The second edition of FIGHTING FOR FREEDOM is still coming along beautifully, and I can't wait to see how this story continues to develop. I'm still writing my way through expanding and developing the remaining chapters of Christine's journey, but there are exciting things happening behind the scenes in the coming weeks - and I can confidently say the new edition of this novel is already so much more powerful than it ever could have been when I first published it in 2013.
I'm also beginning to plot concepts and thoughts for the sequel! STILL FIGHTING FOR FREEDOM will be a fresh novel that completes Christine's story of rebuilding and reestablishing her life, her heart, and her confidence after domestic abuse.
Together, these novels are The Freedom Series, which will come with a pile of trigger warnings ranging from big things like rape and violence to smaller issues like language; the proudest moment of my time as an author is still the moment when a reader confessed being unable to read FIGHTING FOR FREEDOM, because it was too triggering for her own memories and experiences. For me as an author, that moment felt like a powerful confirmation of my effort to bring people into the reality of abuse survivors. I hope the story finds readers who won't shy away, because it's such a raw and unpretentious exploration of what life is like for survivors of traumatic relationships.
Christine's story is a heart-wrenching read, but it's also a heart-wrenching reality for victims everywhere, and the world is far too full of people who turn their heads and look the other way. For readers with open, compassionate hearts, The Freedom Series is a beautiful way to develop new perspectives on recovery, therapeutic practices, mental and physical wellness, self-defense, personal growth, and yes, finding the faith and courage to love vulnerably again after such a terrible experience.
I would love to think Christine will have the chance to inspire people living in terrible situations, that she will lend them the hope and the courage to begin to change their lives But ultimately, my greatest prayer over every word of this novel is that Christine's story will help people who don't know what it's like, to see another side of how difficult it is to "just walk away." I pray compassion blooms in the heart of every reader this book reaches - because we all know someone who has, or is, living a life like Christine's. And every real-life Christine deserves a chance to bloom.