It’s 2018, and I have a New Year’s resolution.
My next book, Mending Fences, centers around family and the relationships of four sisters and their father. I come from a big family. I have five sisters, no brothers, and the dynamics among us are beyond the scope of explaining in a blog. Suffice it to say, we’re all very different individuals—something that always boggled my parents’ minds. I don’t understand why, because no two people are the same, and none of us are twins!
The first three sisters, Susan, Kathy, and Patti (that’s me!), were followed ten years later by Carol, Heidi, and Gretchen. The first three of us were born in the post-World War II era with its frugality and discipline and respect for elders. The second three girls grew up in a world with an overabundance of toys, attention, and the “me” generation of values. This is not a criticism of my parents or my sisters; it’s just a fact that affected our outlooks and ultimately what we expected out of life.
We’re all grown up now, and although we’ve gone in different directions, it’s still possible to maintain a meaningful connection, but it takes work. As we’re getting older, I realize I don’t want to miss out on the closeness that is right around the corner, if I choose to act. I don’t want to carry around a bucket of regrets when I have the power to change the outcome of my relationships with my siblings. Hence, my New Year’s resolution—to stay in closer contact with my sisters.
The fascinating dynamics in my family inspired me to write my next book, Mending Fences, which will be out later this year from Ravenswood Publishing. As in my family, each of the sisters—Sharon, Kathy, Patti, and Helen—has a distinct personality, yet Helen stands out as the black sheep. She has an attitude of entitlement and treats her sisters disrespectfully with her snarky put-downs and sarcastic behavior. Sharon’s interest in psychology helps her understand Helen, whereas Kathy isn’t assertive, and sticking up for herself doesn’t come easily, making her ill-equipped to deal with Helen’s negative remarks. Patti, on the other hand, is a fighter, and her run-ins with Helen escalate the more time they spend around each other. Is it possible to mend the rifts that separate the four sisters?
Do you have a New Year’s resolution? Maybe one that’s beyond the scope of “eating better and losing weight?” If so, I hope you’ll share it with me and the fun Writerspace gang!