When I was fifteen, I lost my closest friend in a car accident. Introducing guilt and grief to my already raging teenage hormones and fierce desire for independence was world-altering. I matured quickly, but not graciously; no longer caring about homecoming dates or owning cool jeans, but full of rage. I LIKED MY LIFE started with a desire to explore mourning at that tender age. At the time, writing was a hobby.
Four years after finishing the first draft, at only fifty-three, my dad died of a heart attack. He was my father, but he was also my boss, mentor, and best friend. The loss flattened me. I didn’t write after his death, not even in a journal for three years. Then one day I happened across I LIKED MY LIFE on my computer. The title popped from the screen; it felt enormously important to revisit it.
Writing this novel helped me rise above the fog and haze of grief to find the insight and clarity that hides in life’s most antagonizing moments. I set out with three characters—Madeline, Eve, and Brady—as they learn exactly that, each on their own timeline and in their own way. I wrote the book for me, as a way to unburden my loss on unsuspecting characters. That their journey has found its way to readers aside from my sister is wild.