Participating in the Writer’s Process Blog Hop is a first for me but it’s right up my alley since my life revolves around writing. It’s an interesting concept and I want to thank social networking guru Delilah Jones for the invitation. I met Delilah in March of 2014 when I spoke at the 10th Annual National Missing Persons Conference in North Carolina. Delilah’s company ImaginePublicity promotes organizations, authors and individuals who need a voice in the media-marketing world.
Maneuvering around the endless opportunities in social networking can be exhausting.Delilah is a ‘mover and a shaker’. She’s not afraid to embrace life and the hard work it takes to be successful. She knows her way around social media, develops and maintains websites and much more. She eases the pain for those who don’t know how or for those who need more promotion.
It’s obvious each project she takes on is handled like a mother watching out for her young. Delilah admits she’s not a published author but is she a writer? Absolutely! You need to be if your going to promote someone’s work.
What am I working on?
Right now I’m working on the sequel to A Child is Missing-a true story. It was accepted for publication in 2008 and released in 2010 it was a work that broke my heart but also helped me to grow as a person and an author.
A Child is Missing covers the brutal murder of my thirteen-year-old sister Kathy in 1971 and the reactivation of the case in 1983. No one has ever been arrested for this horrendous crime. The effects of murder follow families for the rest of their lives.
Before a word was written for the sequel A Child is Missing-searching for justice I did six years of research with over fifty interviews. Current and retired law enforcement officers that worked on Kathy’s case were willing to answer any questions they could. I’ve interviewed citizens from the small town of Franklin, New Hampshire and classmates of Kathy’s. It’s obvious many are still affected by the knowledge of how gruesome the murder was and that no one was arrested. I’ve never poured my heart and soul into anything quite like this before. By the time I’m finished the sequel I pray that Kathy will have some kind of justice. She deserves so much more.
Some passions of mine are speaking to law enforcement about unsolved murders at training seminars around the country. Where I emphasize the need to work cold cases even years later. Speaking to criminal justice students and victims advocates gives them a taste of reality in the field they are pursuing. And, helping families find a way to reach the public to get their unsolved story out to the media. My door is always open to help others in any way I can. Whenever I speak I advocate and support Cold Case Units.
How does my work differ from others of its genre?
My work differs from others because it’s written from a sister’s point of view and covers over forty years of injustice. Every word is mine. It includes acts of sorrow and thoughts of hopelessness during the initial investigation, during the case reactivation and the exhumation of her remains. But, it also covers every triumph, proving tragedy can produce a passion to make changes that will affect thousands in the future.
Why do I write what I do?
Passion and the belief that Kathy’s story could change people’s lives is my catalyst. Her story needed to be told. The murder, the corruption and the injustice done to my younger sister should not lay silent. It took me a long time to do it but I believe God always knows when the time is right. And like others I needed a push and a step of faith.
How does my writing process work?
Probably not like anyone else’s. Just like finding my way own through the turmoil of losing, missing and fighting for justice for Kathy I had to find my own way with my writing. First and foremost it was important I gave others hope. Integrity needed to weave its way throughout both books and prayer was my guide.
A Child is Missing-a true story reveals the emotions of a young girl from 1971 to the 1983 reactivation. My goal was to tell Kathy’s story and let the raw effects of her murder spill out on the pages. Through the writing of her story it created the passions that are now a big part of my life.
A Child is Missing-searching for justice is a work in progress after felt completing many interviews and research. It revealed new information. A few interviews and a minimal amount of research led to six years of research and over fifty interviews.
In my writing process flexibility is important. Walking away when I need too gives me the strength to come back refreshed. Starting the next paragraph before I finish helps me to know where to begin when I return.
If I’m stuck on a chapter and know there’s a subject that has to be covered I’ll write a chapter out of sequence. I save it and put it in the appropriate place when the time comes. This helps to relieve some of the stress.
I don’t beat myself up about how many chapters or words a day I need to write. Some days I write more some less. Whether I’m writing or not if a thought comes to mind I always write it down. I never trust I’ll remember it.
With the sequel a timeline is valuable. It not only saves time it reduces the frustration level. Throughout the writing process I continue to do research. Making sure names, places and times are accurate. The process is tedious but necessary.
Another sister’s story – Where’s Heidi?
Lisa M Buske, author and speaker since 2010, released her first book, Where’s Heidi? One Sister’s Journey, on the 19th anniversary of her only sister’s kidnapping, April 3, 2014. Lisa’s only sister remains missing, more than twenty years missing, yet Lisa and her family have not given up hope. Lisa uses the gifts God’s given her to share encouragement and hope with her audiences, whether you read her blog and books, or hear her speak at one of your events. Lisa spends her days as a teacher’s assistant in a Kindergarten class and her free time making memories with family and friends. Tragedy teaches an important life lesson, make the most of each day because tomorrow isn’t a guarantee. Lisa’s writing and speaking emphasize this and leave her audience smiling and looking for the rainbow, not the clouds.
In ‘Where’s Heidi?’ Lisa writes about her sister’s kidnapping and investigation in April of 1994. Gary Thibodeau was convicted but his brother Richard was set free. Heidi has never been found.
In 2014 Lisa’s family had to endure a round of media attention when news was released there was a possibility Heidi’s remains could be recovered. The family was thrown into a tailspin while the gruesome details were reported. The lead was a dead-end. This proves that murder or a missing person’s case can affect a family for the rest of their lives.
Lisa writes about her families suffering during disclosure and throughout the investigation. Angry with God, she finds a way to convert her bitterness. If you read ‘Where’s Heidi?’ you’ll understand how her bitterness changed to glorifying God.
I consider Lisa a friend and a sister that understands.