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Biography & Autobiography Women

I Feel Great About My Hands

And Other Unexpected Joys of Aging

edited by Shari Graydon

Douglas & McIntyre
Initial publish date
Mar 2011
Women, Essays, Women's Studies
  • eBook

    Publish Date
    Apr 2011
    List Price
  • Paperback / softback

    Publish Date
    Mar 2011
    List Price

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With wisdom and humour, forty-one remarkable, mature women over 50 revel in the joys of aging.

Nora Ephron struck a chord with I Feel Bad about My Neck. Women's advocate and acclaimed writer Shari Graydon set out to counter the supposed downhill slide-inspired grief by inviting notable women of age from across Canada -- all over 50 -- to provide an alternative perspective.


I Feel Great about My Hands is a collection of stories, essays and poems celebrating life, and embracing the changes, discoveries and wisdom that come with age. This colourful anthology includes:

  • Gemini award-honoured funnywoman Mary Walsh on playing a "big, loud, opinionated old bag"
  • Celebrated poet Lorna Crozier's hilariously graphic "My Last Erotic Poem"
  • Val Napoleon, an adopted Gitksan member of Cree heritage applying Aboriginal trickster tales to modern attitudes about aging gracefully
  • Shari Graydon herself focusing her "face-half-unwrinkled" attention on the hands that have helped her nurture life and express creativity and joy



Royalties from the book will benefit Media Action, an organization dedicated to challenging the under-representation and sexualization of women in the media.

About the author

Shari Graydon is an award-winning women's advocate and bestselling author of two media literacy books for youth, Made You Look and In Your Face. Past president of the non-profit women's group MediaWatch (now Media Action), she lectures frequently about media and body image issues from her home base in Ottawa.

Shari Graydon's profile page

Editorial Reviews

"[I Feel Great About My Hands is] a warm, wise, witty response to Nora Ephron's I Feel Bad About My Neck. "

Huffington Post

"Readers will probably cry as much as they laugh because this is no lightweight, 'meno-positive' collection. Older women take the lioness' share of the challenges and heartaches of empty nests, caring for aging and dying parents, living below poverty level, and becoming invisible. These writers do not shirk from sharing these realities."

Waterloo Region Record

"I Feel Great About My Hands is an anthology of anger and hope, loss and love, regret and humour. It's about growing old gracefully, fighting sexism and railing against impossible cultural standards, about accepting that our aging flesh, with its wrinkles and scars and loose folds and liver spots, is not only a visible charting of our life's well travelled road map but a subject for celebration."

Vancouver Sun

"Ottawa author and women's advocate Shari Graydon has answered Ephron with an upbeat response, a Dropped Threads-like collection of stories, essays and poems in which more than 40 Canadian women over 50 celebrate aging and their lives well-lived...I Feel Great About My Hands sends a strong and supportive message about the future."

Winnipeg Free Press

"I applaud these fine women for trying to resolve and accept the dilemma of aging that affects us all, and doing so with such humour and poignancy. A wonderful read."

Karen Kain, CC

"I Feel Great About My Hands and Other Unexpected Joys of Aging edited by Shari Graydon, has notable Canadian women celebrating their golden years."

Zoomer Magazine

"I found the book as a whole quite heartwarming and am moved to describe some of the entries as 'a thing of beauty'. The overall experience of reading it was quite life-affirming."

Sideroads Magazine

"A Canadian cadre has delivered a response to Nora Ephron's witty tome on the hazards of aging, I Feel Bad About My Neck. I Feel Great About My Hands opts for the earnest, and tots up the things that get better after age 50. These include everything from being more confident to enjoying the sight of adult children well-raised."

The Tyee

"Graydon put together remarkable, inspiring stories that are so honest that you can't help but want to be as smart as these women...I'd like to thank the women in this book for helping me stare down my fear and realize that aging isn't what will shorten my life. Not working hard for what I believe in might, though; not being willing to take on risks and try new things absolutely will; not living well or loving well are guaranteed life-shorteners. But aging? Not so much."


"I Feel Great About My Hands offers honest reflections of individuals who have struggled with times of loss and transition to reach a place where they can celebrate the miracles within and the benefits of maturity. This affirming vision is bound to appeal to women of all ages."

Lindsay Post

Other titles by Shari Graydon