I came across a very interesting blog post this morning that I want to share with you all. You can read it here:
I have very strong feelings about this excellent post and the ideas presented. Because of that, I left a long comment on it. Here’s what I wrote:
“I really liked your blog post Marjorie. I felt the points you raised were very important and I left a long comment on the post. Hope you don’t mind. I’d like to share my comment here too in case others don’t read what I wrote: “The points you’ve raised here are very important. This is something I had to decide when I was writing my book, NO TEARS FOR MY FATHER: how graphic should my book be? In the end, I found I couldn’t write it any other way that to tell how it happened, what he said to me, how he coached me, led me to do what he wanted, and what he actually did. I saw no point in even writing the book without these details. Otherwise, what was the purpose of writing it? I wanted to enlighten others to how a predator, in this case my own father, gets his way. I wanted readers to see his thinking, the psychology, the motivation behind his actions and his ability to manipulate a defenseless child, his own child. How else to do that than by actually giving details? But as you suggest, it was necessary to put a ‘trigger warning’ on the book and that’s what I did.
I have been criticized by only one other writer, herself a victim, for providing, what she called “the guts and gore” in my story. She said victims don’t need those details, that I should have focused on recovery and healing. Well I’m not a therapist and how I healed was not the focus of my story. Mine was just that: my story … take it or leave it … but it was honest and real. If I wanted to write a book on healing, I would have. But I don’t feel qualified to do that. And besides, there are many wonderful books out there for that purpose. I even addressed this in one of my book talks where some of my readers, themselves victims, said I’d done the right thing as it helped them relate even better and helped them realize they were not alone when they heard what he actually said and did to me.
Bottom line: 2 sides to this argument and you are so right: write the story as YOU need to and if it’s graphic, put in a warning and let the reader decide if they can handle it. As for the others, get your heads out of the sand folks. This is the real world and this is happening in a home near you!”
So now, I’d love your feedback on my response and on Marjorie’s original blogpost on her LAMPLIGHTER MOVEMENT site. Was NO TEARS FOR MY FATHER too graphic? Should graphic details be spared in books on child sexual abuse? Waiting to hear from you: what do you think? And by the way, you can download a FREE SAMPLE of my book at both SMASHWORDS and GOODREADS.