Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Alyson -- Living My Five

So a few weeks back, before I’d publicly committed to my Five (though privately I’ve been trying to live them for awhile now), I received an e-mail from a reader, Samantha Del Vecchio, asking if I’d be willing to donate signed copies of THE IMMORTALS books for the Ballantyne Country Club Rally for the Cure Auction—an annual event, founded by her mother back in 2004.

Having lost a few loved ones to various types of cancer, it’s definitely a cause I support, and in the spirit of Committing to Random Acts of Charity I immediately sent her signed copies of EVERMORE and BLUE MOON in hopes they would help in some small way.

And though I was obviously touched by her e-mail, what I didn’t realize is that Samantha wasn’t acting under her mother’s guidance, wasn’t asked to drum up donations on her own, she was simply inspired after years of watching her mother’s tireless efforts to help others, and decided to find her own way to pitch in and help-- a real Living Your Five kinda moment, and I’m so proud of her!

Or as her mother, quoted in an article in The Carolina Weekly put it:

One of the event’s bonus results is the lesson it teaches the community’s children, Del Vecchio said. “I think one of the successes is that our children see us saying, ‘Yes, we can do this.’ They see us making things happen. And hopefully they’ll be that way one day as well.”

Del Vecchio realized her daughter Samantha, 12, was learning valuable lessons after she discovered that the student sent an e-mail to popular young-adult-fiction author ­Alyson Noel, asking her to donate signed copies of books from the best-selling “Immortals” series to Rally’s auction. Noel replied within hours, expressing her support for the cause and committing to a donation.

“There are points during the year that dinner isn’t made when my husband is home from work, or I have to pick up the kids from school and then run five Rally errands, but after (discovering Samantha’s e-mail) I thought to myself, ‘OK, this is balancing now. She gets it,’” Del Vecchio said.”

To read the full article, click HERE

Also, in the spirit of Random Acts of Charity I also made a donation to Beyond Shelter, a Los Angeles based charity that helps combat poverty and homelessness among families with children. Blake Snyder, screenwriting guru, author of SAVE THE CAT (one of the best books on writing, ever!), and overall awesome person, was a big supporter. And when he passed away last month, a memorial fund was set up in his name and it felt like a great way to honor a friend and help people in need at the same time.

Also, in my efforts to Commit to Living Greener, my husband and I recently went paperless for all of our bill paying. Did you know that receiving and paying bills online can make a huge environmental impact—and if every American household made the switch, it could reduce solid waste in U.S. landfills by more than 800,000 tons a year and help curb the release of greenhouse gases by 2.1 million tons, according to Javelin Strategy and Research. This could also save an estimated 18.5 million trees a year. Not to mention it’s a lot less mail to open!

Oh, and in my Commitment to Give Something Away Every Time I Buy Something New I bought a purse last week, and so I’m getting rid of a purse—and you know what, I seriously doubt that I’ll miss it!

So, that’s it from me—but what about YOU?

Any good living green tips?

Are you Living Your Five?


  1. How cool, Alyson, that Samantha took the initiative to help with her mother's event. I know I wasn't that service-oriented at the age of 12 (or even 20). What an inspiration. And great that you could help her out.

    I'm paperless on my bills, too. I'm glad for the environmental impact, but honestly I did it to make my life easier. It's always nice when doing good and helping yourself out go hand in hand.

  2. Love the Samantha story! Cheers to both of you (and her mom too)!

    How wonderful that they set up a memorial fund at Beyond Shelter for Blake Snyder. What a lovely tribute. Good stuff all around. And I agree with Tera. It's so nice when doing good is good for you too. Now that's synergy. :-)

  3. Good job on living your five!

    My family and I have been trying to go paperless on bills, too.

  4. Samantha's story is so inspirational! I bet that article touched all of the people who read it!

    Good job on living your five!

  5. This is awesome, Alyson. You've been busy with you Five :)

  6. Replies
    1. Hi Alyson!
      Though you may not believe this, and seeing as this article is about 3 years old I'm not sure you'll even see this, but after typing my name into one of those 'find people' apps, (because thats what us teenagers do) I found this article! And I just had to tell you how privileged I felt that one of my favorite authors would write this about me, also another one of my favorite authors, Becca Fitzpatrick comments on it?! It's all just kind of surreal. I'm 15 now, and a just about to graduate from my freshman year of high school. Unfortunately, we moved to London, England the summer after this occurred, so I haven't been able to participate in the BCC Rally for the past two years, but were moving back this summer, and I hope to get more involved. Thanks again!

  7. Great progress on living your five, Alyson! That's so lovely to hear of the willingness and dedication of Samantha, it really is inspiring when you see such young hearts actually reach out and do what they can to help.

    Love both the charities you have supported and that's a great idea with going paperless! I buy the newspaper daily but I realised that I usually listen to the news on tv and read online, so why not save a dollar aswell as help save some trees too? I'm also trying to recycle paper, magazines, etc more and in the process learning what type of materials can be recycled, so that's good!

  8. Hey Brodie-
    Thanks for stopping by! Recycling is def the way to go--I'm trying to do double duty with my old manuscripts, cutting them up and using them as scrap paper and then dumping them into the recycler! (I've got lots of scrap paper these days!)