What is The Best Girl about?
The Best Girl is an accounting of my life from ages four through twelve. I grew up in New Brighton, Minnesota, a suburb in the Twin Cities area. My dad had mental health issues and was physically abusive towards my mom. Themes of the book include survival, coming of age and childhood exposure to trauma. The book is written from my point of view, and therefore offers readers an in-depth look at what it is like for a toddler, young child and adolescent to be exposed to trauma.
What is the target audience?
The Best Girl will appeal to women, especially those who are in committed relationships and/or are mothers. Persons who are interested in social justice issues will find the book calling to them. Those involved in the world of domestic abuse: advocates, victims, survivors, and legislators will appreciate the awareness to the issue this book brings. The uniqueness of the first person point of view will benefit professionals who work with at risk children – teachers, nurses, pediatricians, mental health professionals, social workers, etc. – will gain an increased understanding of what it is that a child actually sees and observes.
Did anything surprise you while writing the book?
I was struck by the courage and bravery of the people who came into our lives to try to help us. At times, I became overwhelmed by their willingness to put their own lives on the line for us. They are the heroes of the book.
Does your family support your career as a writer?
My husband, John, and I have been married 32 years, and he has been very supportive. My sons, Greg (29) and Tony (27), have also supported me in many ways – including helping me design my website. My brother (six years older) and sister (8 years younger) have encouraged me to tell my part of our story.
Who edited your book?
My professional editor is Patricia Hoolihan, a writing instructor at The Loft Literary Center and Metro State University in Minneapolis. I also have three Beta readers – they read each draft of the book and offer stylistic and editing comments. Patricia and the Beta readers have been instrumental in making The Best Girl a stunning piece of literature.
Do you have a “day job” in addition to being a writer?
I was a Registered Nurse for 32 years. I retired from nursing in 2016 and began writing full time. I now have a part-time job as a receptionist at a salon to help pay for my writing costs.
What is the next step for The Best Girl?
One of the things agents look for is the number of followers and comments generated through social media – so please click on "like" below and send me a comment via the contact page! In addition, I will be attending the San Francisco Writer’s Conference in mid-February where I will pitch the book to agents for the first time.