I'm not going to make it, Shay thought. Why did she think she was up to this? She'd made this short walk to town her whole life, that's why. Now she could hardly make it back. She could see her house just down the road a bit, but it might as well be a hundred miles away.
Shay, the heroine of Heartfelt, came to me uninvited and was like the guest that wouldn't leave until I told her story. All I knew about her in the beginning was that she'd had surgery for breast cancer, and was still weak and sick from the chemo treatments. She was certainly not looking for love, and was not ready for it. I got to thinking about how hard it would be to become intimate with someone when you felt disfigured. And she'd not been with a man for a long time.
The whole story came from this main theme. I don't really know what started me thinking about it, but I've known a lot of women who've had breast cancer. My mother had it three times, my younger daughter twice, two first cousins who are sisters, both had it, and many friends and acquaintances as well.
I started playing around with how the story could develop. How she'd meet a man, and what was his story. And how could they be in close proximity to each other so the relationship would develop naturally. I got fascinated with working out the various elements. And all the while, it was entirely in my head, nothing written down.
Then we went to our place in Canada for a month. It's very rural and isolated, on a lake that's not developed much beyond the six families that bought the 100 acres in 1931. No phones, no internet, no newspapers, no TV. In other words, no distractions.
I started writing Heartfelt in long hand, sitting on the deck, facing the lake. It actually poured out, once I began to write. There were some problems to work out, but it was like unloosening a knot. It just took a little patience and a little persistence. I finished it in nine months.
Author - Carol Owen
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"Every spirit builds itself a house, and beyond its house , a world, and beyond its world, a heaven. Know then that a world exists for you." - Ralph Waldo Emerson