In July 2011, Emma Mebane, age 19, died in her sleep from no known cause. As her family says, Emma died “on the threshold of her dreams.” She was home on summer break after her freshman year in college and spent the evening having pizza with her brother and dad and facetiming with her sister and mom in England. In the morning, Emma’s living spark had vanished.
But Emma’s mother Donna could not accept that she was gone. She wrote: I had a vague idea of heaven, but I couldn’t envision my daughter there. I couldn’t imagine her in some pristine place, wearing a flowing white gown, possibly sprouting angel wings and trading her signature “Wait … what?” for sudden wisdom.
With this thought, Donna began to imagine a world in which Emma could continue “to laugh, love and, yes, live, in a place that wouldn’t scare her, change her, or overwhelm her.” Over the next months, Donna created this world, that Emma came to call AFTER, in an award-winning book called Tomorrow Comes. The book begins with this passage:
Emma opened her eyes. She was surrounded by a blaze of color, and she was filled with an overwhelming sense of peace. The sun streaming through her window was unusually bright, and her room was bursting with sensation …
Wordsmith Associates worked closely with Donna from the beginning, editing and organizing her work as she turned chapters over and designing the eventual publication that was released in 2014. Tomorrow Comes has since gone on to receive 11 awards – from 6 major award competitions in 8 different genres and 3 special categories, including best first novel and grand prize finalist.