From one mom to another

Bookmarks spotlights the personalities and published books of faculty, staff and alumni.

Today, Cynthia Lockrey, BA’95 (English/History), author of Bed Rest Mom: Surviving Pregnancy-Related Bed Rest with Your Sanity and Dignity Intact, answers questions on her ‘bookishness’ and writing.

A public relations consultant, Lockrey spent a number of years working as a reporter and newspaper editor before switching careers. Currently based on Vancouver Island, she has worked throughout Canada, having spent a number of years working in the Lower Mainland, British Columbia and in Ontario.

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What book do we find you reading tonight?

One Day Closer by Lorinda Stewart – a powerful read of a mother fighting to bring her daughter home.

How you decide what to read? Reviews, word of mouth, maybe occasionally judge a book by its cover?

I belong to a book club made up of an eclectic group of women with an equally diverse reading list. Some of the books I read come from this list, which exposes me to genres and books I might not normally read on my own. I also have my guilty pleasures I read when I just want to escape.

Name one book you wish you had written. And why.

Any of the books in the Harry Potter series. I love how J.K. Rowling has created such a complex and magical world. It is one of those series that as a parent, I can read to my kids and get just as much enjoyment and excitement the second or fourth time around. We are transported to another realm and the experience lingers, even after we’ve put the book down.

Name one book you could never finish. And why.

Reading Lolita in Tehran – Azar Nafisi. It was a book on my book club reading list I just couldn’t get into.

What book might people be surprised to find on your shelves?

Having graduated from Western with an English degree, my professors would likely be mortified to learn I have a number of Nora Roberts books on my shelves. We all need some guilty reading pleasures. And working as a writer, sometimes I need a break from being in my own head.

Any genres you avoid? And why.

While it’s not a genre, I try to avoid stories where children are injured or abused. Since becoming a mother, I find I get too emotional and have a hard time detaching myself from the story. The Glass Castle by Jeannette Walls, though well-written, was a very tough read that haunted me after I finished the book.

If you could require every university president to read one book, what would it be? And why.

Leadership by Rudolph Giuliani. His message about the value of surrounding yourself with good people and realizing you don’t need to have all the answers is a good reminder of the importance of building and relying upon a strong team.

What sort of objects are must-haves in your writing environment?

A window with a great view so when I need to take breaks to formulate my thoughts, my eyes have the opportunity to watch nature so I don’t feel confined to my office. I’m blessed to live on Vancouver Island with no shortage of great views out of my windows. Chocolate and coffee are also staples in my home office.

You’re organizing a literary dinner party. Which three writers, dead or alive, do you invite?

F. Scott Fitzgerald

Jane Urquhart

J.K. Rowling

How do you explain what your latest book is about to them?

The incredible inner strength of women and the important role their friends and family play in bringing children safely into this world. Pregnancy is complex, fraught with emotions and risks yet sadly the mental health issues facing women on bed rest are often overlooked by medical professionals. We all need to step up to the plate and help women through this difficult time. My hope when writing this book was to let women know they aren’t alone in this journey.

What is the best line you have ever written?

“Every day you give your baby in your womb is a blessing. Don’t look at how many days you have left until you reach full term, but how many days of love you have given your baby.”

Who would you want to write your life story?

Caitlin Moran. I approach life with humour and gratitude and would like my life story to be told in a lighthearted way, even the rough patches.

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Bed Rest Mom: Surviving Pregnancy-Related Bed Rest with Your Sanity and Dignity Intact by Cynthia Lockrey (Self Counsel Press, $18.95) is available through the publisher, Amazon.ca or other online retailers.