I keep seeing this question everywhere lately…What’s your why?
I decided to answer it, and that led to this post!
I just published my first novel, Starting Tomorrow.
I began writing Starting Tomorrow in an attempt to understand myself, and ended up discovering a new way of understanding of everything.
Starting Tomorrow is a fictional story inspired by my struggle with bulimia in high school. While I overcame my struggle with bulimia, I later engaged in other harmful behaviors, like binge drinking and excessive exercise. I was comfortable at the ends of the spectrum—empty or full, happy or sad—but if I were somewhere in between, the emptiness inside would be overwhelming. I started looking into that emptiness. It’s super scary to stand in your own darkness, but like most things, the more familiar it becomes, the less threatening it is. I don’t think I will ever get to the bottom of all that is inside me, and I think that’s okay. The fact that I’m perfectly fine right now is what I discovered while writing Starting Tomorrow. This book is about finding your personal worth and power and loving yourself as you are.
A lot of people think if you accept yourself as you are, you will never improve, but that’s just not how it works. You can love yourself and accept yourself and truly believe that in this moment you are the best you can be. We are all doing the best we can. When you start from a place of self-love and acceptance, you naturally gravitate toward the people who will help you. Your relationships deepen and you let more love in. It changes everything.
Why did I write a fictional novel?
What I love about fiction is that it is intuitive, not prescriptive. As a reader, you are free to think whatever you want about the characters. They may remind you of yourself, but they are not you, so they are not threatening. The lessons and takeaways from a fictional story are different for everyone. I love the characters in Starting Tomorrow, and how hard they try and how much they love each other. They are messy and real, and every person is doing the best they can, just like we all are. Someone might read something in Starting Tomorrow and think, “That’s cool. I wonder if I could try that. Maybe I would feel better.”
Why a young adult novel?
Life today is speedy and it takes effort to read a book. I wanted to write something fun that would appeal to young people, and hoped it would appeal to everyone. Larger font and spacing. Short chapters. It’s nice to read for ten minutes and feel a sense of accomplishment. And the real accomplishment is you took time for yourself. Just you, the book, your thoughts and dreams. It’s a beautiful thing.
I think Anna Quindlen said it perfectly:
“All of reading is really only finding ways to name ourselves, and, perhaps, to name the others around us so that they will no longer seem like strangers.”
― Anna Quindlen, How Reading Changed My Life
I highly recommend doing the exercise of writing down your why for anything in your life. You hold all the answers!
Be inspired. Go forth. Create your day.
Starting Tomorrow is available in paperback and ebook on Amazon.