In her 2015 novella-length memoir, Community Chest, English faculty Natalie Serber describes her diagnosis of and subsequent treatment for breast cancer—from surgery, through chemotherapy, to remission.
According to her publisher, Two Sylvias Press, Community Chest is Serber’s “fierce and funny memoir about fear and family, treatment decisions and the changed landscape of her body.”
“It happened the year I turned 50, the year I published my first book, the year my youngest child went off to college,” Serber wrote in a blog post for Beyond the Margins. “It was supposed to be my year of celebration, of immersion into my work, of embracing my empty-next life stage and instead I’d been pushed into my own dark corner.”
In an opening letter to readers of Community Chest, Serber writes: “If you’ve received your own bad diagnosis, I hope my story makes you feel less alone. I hope reading about how I made it through makes you feel a little bit stronger. I hope you feel me beside you, seeing you through.”
A portion of proceeds from Community Chest will be donated to Northwest Hope and Healing, which provides financial assistance to women who are battling breast and gynecological cancer.
Natalie Serber is a member of the faculty in the Department of English at Marylhurst University. Her story collection, Shout Her Lovely Name, was a New York Times Notable Book of 2012.