People used to ask me all the time what my platform was. Why I wrote. What was my purpose.
Did I have to have a purpose? I wracked my brain. Mostly I just had stories in my head. I thought maybe my platform was on empowering moms. Finding happiness within yourself.
Yesterday I had the opportunity to attend an amazing little writers conference in Kansas City. The classes were amazing and the camaraderie lifted my soul.
But I also had a crazy epiphany. There were some defining moments that helped me solidify my mission and role as a writer. It began years ago when a friend helped me see an overarching theme in everything I write: social issues. But another writer at the conference helped me see that this is more than a writing preference: it's a calling. And it's one I should embrace because of the lives I can touch and change. Even when I try to write light and happy, the darker themes peek through.
Because the reality is, I see the dark things in life. I've experienced the dark things in life. And when I'm writing, I want to shed light on these hard topics. I write into the darkness so I can give it light and hope and redemption. I want to show people who have walked in the darkness that they are not alone and there is light! And I want to show those who have never experienced darkness that they can still have empathy and compassion and understanding for people walking through the darkness. Maybe they can even be that light.
And so I have my goals and my purpose in front of me. I have found fellow authors like Kierstin Marquet and Mary Gray who feel the same desire I do. To this end we have banded together with one mission: to write light into the darkness. To write hard topics with happy endings. I will continued to write about abuse and peer pressure and eating disorders and bullying and prejudice and promiscuity. I will continue to shed light on issues we sometimes are afraid to even whisper about. Because this is reality for many people. But I will also give hope and light and faith to the stories I write.
I won't be offended if you don't want to read my books because of the heavy topics. But I hope you will anyway. And I hope you will share them. Because just because something makes us uncomfortable doesn't mean we should pretend it doesn't exist.