In my twenties, I worked a trade show in Abu Dhabi, where I was caught off guard when about one-third of the men would not interact with me. We engaged in a masque in which they asked my male coworker a question, I answered (in front of these men), my male coworker repeated my answer, and so on. Looking back, I see there was no antagonism—it was simply not for these men to directly interact with a woman—but for me the experience was a shocker. I returned home a more conscious feminist, determined never to take for granted the rights I had as an American woman, and to support other women as much as I could.
So why did I write a book almost entirely about boys and men? In my debut novel, mothers are absent, and other females have minor roles. Even after I learned how many girls raise and compete steers—and win—STEERING TOWARD NORMAL was always about boys. Considering my genuine concern for young women in today’s society, I can’t help but wonder why.
My mom wasn’t absent. She made me crazy a lot of the time because I’m a daughter and she’s my mom and I think that’s how it goes for a lot of us. But she also gave me a sense I couldn’t complain if I never tried to reach for what I wanted. Because of that sensibility, I’ve achieved a lifelong dream to be a published author.~ read more ~