Veronica Waldrop was the author of The Nuff, a story she wrote for her daughters before she passed away in 2017. This interview is with Will Waldrop, her husband, and Alan Williams, a family friend who organized the publication of The Nuff.
Q: How did Veronica Waldrop come up with the idea for The Nuff, and what message did she want to leave her daughters?
A: Veronica came up with the idea of The Nuff based on her experiences throughout childhood and into high school. She always struggled with insecurities and strived to find her place in some type of “group.”
As an adult, it is easy to look back and see how trivial those insecurities may have been, but for children they do not have that vision and foresight to navigate those issues. To compound things, we live in a day and age where social media serves as a highlight reel for people’s lives.
However, as we have learned the hard way, life is difficult and can give you many challenges that are extremely hard to accept.
At the end of the day, her message to the girls was for them to know they were amazing and created by God, which makes them beautifully and wonderfully made.
Q: What was the process involved in getting the book published, and what has the reaction been so far?
Alan: Ultimately, a friend asked me for help. Just weeks after Veronica passed away, Will shared the poem with me along with his desire to bring this poem to life. I created Tailwind Publishing with the sole purpose of producing The Nuff and fulfilling its mission to inspire every girl to know that she is enough.
Most importantly, we've focused on strategic partnerships that will ensure that this book gets in the hands of girls that might not otherwise receive it.
The reaction to The Nuff has been inspiring, joyful, and indicative that all of us – not just women – want to spread the powerful messages found in the book.
We've already launched the book in Texas with H-E-B across their 310 stores and our nationwide launch kicked off on International Women's Day. In a very short time, we've shipped books to individuals, retailers, and schools in over 45 states.
We're entering our fourth printing of the book and are just getting started. Parents are inspired by Veronica's courage and they want their kids to understand acceptance of self and acceptance of others.
Q: What do you think Cat Elliott's illustrations add to the story?
Will: Cat knew Veronica, and so only she could have brought this character to life. Her illustrations capture the life and the depth that Veronica envisioned for The Nuff when she would dress up as a unicorn to lift the spirits of her daughters during the final days of her life.
The Nuff is a beautiful creation, but far from perfect. The character has a broken horn and a bandaid – a clear reminder that brokenness is beautiful. At the end of the day, I want my daughters to know that their confidence does not come from what they do, but who they are.
Q: Can you say something about Veronica's legacy today?
Will: Preserving Veronica's legacy – so that my daughters would forever be reminded that they are enough – is what inspired this project. The social media response to the book has been heartwarming and inspiring. This timeless story is resonating with girls and women of all ages and backgrounds. The Nuff may be a children’s book, but it is not solely a kid’s message.
As a dad, there are times when I don't feel like I am enough, but I'm thankful that, through this book, we can all be reminded that we are enough. Veronica said it best, "Grace is amazing, perfection is not – have faith in who you are. Just be you and love will shine through like a brilliant, sparkling star."
Q: Is there anything else we should know?
Alan: The Nuff is evolving as an educational resource. We are working with an educational partner to develop a curriculum tied to The Nuff for Pre-K through 2nd grade students.
These educators recognize that without a strong sense of self-worth, girls fall behind their peers, subconsciously setting low expectations and losing sign of their true potential.
But that can change. When a girl knows that she is enough, amazing things happen. She dreams big. She lifts others along the way, and she becomes resilient in the face of adversity – all things that I want for my own daughters.
--Interview with Deborah Kalb