Good Morning Monday readers:
Growing up I devoured fantasy and science fiction books but the one book that stayed with me the most was something I read in grade 4, The Boxcar Children by Gertrude Chandler Warner. That book seemed realistic and I could picture myself running away and hiding out in a cool rail car. When I started writing YA I found I was leaning toward contemporary hard hitting issues and I wasn’t sure why. I haven’t plotted out any of my nitty gritty YA stories so I wasn’t sure what journey my characters were going to take me on but what a therapeutic rollercoaster of a ride. My teen years weren’t the best.
Growing up in a small fishing community there were a lot of issues I turned a blind eye to. One of those issues was molestation. My good friend’s step-father sexually abused her but because we didn’t openly talk about that we pretended it wasn’t happening. But the scars that she kept hidden became major issues as our high school years progressed and tragically our friendship ended. Looking back I realize I wasn’t much of a friend and I think writing Off Limits was my way of wishing things had turned out differently.
Megan and Lindsay don’t like each other and in the beginning they are using each other for their own purposes. But as they spend more time together they each realize the façade of what they’re wearing is just that. What surprises them both is a true friendship forms; one that can withstand the brutal secrets that scar each of them. Together they are stronger and once secrets get revealed the power they hold quickly diminishes. I wish more than anything I had known that as a teenager. I certainly know it as a mother of four and tell my children, even my teens that secrets can destroy a family and an individual. Secrets hold power but being brave and telling someone makes that person even braver.
Off Limits is a journey for both my main characters and writing it was a journey for me. I hope readers will understand the hard hitting subject matter and show empathy for both Megan and Lindsay.
What I’d like to know is if you kept a secret that did more harm than good? Should teens tell? We talk about bullying but is keeping a secret just the same?
Off Limits is a .99cent read in the Indie .99cent Blow out sale!