By Liz Sullivan
When Kevin Carroll attended a retreat at the Jesuit Retreat Center of Los Altos, he never thought it would lead him to script a new chapter in his life – writer.
This fall, the 61-year member of Saint Lawrence Parish, published his first book titled, “A Moment’s Pause for Gratitude; Enrich Your Life with a Focus on Gratitude.”
“Everyone says they want to write a book,” said Carroll. “I was reading the ‘Alchemist’ (by Paolo Coehlo) and I talked to my wife (Kathy) and said I want to write a book.”
That was about a year ago. At that point, Carroll had been writing blog posts since he attended the retreat way back in 2006. By December of 2016 Carroll had 1,500 blog posts all on various types of gratitude. In January, he began reviewing the posts, narrowed it down to 200 and after a little more editing he was done by September. That’s when he contacted Balboa Press based in Carlsbad, California. The company is a division of Hay House, a book self-publishing company that offers design, editing, marketing, on-demand printing, and more.
There are 50 chapters, or reflections, in the book. Each chapter/reflection begins with a quote on gratitude and ends with reflection questions at the end. A native of San Francisco, Carroll is a graduate of Saint Ignatius College Preparatory, Santa Clara University and the University of San Francisco.
“It has turned out better than I ever thought it would,” said Carroll, who spent 31 years as a religious studies teacher at Saint Lawrence Academy before retiring in 2015. “Money was never a factor for me. I have learned a lot from writing the book. I feel like I am in a constant state of awareness. It definitely has been life changing. My wife says I am more laid back than I used to be.”
Once he decided to compile the blog entries for the book there was one person he really wanted to hold the completed book – his 88-year-old mother Peg. He dedicated the book to her “with gratitude for her unconditional love which has consistently nourished me throughout my lifetime.”
Said Carroll, “I wanted her to her to hold it and she did.”
The book is available on Amazon, at Barnes & Noble and Half Price Books.
“I want to let people know the book is out there,” said Carroll, who continues to write his gratitude blog – attitudeofgratitude.typepad.com and is planning a second book of gratitude in 2018. “I want them to read it and to share it.”