NEWS and MEDIA EVENTS
WRITER'S DIGEST CONTEST WINNER
My story, "Familiar Words," won 1st place and appears in the March/April 2018 edition of WRITER'S DIGEST MAGAZINE.
Celebrating 25 years of CHICKEN SOUP for the SOUL success, and many more, with Amy Newmark, publisher and editor-in-chief (pictured) & fellow contributors. The luncheon held in Princeton, NJ, was an informative and fun event for authors.
Thanks to all those attending the Meet the Author at Roseland Public Library, Roseland, NJ
To read the article appearing in the Winter 2016 edition of RadiusMagazine titled, "Look Back Move Forward," about my book of the same title:
You can read about me as a contributor by hitting the link:
LOOK BACK MOVE FORWARD
PODCAST OF "MOTHER-DAUGHTER CONNECTION"
Listen and enjoy as Amy Newmark, Editor of Chicken Soup for the Soul: Best Mom Ever! discusses my truly miraculous story,
West Caldwell resident's book honors late father
Valerie Almquist's novel mirrors family life in West Caldwell
By REBECCA LORENZO Staff Writer Oct 26, 2015
West CALDWELL TWP.—Valerie Almquist, a 40-year local resident, has immortalized the memory her father in her first novel “Look Back Move Forward,” which was released on Tuesday, Oct. 13.
“Look Back Move Forward” follows two brothers who are transported back to Dec. 22, 1939 during the Great Depression. While seeking refugee in a dark, musty cellar in a poor Italian immigrant neighborhood, the pair befriend a poor boy living on the fourth floor of the tenement who, despite his hardships, manages to make the best of his situation.
According to Almquist, weaving her father into her novel helped her come to terms with his death.
“My father passed away in 2012, and I woke up one night with the idea for this book,” said Almquist. “The writing process was a constructive outlet for me to express my feelings and cope with loss.” Almquist commemorated her father by including pieces of his own life in her book. “I included many details about my father in the story,” she said. “Remembering all these details and including them in the story put a smile on my face as I typed every word.”
Her father’s character, Stomper, is named after the nickname he was given in real life. Much like his character, he worked from youth shining shoes on street corners and setting up pins at bowling alleys. In addition, he loved the movies Gunga Din and Angels with Dirty Faces, both of which are mentioned in the story. He also met Almquist’s mother, whom he calls “sweet pea,” at The Proctor’s theater in both the book and in real life... (more...)