Related to: 'Daily Readings from Your Best Life Now'

Julie Sarkissian blogs about the problems facing the protagnist of her debut novel, DEAR LUCY

Something's Wrong With Lucy - But What?

Lucy is different – that much is clear. She speaks like a child, doesn’t recognize social boundaries, flies into rages, and treasures rotten food. Her cognition is impaired, her vocabulary is very limited and she cannot read or write. But what – precisely – is wrong with her is left up to the reader. Lucy is the protagonist of my novel, DEAR LUCY, and from the first sentence of the book I ever wrote it was obvious that Lucy was cognitively different. The way Lucy describes herself is as “missing too many words.” Her mother calls her “difficult.” Readers of early drafts of the book had a few theories as to Lucy’s condition; autism, Williams Syndrome, Down Syndrome. But Lucy’s mother has kept her from going to school and Lucy has never seen a doctor. So in the fictional reality of the book there is no official diagnosis. But as the novel progressed I wondered – should I have one? I was torn. If Lucy was presenting enough symptoms to point to a real condition, was I ignoring the obvious not to fold that condition into my development of her character? Was it insensitive of me to allude to aspects of certain real, life-altering conditions but not assign a specific condition to Lucy? I worried about appropriating aspects of serious conditions without treating those conditions with proper respect and acknowledgement. And though any clinical diagnosis would probably not be explicit in the novel, I wondered if I would be ignoring an opportunity to bring attention to a real disorder when people asked me about Lucy’s condition, the way The Curious Incident of The Dog in the Night-time did for autism. On the other hand, I had concerns that if I chose a diagnosis for Lucy, I would be ascribing to her qualities that she wouldn’t have otherwise presented. Lucy had her own will over my writing and over the novel. I didn’t want to yoke Lucy’s expression by keeping her behavior and abilities consistent with a clinical condition. Accuracy would also become a critical issue if Lucy’s condition was named. Ultimately I chose not to diagnose Lucy, though I worry the artistic freedom provided by that decision comes at the price of being judged for being too liberal with my treatment of cognitive disorders. Now that publication is a few months away, I am apprehensive of how my treatment of Lucy’s cognitive limitations will be judged. I have yet to talk to a reader who has a learning different child, or works with learning different people, and that conversation is one I will be honored, and not a bit anxious, to have.

Hodder & Stoughton

Daily Readings from Next Level Thinking

Joel Osteen
Authors:
Joel Osteen

In Next Level Thinking, Joel Osteen wrote that we weren't created to go through life weighed down by addictions, dysfunction, guilt, or the past. God created us to be free. This companion devotional encourages readers to leave behind the negative mindsets, the scarcity mentality, and the limitations others have put on us, and shows us how to enjoy the positive life God meant for us with motivational daily readings and inspirational prayers.

Hodder & Stoughton

Next Level Thinking (International)

Joel Osteen
Authors:
Joel Osteen

Many of us have let our minds become conditioned to thinking we've reached our limits, we've made too many mistakes, we'll never do anything great. What's happened? Instead of moving forward, we've adapted to our environment. Instead of pushing beyond our bounds, we've allowed a bad break, how we were raised, living with insecurity, or what someone did or didn't do to hold us back.The good news is that people don't determine our destiny-God does. And He has already taken into account every detail of our lives and factored them all into His plan. In his new book, Next Level Thinking, Joel Osteen writes that we weren't created to go through life weighed down by the past. God has destined us to rise higher-to the next level. When we leave behind the negative mind-sets, the scarcity mentality, and the limits others have put on us, we'll experience the life of victory, favor, and abundance that was meant for us all along.

Hodder & Stoughton

Next Level Thinking Study Guide

Joel Osteen
Authors:
Joel Osteen

Hodder & Stoughton

Next Level Thinking Journal

Joel Osteen
Authors:
Joel Osteen

FaithWords

Wake Up to Hope

Joel Osteen
Authors:
Joel Osteen
FaithWords

Think Better, Live Better

Joel Osteen
Authors:
Joel Osteen

Your mind has incredible power over your success or failure. THINK BETTER, LIVE BETTER offers a simple yet life-changing strategy for erasing the thoughts that keep you down and reprogramming your mind with positive thinking to reach a new level of victory. As a child of the Most High God, you are equipped to handle anything that comes your way. To claim your destiny, start thinking about yourself the way God does and delete the thoughts that tear down your confidence. When you train yourself to tune out the negativity and tune into your calling, you'll begin to live the wonderful plans God has made for you.

FaithWords

Daily Readings From The Power Of I Am

Joel Osteen
Authors:
Joel Osteen
FaithWords

Think Better, Live Better Study Guide

Joel Osteen
Authors:
Joel Osteen

Based on Joel Osteen's book Think Better, Live Better, this study guide expands on his message about the effects negative thinking has on our actions. By presenting intriguing questions and motivational insights in each chapter, readers' minds will be freed from despairing thoughts, so they can rise to a new level of victory. Designed for both individual and group study, THINK BETTER, LIVE BETTER STUDY GUIDE is filled with challenging activities and other interactive applications to guide readers each day. Osteen helps readers begin to think about themselves the way God does. In order to live more fulfilling lives, readers will re-program the thoughts that tear down their confidence and learn to use their thoughts for success.

FaithWords

The Power Of I Am Journal

Joel Osteen
Authors:
Joel Osteen
FaithWords

Fresh Start

Joel Osteen
Authors:
Joel Osteen

God loves to give people fresh starts. He wants everyone to see His blessings in new ways so we can reach our full potential and achieve extraordinary levels of success. In this truly one-of-a-kind guide, Joel Osteen encourages growing Christians with a "How to Study the Bible" and "Bible Promises" feature to help everyone find the courage to start over and live their best lives now. In FRESH START, readers learn what it takes to rise to a new level of honour, a new level of influence, and a new level of favour.

FaithWords

Daily Readings From You Can, You Will

Joel Osteen
Authors:
Joel Osteen
FaithWords

You Can, You Will Journal

Joel Osteen
Authors:
Joel Osteen
FaithWords

Daily Readings from Break Out!

Joel Osteen
Authors:
Joel Osteen
FaithWords

You Can, You Will

Joel Osteen
Authors:
Joel Osteen
FaithWords

I Declare

Joel Osteen
Authors:
Joel Osteen

FaithWords

Break Out!

Joel Osteen
Authors:
Joel Osteen

FaithWords

Every Day a Friday

Joel Osteen
Authors:
Joel Osteen

The title comes from research that shows people are happiest on Fridays. Pastor Joel Osteen writes how we can generate this level of contentment and joy every day of the week.Known as a man who maintains a constant positive outlook in spite of circumstances, Osteen has described this message as a core theme of his ministry. Combining his personal experiences with scriptural insights and principles for true happiness, he shows readers how every day can hold the same promise and opportunities for pure joy that they experience at five o'clock on Friday.

FaithWords

Your Best Life Begins Each Morning

Joel Osteen
Authors:
Joel Osteen
Hodder & Stoughton

Your Best Life Now

Joel Osteen
Authors:
Joel Osteen
Hodder & Stoughton

Your Best Life Now Journal

Joel Osteen
Authors:
Joel Osteen