This novel took three years. When I first started, I wrote about 30,000 words and then stopped to become a certified foot zoner. After a year of not writing, I tried to get back into the groove of the story. I wrote a few more chapters, but it was like I was running into a brick wall. I would leave it and write something else for a while and then come back. Finally, the flow of the story all came together with the encouragement of a few friends.
As I look back at the whole process I think this quote from Zig Ziglar sums it up; “What you get by achieving your goal is not as important as what you become by achieving your goals.”
I can say that my journey in writing this novel has enriched my life. It was hard going a few times, but my persistence paid off. I’m still on a high from completing it, and it turned out better than I ever expected (love the ending). Along the way my family benefited from it as well. (Don’t let them tell you we haven’t had a home cooked meal for a long time, because it might be true) My husband’s family (VanLuyk’s) are from Holland, which inspired the time and place. His relatives lived in Rotterdam, therefore, I did my own supposing of what it would have been like when it was bombed during World War II. (Hence, this book is a book of fiction) As I did research on Holland, I learned about some of their holiday traditions. At Christmas time, Sinterklaas and Piet delivered presents in black bags and they left candy in wooden slippers. We’ve adopted some of these fun traditions as our own.
One of the things I enjoy about writing is the researching. I love that I can educate myself while living in a fictional world. The heartache inflicted on people during World War II is humbling and sad, so I hope I showed the reverence I have for everyone who lived through such a trying time. What inspired me the most were those who stood up and protected others from harm. What heros! That’s just it––a hero doesn’t wear a cape and fly––they counter the evils in their world by standing up and fighting back with the purpose of showing that all people are equal and valuable.