On Sunday April 24th, from 12 -3pm, El Cid restaurant, in Hollywood, was jam packed with a crowd of people to celebrate Sheryl Aronson’s, Entertainment Reporter for The Hollywood 360, book release party for her new Memoir, Passing Myself Down to the Grave, A Woman’s Rise from Darkness.
The crowd consisted of friends of the author’s for over thirty years, celebrities that she has covered for The Hollywood 360, and wonderful new friends that came about as she rose up from the “12 Years of Despair” which she documents in the book.
“I am overjoyed that so many people came today to support the release of my Memoir,” Sheryl Aronson said. “ Four years ago, I was barely talking…I had very little contact with people at all because of the dark circumstances that followed after I had breast cancer.” She looks around the room in awe and happiness. “It’s a miracle I am standing here right now. It’s a miracle I could write this book.”
The Great American Swing Band led by Jodi Gladstone (who is Sheryl’s sister) displayed their superb talent by playing jazz standards to kick off the afternoon. The crowd grabbed delicious food prepared by El Cid as they took their seats or mingled. Victor Robles, a contemporary jazz saxophonist commented on the music, “This band has some great chops. They are smoking.” Lori Santo, a free-lance writer also commented, “Jodi Gladstone’s band are incredibly talented and yes…those chops!”
This was no ordinary book release party. Sheryl Aronson planned out a program of entertainment that would highlight Passing Myself Down to the Grave in a unique way. We learned that in 2013, she had written two ten minute movies called Passing and Down to the Grave. Unfortunately these movies never reached the screen (she explains why in her Memoir) and while meditating one day, the title, Passing Myself Down to the Grave popped into her mind. Voila – there was the title to her Memoir. She realized it was no mistake these movies had been written.
“I hadn’t planned on writing a book back in 2013 when I wrote these screenplays. But I was so disappointed that all the hard work I had put into writing, producing, and filming these movies went to naught. Suddenly, when I was meditating and praying about the situation, I heard the title to my Memoir, Passing Myself Down to the Grave. And I knew I had to write my story.”
Then another creative idea came to her which was turning the screenplay Passing into a full- length feature which would run parallel to the personal story. “My spirit suddenly burst forth with creative ideas about how to format the Memoir in a completely unusual way. I began my story with the first scene from Passing then wrote the first chapter called “Waking Up” talking about when I first discovered I had breast cancer. Then I went back to the movie, then back to Chapter II and so forth.”
For the book release party, the crowd partook in three scenes from the movie Passing, then the author read the coinciding chapter from her Memoir. Ms. Aronson had asked theater and film actors, Tanna Frederick, Robert Standley and Don Franklin to read the parts of Cleo, Rory and Levy. The story line is poignant yet tragic. Three strangers, Cleo, Rory and Levy meet in the woods because they want to kill themselves due their own personal tragedies; however each character tries to prevent the other from carrying out their last act of desperation. As these three skilled actors portrayed Cleo, Rory and Levy, the room fell silent. Sheryl then read from her Memoir two chapters, which described in vivid detail about how a white bird came to her again and again as a sign she would be okay. In the Chapter, The White Bird, the author wrote about how a white bird mystically appears for her throughout the journey.
I go downstairs to meditate in the office where the computer and books reside. A book calls out to me, so I take it off the shelf. The book was You Can Heal Your Life, by Louise Hay, top New Age author. Without thinking, I open the book up to a page and my eyes widen in shock yet my heart fills with joy. On the page is a white bird flying out of a cage. The magic of the moment steals my bad thoughts. Opening to this page acts as a validation from the universe that the Angels looked over me. And then another miracle or unexpected event occurs a few days later. As I drive on Alicia Parkway, in Laguna Niguel, a white crane flies over the Regional Park.
I am no longer alone. The white bird appears again and again throughout the next 12 years.
Tanna Frederick told The Hollywood 360 how she was affected by Sheryl Aronson’s writing. “The writing is deeply profound and powerful. The story is so riveting and honest. I think the movie script Passing deserves a separate reading in it’s own. Sheryl’s work and now her life story have indeed changed my life.”
Lightening up the atmosphere after this commanding reading, the program then switched over to Jodi Gladstone’s marvelous band and the magnetic, dazzling theater actress Palmer Davis as she belted out Who Cares About Me. The song was written and composed by Sheryl Aronson and she talked about how it ended the first act of her musical, On The Road to Your Heart. Palmer depicted the funny, yet assertive single woman looking for Mr. Right with pluck and pizazz. Her facial expressions plus expert dancing skills lit up the room as the Great American Swing Band bounced along behind her with the composition.
Closing out the party were three friends that have played different roles in Sheryl Aronson’s life and they each talked about the author. First onstage was Dr. Lisbeth Gant-Britton who has known Sheryl for over thirty years. Dr. Gant-Britton had mentored Sheryl as a young writer back in Boston and helped Sheryl get her first article published. However, she spoke about the dark times too and also helping Sheryl when the author had no will to live. Tears filled up in Sheryl’s eyes, as she stood onstage next to her dear friend remembering that difficult time.
The next speaker was Dr. Michael Berlin who also wrote a review on Passing Myself Down to the Grave. Dr. Berlin, who has known Sheryl Aronson since 1979 because they played softball together, used humor to start off his speech. “I used to untie Sheryl’s bikini top when she sat on the bench before she got up to bat,” he quipped. The audience laughed. Then Dr. Berlin got deadly serious and told everyone, “Even though I have known Sheryl all these years, I really didn’t know Sheryl at all. After I read her story, I realized I had no idea the depth of the experiences she had gone through. Her story was so inspiring, I recommended it to my daughter to read,” he paused, “Sheryl said ‘Why not recommend it to your son as well’ and I agreed.”
The last speaker was Mikey Adam Cohen, her partner of Museically Inclined and influencer of the twitter campaign, #Workin4Good, Follow Mikey on Twitter at @1ViewFromTheTOP. Mikey Adam Cohen spoke about their partnership in covering the entertainment world of celebrities for The Hollywood 360. He told the audience how Sheryl is very dependable and always shows up ready to cover the stories.
A video presentation was then given by Sheryl Aronson as to the website, http://readnewbooks.com/authguest…/guestbook-sheryl-aronson/ where her book has been published. The afternoon ended on a lively note as Sheryl Aronson greeted all her guests and took pictures with them. Suddenly, entering the back of the stage, Larry and Luisa Dunn appeared. Larry Dunn, the evening before had just received the Lifetime Achievement Award from the Grammy’s and Sheryl didn’t know if the couple would be able to attend the book release party. When she turned around and saw Larry and Luisa Dunn standing there, she let out a gasp of surprise. They each hugged her and congratulated the author on her success. Sheryl immediately introduced them to her daughter, Claire Aronson who had come down from UCSB to attend her mother’s party.
Sheryl Aronson has proven through writing her personal Memoir, Passing Myself Down to the Grave, that no matter how old one might be, no mater how dark and tragic one’s circumstances might be, miracles and human revolution can occur. She has passed herself down to the grave and wants to share her story with you.
You can learn more about Sheryl Aronson and her new Memoir, Passing Myself Down to the Grave, A Woman’s Rise from Darkness by going to this link: http://readnewbooks.com/authguest…/guestbook-sheryl-aronson/
Please sign her guest book even if you didn’t attend the book release party and order your digital copy or Reserve your paperback version. Please indicate if you would like for her to sign your paperback copy.
You can also visit: www.readnewbooks.com and scroll down to the section that says “Hover over the Cover” of the books and find Sheryl Aronson’s book, Passing Myself Down to the Grave in the second row of books. Hover over the cover and then click. It will bring you to her website. You have six different fields to find out about the book. Please register your name and email address at the guest book site or talk to the author.
I am also available to give lectures as well. If you belong to an organization that would like a speaker, or would like to recommend me as a speaker to an organization, please let me know. I have conducted many workshops and lectures as a psychotherapist throughout my 30 years of being a Marriage, Family Therapist.
I want to interact with each and every one of YOU!!!! Thanks so much for ordering my book and if you have any questions, please message me on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/sheryl.aronson.444
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Photo Credit : Mikey Adam-Cohen