PublishHer Podcast
{ep. 12} The Power of Conversation w/ Desiree Peterkin Bell
January 20, 2021
On this historic day of the first woman elected into the white house, I share an important interview with Desiree Peterkin Bell about the importance of conversation to open your mind to those are different from you.
On this historic day of the first woman elected into the white house, I share an important interview with Desiree Peterkin Bell about the importance of conversation to open your mind to those are different from you. As writers who want to make a difference in the world, as women with the goal of changing lives, it's so important that you open yourself to conversations to understand others who do not share the same beliefs or backgrounds. When women support each other, we all win together. Grab your ticket to the Women in Publishing Summit to continue this conversation.

UNEDITED RAW TRANSCRIPT: (with a few bizarro transcriptions! We'll clean up soon!)

00:00:00] spk_0: Publisher Podcast Episode 12 Today's episode is dedicated to Kamala Harris, Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Stacey Abrams and all the women who are out there every day, both now and in the past, who have made a difference in the lives of women who are working hard to make sure that women of all ethnicities, races, backgrounds, religions are treated fairly and equally. It's a day that we celebrate the achievements of minorities and marginalized voices. Today, if you're listening live is January 20th 2021 where we are going to have the inauguration of Joe Biden and his vice president, Kamala Harris, the first woman in the White House. There's so many first with this. But it's such an exciting day, and I am really excited to bring you this episode of an interview I recorded a couple of years ago for the women in Publishing Summit with Desiree Peterkin Bell. Desiree Peterkin Bell impressed me so much when I heard her speaking live, and we really get into the topic of how important it is to spend time speaking with others who are different from you. If you really want to have empathy and sympathy and an understanding of people who are different from you. We're going to talk about her program, her revolutionary program, the chat and choose where she brings together people that are so different from one another so that they can start to learn and understand each other. While this is a podcast for writers, it's also a podcast for women who are trying to make a difference in the world through their words. And if you are new to me, if you are new to the podcast, I want to make sure that you know what we stand for, what our values are. I am an extremely compassionate person, learned through life experiences through lost through grief. But mostly because of the time that I've spent talking with people that are different than me, putting myself in places where I would learn from others who were not raised the same way that I was who don't have the same skin color who are don't share the same religious beliefs and those small actions have made such a big impact on the way that I view the world on the way that I view people. So I'm very excited to share this interview today. on this very special day, where we can truly for one day at least, have a day of off hope and recognition off the achievements of women who have fought so hard to make a difference in this world for others, whether they're like them or not. Through the women in Publishing Summit, we are an advocate and a voice and a platform for marginalized voices, Um, and for those who are in the in, writing words and and doing things to make a difference, in addition to all the other wonderful things that we talk about in the journey to write, publish and sell a book. So just want to remind you tickets are on early bird pricing. Head on over to women in publishing summit dot com. When you're done listening to this and make sure that you grab your ticket, I am so excited to announce that Desiree Peterkin Bell is also going to be our closing presenter on March 8th International Women's Day. And we're going to continue this conversation about the importance of supporting others supporting women who are different than you, having open dialogue with other people to get to know and understand them and why it's so important that women support women. And without further ado, I bring you my interview with Desiree Peterkin Bell. Don't forget. If you love this podcast, please leave us a great review. Please subscribe wherever you listen to your podcast and please do grab your ticket to the women in Publishing Summit. We are going to be talking a lot about diversity again this year. It's always a major focus of conversation in our conference to make sure that those voices who have a little bit of a difficult, harder journey getting in front of the mainstream audiences are brought to light as well. And, of course, the conversations of why diversity and publishing is so important, and why, why all of this matters why all of it matters at all. Women in Publishing summit dot com Enjoy this episode. Thank you. Welcome to the published Her podcast, a place where you can come to get inspiration, motivation, help, encouragement and support in your journey to write, published and sell your book hosted by Alexa Big Worf. Because I've been where you've e and I felt what you're feeling way. Welcome to the women in Publishing Summit I am Alexa, Big War for your host of this incredible if I do say so myself week of really digging into the meat of all the things around writing, publishing, marketing. But even more importantly, digging into who we are as women in the publishing industry on I think that's kind of the coolest thing about this entire conference is that we talk about things that you wouldn't hear about in a normal if you will quote unquote publishing conference to include things that impact us as women to include things that imp packed us as marginalized voices on other things along that nature. And I'm really excited today. Toe Have you toe have Desiree Peterkin Bell with us because she can talk about all of these things. Desiree is an international, best selling author, seasoned an award winning political and brand strategist, speaker and advocate who seeks to lead movements, not moments that that's the most powerful thing I've ever read in a bio that advanced the rights of women everywhere. As president and CEO of the public affairs firm DP Bell and Associates, she has over 20 years of experience serving as a trusted adviser to an elite roster of clients, including several of America's most notable name, Oh, notable mayors that I did not expect that to be a tongue twister and world leaders after lending her billions towards the success of powerful men for much of her career. Today she operates in her purpose despite her change in position to champion causes designed to amplify the voices of women of color and other marginalized communities. On Accomplished Woman, who has had to fight to claim her place in rooms where she rightfully belonged to Desiree, knows how it feels to face challenges and overcome them with grace. She's been battle tested and scarred in some ways, and she's using those scars is a road map to help other women find the strength within to persevere and succeed as a speaker. She is known for delivering engaging toxin, encourage women of color to challenge the status quo and stand authentically and their personal truths. And I'm gonna, in true, corrupt this bio for one second to say I have seen does a race beak in person, and it's not just women of color that she can get excited about, because I absolutely loved everything that she had to say when I heard her speak at a conference about a year and a half ago. So well, we can talk about that more in a minute. But eso Desiree believes that in order for women to advance, they must no longer be silenced. And she is fully committed to curating spaces where their stories can be told. With her signature chatting to events, she co facilitates honest conversations on a variety of issues that affect women from race, culture, politics and more in an effort to create dialogue and promote healing. Thes dynamic conversations held in L. A. Washington, D. C. Philadelphia and New York City, Tel Aviv, India, Panama and London, to name a few locations, are poised to continue and make a global impact in the lives of women and girls. And all she does does a race goal is to help create a world in which her young daughter can become exactly who she's meant to be without boundaries, limits or fear. She works tirelessly to ensure women and girls all over the world will have the courage to rise up against anyone who try to stop them for walking in their purpose. Wow, I just love everything that you stand for. I'd like to say that I embody many of the same aspirations. But, man, have you done such a phenomenal job carrying it out.

[00:08:35] spk_1: Thank you. That's the and I'm still trying, right. I think part of this is acknowledging that you're still learning you're still growing. But if you put the vision out there, then it's easily attained if s and believe it. So thank you. Thank you for being the host and for, you know, bringing in the voices. I wouldn't appreciate

[00:08:55] spk_0: you. Of all the things I do, this is one of my favorites. So thank you for being a guest and taking your time out. Um, Okay. All right. So yes, I am okay. I don't even know where to start. We could talk about so many things, but let's let's start with how I met you, How I first heard you and how this plays into all of this. So Deseret and I are both co authors in a book. Women of Influence. Right, You influence. She's done so many books now. I can't remember when I'm, like, quit. Was I women who influenced women? Who it And and so we were at a conference, These air organized right woman named Kate Butler, who was the speaker on the on the women in publishing Summit last year. And she organizes a wonderful conference each year about visibility is power. And all of these things in disarray was one of the speakers. And she just blew my mind because I am. For those of you don't know me personally, I am a very strong advocate, and I call myself an activist light. But I do a lot more activism than a lot of people do. So maybe I should just give myself full on credit. But Desiree was up there talking about these chat and choose that we mentioned in the bio. And I'm just gonna let her tell you about them.

[00:10:07] spk_1: Sure. Well, thank you. I started these chatting. Choose in 2016. And to be frank, it was after the election. So regardless of whatever started I'll people fall on, I think folks can remember that it was acknowledgement that the country was in a weird place in space and people were in their place in the spaces on bond. I felt this crazy, um, feeling of not really knowing, not really realizing that I knew people I thought I knew and I decided toe have, ah, chat and chew. I called it so bringing women together from different backgrounds to really have honest conversation about not who they voted for to be frank but to draw some similarities. Despite our differences, outward differences and the first one was truly amazing. It was eye opening on what I realized is on both sides or every side. I should say we learned a lot more from people when you stopped and listen and understood on. So I decided to take this on the road. And the second one was an interesting chat into where we had a woman who and I had no idea what I was doing. So I just want to put that out there right now. You

[00:11:30] spk_0: see, there was a need and went for it

[00:11:32] spk_1: on me, and, you know, part of that is, you know, the work that I do, which is, you know, you have to be bold in your approach. Always sit back and you'll be unafraid toe tap your feet into the water to try something new, and so I had no blueprint. I had nothing. I just knew I had a passion, and I knew that the first chatting to was quite successful. So you put out a call for some other women, and we received information about a woman who was a self described white nationalist who, um, you know, participated are chatting to and another woman who was an advocate in black lives matter movement. Another woman who was in the law enforcement law enforcement area. Another woman who was a mom, uh, tried regular 9 to 5 and some other women a swell and what we found after 2.5 up 2.5 hours at the beginning. And then we had a 2nd 2.5 hours. So altogether

[00:12:37] spk_0: five hours, a lot of talking time.

[00:12:41] spk_1: But we also had food at the table, which I realized waas kind of a way to get people to feel comfortable. Everyone has to eat, or I hope so. Anyway, um and so, you know, that actually drew people in, um, and warded off a lot of the suspicion that people may have, and we realized that a lot of folks and a lot more in common than they had differences. The woman who was a self defined, self described white nationalist wind up talking to the woman who was a black lives matter advocate. They wind up talking about what they wanted for their Children, and they wanted their Children to have the opportunities that they both did not have. Um, now the way to get there was a little different. But at the end of the day we focused on that similarity that they, both under their Children toe, have better lives than what they had, what they have. And they wanted the visions of their Children's futures to be full of opportunity. And resource is on dso There were a lot of there were a lot of things that folks learned about each other. Those two women today are still friends. Wow! And I realized that we had a movement and so we began to continue this convening of women. We had our largest convening with United States of women. Uh, in March of 2018 May of 2018, I think with 125 women partnering with, you know, United State of Women, which was the former first ladies, um, love and and brain child when she was in the White House. Um, really paying homage to the power of women in leadership and it was powerful. And I remember thinking, we have to continue this conversation. Yeah, And so I tried to do that today.

[00:14:32] spk_0: I think I think it's amazing you went into a lot more detail about these two women at the when I heard you speaking. And it just, like, really like it really struck me how important all of this stuff is. Talking, writing, sharing our thoughts, sharing our fears, sharing our everything. And, you know, before we started recording, we were talking a little bit about this power of our words. And how sometimes, you know, I do a lot of focus on writing to heal and writing through that journey. And you were saying the same thing, that often being ableto right about this Yes, so important.

[00:15:08] spk_1: Very powerful, that what we found is so while the chat and she was focused on the telling, right, so being physically present and being physically in the space and place to allow yourself at times to feel uncomfortable. Andi and we try to create a space for women to be their authentic Selves. We have not turned it into the way. Um, by the grace of the universe, we have not had any significant mishaps, um, of people being unwilling to learn and listen and hear. Um, but the goal here is to really be able to own your truth. Yeah, be present. Listen. And then to figure out how to move forward with that new information, right? So that is that's the goal of the chat and shoes. And when we're telling our stories and we're writing and we talked about this before, part of the power of writing your story is you sharing something with an audience that you're really not even sure who that audience is yet. And you putting yourself out in a place in space where you're going to be a little bit uncomfortable. I talked about uncomfortable ity because I think it's necessary.

[00:16:27] spk_0: I agree. I mean, and you hear all these? You hear all these? You know people talking about how the rial change can't happen until you put yourself in a place where I mean, you hear about it with entrepreneurs, with writers with everybody like you have to get uncomfortable. You have to get out of that space of what is normal to you to push through and make and make the magic happened. Really? Um, so go ahead with

[00:16:52] spk_1: I said and be open. I mean, I think, you know, I have to be honest, my personal experience in 2016 waas. You know, when some stats came out about who voted for who, I began to look a different folks in a way that was, like, suspect like, Oh my God, do you see me? Do you value me? Do you value my presence or not? And instead of walking around with this cloud of distrust, um, I actually decided to sit down and have honest conversations with folks and to understand it, to see where they were, what kind of world where they living in what kind of world was I living in? What were the similarities in the communities that we come from? What were those differences and then to figure out a path forward

[00:17:40] spk_0: at the conversations? They're so important, and I remember looking at those stats afterwards and feeling a lot of sadness of what the numbers showed and wondering from from a different perspective of like, Why? Why, what would make you know why are and I came to the kind of the same conclusion that it's about not understanding. It's about not understanding. And, you know, you've been on my podcast before. We've had these conversations like there is a big, big area where people do not understand what even the person right next to them is going through on a day to day basis or have. And as I've started this journey of trying to understand more like it's been completely eye opening to me things. I had no idea where fears and concerns and good grief, the hair. I've been talking a lot about hair lately because it's like I had no, I had no idea this was such a new issue, you know, and all of a sudden you peel back the layers and it's like not only is it an issue of aesthetics, but it's a health issue and it's, you know, like all these other things and then from the grief side, you know, the more and more reports that show how many women of color are dying after childbirth and why that's happening, you know, and it's not always because they're unhealthier. It's because it's often because of, ah, whole lot of other things happening in our society that isn't really related to this conference, but is something I'm very passionate about. But it does come back to using your words to heal, using your words to help educate other people telling your story, sharing your story If you're not doing any of those things, no. One no one will know. Um, before we go on to talking about the writing and using your authentic voice a little bit deeper, I do want Thio find out what's happening. Like in the next year. There are these chatting choose still continuing. Are you Are you traveling around the country? What are you doing with this?

[00:19:37] spk_1: Yeah, so we're very excited about 2020. We took a look at where we want to go, where we've been and where we want to go in 2020 we will be announcing in March, or we'll be announcing in January a very big chat into event taking place in March outside of the country on. But this is really a call for women who are interested and really wanting to understand how to connect with other women who are very different from them. So if you want to be uncomfortable, if you are open to sustaining dialogue, not just at this event but also beyond, then this will be for you. And our goal really is to figure out how women can better connect with each other. I've talked about this before on your podcast. You know, I truly believe this is a little controversial, but now people, I think get it. But there's a difference between an ally and and I'm accomplice. Word Accomplice, as I will acknowledge, typically, is a negatively charged word. But what we're talking about social justice, issues and issues of justice, period and issues of showing up for other people than it is a completely positive word. And in fact, it's more connected with action. And so this event next year in March is going to really focus on building those connections with women but really differentiating between being an ally and an accomplice. There are folks who say that their allies of other women of other people of other groups of other communities, but they don't allow themselves to be uncomfortable and challenge the status quo. Yeah, accomplice means just that. I used the story the last time about a good friend of mine who had Thanksgiving after election in 2016 was completely panicked because she was sitting at her table and her father was saying all these crazy, racist, homophobic, discriminatory thanks at the Thanksgiving Day table. And she's texting me crazy, saying I can't believe you're saying this. Oh, my goodness. I'm not gonna and I text her back. Why are you telling me right, right? You can't do anything. And in fact, you complaining to me does nothing. Well, why don't you tell your father and you know, and she's like, I can't, I said, But that's what is needed. That's what being an accomplice is standing up and voicing your opinion and being uncomfortable in the face of adversity in the face of issues of justice, in the face of issues of things that you know that are wrong. And so we're going to deep, you know, dive into this stuff, uh, in March of next year, and I'm very excited about that, and then we have a couple of other cities that we're gonna go to some in the west. Um, and also a couple more in I think we're gonna go to New Jersey and we're gonna go to L. A again, and then we're going to go to Oh, I almost think place away. I can't wait and find out. But it will be posted on on my website, which is www dot desiree Peterkin bell dot com eso stay tuned for that?

[00:22:49] spk_0: Awesome. That's that sounds very exciting and totally right up my alley, so I can't wait to find out where the location is. And if I'll be able to attend, uh, we'll share it. So this one goes live the week of March 2nd. So we will share the announcement on the Facebook page as soon as you make. No, that's so hopefully people will have seen it there, but hope. Okay, so, um, I'd like to kind of now that we've really set the stage on who you are and what you stand for and this whole idea of writing about bigger things like how? How does somebody who is passionate about these topics How did they find that voice and make a splash with it.

[00:23:32] spk_1: I think the first thing I always refer Thio I'm a big acronym person. I try not to be, but it's just easy for me. E find that as I'm getting older, I'm like, What's the acronym on DSO? For me, it's PAB, so be fat and PAB on drily it's about being present. Uh, a lot of times folks may have difficulty writing finding their voice because they're not really present in their situation, their context of their environment. And there was power in that. So the first step for me is being present, and that means being completely aware of the things that you know and the things that you don't know. The second part of that is being authentic, being honest with yourself, being open with yourself. Um, you know, for example, I sat down recently and we're thinking of doing a chat to Siri's with women who have a disability. Um, and you know, there are things that I didn't even think about because I don't think about them and I have the luxury of not having to think about them on DSO. You know, I sat down and was able to be really open and honest with? No, I really never thought about. You know, when I go on a train No, I don't think about Oh, Well, how do you get? There's only an escalator. Where's the elevator? And how far is the elevator? From where? I need to get onto the trick. I don't think about it. I don't have to, um, or another, you know, a disability. And so, you know, it was in there that I realized that I had to be authentic, and I had to be open and honest with things that I just don't even think about. And that's not to say that I'm intentionally forgetting. It's just where I am, Um, but I wanna learn. I want to be open, You know, I don't want to seem aloof s. So that's the second part. And then the last part is being bold in telling your story. So once you have presence, once you realize the context in which you exist, you are present, you are there and you are open and honest with yourself. You're authentic. Not afraid to be uncomfortable than the last part is being bold. And for different people, that's going to mean different things. I think when you're writing that means simply sharing your authentic space, sharing what you know and what you don't know.

[00:26:02] spk_0: You know, I think that is such an excellent point. And I started my writing journey as a blogger. And I remember at one point in time there's a There's a woman named Jen Man who wrote about the elf on the shelf and wound up like millions of followers because of her hilarious writings about this stupid elf on the shelf. And, um, sorry if anybody is a huge l fan there, But anyway, I I

[00:26:27] spk_1: won't like my life for a year. By the way,

[00:26:29] spk_0: my gosh, Oh, my gosh, ours died. That's a whole nother story. The kids kept touching it. So, you know, you only get so many trips to the hospital before you don't come back. I mean, life lessons, right? Oh, people thought I was horrible when I did that, but that's another. Anyway, um so I So I was seeing her success and how she just, like, continued to just get all of these people coming in. And I asked her at a conference that we were at together, I said, I'm writing about important topics. I don't understand why people aren't coming and reading them and sharing them and all these kinds of things. And And we had shared some of my writing with her before and she was so honest with me, she said. You haven't picked aside. She's like Every time you write something that's even the slightest bit controversial, you pop yourself right in the middle. You jump right on the top of that fence and you don't budge. And I was like,

[00:27:25] spk_1: But I don't wanna offend people. I don't want

[00:27:26] spk_0: to upset people. I want to see it And she was like, That's fine if that's the way you want to write. But people don't People don't follow that, like there has to be some you have to pick. You have to be on one side or the other. That, speaking of getting uncomfortable, is super uncomfortable for

[00:27:42] spk_1: me. E. S O. That's a tough one for me. I'll be honest because in a lot of ways I am very clear about some stuff. It's like No, no way and what's what's happening? But I am also very nuanced person. Yep, and so And I'm I try to be open and honest about that nuance, you know, and some of those things are very controversial. You know, to be frank, whether it's a woman's right to choose while I'm you know, for that, I I also. And if I ever said this publicly and people will probably come fine to me. But I do believe that folks need to be able to show that they can provide for a child. I can understand that I have one daughter and went through recently a miscarriage. And, um, you know, it is always amazing to me that the only thing you have to show when you leave the hospital is the fact that you have a car seat. Yeah, my gosh. And so not that not like pictures of where the baby is going. Like, here's the bed Look, um, but a car seat and that especially having gone through my own personal loss, was a lot on. Do you start to, you know, you start to think and look at things differently, and I think people's experiences shape their opinions. That's natural. That's what humans do. And so, while I I kind of agree about picking aside. I do understand the nuance of so many things living a nuance

[00:29:31] spk_0: world. I agree. And I don't think every topic you have. You know, when we were having this conversation, I don't think she necessarily meant like, you have to be strong because because, like, I mean so many issues there are There are different sides of it that you and I do try to always way things out for, like, this is, you know something. But I do agree with her that in order to, like, really have people follow you, they have to know what you stand for and what you stand against on. If you're always in the middle, then it's really hard. Thio draw that line. So, um but But I you know, But to your point, it's like sometimes you just have to get uncomfortable if you're going to, you know, be ah, voice for change or a voice for anything bigger than just where we are right now, to be

[00:30:21] spk_1: honest, I mean, and I think that's where yeah, I think that's what she was trying to say. Yeah, yeah, but I would agree on about Well, here's what I'm struggling with. Right? Right here is my struggle,

[00:30:32] spk_0: E You know what I think that's what she came back with because of the time the elf was super super popular. Like it was a very, uh um, Well, she thought it was a very unpopular opinion to hate the elf on the shelf because everybody else was just talking about, you know, all the fun things they're doing with it. So she wrote a rant on it one night expecting that, you know, people were gonna throw rotten tomatoes at her and, like, people were just like me. Todo eso like, Wow. Wow. This is what happens when

[00:31:04] spk_1: you like. They're looking for someone to be like you say it first,

[00:31:08] spk_0: right? Exactly. Um, s O Okay, So when you what words of advice do you have, then if somebody does want I mean because wow, Like, I keep thinking that we're going to get to a place where things are not as charged, but we just live in a charged

[00:31:25] spk_1: all the time environment. Yeah, it's gonna I mean, it's funny. It's funny. Someone asked me the other day if I thought communities were more separated today than they were 50 years ago. Onda geun nuanced question for me because I do. I think it depends on where your community is, Um, and who's in your community to be friends on DSO? I always pause for a second, and I always remind people that, um, you know, communities or policies and policies and people's large opinions are shaped in these small communities. If anything is going to change, it's gonna happen because you talk to your neighbor. You know who your neighbor is. You invite someone you didn't know to your house to get a better understanding of who they are, right? You're more inviting, your more welcoming. You're more friendly, you're more willing to be uncomfortable. And I think that interestingly enough as I traveled all across the country, I see a lot of that. I see a lot of people who were willing to open the door, hold the door, say, you know, I got you. I'll help you. How can I be helpful? I do think the loudest people in the room right often times just like in communities or in the country are the negative folks, you know. And so my my my challenge to those folks who are trying to build more sustainable communities by being and creating open dialogue is for those folks to speak up more. Yeah, a beam. Or to be more bold about the things that they are doing Because I think on Lee. Then will this idea of division basically maybe not eradicate because that's who we are as a country and have things but dissipates?

[00:33:24] spk_0: Yeah, Yeah, I agree on day. And, you know, writing can be such whether I would like to say this to you don't have to be writing like, um, nonfiction pieces. I mean, there are some great works of fiction that demonstrate these things as well. In one of the previous interviews, we were talking about the book which you make your in Atlanta. I believe right you may be from the

[00:33:46] spk_1: I'm in New York are you're in New York in Atlanta to

[00:33:49] spk_0: okay, Okay, but the book I'm not dying with you tonight. Have you heard about this? So I have not. I'll have to send you the link to the book. It's written by a black woman and a white woman, and it's a story of a bus that basically gets trapped in the middle of one of the riots. One of the riots after a one of the young men was killed by a police officer. And so there's this riot and they get trapped on this bus together in the middle of a riot. And it's it's their stories of how their take that their perceptions of what's happening that night, what's happening in the world, what's going on around them. And but it was, It's It's a fiction book, but based obviously on things happening in our society, and it was just really I haven't finished reading it yet. So but so far, like, I got to see the authors in person as they talked about the book, and it was really I just thought such a fantastic idea of them because talking about not, you know, writing about what you know, well, bringing to two people together that that no both of those sides and then putting it together. I mean, it's

[00:34:58] spk_1: all right that I love that. And it's really about art imitating life. Also, right? Yes, exactly. You know, we were talking about as you're writing as you're writing, finding your narrative finding your voice. Um, you know, I will be honest. I There was a young lady who was a writer. She's a mentee of ours, Um, my husband and my in mind and and she's really interested in capturing people's stories, and she's not quite sure you know how to tell her own right. So gone through the process of being present, being authentic, be bold on gun, we realized that she could be a very powerful vessel, help people tell their stores. And so she has been, um, you know, blessed with sitting down with different women and helping them tell their stories. Andi. And that is another way of being present, being authentic and being bold in terms of How do you tell your story? But also how can you help others tell their story? I mean, Kate did that with us is, well, right, and so part of it. You know, everyone's trying to figure out what's my part. What can I do? What can I do? I'm afraid to say you know my story 100% but maybe it's sitting down with someone who who you think may have a similar story, is you or a completely different one, right? And being a vessel, capturing their story, capturing their words, writing that down and then being able to convey that message.

[00:36:29] spk_0: Yeah, and you know that I mean, that is powerful. But then also I I think that as you were speaking, it kind of sparked this idea in my mind of how if you're going to be a good storyteller in general, and this is across all genres memoirs, nonfiction fiction, wherever Children's books like taking the time to sit down and hear other people's stories, will Onley help you be a better storyteller? You know, having that understanding of things that are going around around on around you and and how other people process things. I mean, how much more depth can you make the people in your book when you understand the way different people operate in different environments?

[00:37:12] spk_1: 100%? Some of the information that we captured from these chat and shoes we're not quite sure what we're going to do with it yet. We do you see a book in the future, but we'll see. But sitting down with women from a small town in western Pennsylvania and having them. Tell me about the power of, um, you know, coal mining, What happened in their town and then black lung. And how that took their grandfather, their son, their brother. It was powerful for May. You know, I'm from an urban community. We don't have black love, right? I don't even know what it was. I was like, Why is your, uh, right or, you know, simple things like, Why are you working in a coal mine, right? Well, I right, But to understand that for some folks, this is a generational thing. This is a I'm gonna do this because my grandfather did this because this and this is what we do. We know this is all you know, and it's good work. And that's what we have in our town. And here is my life is in this town. And so to your point, yes. Part of being able to tell those stories even your own, is being able to sit down with folks who are different from you. Because then you have a broader perspective, right? And you can, you know, have a little more nuance out. You know what message you are conveying and what your narrative ISS.

[00:38:34] spk_0: You know, I think about some of the hot button issues right now that are happening in politics. Name any of them, abortion. What's happening at the borders like all of those things. I mean, the biggest problem that people have in trying Teoh is they don't understand the story. They don't understand what's happening. I mean, what could make ah mother walk 3000 miles with her child? We can't fathom that because none of us have ever lived in a situation where life was so bad we would pick up what we could carry on our back and our little Children and walk for thousands of miles. Like when you start thinking about that part, then all of a sudden, everything else becomes more human to you, too, and it's with its with any kind of story, like if you if you're if you're going to change the world, if you're going to be authentic. If you're going to share stuff like you have tow, you can't just understand your voice. You have to understand other people's voices.

[00:39:31] spk_1: You have to. It's the world we live in. But also Thio, you know, dig a little deeper. I always ask people this question whenever we're talking about child separations and the controversy surrounding that policies is what are you willing to do for your child, right? I just I leave that and I had people write it down. I just say, What are you willing to do for your child to protect them? What? Right. I mean, and then people all this and they're like, Yeah, but this person I'm like, how do you know Here's the story, right? What are you willing to do to protect your child to protect your family? You know, when you put it in perspective, then it changes. Sometimes most of the time, it changes people's perspective. You know, it gives them context on bond to be able to actually, you know, respond now in a way that they didn't know.

[00:40:17] spk_0: Yeah, it's amazing. It's the power. The power of the story is literally life changing its

[00:40:28] spk_1: powerful, you know? I mean, I think storytelling, no matter how you cut it, whether you are writing whether you are an all Reiter, whether you are being a vessel in helping someone else determine their story or convey their message, I think all of these things. The similarities are Have to allow yourself to be uncomfortable.

[00:40:47] spk_0: Oh, my gosh, yes,

[00:40:49] spk_1: And I think there's power and purpose in that. I think that is part of our humanity. I think that's part of how we grow part of how we define how we respond to each other. Um, and in some cases, that's also how we can define our societies and and be much more of, Ah, I don't want to say forgiving, but a welcoming society.

[00:41:13] spk_0: Yeah, Agreed. Well, this has been an amazing conversation, as I always are with you. Thank you for, you know, being so honest and sharing. And I love that you and I can sit here and have these conversations on topics that, frankly, a lot of people are afraid to even open their mouths and discuss, you know, and it just I would I would talk to you all day long, but

[00:41:38] spk_1: thank you to you, because, you know, you can actually teach a lot of other folks a lot of things, and part of it also is, you know, you've created a vessel to allow people to convey their message. But you've also put yourself in a position to be uncomfortable and to acknowledge things that you know and things that you don't know. You know, I think that there's power in that and, you know, kudos to you, because this is ah, lot of people need to do a lot more of this a lot more.

[00:42:08] spk_0: Well, this is me trying my best to be an accomplice. So thank you for teaching me that, but no, I I agree. And hopefully, you know, I mean, maybe just one interview like this is enough for someone else to say This is something I'm interested in writing about or talking about her blogging about her podcasting about or or, you know, whatever talking to my neighbor about and it it really is, You know? I mean, we can Onley we can. I think I don't know what the demographics will be this year. Generally, about 50% of our audience is a mother or a caregiver of some sort. And I feel like women kind of fall into that role. Regardless of whether we have our Children, we always tend to the that that that person right? And I think that as we operate as women on. We realize you know that we do have a Neben Illit e to make things better for the next generation, whether it's our Children or our nieces and nephews or our neighbors, Children, or are best friends, child or whatever. Like I think I'm so hopeful, I guess, is what I'm trying to say. I'm so hopeful that what we're what what we are starting now is going to have a tremendous ripple effect. And I'm really hopeful at looking at the teenagers right now. As crazy as they could be, There's some that really impressed me.

[00:43:30] spk_1: Yeah, I mean, I think, and that's a whole other show. 100% I think Number one is already happening. Yeah, right. And so, especially with our teenagers and I, you know, I impress upon this. My daughter, who's a preteen, is build connections. Just don't send the instagram post or a you know a Snapchat or, you know, like go to your friend's house and have your friend come over here and let's meet and let's connect because I think there is power in connection and you're setting the bar here by setting an example of power of connection and really opening your lineup for voices all over varied voices. And I think particularly with young folks, teenagers, we're gonna have to teach them because a lot of those teenagers or digital Yeah, that's a digital generation. Every single thing they do is online, right or wrong. And, you know, I think here's where the power is again of building that connection, you know, hand to hand, face to face, person to person.

[00:44:30] spk_0: Agreed one more time. Tell everybody where they confined you because I know everyone's going to be flocking

[00:44:36] spk_1: eso My website is www dot d e s i r e p e t e r k i N e l l dot com www dot desiree Peterkin bell dot com I'm also on Twitter at at D P Bell and Instagram at Desiree Peterkin Bell.

[00:44:55] spk_0: All right, awesome. Thank you so much. This was I enjoyed this conversation so much. Thank you. Energized me. Oh, yeah. Have a great day. E o have to give it away. Thank you for joining us on the publisher podcast. We hope to see you back for the next episode. Great. Huge thanks. Goes to jasmine commerce for the use of her song. You confined Jasmine on Soundcloud. Go check out all of her music. We'll see you next time gave me for any day.