National Novel Writing Month kicks off this Friday. Are you in? I'm giving it a go even though I'm not super confident I can finish. Why? Because I'm not writing a fun erotic romance. Instead, I am writing a novel about a woman living with the effects of childhood sexual abuse, something which is all too familiar for me. This will be a much lengthier project, too. I am accustomed to writing short stories and novellas. For NaNoWriMo, the goal is to write 50,000 words in a month. That's a lot of words.
The title of my book will be The Broken Doll, a metaphor for the way my heroine, Poppy Blake, views herself. Here's a short synopsis:
For years, the past has taunted Poppy Blake with the things she couldn't remember. Ancient wounds have a way of showing up anyway, though, and Poppy knows in her soul something went very wrong in her childhood. Her fear of sex, along with her obsession with her children's safety, drives twin wedges between her and her husband, Evan. In a relationship marred by tension and anger, she clings to her marriage with a desperation which suffocates Evan, pushing him farther and farther away from her.
When Poppy rediscovers an old, beloved doll, a lock clicks open inside her brain, and memories, good and bad, come tumbling out, some fully formed, some mere fragments. Old moments of horror fall to the floor of her heart, side by side with recollections of love and grace.
Estranged from both of her parents, Poppy looks to her younger siblings for insights. Her brother, Jimmy, having made peace with his past, has no desire to go back into the darkness. Her sister, Lily, close to both of their parents, refuses to claim a childhood fraught with abuse, choosing instead to live with manufactured memories of sugar-sweet perfection.
Alone on her journey of remembrance, Poppy begins to experience mystical visions. When her younger self appears to her and speaks four little words, "Daddy did it again," she must challenge everything she thought she knew about herself and her life.
Just two more days until NaNoWriMo begins. What will you be writing? If you'd like to add me to your buddy list, you can find me here.