When my aunt lent me the novel Trouble, by Kate Christensen, she told me her husband thought it was a page-turner and though she herself hadn’t thought so, I might. I decided this recommendation warranted reading the book, and as it turns out, I did go through it pretty quickly. It may not belong to the literary highbrow, but what I loved about it was the speaker’s authenticity, her vulnerability.
In the wake of her decision to divorce her husband, protagonist Josephine Dorvillier joins her rock star girlfriend in Mexico. There she meets and experiments with a young man. She returns to New York when her jaunt is cut short by her friend’s suicide.
I enjoyed the emotional exploration of the mother-daughter relationship, the female friendships, the failing marriage, and the fling. I could see how the raw narrative might give a woman in a similar position insight into her own life. Personally, I gained insight into the way I sometimes let my thoughts run away with me. I saw the character’s insecurities and identified, because I’ve been there, and though I have never gone through a divorce nor endured the suicide of a best friend, I identified emotionally. The message that everything will be all right is not original, and often it is something refuted, something fought against. But it is powerful.
And this is what I aim to do with my own writing – if I could write one piece that changes one person’s life, that would be enough. Though what I want, of course, is to write many pieces that change many people’s lives. To write something that allows someone to look into herself and accept herself. To write something that someone would read and forgive himself. That many might read and embrace each other. The hope that I will do these things – that is why I write.