Writing Incubation: Finding Peace 2 has been a long journey. The first book was around 87K and this one is around 100K. So yeah, not short. I started writing the series a little over a year ago based on an idea and one character. And much has evolved since then.
The idea: Throw a new makeshift group of friends on a conservative campus and see how they deal with the things that happen to them and the choices they make. Ultimately, the goal is for them to find peace with what has happened in their lives and with who they are.
The character: the first three books center around one David McCourt. David has had a very rough life and has transferred to Capstone Ridge University in hopes of starting over. Life, however, gets in the way.
The Finding Peace series can be emotional taxing at times because I have to deal with some very sensitive issues. Such as rape and sexuality. And David McCourt’s character is at the center of that since he was the one who was hurt. I’ve had to walk a fine line in writing about these topics but without them, the story would be incomplete.
Rape is always a touchy topic for people. And let me say this, the rape itself was not discussed in detail in the books but we do get flashbacks and scenes with violence. I felt this was an important topic to discuss for a few reasons.
1. It is something that should be discussed. Rape victims have had a great deal of stigma to deal with and many still do not come forward to this day because they feel ashamed. I don’t want that. If someone has hurt another person, the person who was hurt should never feel at fault.
2. I have read one too many books in the LGBT genre that have glossed over the issue. So many times the main character is suddenly okay and ready to be in a relationship. Ummm… how? Not to say that other authors are wrong in doing this. They want to convey strength of character and the ability to get past a tramatic event in ones life. I applaud that view. I just wanted a story that dealt with the recovery aspect of it more and how it affected others.
3. In addition, I wanted a story that gave my main character a chance to be human but also to show someone who was hurt can find his way back from the pain. Sometimes pain can be overwhelming and people want to bury it or push it away, David does this, and we see what the outcome for him is. The third book analyzes that outcome and how David, and his friends, deal with it.
The next issue my series deals with is sexuality. We have a bunch of friends in college for the first time, or around that age, and they’re figuring themselves out or trying to find acceptance about themselves. This is a common issue for anyone in the LGBT community, and I wanted to highlight it. Which meant I didn’t ignore heterosexual or bi aspects of the story line because to understand the struggles some people have, they all needed to be there.
I wanted a series that didn’t exclude anyone, and I hope that I achieved that. Not everyone in my life is LBGT, and to show the emotional impact of someone who is struggling with themselves I felt it was important for the story to be dealt with in a typical setting. Now, not all my stories are like this. I have quite a few series started up that are strictly gay romance.
But Finding Peace was different from the get-go, and I was okay with that. Yes, most of the series centers on gay relationships, but we do not live in a world where everyone is gay so I didn’t want my characters to either. It needed the realism to make it work, to show the emotional struggles better. I wanted the focus to be one the friends and how they grew, no matter what direction they went in.
I also wanted a series that gave hope and understanding, showed the different ends of the spectrum working with each other and have a dose of reality with the fiction but with a positive spin at the end. And when the ride is over, I hope the Finding Peace series has accomplished that.
|A Place of Peace|
How to Find Freddy
For my FREE flash fiction pieces, if you would like a taste, you can go to: http://freddymackaysshorts.blogspot.com
David McCourt settles into his new family, one surrounding and protecting him. He should open up and let go of his past. But even with everyone cheering for his recovery, David feels too close to the edge of losing everything.
David McCourt's makeshift family moves in together and forms a protective cocoon around him. But they don't know David's whole story and he finds the constant noise a distraction instead of a help.
Bobby, Chris, and Austin want to help David however possible—but he needs to open up.
Jackson crossed a line he never thought he would. He wants to take a chance with David, even if his dreams of a normal life are firmly rooted with Alyssa.
The group has the makings of a rag tag family, but secrets—old and new—threaten their fragile bond. The community takes sides and David ends up where he doesn't want to be: the center of everything.
Content Advisories: This has references to rape or near rape, and has MF and MM scenes.