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Joy

Famous writers pep talked a new author after just two people came to her book signing

Ah, the power of vulnerability and solidarity.

books, bookstore, authors, writers

Famous writers shared their book signing woes with a disheartened new author.

Putting creative work out into the world to be evaluated and judged is nerve-wracking enough as it is. Having to market your work, especially if you're not particularly extroverted or sales-minded, is even worse.

So when you're a newly published author holding a book signing and only two of the dozens of people who RSVP'd show up, it's disheartening if not devastating. No matter how much you tell yourself "people are just busy," it feels like a rejection of you and your work.

Debut novelist Chelsea Banning recently experienced this scenario firsthand, and her sharing it led to an amazing deluge of support and solidarity—not only from other aspiring authors, but from some of the top names in the writing business.


Banning shared on Twitter that 37 people had responded as "going" to her book signing at Pretty Good Books in Ashtabula, Ohio, on December 3, but only two showed up.

"Kind of upset, honestly, and a little embarrassed," she wrote.

A librarian by trade, Banning spent 15 years crafting the story for her fantasy trilogy about King Arthur's children. The first book in the series, "Of Crowns and Legends," was published in August and Banning has been trying to market it ever since.

"For a while I felt like I was throwing my book into the void and getting nothing," she told NPR. "This felt like last straw."

Then something amazing happened.

That tweet—which Banning had considered deleting shortly after she posted—started making the rounds. And much to her surprise and delight, Banning got responses from the likes of Margaret Atwood, Jodi Picoult, Neil Gaiman, Stephen King and other famous authors, who shared their own unattended book signing woes.

Even some famous nonauthors unexpectedly swooped in to lift Banning up.

Story after story poured in from dozens upon dozens of household writing names who had experienced two or one or zero people showing up to a book signing event. Anyone who has ever felt like they had failed due to a lack of interest or audience would find the thread inspiring, or at the very least, comforting.

But what was just as heartwarming as the successful writers commiserating with Banning was the fact that she shared her story in the first place. It's not easy to be vulnerable like that—most of us want to share our wins, not our perceived losses, with the world. But Banning demonstrated how opening up invites others to do the same, which lets everyone know they are not alone in their struggles.

What a beautiful thing all around. And to make it even better, Banning sold out of her signed copies that very same day. Here's to the power of sharing and caring!

Images provided by P&G

Three winners will be selected to receive $1000 donated to the charity of their choice.

True

Doing good is its own reward, but sometimes recognizing these acts of kindness helps bring even more good into the world. That’s why we’re excited to partner with P&G again on the #ActsOfGood Awards.

The #ActsOfGood Awards recognize individuals who actively support their communities. It could be a rockstar volunteer, an amazing community leader, or someone who shows up for others in special ways.

Do you know someone in your community doing #ActsOfGood? Nominate them between April 24th-June 3rdhere.Three winners will receive $1,000 dedicated to the charity of their choice, plus their story will be highlighted on Upworthy’s social channels. And yes, it’s totally fine to nominate yourself!

We want to see the good work you’re doing and most of all, we want to help you make a difference.

While every good deed is meaningful, winners will be selected based on how well they reflect Upworthy and P&G’s commitment to do #ActsOfGood to help communities grow.

That means be on the lookout for individuals who:

Strengthen their community

Make a tangible and unique impact

Go above and beyond day-to-day work

The #ActsOfGood Awards are just one part of P&G’s larger mission to help communities around the world to grow. For generations, P&G has been a force for growth—making everyday products that people love and trust—while also being a force for good by giving back to the communities where we live, work, and serve consumers. This includes serving over 90,000 people affected by emergencies and disasters through the Tide Loads of Hope mobile laundry program and helping some of the millions of girls who miss school due to a lack of access to period products through the Always #EndPeriodPoverty initiative.

Visit upworthy.com/actsofgood and fill out the nomination form for a chance for you or someone you know to win. It takes less than ten minutes to help someone make an even bigger impact.

Joy

'90s kid shares the 10 lies that everyone's parent told them

"Don't swallow that gum. If you do, it'll take 7 years to come out."

via 90sKid4lyfe/TikTok (used with permission)

90sKidforLife shares 10 lies everyone's parents told in the era.


Children believe everything their parents tell them. So when parents lie to prevent their kids to stop them from doing something dumb, the mistruth can take on a life of its own. The lie can get passed on from generation to generation until it becomes a zombie lie that has a life of its own.

Justin, known as 90sKid4Lyfe on TikTok and Instagram, put together a list of 10 lies that parents told their kids in the ‘90s, and the Gen X kids in the comments thought it was spot on.


“Why was I told EVERY ONE of these?” Brittany, the most popular commenter, wrote. “I heard all of these plus the classic ‘If you keep making that face, it will get stuck like that,’” Amanda added. After just four days of being posted, it has already been seen 250,000 times.

Parents were always lying #90s #90skids #parenting

@90skid4lyfe

Parents were always lying #90s #90skids #parenting

Here are Justin’s 10 lies '90s parents told their kids:

1. "You can't drink coffee. It'll stunt your growth."

2. "If you pee in the pool, it's gonna turn blue."

3. "Chocolate milk comes from brown cows."

4. "If you eat those watermelon seeds, you'll grow a watermelon in your stomach."

5. "Don't swallow that gum. If you do, it'll take 7 years to come out."

6. "I told you we can't drive with the interior light on. ... It's illegal."

7. "Sitting that close to the TV is going to ruin your vision."

8. "If you keep cracking your knuckles, you're gonna get arthritis."

8. "You just ate, you gotta wait 30 minutes before you can swim."

10. "If you get a tattoo, you won't find a job."

Why Your Next Mattress Should Be Latex, Not Memory Foam

The 100% organic mattress is made from sustainable materials and you can try it risk-free for 100 nights.

Do you ever feel like you’re on an eternal quest for good sleep? Have you tried everything from sleep masks and white noise machines to weighted blankets and herbal supplements? If so, it’s probably time to reconsider the most obvious element of good sleep: your mattress. Of course, when it comes to mattresses, for years memory foam has been the top choice for comfort. But today consumers want something that is more sustainable and healthy. And for that reason, more and more are turning to the Peace Lily Latex Mattress, a game-changer in the world of sleep. This 100% organic marvel doesn’t just deliver superior comfort; it does so without using any of the toxic chemicals that are bad for your health and the planet. Want to hear more about how you can get a better night’s sleep and help the planet at the same time? Then let’s talk about why you should choose latex over memory foam.

The Problem with Memory Foam

Memory foam mattresses, while cozy at first cuddle, come with a long list of not-so-cozy problems. Ever wake up in the middle of the night feeling like you're sleeping on a radiator? That's heat retention for you, a notorious trait of memory foam that turns your bed into a sauna. Do you often find yourself waking up with the morning sniffles or headaches that just won't quit? You may assume that this is natural, but it’s often a silent signal of off-gassing—the release of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) from the synthetic materials memory foam beds are famous for.

But it's not just about uncomfortable nights or mysterious sniffles. The environmental toll of these synthetic materials is hefty, contributing to our planet's growing pile of non-biodegradable waste. As we become more aware of our ecological footprint, the choice of mattress becomes more than a personal comfort issue; it's a health and environmental decision. Switching from memory foam to a more sustainable option like natural latex isn't just good for your sleep; it's a step towards a healthier planet.

The Peace Lily Latex Difference

Latex mattresses are in a league of their own when it comes to combining comfort, durability, and health. Unlike their memory foam counterparts, latex doesn't trap heat. Instead, latex lets you enjoy a cool, serene slumber thanks to its open-cell structure that promotes air circulation. This means you can say goodbye to those sweaty wake-up calls. Plus, the inherent durability of natural latex ensures that your mattress remains supportive and sag-free, offering an unwavering comfort that lasts for decades, not just years.

Of course, while latex is fantastic, not all latex mattresses are created equal. What makes the Peace Lily Latex Mattress stand out is the fact that it is made of 100% sustainable, certified organic, non-toxic materials. We’re talking inner foam layers made from GOLS certified organic latex with sustainably sourced rubber sap; a cover and handles made from high-density organic cotton for a soft, cloud-like feel; and batting made from GOTScertified organic New Zealand wool for plush, breathable luxury.

To top it all off, Peace Lily is embarking on the world’s first regenerative latex program focused on recovering degraded soil using specialized agroforestry practices. With new estimates saying that in 60 years all of the topsoil in the world will disappear, this makes a real difference! Every single element and sourcing process is thoughtfully chosen for its sustainability, lack of off-gassing, and luxury comfort, ensuring you breathe clean air and reduce your carbon footprint while you sleep soundly.

The Greener Option

So what does sustainably sourced latex actually mean? The Peace Lily Latex Mattress is produced by tapping rubber trees in a way that allows them to continue growing, and thus continue absorbing carbon dioxide. In that way, every single mattress becomes part of a larger, greener cycle.

But the environmental benefits of this particular Peace Lily mattress don’t just stop at production. Sleeping on a mattress free from the toxic chemical cocktail found in many non-organic options means you're resting in a cleaner, healthier space every night. The Peace Lily Latex Mattress boasts non-toxic, antimicrobial, and hypoallergenic properties, thanks to its natural latex and organic wool. These materials naturally resist dust mites, mold, and mildew, ensuring a sneeze-free, breathable sleep environment. With prestigious certifications like GOLS, GOTS, OEKO-TEX, and eco-INSTITUT® to back up these claims, you get the assurance that you're sleeping on a mattress that meets the highest standards of environmental and health safety.

Peace Lily, Here for a Good Time and a Long Time

Worried that the Peace Lily Latex Mattress won’t be right for you? Don’t be. For starters, the Peace Lily Latex Mattress is a flippable mattress with two different firmness levels. One side is medium, the other is firm. And if you want something a little softer or firmer you can add a Peace Lily mattress topper for a fully customized sleep. But even if you try all that and you still don’t like the Peace Lily, that’s cool too, because they offer a zero-risk 100-night trial! Sleep on it, dream on it, and if you don't absolutely love it, they’ll take it back and give you a full refund.

The Peace Lily Latex Mattress ships free, arriving at your doorstep compressed in a box, ready to expand into the bed of your dreams, all over the United States. No extra fees, no hidden costs — just pure, unadulterated comfort waiting to unfold in your bedroom. And it all comes with a 25-year limited warranty so you can feel confident investing in your sleep and health. This mattress is built to last and Peace Lily backs that up with this amazing warranty.

Better Sleep, Better Planet

If you’re looking for the perfect night’s sleep, ditch the environmentally disastrous memory foam and go with natural latex instead. The Peace Lily Latex Mattress offers 100% organic materials and customizable firmness levels, plus cooling sleep, unbelievable durability, and antimicrobial benefits, so you get better sleep and a cleaner planet. If you want to improve your sleep, general health, and contribution to the environment - this is the best investment you can make!

Click here to order your Peace Lily Latex Mattress today. From what we’ve found we think you’ve got nothing to lose, and the entire planet has something to gain.

Tony Trapani discovers a letter his wife hid from him since 1959.

Tony Trapani and his wife were married for 50 years despite the heartache of being unable to have children. "She wanted children,” Trapani told Fox 17. "She couldn't have any. She tried and tried." Even though they endured the pain of infertility, Tony's love for his wife never wavered and he cherished every moment they spent together.

After his wife passed away when Tony was 81 years old, he undertook the heartbreaking task of sorting out all of her belongings. That’s when he stumbled upon a carefully concealed letter in a filing cabinet hidden for over half a century.

The letter was addressed to Tony and dated March 1959, but this was the first time he had seen it. His wife must have opened it, read it and hid it from him. The letter came from Shirley Childress, a woman Tony had once been close with before his marriage. She reached out, reminiscing about their past and revealing a secret that would change Tony's world forever.


"Dear Tony, I bet you are surprised to hear from me after so many years. I was just thinking about you tonight like so many other nights. But I thought I would write you and find out how you are," the letter reads. "Tony, please don't be angry or surprised to hear this. I have a little boy. He is five-years- old now - grey eyes and beautiful black hair. What I am trying to say Tony is he is your son."

"Please, Tony if you can find it in your heart to forgive me, please come and see him," Shirley wrote in the letter. "Every day he asks me where is his daddy and believe me Tony I can't even answer him anymore. If would be forever grateful to you if you would just see him. ... I'll close now hoping and praying you will answer. P.S. His name is Samuel Duane."

Now, Tony faced the fact that he had a son that would be around 60 years old and he set out to find him. For over a year, Trapani’s sister tried to track down the mysterious Samuel Duane Childress, until she finally contacted his wife, Donna.

Tony and Samuel met in January 2015 and he felt like a new dad. After meeting his father, Samuel said his mother told him she sent the letter, but Tony never responded. "Why my wife didn't tell me," said Trapani. "I don't know. She wanted children. She couldn't have any. She tried and tried."

"I always asked my mom, I said, 'Well what does he look like?'' Samuel said. "She said, 'Well, go look in the mirror."

The two met and caught up on a lifetime of memories with the understanding that they could never change the past. "Just to know him now is so important to me. It's going to fill that void," Samuel said. But just to be sure, Tony took a paternity test to ensure they were father and son.

The test came back negative, revealing that Tony was not the father. The news upset Tony and Samuel, but they still had a unique bond. They shared a relationship with Samuel’s mother and both have been on an incredibly wild ride after Tony found the mysterious letter.

“They're keeping that bond,” Donna said. “That paper doesn't mean anything to him. That bond has been made—and we're going to move on from here.”


This article originally appeared on 2.23.24

Health

Self-defense expert shares 'Ted Bundy rule' to protect women from men who appear harmless

"This is important because dangerous people use this tactic to lure victims into compromising situations."

Ted Bundy in a 1980 Florida Department of Corrections inmate ID photo and Self-checkouts in Lidl discount in Tomaszów Mazowiecki, Poland.

Katie Ring, known on social media as The.Self.Defense.Girl, recently shared a success story on TikTok after a woman followed her “Ted Bundy Rule.” The big takeaway from the story is that even when people appear harmless, it could all be a clever rouse to put you in extreme danger.

Ring is a self-defense instructor, martial artist and former D1 athlete who started her TikTok and Instagram profiles (@the.self.defense.girl) after a man assaulted twenty women in San Francisco and had still not been arrested.

"One self-defense rule I want every woman and child to remember is what I call the Ted Bundy rule,” Ring shared on TikTok. “That is, if a grown man needs help, he's typically going to ask another man and not a woman or a child. So, if a grown man asks you for help, I want you to question why he's asking for your help in particular."


One of RIng’s followers heard her share the rule in the past and put it to good use after someone sketchy asked her for help at 10 p.m. in a grocery store. At the self-check-out, a man on crutches asked her to help him carry his groceries to his truck. She said no to the man because she thought it was "weird" he asked her instead of a male employee.

@the.self.defense.girl

One of the most important self-defense rules if you are a woman or a child, is if a grown man is asking for your help, always question why. Obviously not everyone has bad intentions, but your safety is more important than someone elses feelings! . #selfdefense #safety #safetytips #womensselfdefense #tiptok #tedbundy #fyp #foryou #viral #greenscreen

“Exactly like she said, the guy could have had no bad intentions, but as women and children, we just can't take that risk," Ring said. "This is the exact tactic that Ted Bundy used to lure his victims. He would have a cast or crutches and ask women to help him to his car, where he would proceed to knock them out, kidnap them and unalive them."

Ted Bundy was a serial killer in the mid-’70s who was known for hiding behind his good looks, intelligence and clean-cut image to murder at least 30 women. One of the tactics he used to lure women was to feign injury by using crutches, wearing casts or arm slings and asking women for help taking things to his car.

On one such occasion, after dropping books in front of Georgeann Hawkins at the University of Washington, Bundy convinced her to return them to his car. As she bent over to place the books in his seat, he hit her in the head with a crowbar.

The video was a great reminder for women everywhere to be cautious when a strange man asks them for help, especially when other men are around. Some people may feel uncomfortable saying no to someone asking for help. But the commenters shared why that should be the last of their worries. "The thing is, if he had no bad intentions and is a nice guy, he won't mind you saying no. If he gets angry, he wasn't a good guy," one commenter wrote.

Another commenter suggested if a woman finds herself in that position at a grocery store, they grab an employee to help the person bring the groceries to their car. “Smart move! Ima say, ‘sure thing! Let me grab an employee for ya!’” a commenter wrote.

Ultimately, being safe means being assertive and telling people no. But that’s a lot easier than following their wishes and winding up in extreme danger.

"So remember, your safety is more important than anyone else's feelings,” Ring concluded the video.

Representative photos by Wonderlane|Flickr and Aris Leoven|Canva

Canadian nail salon has people packing their bags for a manicure

There are a lot of nail salons out there and without word of mouth it can be impossible to know which salon to visit. This is why many businesses have social media pages to advertise services without having to spend a lot of money on television ad space. Advertising pictures and videos of amazing work can help keep a steady flow of customers, but one Canadian nail salon is going with a different approach.

Henry Pro Nails in Toronto, Canada is leaving the internet in stitches after creating a viral ad for his nail salon. The video takes several viral video clips but instead of the expected ending, Henry pops in completing the viral moment in hilarious different ways.

It opens with a familiar viral video of a man on a stretcher being pulled by EMS when the stretcher overturns flopping the man onto the ground. But instead of it ending with the injured man on the ground, Henry lays out on the floor of his salon and delivers his first line, "come to my nail salon, your nails will look beautiful." The video doesn't stop there and has certainly having the desired effect.


In another clip, a man holds his leg straight up and somehow flips himself into a split. When the camera cuts back to Henry, he's in the splits on the floor of his nail salon promoting loyalty discounts. The ad is insanely creative and people in the comments can't get enough, some are even planning a trip to Toronto just to get their nails done by the now internet famous, Henry.

"I will fly to Canada to get my nails done here just because of this hilarious video. You win this trend for sure," one woman says.

"Get yourself a passport and make a roadtrip! My bf and I are legit getting ours and its only a 4 hr drive from where we are in Pennsylvania. Their prices are a lot better than other places I've been too," another person says while convincing a fellow American citizen to make the trip.

"Omg, where are you located? I would fly to get my nails done by you," one person writes.

"The pedicure I had at Henry’s was the best I have ever had. Unfortunately made all other places disappointing and I don’t live close enough for Henry’s to be my regular spot," someone else shares.

It just goes to show that creative advertising can get people to go just about anywhere, but the service gets them to come back. This isn't Henry's first rodeo at making creative ads, though this one seems to be the one that takes the cake. If you're ever in Toronto and find yourself needing an emergency manicure, Henry's Pro Nails is apparently the place to be.