The Evolution Of protect her

I can’t believe Christmas is a mere four days away! I’ve had a pretty awesome December so far, one which started with the publishing of protect her. Publishing a story has been a dream of mine since at least age 10. I used to write stories about vampires, about time travel, and I think I even had a few about mermaids. Of course, those types of stories have not carried with me. Now, I’m more of a realistic fiction writer. One thing I love to explore in my writing is different types of family/social problems affecting teens. In protect her, Charlotte is facing the horrors of living with domestic violence.

Me holding "protect her"
Me holding my first copy of “protect her”

This novelette actually began as a 7 page short story that had nothing to do with domestic violence. In my junior year of high school, I was taking a creative writing class. In it, I created a piece called Forget You (Please). It is essentially the beginning of the novelette wherein Charlotte is a runaway, and the sole reason for her leaving is because of her boyfriend dumping her. It was only when I continued it that I realized there was something else that made Charlotte run: her dad.

This addition of an antagonist that wasn’t her ex-boyfriend made the story take an entirely different direction. So much so that I needed a new name for it, because Forget You (Please) no longer made much sense. So, as soon as the novelette was done, I started brainstorming for a better name. And by ‘as soon as’, I mean that literally. I wrote the last sentence, celebrated, then started writing down new name ideas. I honestly can’t remember the other contenders, because within five minutes I had written “protect her” and fell in love.

Charlotte is always trying to keep her little sister safe, so she is trying to “protect her”. When you say protect her out loud it can sound like the word “protecter” which is what Charlotte is. Are you having the same “Omigosh!!” moment I did right now?!

One of my favorite things to do design covers for my stories while I’m writing them, to remind me of my end goal. Kinda like this:

So of course, protect her had a few of it’s own covers that I stared at while writing. The idea of me holding that book in my hand kept me going. Here are some of the variations I went through:

So now that I have finished my first story, I can guarantee you it won’t be my last. Now I know that I can do it.

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