What would you write to your 10-year-old self? What words of wisdom may have made your journey through childhood easier? —
Anna Ball pondered this question, as the theme for the newly released anthology A Letter to My 10-Year-Old Self. Her letter addresses an important turning point in her life, one that she herself manifested by choosing to walk away from the potential of a life of fame and fortune. Although her choice of topic seemed straightforward and obvious, it didn’t come to her straight away.
“One element I found challenging was deciding what to settle on as my theme. As a 10-year-old you’re learning so many lessons in life. 10 was a big age for me, a lot happened that year and I was faced with choosing whether to focus on my big move to Canada without my family or my life-changing decision to step out of the pathway that could have led me to a life of singing and theatre.”
Anna’s letter talks to her 10-year-old self as she starts a new life at boarding school in Canada, far from her loving parents. Being a daring and strong young girl, she took this in her stride while also demonstrating the talent and tenacity to rise as a singer/actress.
The sacrifices that came with the grueling rehearsals and the late nights did not influence her decision to walk away. This is precisely what her letter discusses - the power of decision-making and knowing that you always have the power to direct your life path.
“One of the sparks that illuminated this topic for me was listening to people this year, during a global pandemic, talking about their choices being taken away. They can’t travel, they can’t see their families, they can’t do the things they want to do. It was a subject that came up and it tied in my decision to walk away from the possibility of a life of fame.”
Now, as an adult, she reflects on the enormity of the choice she made as a child at that tender age. At 10 years old, children have developed the full range of emotions but not the cognitive abilities to categorize all of these experiences in order to process them.
This is why a child is more easily overwhelmed by the prospect of making life-altering decisions. By writing this letter, Anna acknowledges her uncanny ability to make this decision without so much as a flinch or a second thought.
“As a mother to a 10-year-old son right now, we’ve recently been discussing the power of choices with him. Making the right choices and the impact that those choices can have on your life in the long run.”
Anna also talks with enthusiasm about how valuable an anthology is during a pandemic where the world is experiencing this enormous challenge, collectively.
“This year has been particularly unpleasant and I think the positivity in this book, painted with such a variety of voices and stories, gives readers a welcome break from the dark and demanding topics. The beauty of the short stories in the anthology is that we’re all tired, this is light and easy reading that uplifts.”
The creation of this incredible anthology was a labour of love, the authors were coached, trained, supported, and encouraged to share their stories with the world.
With the state of the world, stories of triumph written with tenderness and self-compassion are enthusiastically consumed by readers looking for something meaningful to sink their teeth into. Anna feels the book meets these needs, flawlessly. She talks with fondness when she describes the other letters in the book.
“I think the power of anthology lies in the collective message. You have a kaleidoscope of positive voices giving advice. Having read all of the stories myself, I was amazed by how diverse our backgrounds were, how diverse our stories, and yet we all carried one powerful underlying message. Every story was positive, every voice was motivational, and the recurring theme was the power of positive choices.”
Cathryn Mora, A Letter To My 10-Year-Old Self’s publisher, said “These are letters written by real people that contain actual events,” Cathryn said. “The letters are all beautifully, uniquely, different.
“They all had wisdom to share with their childhood selves, and they were generous, open, and raw in sharing it. When the first draft letters were submitted, it was an emotional day. I cried from start to finish with many of the letters, touched by the love each author had for their childhood self. How they wished they could go back and hug that child close and tell them that they were loved, and how they wished they could protect their younger selves from some of the difficulties which lay ahead.”
Anna has a very specific message she hopes to portray to any young readers who pick up this book and share her experience.
“One thing I’d love young readers to gain from my story is that you can’t always control what happens to you in life. You’re dealt your hand of cards and it’s about how you play them. If you get a bad hand, the power is in your hands to recognise that, play your best, and then move on with a positive attitude. This is how you become more resilient and stronger in life.”
Release ID: 88990843