My second novel has been finished for about three months now, and the original title, “Get Over It,” is something I have outgrown. I have been cogitating over a replacement title for it, and I am happy to report that the final title for my second novel is “Mental.”
My main character, Evelyn, or Eve as her twin sister/narrator calls her, is a woman who is at first trapped and overwhelmed by a past that many would never recover from.
Eve suffers from a mental illness that developed in her the morning after her father raped her. She finds herself engulfed in feelings she has been blocking out since that night when she was in high school, and subsequently has a large nervous breakdown after graduating early from college.
Although seeming to be quite a depressing novel, it is only so in a sense. “Mental” has many scenes of comic relief and recreational activities. My characters are in college or recent graduates, and the bulk of the present tense setting of my novel is a large and entertaining house party to lighten the mood. Eve finds refuge in Nature often, as well, communing with the Guadalupe River, the moon, fields, stars, the sun, and more. She is in love for most of the novel, too. All of these things occur to help her deal with difficult memories from her past as she fights hard to work through them.
She rediscovers certain “facts” about her life, namely, that love and togetherness are the most important aspects to a successful life; and, that no matter what happened to her, Eve’s capacity to love hasn’t been broken like she had feared. She is happy to rediscover that her strongest inclinations to maintain and create relationships are still gifts that her heart can rely on, and the novel ends with an unforgettable scene where she gets lasting advice from an old hippie woman on creating happiness in her life.
I am actively shopping “Mental” around to agents who specialize in literary fiction. Wish me luck in getting this second novel published by a big fish publisher by this time next year!