Table 13 Journals

A Story of Teen Survival and Transformation

Authored by Ted O’Toole, Miles Harrison

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table13journalsTable 13 Journals tells in a raw and vivid way the story of a teenager’s struggles with drugs, violence, and persistent thoughts of suicide. It is told in Miles Harrison’s own words, written when he was 15 and 16, and in the words of Ted O’Toole, who was his mentor during this period. It also tells the story of the healing effects of a remarkable youth center known as the Key, of the creative writing process, and of Ted’s supportive presence, informed by his practice of Zen Buddhism.

This book belongs on the must-read list of teens and anyone who has ever loved or worked with a teen, especially during times of difficulty. It does not provide easy answers; instead, it is about taking the time to see clearly. Through journal entries, it chronicles a path of openness, honesty, respect, and letting go. Ultimately, Table 13 Journals is about finding our deep and quiet joy-the joy that sustains life.


About the authors:
Ted O’Toole has taught creative writing to both teens and adults, and is an experienced public speaker. He received a law degree from the University of Michigan law school, and works as a writer, editor, and trainer in the field of legal publications. Ted is also an ordained Soto Zen Buddhist priest, having received dharma transmission from Tim Burkett, in the Dainin Katagiri lineage. He is Assistant Guiding Teacher at Minnesota Zen Meditation Center in Minneapolis, Minnesota, and was one of the founding members of the Northfield Buddhist Meditation Center in Northfield, Minnesota.

Miles Harrison grew up in Northfield, Minnesota and was a member of The Northfield Union of Youth at The Key, where he met Ted, a volunteer mentor at The Key. The pair worked together for over a year in the mentoring program. Table 13 Journals is the result of their mentoring experience. Miles Harrison currently performs and teaches for the Shakespeare and Company in Lenox, Massachusetts. With the company’s regional education tour, Miles helps hundreds of high school and middle school students learn classic Shakespeare plays, while they also gain confidence in themselves through public performances.


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