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when the book starts to come together, it's a beautiful thing

As some of you may know, I'm co-editing Don't Leave Your Friends Behind, a handbook on how social justice movements and communities can support the families in their midst (to be a Fall 2012 release right here on PM Press!). Don't Leave Your Friends Behind is the culmination of a seven-year collaboration with China Martens, fellow mama, writer and author of the groundbreaking The Future Generation. That collaboration has included discussions, workshops, impromptu conversations with childless organizers and activists who have never considered children's or families' needs, panel discussions, and zines.

This past year, China and I have been working to turn this all into a book. We've gone back and forth, talking not only about the submissions but the larger idea of Don't Leave Your Friends Behind, which is that we shouldn't leave people behind in our quest to transform the world. We've reached out to try to find voices that we don't often hear, such as transsexual and genderqueer parents and caregivers, incarcerated parents or teen moms who make the decision to unschool their kids. It's been a long process and sometimes the overwhelming amount of tedious tasks can be overwhelming.

But today, looking at how these various pieces come together, we both remember why we both agreed to undertake such a time-consuming and often thankless task. This book is going to be a beautiful thing. And even more so, it will be a Beautiful Useful thing in helping to guide some of the discussions that have been popping up about childcare and including children and families in our social justice movements.

Together we can build a better world without leaving anyone behind.

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