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Flower Girl A Novel . . . Writing the Uncomfortable Truth about Self-Awareness and Change

Midwest Book Review, Senior Reviewer Diane Donovan says, "Collections strong in women's literature and fiction surrounding domestic violence and recovery processes will find Flower Girl an evocative, compelling read that chooses no easy paths to resolution. Suzanna's changing choices and perceptions are outstanding examinations of the darkness that pervades her world and provide important keys to recovery that women will want to learn about."

 

Writing a novel of women's fiction is devoted to portraying and examining a woman's journey to a fulfilled self. Life is a highway with ups and downs . . . it isn't all straight, flat, or comprised of gentle grades. Instead, it is complicated by gnarly twists and turns, impeding the protagonist's self-discovery and ability to live and give voice to her values. Life can be beautiful, thrilling, and amazing . . . but it can also be messy, chaotic, confusing, and even dirty and ugly.

 

The stories I write show how the protagonist progresses in self-discovery and faces life's obstacles. Such self-awareness can be exhilarating and freeing. But it can also be unsettling when it demands accountability and commitment to change.

Writing Flower Girl was fulfilling . . . but to achieve that self-satisfaction and be true to my mission, I had to come to grips with writing about situations that are difficult and uncomfortable—narcissism, denial, emotional abuse, and sexual assault, among them.

 

To show the protagonist's mettle required to plunge her into self-discovery amidst tricky and sometimes terrifying circumstances and then hold her accountable in overcoming these. Self-awareness, accountability, and commitment to change, though difficult, had to be the foundation for the protagonist to achieve a flourishing life.

In Flower Girl, I show readers a journey of self-discovery and accountability, which I hope might challenge them, like Suzanna Jordan, to live their truth. Though sometimes bumpy and slippery, the road to achieving a life filled with engagement, satisfaction, positive relationships, meaning, and achievement is worth the trip.

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One Way or Another--Authors are Explorers

"The writer is an explorer.  Every step is an advance into a new land."  --Ralph Waldo Emerson

 

I am an explorer when I write. As I walk on the well-trodden path, studying my values, beliefs, culture, and experiences, scrubby side trails invite me to take a chance, leave behind the superficial and known, and take the risk to explore the concealed, unresolved, and mysterious.  Blackhorse Road took me on the forgiveness trail and led me to take more risks and roam bumpy paths in Flower Girl—ones needing more unraveling—shame, self-discovery, agency, and purpose.   

 

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