Edge of Night may be gone, but it’s never been forgotten. The ABC mystery-themed serial which ended in 1984 continues to have life, thanks to its enduring appeal. One of the show’s (and daytime’s) most memorable characters is Raven Alexander Whitney, played by Daytime Emmy nominee Sharon Gabet.
Sharon Gabet — By The Book
Recently, the actress updated her memoir From the Raven to the Dove, a tome that includes many stories of her life — from growing up on a farm in Indiana to taking flight as one of daytime TV’s most popular stars. But the autobiography is far more than that. Gabet takes her readers on a spiritual journey, inviting them to open their hearts and minds as she shares experiences of her own transcendent transformation.
Soap Hub recently spoke to the actress/author about her the new edition of her life story. Read on for the highlights of a thought-provoking conversation.
Soap Hub: The cover to your updated memoir is beautiful. The book feels very supple and has lots of photos in it!
Sharon Gabet: Thank you! I’m so proud of it. These little decisions mean a lot. I went with this size because of the photos. My cover designer, Lynn Goldsmith, did such a magnificent job. Lynn had done the cover of Us magazine that the ABC super witches were on. I love the photo — it’s the Raven in flight.
In the intro, you explain that while there are lots of anecdotes from your years in soaps, this is not a standard memoir of working in showbiz. You invite readers to read with an open mind and a sense of humor and that this book may challenge their paradigm of reality!
When I decided to write the book in the early 2000s, it took me about a year to write it. I hadn’t gone back to nursing yet, however, I’d gone through an amazing change – I went through a spiritual and psychological search for myself.
In 1990, my daughter, Johanna, who has autism, was born. I went on a journey and had been focusing on that for about 11 years. My book was never going to be about a farm girl who goes to New York City. I didn’t have the material for that kind of book – the people who’d write about their sexual or Xanax addictions [wasn’t me]. Those make for popular books, but that didn’t apply to me. While my time in New York City was an explosive period, my transformation after that was also explosive. I got into energy work and learned about energy which sent me into studying physics and quantum physics.
How does this updated memoir differ from the first edition?
I’m a better writer now than I was 20 years ago! I discovered that people are more interested in your stories than your philosophy. I wanted to tell my stories to exemplify my philosophies. What’s the story that I can tell? I also wanted to dispel the “Raven myth.” She’s certainly my animal totem. She was the best character I ever played, an amazing character. People would identify me as who Raven was, but I was not like that. I pulled that out of me. Raven gave me confidence and I gave Raven heart.
I’ve always been an empath, a mystic, and clairsentient, which means I sense things. That’s why I split it up between the Raven and the Dove. I always wanted to reveal this other side of my life…I love that this new version allows me to write an epilogue. People don’t even know that I was a nurse. That was a whole other life. What an amazing time. Plus, I write about my spiritual travels all over the world, working with energy. I was just starting to get into that when I first wrote the book.
Can you talk about the process of learning to trust what you were feeling?
Yes. The good thing about the acting profession, for me, was that I was one of nine kids and, as I say in the book, there wasn’t time for any “needy, greedy” children. You were left to yourself. That promoted learning how to take care of yourself. We’re all extremely independent. I learned, as a child, how to go off into my own imaginary world, which was extremely creative. If I were left alone for five minutes, I never got bored. I was inside dreaming of something, creating something in my mind. I used to lay out on the grass and watch the stars move and ponder them. I’d commune with nature at an early age.
On how writing and updating this memoir led to personal growth?
When you open yourself to feeling and sensing more, you’re not going to do that successfully if you’re repressed or if you’re closed off. I had no idea what I was carrying around. A lot of us don’t. You learn about patterns you carry around from your family, from your schools, from culture and society…we get into certain patterns and we start living by them. We wonder why these things keep happening in our lives. This was a way for me to find out why. That was the journey.
To order your copy of From the Raven to the Dove, click here. (Note: the softcover edition of the book contains photos; the Kindle version of the book does not.)