Norman Aladjem, a Hollywood manager and producer, began writing Letters to Mackenzie as an ongoing series of advice he wanted to give to his daughter. As an ‘older dad’, as he describes himself, he wanted to be able to teach his daughter valuable lessons that he’s learned in his life.
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What once started out as a passion project, quickly turned into a small self-help phenomenon. Letters to MacKenzie was a series of letters of advice that Aladjem would post once a week to his Facebook as a way to keep himself accountable and to stick to the project. Aladjem was contacted by a book agent he had on Facebook, and the book was quickly picked up by Simon & Schuster. “I didn’t set out to become an author,” he said. “I set out to write letters to my daughter and then it seemed to have universal themes of female empowerment and lessons about life and the relationships between parents and their children.”
The MacKenzie in question is actually sixteen year-old actress MacKenzie Aladjem who has starred on shows like Hawaii Five-O and Nurse Jackie.
The blog brought him and his family closer together as it provided him a way to articulate feelings and thoughts that he may not have been able to share before. He used the letters to talk about things from allowances, to deaths in the family, or even the birds and the bees. Norm actually planned to bind the letters together and gift them to MacKenzie during her eighteenth birthday, but he joked, “Then somebody bought the book.”
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The novel, entitled From Me to You, was recently published by Post Hill Press.
Aladjem stated that this was one of the most fulfilling things he has done as a parent. “I’ve had people say, ‘I wish my Dad had done that for me’ or ‘I need to start doing this for my kids.’ It’s never too late to do this for those you love.”
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