A big thanks to the Canada Council for the Arts for their generous grant to complete my women’s fiction, The Shark’s Wife: For 12 years, Cindy MacNamara has enjoyed the perks of affluence in Oak Park, Chicago, but it all ends on an icy January morning when she finds her husband’s body, and the reason he took his own life.
After watching an interview with unsuspecting wives of Ponzi schemers, and having lived through my father’s bankruptcy, I wanted to write about a family broken by greed, to explore a wife’s struggle with conflicting feelings of love and guilt, and the challenges of starting over. For Cindy, who has lost everything, the struggle to support her teenage children, emotionally and financially, becomes almost impossible as her own mental health declines. When her daughter takes off, Cindy sinks into a bottomless pit of depression. Until an unlikely hero raises her spirit and helps Cindy see herself through a clearer lens.
To ensure my manuscript is compelling from start to finish, with an unforgettable narrative voice, I hired New York City editor, Alice Rosengard, who has thirty years of experience at Harper Collins, Bantam, and Doubleday. In her review of my manuscript, Alice writes: “Overall, I think THE SHARK’S WIFE has a lot of commercial appeal, especially in the waxing and waning of the characters’ empathy for each other…The fact that you end the story with an inner resolution rather than an outer one makes it even more attractive. It truly is a novel for the women’s fiction market, as its central character goes from the comfort of wealth to penury and shame, and then back to the beginnings of self-respect.”
The highlight of 2015, was my week in Manitoba as a Toronto Dominion Canada Book Week Author, an experience that dramatically broadened my outlook on Canada. As I travelled throughout the province, speaking at libraries and schools, I saw the magnitude of a true prairie sky for the first time. Meeting avid readers and answering their thoughtful questions are amongst my best memories of the week, along with my appearance on CTV Morning Live on May 5. Here’s the link: http://t.co/R8iC5CMgX8
For 2016, I’ve added a Book Clubs Discussion Guide to my website, compiled of topics I encounter when I speak to groups. If you’re a teacher, be sure to look at my Rachel Trilogy Literature Guides on this website, which are written to Common Core and the National Council of the Teachers of English Standards. They’re free! I’ve also included writing tips and exercises which can be accessed by clicking the “On Writing” tab. I love to hear from readers; you can e-mail me through this site and contact me through the following:
Second Story Press www.secondstorypress.ca
Thanks for visiting and have a peaceful, healthy year,
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