Tuesday, June 5, 2007

H. Stephen Glenn

H. Stephen Glenn was a brilliant, charismatic person who was dedicated to Developing Capable Young People by helping adults become more capable in their skills for working with children. At the end of this post, you’ll find a link to listen to a sample from one of his CDs.

I was one of those who attended his lectures and workshops and was mesmerized, entertained, and inspired. I was also pleased to learn that the concepts and methods he taught were so compatible with Positive Discipline

Methods and Concepts.

Eventually we became co-authors. It began in 1983 when I gave him a copy of my newly, self-published Positive Discipline. I know he didn’t read it at that time, and I can understand why. If fact, I’m surprised that anyone did. I didn’t know anything about self-publishing, and that first printing was very funny looking with a two-color cover that I designed (not one of my talents), and was printed by a local printer who managed to misspell discipline and put it upside down on the spine. Still the first printing of 2000 was sold in a year. So, by the time I attend Steve’s Developing Capable People workshop in 1985, I had a fairly decent version of Positive Discipline and gave him another copy.

During the workshop, we do a lot of group work. During that time, I kept noticing that Steve was reading Positive Discipline. At the end of the three day workshop he asked me if I would like to collaborate with him on writing a book that he could use as the text for his DCP workshops. I said, “Sure,”

That is what I said, but this is what I thought. “I can’t write another book. I’m not really a writer. I could never do this.” I did not believe I was an “author” until three of the books I wrote (including the one I eventually wrote with H. Stephen Glenn) sold very well. So, the idea sat on a shelf for a while. Meanwhile, Steve started using Positive Discipline as the text for his DCP workshops and keynotes he did all over the country. So, this self-published book started selling all over the country.

Steve got so busy that he subcontracted with Positive Discipline Associates to handle his bookings. Cindy Botello eventually worked full time for Steve out of my offices. I kept printing Positive Discipline books because I was now getting orders from all over the country.

Meanwhile, I decided to self-publish Understanding: Eliminating Stress and Dissatisfaction in Life and Relationships. Steve started selling this book also, and more orders poured into my office. I decided it was time to tackle the task of writing a book with Steve. What an adventure.
It took me awhile to discover that Steve didn’t have time to write. He was excellent at speaking, and spent so much time on the road that he didn’t have time or energy left for writing. So I began the task of listening to his cassette tapes and trying to capture his charm and brilliance in writing. This was not as easy task. When you listen to his Developing Capable Young People CDs you will notice that his sentences are often three paragraphs long and may go in several different directions. Sounds great. Doesn’t read great. I’m very proud to say that I think I did a good job, but it was very time consuming. Steve kept promising that the book would be available in six weeksand collected prepublication sales. Meanwhile, I’m listening to cassettes and writing 16 hours a day trying to meet the deadline. I remember one time I asked him a question and turned on my tape recorder. He talked for two hours and I had another chapter.

Four month’s later; the self-published version of Raising Children for Success was hot off the press. Steve now had another text to use with his Developing Capable People Course (he continued to use Positive Discipline). Two years and 40,000 copies later, we sold the rights to Prima (eventually purchased by Random House) and they called it Raising Self-Reliant Children in a Self-Indulgent World.

H. Stephen Glenn died in 2004 http://www.capabilitiesinc.com/about.html Fortunately we can still learn from Steve through his CDs, Videos, and Books.

Click here to listen to a sample.

Also listen to the podcast at http://positivediscipline.com/podcast/


Unknown said...

how did this wonderful person pass away

Anonymous said...

I wanted to write a letter to dr. Glenn and was dismayed that he had passed away. Many years ago he came to Santa Cruz for his annual lecture. A friend had recommended his and Jane's lectures so we met our host at the auditorium and my friend sat us in the front row. I was very uncomfortable in the front row and Dr. Glenn heard me saying so and then very kindly sat next to me to reassure me and share his difficulties with a similar challenge. It was then I was struck by surprise by a theretofore hidden terror and I could not look at him or respond to his words. I felt so badly that I could not respond to his kindness and empathy.It has not been until very recently that I have finally unraveled the nature of my terror and the first thing I wanted to do was to contact him and thank him. Alas, I was too late. I pray that this thank you reaches him or those who might receive it for him. NND