Meet the Ladies

As I begin the novel, I thought I’d introduce the first four characters you will meet ahead of time. You will get to know them well in the months to come. I already feel as though they sit beside me, looking over my shoulder, reading along, acquaintances sure to become my most intimate friends. 

Melinda is 34 with no children, married to Jake, a lawyer who has two children from his first marriage. They are high society Houston although Melinda is still finding her way with the full-time volunteerism of the women in the River Oaks area of Houston where they live. She gave up her law practice when she married Jake because they did not need the money and because she wanted to focus on having a family. Jake’s ex-wife Sarah is haughty and mean to Melinda, treating her like a babysitter and ridiculing her efforts to fit into society. Melinda’s miscarriage will open the book.

Stella is 44 and has run the pregnancy loss group for ten years, since her second loss. She is Jewish, funny, boisterous, and opinionated. She has a horror story to outdo most any horror story, and she leads women through the group with a sensitive but firm hand. She experienced secondary infertility after her second miscarriage and did four rounds of IVF before giving up. She makes jewelry now, and owns a small shop where she sells her pieces, which are solely made from gentle purple amethyst and vivid green peridot, the colors of the would-have-been birthstones of her two babies. She has been married to Dane, a construction worker, for 20 years.

Dot is 29 and has five children with her truck driver husband Buster. He has dropped in and out of her life since they married when she was 17. After each departure, she tends to end up pregnant. He was only present for one of the kids’ births. She makes ends meet by running a little store in the trailer park where they live. Buster has been gone for an unprecedented 18 months when she meets Barry and falls desperately in love for the first time. When an accidental pregnancy with Barry ends in miscarriage, she feels God is punishing her and vows never to see him again, and to make amends with her philandering husband.

Tina is 17 and in high school. She and her boyfriend had finally gotten through the hard parts of telling their parents, rearranging their futures, and working out who they will be to each other when she goes into labor at 19 weeks. The death of their baby three hours after his premature birth alters her new life yet again–the boyfriend breaks away in relief, her parents insist she return to regular high school from her alternative school for pregnant teens, and in her desperation, she harms herself. She enters the pregnancy loss group as part of her therapy but resolves to get pregnant again as soon as possible to fill the emptiness.

Other women will come along as the story progresses until a serious twist to the story will take a controversial but necessary slant.

I will begin writing the novel at midnight tomorrow night as the clock switches to November. I plan to post the first scenes of the book by 4 a.m. Central Time, GMT -6.

I can’t wait!

6 thoughts on “Meet the Ladies

  1. Great to meet them!

    One little bit of info, I don’t know if you’ll need it or not, but truck stops have a tape exchange of Christian tapes…sermons mostly. We stopped to get gasoline when traveling once (no, we’re not truck drivers) and my husband noticed them. The idea is that a truck driver can take a tape at one stop, and then leave it at another. It isn’t necessary to your story, but it popped into my mind when reading about these women and their partners.

    I would love to talk with the teen. I recently was directed by a leader in our church to possibly do “visitation” for those who miscarry, and to possibly be a teen mentor especially to pregnant and new moms.

    It will be interesting to read about Tina and see how you work her family into this. Teens in miscarriage must really be confused about what life is all about! They not only have to deal with coming out and telling people they are pregnant (or they begin to show and are found out), then they loose a baby and have to go through the loss. I would imagine the support would be almost non-existent.

  2. Hey Deanna,
    Because of the time difference you may not get this til Nov 1, but I just wanted to say the characters look great! And just to offer my encouragement and support. This book is such an interesting idea and I am addicted to coming back and looking at all of the examples. Thanks for posting that list of snippets from stories that you may use, there was one on there, it was not mine, but I did it too. Which was afterwards, to open the Bible at random pages to see if God was trying to tell me something. It didn’t work and I came to my understanding slowly over time. It was difficult when that understanding dawned but I am glad I have it now.
    Keep up the good work Deanna! You are an inspiration to all of us and I hope that you are doing well.
    Love Rosie

  3. Yeah, I did go over verses repeatedly, but in doing an organized bible study it really helped most and cooled me on my irrational search and showed me how God is with me through all this. I still flip open my bible, but since I know more about the passages that comfort me, I now turn to those to hear from God.

  4. 13 minutes and counting…

    I’m writing my own book just for fun. It’s like a twisted version of Little House on the Prairie because my life was not that nice as a girl. I start in the morning. I bet I won’t get 50,000 words, but to start is always a good thing.

    uh, 14 minutes now that you’ve been going.

  5. Oh, Deanna, this is exactly like the board. Everyone coming with their own stories. Can’t wait to read more!

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