My goal when I was in college was to save every abused child in Indiana.
Didn't. Quite. Happen.
I discovered I was also very good at counseling domestic abuse victims, but when my senior year rolled around, I was so stressed from working a full-time waitress job and juggling 18 credit hours in order to graduate, I lost my fire.
I just wanted to finish the romance book I had been writing for four years and work some mindless job that didn't require me to THINK!
Couple my first job that I loved (except for having to drive in snow and ice, lol...) with an emotionally controlling idiot and you have a recipe for disaster. So after getting out of that situation, I decided to write about the experience, and it proved to be very theraputic.
But my counseling training is still swirling up inside my brain, and now whenever I write, the strangest twists come out. In my first Kenzie book, it was the issue of attempted rape, which has now beeen changed to simply a breaking and entering, alongside a secondary character dealing with a gambling problem and needing an intervention.
My NaNo project dealt with sexual harrassment and the issue of extreme emotional damage.
My next two seemed 'normal', until a character mentioned his ex had an eating disorder and was determined to foist it on the kids. The second one is a modern Romeo/Juliet problem, in which if you've read it, know that it does have a different ending than Shakespear's!
The one I'm writing now seemed perfectly normal, until the heroine revealed why she reacted so negatively to a stranger's kiss. I was thinking maybe he simply reminded her of someone in the past? No. All of a sudden, it turns out she'd been raped as a teenager! Whoa...where the hell did THAT come from??
For the record, I've never been in that situation, nor has any of my friends been through this. But the past couple of Jody Picoult books have, so maybe my brain is wanting me to wear my social worker's hat alongside the one which says 'Author'.
Sigh...I'll continue to write and see where this takes me! Wish me luck...