned, I  then started search out your books.  Your voice is one of a kind and your talent for becoming your character is amazing! Honestly,  I almost couldn’t stand you in the first book I listened to.  The character was arrogant and cocky!  After I finished listening to the book, I laughed so hard.  It hit me that the man who narrated this book could be equated to Larry Hagman from “Dallas”.  He was so good as J.R.Ewing, that his audience didn’t separate the person from the character and many times he was assaulted out in public by little old ladies who absolutely hated J R Ewing, because he did such a great job!
You are fabulous and I wanted to thank you for the wonderful gift you have given to me at one of the worst times in my life.  Bless you. 
I look forward to listening to more of your work very soon.  
Happy Holidays,

I often receive fan mail but this one really resonated in my empty, soulless chest. I got a lil’ teary-eyed and had to stop everything I was doing/narrating/eating/napping on and respond to AA. I couldn’t express how thankful I was to have them share their story with me and in turn allow me to share it with you. It’s wonderful to make a positive impact on someone’s life, no matter how small or large. It often eludes me that I can do just that, sitting in my pajamas in a booth and flapping my gums. There are times when I feel that what I do is of little value in the face of the world at large, one beset by rampant intolerance, greed, hatred, bigotry, violence and ignorance. Something like this heart-warming note from AA reminds me that we all have our part to play.

Everyone has their own story.

You are living your own right now.

…and that one isn’t for me to narrate but for you to live. Live it well.

Here’s to Happily Ever Afters for everyone! Happy Holidays, Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukkah, Joyous Kwanzaa, Damn Good Festivus, Happy New Year and/or whatever the heck you celebrate. Cultivate and share happiness!