I press Publish on my fourth novel, Everything She Ever Wanted, the story of Harlow James, a heartbroken surgeon and Dax Drexel, the cocky carpenter who helps her discover the meaning of life.
Of all the books I’ve written, this is the one that “wrote itself.” The moment I found Harlow’s voice, the race was on to capture it and the first chapter, as painful as it is in parts and to some, is where they put down the book and mark it as DNF, was one I would never change for anything. The same goes for Dax’s chapter (Chapter 2). Sometimes, when you write, the characters just come, the Muse.
And you welcome them in. Whether others love or hate them is out of your control. You simply write their story.
I was also at a terrible time in my life when I wrote Dax and Harlow’s story. I was struggling with my son’s autism diagnosis and the absence of any help that summer which meant it was just him and me all day every day. But each night, I wrote and every morning when I woke up and he was still asleep, I wrote.
Thanks to the Wattpad readers who believed in Harlow and Dax and who eagerly awaited each chapter, it was as if we were all going on a journey together (I was a pants-er then, which means I didn’t outline my stories ahead of time).
So two years ago today, I hit that Publish button on Everything She Ever Wanted, obtained permission from one of my favorite singer-songwriters to let me quote the lyrics of the song that inspired the story, and here we are. Not everyone will like their story but that doesn’t change anything on my end. Dax and Harlow saved my life that summer and every day I’m reminded why I write my stories whether anyone else loves them or not.
And to those who’ve followed me from the beginning whether we met during Sam and Erik’s story or Ashe and Riley’s all the way to Sawyer and Alma, thank you for coming along with me.