Saturday, January 25, 2014

Guest Authors: Anne Rothman-Hicks and Kenneth Hicks

Writers are often told, especially when just starting out, to stick to what they know.  Well, maybe yes, maybe no.

KATE AND THE KID is a novel we wrote about a somewhat self-centered young woman living in New York City.  Kate is tricked by her neighbor into taking care of a troubled six-year-old girl by the name of Jenny, who doesn’t trust adults enough to talk to them except through a one-armed doll called Miranda.

Kate has just lost her job and had a major fight with her boyfriend, and the last thing she thought she needed was the care of a young child.  But after a night of babysitting that has its fair share of excitement, Kate begins to bond with the girl and learn about her problems, causing a whole new set of complications with the people in both Kate’s and Jenny’s lives.  This book tells the story of how Kate and Jenny help each other to heal, grow, and navigate the difficult and sometimes dangerous world of New York City.  

Fortunately, we have never known a little girl who was in as rough a shape as Jenny is when this novel begins.  However, we have raised three children and are well aware of the difficulties and triumphs that they and their friends have had over the years.  We’ve certainly been to most of the playgrounds in New York City and had no problem writing those scenes.  Likewise, as is true of most parents, we have brought our children to the emergency room of a hospital and are aware of how traumatic and frightening that can be for a child, so the scene involving Jenny being injured at a playground and taken to the hospital was not difficult to imagine.  Ken is a lawyer, and has spent a good deal of time in Family Court, so he understands some of what can go on there.  Neither of us know anyone like the drug dealer in the book who claims to be Jenny’s father and have never been threatened with a knife, but we were able to pull a little from here and a little from there and created a character who was both evil and sympathetic.  Similarly, we have never encountered a woman like Jenny’s mother, who was an alcoholic and a drug abuser and a con woman rolled into one. But from bits and pieces, the character emerged with human qualities.  Finally, we did know from experience what it is like to get laid off from a job, to live in New York City without a lot of money, and to find happiness in love and the many small joys of life, which is really what KATE AND THE KID is all about.

Like we said – write about what you know?  Yes and no.

Kate and the Kid

Authors: Anne Rothman-Hicks and Kenneth Hicks
Paperback: 326 pages
Publisher: Wings ePress (June 2013)

Amazon Link / Wings ePress Link  
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