Writing The Illusion of a Boy was hard at times; it made me cry, laugh, and drop my face into my hands with frustration. It’s the sequel to The Illusion of a Girl. My passion to write these stories drives me forward. You know it’s a passion when you basically do it for free. As an indie author and abuse survivor, it’s important to get the message out to teens who are struggling with dysfunctional family. My heart pours into these books expressing how I survived and how others can too. I plan to write future books, but I don’t know if they will be so personal.
My main characters are siblings: Brian, the older protective brother, and Jessie, the adoring younger sister. They are especially close because they had to be to survive their household.
One of the fun things I like about writing is adding music to my characters’ lives. The songs help set the scene and the mood. Brian when he’s tense and stressed bangs on his steering wheel and yells the lyrics to the Beastie Boys “Sabotage.” When Jessie goes to the river on an awesome date with the very sweet and handsome Will, “Time Machine” by Willow sets the cool vibe.
Lena, the protagonist in The Illusion of a Boy, taunts Jessie’s ex-boyfriend to the tune of “Therefore I Am” by Billie Eilish, letting him know she’s not his friend. Now that scene was fun to write. Lena is oh-so-entertaining. She does all the ballsy things you wish you would have done.
The wide-ranging selection of songs shows my age too. I chose old and new songs to set the mood. Brian listens to “Under Pressure” by Queen as Jessie attends her first counseling appointment. His sister and her mental health are very important to him. Their bond ties him to the earth.
Jessie also bonds with her boyfriend Will over music. They take turns playing the oldest songs on their iPhones as they get to know each other. Music is a window into someone’s soul. Jessie plays the song “I’d Rather Go Blind,” by Etta James and Will choses “My Immortal” by Evanescence. Both are powerful songs and hint at their budding connection.
I hope you check out The Illusion of A Boy and enjoy it immensely. You can check out chapter previews of both books and my blog on healing from dysfunctional family at www.illusionofagirl.com.