Book review: Uses for boys by Erica Lorraine Scheidt

6 March 2019 / 1 comment

Holden Caulfield says “What really knocks me out is a book that, when you're all done reading it, you wish the author that wrote it was a terrific friend of yours and you could call him up on the phone whenever you felt like it.” (J.D. Salinger, The Catcher in the Rye)


This is how I feel with 'Uses for boys' by Erica Lorraine Scheidt. I want to meet her, I want to hang out, I suspect I'd like her a lot.


'Uses for boys' is raw, courageous and hard hitting. Anna has no role model. Her mother leaves her home alone most nights while she goes through a revolving door of men. 


Anna is desperate for love - from her mother, from anyone, so when boys start paying attention to her she takes it. She lets them do what they want to do. But soon she is getting a reputation for it. 


My heart was practically breaking for Anna as I was reading it. But it also breaks for her mother and for every woman who has wanted to be loved and cherished, not just desired. 


Scheidt's lyrical style of writing and the short chapters are a saving grace and help the reader traverse what is really uncomfortable terrain. 


Bravo. I'm waiting for her next book.



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New young adult novel on Wattpad - Subject to change

1 March 2019 / Leave a Comment

I've been working on a new young adult novel - Subject to change - for a couple of years now.


The initial idea came from a friend of mine who was telling me about her brother in Perth who was divorced and his son no longer wanted to see him. He'd spent over $150,000 in legal fees going through the court system trying to get access to see his son. She described how his ex-wife was manipulative and that there was a term for her type of behaviour - parental alienation.


Having recently separated from my own husband, and seeing the effects on my children in a so-called amicable divorce, I wanted to find out more about parental alienation. I began listening to podcasts and reading articles about parents who were experiencing this type of alienation from their ex-partners and children. It was heartbreaking.


At first, I thought I was going to write an adult novel, but I was talking to my own psychologist who was counselling me through my separation and he said, 'you know whose perspective you have to write this from? A teenager's.' And so I began ...


I've thrown in the subculture of skateboarding and risky urban tricks, an overprotective mother, paranoid about health and wellbeing, and the question of what would it be like to fall in love with someone who has no fear when you've been brought up to fear everything.


Finally, I've started posting chapters to Wattpad - as this is where I've tested my other young adult novels Silver and Repeat After Me with readers.


Here's the blurb at the moment (which is also subject to change):


The one thing Macy's mother can't protect her from is falling in love ...

Macy likes to skate but she's cautious. For years, her mother has warned her that the world is full of toxins and accidents waiting to happen.

Tucker moves in next door. He has no fear. He performs skate stunts off shipping containers and petrol station roofs. His risky urban tricks are legendary. 

Macy wants to fix her broken family ... and she worries all the time about Tucker getting broken.

She discovers that loving Tucker is the greatest trick to land.


Read now: https://www.wattpad.com/story/179265579-subject-to-change



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