My Pilgrim’s Heart – greetings from the author, Stephanie Dale

Hello TTT Ladies!

Thank you for your interest in my book.

And congratulations on such an innovative web site!

Firstly, let me say this format is new to me and at first I thought I’d hacked your web site when I accepted your invitation and ended up back here!

Secondly, I’m logged in as an old wordpress log in, because that just happens to be the account linked to my valid email – and if I set up a new one, the link you sent inviting me to contribute is no longer valid.

SO . . . here we go.

It is fascinating reading your comments about my story, my life, my book!

I think the best way to address your comments is to leave replies at the end of your individual posts.

One thing I have learned since publishing My Pilgrim’s Heart is that people read their own story into it.

It is fascinating to me the passion and interest people speak to me about x or y or z in the story and I’m thinkin’ ‘wow, that is not what I meant or thought at all!’.

And this has caused me to question just about every book I’ve ever read – did I read the story the author wrote or the one that triggered my own stories about my own life?

And this of course is why we love books – they take us on a journey, illuminate for us aspects of our own lives we might previously have been unaware of and leave us expanded and ready to take on the world anew.

I look forward to engaging with you all,



20 thoughts on “My Pilgrim’s Heart – greetings from the author, Stephanie Dale

  1. Welcome Stephanie to Talk The Talk Ladies Book Club blog page. We are enjoying reading “My Pilgrims Heart” it does take you on your own personal journey, even the ones that you put the “closed” sign, up you might just have to take it down to do some “tweaking” TTT Ladies and I thank for you taking the time to blog and journey with us as we read and explore “My Pilgrims Heart” We look forward to meeting you here in Augusta, GA on 15 May 2012 at the Augusta Richmond County Public Library
    823 Telfair St 30901 6:00 pm to 8:00 pm

  2. Hi there, and thanks – it’s great connecting with y’all. Not sure what you mean by ‘put the closed sign up’ . . . did I do something technical I shouldn’t have?

    Look forward to meeting you all in person!

  3. Hello Stephanie,

    What I meant by ” put the close sign up” is issues that are resolved, but your insight, thoughts, and views in your book “My Pilgrims Heart” has encouraged me to take a second look at some of my actions and decisions from the past. In all honesty I guess you could say there are areas in my life, I told myself I would never think about or speak on. I put up a “closed sign” end of story, so I thought. Reading “My Pilgrims Heart” has made me realize that I put up that “close sign” out of ” fear”

      • And that is what I mean by my little speech on courage towards the end of the walking section of the book, when we are in Budva. Courage is eyeballing your story, which will always be an expression of your fears.

        In other words, no fear, no story.

        If you’re runnin’ a story, then there’s something to look at.

        Actually, I stopped telling stories about my life for quite a few years, just so I could stop defining myself by my stories about me and others and situations and events.

        A while back I started telling them again, so as to participate in conversations with others and I’ve learned to tell my stories differently – these days I reckon I don’t tell them the same way twice. And that’s a relief 🙂

  4. Now I can totally agree with ” putting up the closed sign” out of the fear that things and situations can be so painful that you just want to not think about them any longer. It is amazing how we try to shut out events that has happened in our life’s only for the memories to be triggered again through conversation with others as Stephanie was saying or some other crazy way such as songs you hear, food you eat, the smell of cologne, etc…

  5. TTT Ladies and Stephanie,

    The “closed” sign is down, thanx to theTTT Ladies and Stephanie I am equipped with the knowledge to deal with “fear” This has always been a concern because I don’t want to fail or make a mistake, I have always been a “late bloomer” so to me it means taking care of business on my own time table. The most important aspect is capturing the confidence that allows you as a woman to be assertive, but also that same confidence needs to validate the “OK” that I will make some errors. When I do, I just want to be able to pick up the pieces and keep it moving with out people giving me the “raised” eye brow.

    TTT Ladies there are so many books that are about matters of the heart ect, what is it about “My Pilgrims Heart” that makes you take a second glance, this book is different?

    Stephanie when you wrote “My Pilgrims Heart” why did you want to share it with the world? It could have easily just been a personal diary, Was there a “fear” that you had to conquer before you decided to publish your personal journey into a book?

  6. Good question – when I wrote the book I only paid attention to what was calling me to do – write the book. I gave no thought to publishing, otherwise I would have edited myself out of existence! Then I just knew I’d publish . . . people think the idea of walking across Italy and through the Balkans is scary – publishing the book took ten times more courage.

    If I had not published the book, I would have let no-one read it. Either no-one would read it – or everyone would read it.

    And somehow I knew it was going to be a universal story.

  7. Stephanie “universal” is a understatement. ” My Pilgrims Heart” has it’s own style of uniqueness; the words are so poetic, Is this your natural style of writing?

  8. “My Pilgrims Hearts” speaks volumes, It ignites the “fire” to be true to our selves, for me it has made me think, who were you before all the choas, but most important, are you willing to take the risk to know “her: again. Don’t be afraid of her, yes she does have some battle scars, but with some “courgage” you and her can just simply sit down and have a cup of coffee( de-caf) and eat a peanut butter sandwich.

  9. Stephanie can you clarify on “what” was calling on you to write “My Pilgrims Heart”

    What do you think your life would have been if you had ignored what was calling you?

  10. Love it! The comment above, I mean. As for ‘what’ was calling me to write My Pilgrim’s Heart specifically . . . when I sold everything so I was free to write I made one single commitment to my life – that I would do whatever was calling me to do. In other words I would take my hands off the steering wheel of my life for a while and let life lead me. Surprisingly, to me, life was still full. In fact – fuller. And much much more satisfying. So while there were other books I’d have preferred to write, My Pilgrim’s Heart demanded to be written.

    It’s like once I sat down to write it, I was just typing out what was in my brain, like a big long thread.

    As for what my life would have been like . . . I think my spirit would have curled up and died and I’d be bitter and cranky with the world, like it and everything in it was the biggest disappointment I could imagine.

    And I didn’t want to die wondering what life would be like if I freed myself from that disappointment, from all that wishing and wanting. I didn’t have to ‘succeed’ at anything, I just didn’t want to die without taking a single step down the road that was calling all of me.

  11. “Inspiration at it’s best” I love this comment you made when you were at the end of your journey ” I am queen and slave and conqueror and king, I am the great stone pillars connecting earth and sky, I am the wind and the sea,and the wide flat plain”

    ” I am one with my own life”

    This is truly the essence of life we “dare to be our selves”

    • yeah. I love that comment too. It’s quite something to experience, as I did when I arrived in Istanbul, a sense of being one with all time. No separation. We’re all just living breathing dust of time and tide.

  12. Hello Stephanie,

    “My Son and I have been confusing independence and tolerance with a cruel sort of loneliness” This comment is written in your book two times, I can feel the passion and love as I was reading about your relationship with your son. Please elaborate.

  13. When people read ” My Pilgrims Heart” can the message that you are trying to relay to “readers” get “lost in translation” if they keep comparing it to their lives?

    If so , is it “trying” to be constantly explaining your self and clarifying your comments?


  14. Hi there, I’ll start with the latter comment first – most people aren’t even aware that they’re projecting their story onto mine. Because the story evokes such passions – and vulnerabilities – in people, I don’t try to explain myself, but rather listen to their sharing. Occasionally I might try and clarify something I feel uncomfortable about – but that goes right over people’s heads, so I’ve learned to stay centred in myself and let be whatever story people tell.

    This book and this journey have been my spiritual path!

    Gosh, elaborating on that comment about my son . . . . can we save this for our time together? It’s not that I mind going into it – it’s just that the question is so broad. And to me, there were two great impacts on me from the journey/book – and neither was the husband stuff. One was the maturing of the son/parent/mother relationship, the other was learning to hold my centre as a woman, regardless of what anyone demanded or wanted from me.

    Thank you for connecting with the ‘love and passion’ I feel for this relationship – a couple of readers have responded with quite negative comments about my son and this is one place where I don’t let them get away with their own story. It shocks me that they would read that – and so I appreciate you recognising the depth of my expression. And I feel sorry for them, knowing what I know now about projecting stories.

    Look forward to elaborating soon!

    • Stephanie thank you, everytime you comment ” My Pilgrims Heart” comes alive in a different “light”. I would like to thank you for for creating a “atomosphere” of sincerity, truthfulness and “tough love” This blog page has allowed the TTT Ladies a precious oppertunity for us to be “real” I can’t thank you enough for taking the time to comment and answer each question. I did my final post on 6 May 2012, and honestly I have been on a “journey” of self reflection. Your book ” My Pilgrims Heart” has opened up the flood gates to my soul and mind. I did not realize how much “tension” that is in my spirit. I have set some new goals for myself, and I have a plan to be proactive with each one. Your Journey is full of wisdom, and your insight is limitless.

      TTT Ladies I really hope that other book clubs take this journey with Stephanie Dale and “My Pilgrims Heart” They will discover the” journey” in their heart,just take the time to stop, look and listen, because at the end of the day, it is all about you.

      Stephanie you are a ‘rare jewel’, and I have the upmost respect for you.

      I did talk to Dstinguished”5″ today and she is doing well, she sends her love.

      • It has been my pleasure. What a privilege to engage with readers so candidly and courageously, thank you all. Love and best wishes to Distinguished 5 on the return tide. Thanks again.

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