One of the things that was hard for me growing up was knowing I was different but not being able to put a name to it. There were so many stories and ideas running through my head and things I was curious about, but I didn’t have anyone to talk about them with.
When I first started writing (my taboo books in particular), it was amazing to have so many people to share that part of myself with and who were drawn to it as well. The readers who’ve contacted me over the past couple of years to share how my books have touched them or how they’ve related to my characters have meant the world to me. But they also got me thinking.
I couldn’t help but wonder how differently my life would’ve turned out if there had been someone for me to talk to as a kid who’d really understood or who could’ve just accepted me for who I was, not who I’d been told I had to be. So I started thinking about my characters (because really, most of my life involves thinking about how they would react to things lol). That’s where Trent and Hayden came from.
From the first moment they popped up as side characters it was clear they’d been best friends forever, and I wanted to show that relationship. I wanted them to have each other from the very beginning so there was always someone who understood them.
So when I sat down to write their story, I started when they were eight. Kids have such a clear way of seeing things, without all the worries about the whys and fears about what it says about them. They just love and they accept. And when everything is going against you like it is for Hayden and Trent, unconditional acceptance is what keeps you going.
I hope you enjoy their book, and I hope that someday every child can be who they were meant to be without anyone making them feel like it’s wrong.