Woman’s Club of Minneapolis guests who hear Roxane Battle’s speech Wednesday will meet the former TV newswoman for the first time, so to speak.
The real Roxane Battle was hiding in plain sight throughout her 14-year career at KARE 11. She didn’t want us to see her pain — as a new mom to her beloved, now-adult son Jarod — going through a divorce: “Which is why, C.J., I was so ornery.”
Then she discovered that even in bad situations there are “Pockets of Joy,” the name of the book she self-published in 2015. It’s available for a limited time on amazon.com and barnesandnoble.com and has been picked up by Whitaker House. In September it’s being republished in an expanded national edition that will include more celebrity connections.
“I’m talking on the 29th of March about your pathway to happiness — authenticity, gratitude, generosity, self-care and forgiveness,” she said. “If I had not forgiven my first husband for the transgressions that led to the end of our marriage, this fantastical journey that I’m on as an author would have never happened.”
Asked if she had to forgive a second husband, as she is now divorced from a well-known Twin Cities pastor, she said: “Here’s the deal. I was remarried. I am no longer remarried. I just want you to know that I’m doing OK.”
Q: Are we going to see you on TV news again?
A: I am the shuttle bus driver for a St. Croix Casino commercial, all five seconds’ worth. “We’re a part of this community!” I’m on TV now. Am I going to be on TV again? I don’t know.”
Q: What’s your book about?
A: My book is about my time at KARE 11, a 14-year period. Most people didn’t know me. I was just a facade. I’d get on the air and I’d smile and go home and put my life back together. What people didn’t realize was that I was a divorced, working mom, had an 11-month-old. Just about the time I got to KARE, my marriage fell apart. Which is why, C.J., I was so ornery, which is why I was so standoffish, why I didn’t talk to people. I was struggling at home, trying to keep it together.
Q: What’s the difference between those versions?
A: The first version is about my time at KARE 11, how and why I made the decision to leave. I thought I owed it to the viewers who had been watching all those years. The second version is more new material. How to find happiness in life.
Q: How did you get Tavis Smiley to write an endorsement?
A: I’m flying out to L.A. I sit down, look over and it’s Tavis Smiley, New York Times bestselling author, talk show host, philanthropist. So I got my cellphone out, googled him, figured out what book he’d just written. I said, “So tell me about this new book.” He goes on and on about this book he wrote about Maya Angelou. Finally he gets to Sooo, Roxane, what do you do? And I put my book in his hands. I said, “Tavis, it’s kismet that I am sitting next to you. You get that there is nothing random. I want you to read my book.” He said, “I’m gonna read it.” Then I said, “Tavis, I want you to endorse it.” Two days later he endorsed my book. Those little things let you know you’re on the right path.
Q: You also managed to meet and interview Maria Shriver (bit.ly/2ncgczx). You’re one of Shriver’s “Architects of Change.”
A: A friend gave me this itty bitty book, “Just Who Will You Be?” by Maria Shriver, about how she had to walk away from NBC News when she became first lady of the state of California. That book resonated with me. Somehow Maria found out about it and had her people contact me and ask me for my life story in 1,000 words or less. Maria published it on her website, thereby making me an Architect of Change. (See more about the Shriver encounter on my video.)
Q: What will we learn about Roxane Battle that we didn’t know?
A: That I am an eternal optimist. I’m not afraid to cry. I am soul-searching to become the best version of me.
Q: By whom would you like to be played if your book becomes a movie?
A: You know who’s going to play me. Yeah, Halle Berry is playing me in the movie.
C.J. can be reached at email@example.com and seen on Fox 9’s “Jason Show.” E-mailers, please state a subject. “Hello” doesn’t count.