It started out as an ordinary day for Esther Comely-Cox, if you consider simultaneously totaling your car, smashing a Ho Ho in your face and meeting a handsome doctor ordinary. Estranged from her family over her sister’s mental illness and death, Esther can’t help but feel alone. And when Esther hears the voice of her twin sister who committed suicide seven years ago, she begins to question her own sanity, leading her to wonder if anything is what it seems. Searching for answers, Esther must confront her past while looking towards a new future—one in which she is finally accepted. Through humor and heartbreak, Esther learns that blood does not mean family, that absence does not make the heart grow fonder and that silence can speak volumes. Put I’m Still Here on your TBR list! Buy on Amazon /iTunes / Kobo / Smashwords
About the author:
Telling stories of resilient women, Kathryn Biel hails from upstate New York and is a spouse and mother of two wonderful and energetic kids. In between being Chief Home Officer and Director of Child Development of the Biel household, she works as a school-based physical therapist. She attended Boston University and received her doctorate in Physical Therapy from The Sage Colleges. After years of writing countless letters of medical necessity for wheelchairs, finding increasingly creative ways to encourage the government and insurance companies to fund her clients’ needs, and writing entertaining annual Christmas letters, she decided to take a shot at writing the kind of novel that she likes to read. Her musings and rants can be found on her personal blog, Biel Blather (kathrynbiel.blogspot.com). She is the author of Good Intentions (2013) and Hold Her Down (2014). Please feel free to follow on Twitter (@KRBiel) or on Facebook (Kathryn R. Biel: Author)
Hi all! Thanks to Jen at Simply At Home Mom for letting my drop in with a guest post while I’m on my blog tour for my newest novel, I’m Still Here. My inspiration for stories comes from all different places. Sometimes it’s a vivid dream I have. Sometimes it’s someone out in public that catches my eye. Sometimes it’s a crazy story that someone tells. And sometimes, all three of these get rolled into one. That’s how I’m Still Here was born. A few years ago, I had a very vivid dream about my brother-in-law. He passed away before I ever met my husband. In my dream, I found my brother-in-law in our basement one day. He apparently hadn’t passed away, but had gone into hiding to work out his problems. I remember with such clarity how happy I was that he was alive, but how mad I was with him at the same time for what he put his family through.
Fast forward a few years. I was on the phone with my friend while driving home from a meeting (hands free of course). She proceeds to tell me about how her husband received a spam e-mail that was supposedly from me. When they investigated further, the e-mail address was a horrendous porn name. I started laughing, saying that it would be a perfect character name. I just started going, saying that the character’s name would be Esther and she would have a twin sister Aster. I had the whole back story going. At that moment, I drove by a bus stop and saw a young woman standing there. She reminded me of an acquaintance who had committed suicide a few months earlier. With those three thoughts swirling around in my head, I’m Still Here was born.
Often, when people tell me a crazy story, I will ask for permission to use it in a book. More often than not, a look of panic crosses their faces. I have used many stories that have some bit of truth in them. I dare you to tell them from the totally fiction ones!
And now, even when calamities happen, all I can think is, “This will be perfect for a book!” I try to write them down so when the time comes, I can include them in my story. I’ve also been known to pull snipets out of conversations that are particularly amusing and include those in my stories. I have one friend who has given me countless items already, and I have a few more post-it notes with more sayings on them for the next time around.
As a writer, my brain is always looking for more ideas, and I have to be open to inspiration when it happens. So whether it be a dream, a funny conversation or a blow-dryer malfunction, I have to be prepared to be open to the possibilities. You never know where the next great idea will come from!
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