Related to: 'The Wisdom House'

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

Rob Parsons: The Sixty Minute Father, The Sixty Minute Marriage

Rob Parsons
Authors:
Rob Parsons

THE SIXTY MINUTE FATHER sets goals to help every father ensure that he doesn't miss out on the greatest opportunity of his life. His advice includes: Put dates in your diary that are important for your children; talk to your baby as if she understands every word; if you have to be away write your children a letter; tell them how you spend your day.THE SIXTY MINUTE MARRAIGE presents an action plan to revolutionise every relationship. Includes: Are affairs good for a marriage? - How to argue - effectively - Why many men say, 'My wife's not interested in sex' - Why cutting your credit card in half can save your marriage - How a divorce will affect your children.This bundle is what every father and mother will want to read!

Hodder & Stoughton

Rob Parsons: Heart of Success, Money Secret, Wisdom House

Rob Parsons
Authors:
Rob Parsons
Hodder & Stoughton

Let Me Tell You A Story

Rob Parsons
Authors:
Rob Parsons
Hodder & Stoughton

Rob Parsons: The Sixty Minute Mother, The Sixty Minute Marriage

Rob Parsons
Authors:
Rob Parsons

In THE SIXTY MINUTE MOTHER Rob Parsons turns his warm wisdom and wit to the subject of motherhood. Talking to a variety of mothers, including Dianne Parsons, from all backgrounds and situations (working, lone, home-based, mothers of babies, teenagers, adopted kids and so on) he has compiled a wonderfully inspirational book on the highs and lows of being a mother, with lots of fresh insights. In his usual style, and never forgetting the essential truth that men need to nurture their maternal instincts too, he has written another winner.THE SIXTY MINUTE MARRIAGE presents an action plan to revolutionise every relationship. Includes: Are affairs good for a marriage? - How to argue - effectively - Why many men say, 'My wife's not interested in sex' - Why cutting your credit card in half can save your marriage - How a divorce will affect your children.This bundle is what every mother and father will want to read!

Hodder & Stoughton

The Sixty Minute Grandparent

Rob Parsons
Authors:
Rob Parsons

'If you have children, buy this book for your parents now. If you are a grandparent, don't go near your grandchildren until you have read it!' Rosemary ConleyThere are many different kinds of grandparents - tired-out or over-eager, super-involved or unsure how to help, unwilling or ever-ready. In this simple book Rob Parsons will help you reach the common aspiration: to be the best grandparent that you can possibly be.- The baby stage: helping out without interfering - How to help your own children find their way as parents- Loving your grandchildren without spoiling them- When to intervene, and when to keep out of it- Finding your place within a blended family- Becoming invaluable (rather than insufferable) to your daughter-in-law

Hodder & Stoughton

The Sixty Minute Mother

Rob Parsons
Authors:
Rob Parsons

In THE SIXTY MINUTE MOTHER Rob Parsons turns his warm wisdom and wit to the subject of motherhood. Talking to a variety of mothers, including Dianne Parsons, from all backgrounds and situations (working, lone, home-based, mothers of babies, teenagers, adopted kids and so on) he has compiled a wonderfully inspirational book on the highs and lows of being a mother, with lots of fresh insights. In his usual style, and never forgetting the essential truth that men need to nurture their maternal instincts too, he has written another winner.

Hodder & Stoughton

What They Didn't Teach Me in Sunday School

Rob Parsons
Authors:
Rob Parsons

A new edition of this best-selling inspirational book which is already an established classic. Some of the lessons learnt along the way will change forever the way we view ourselves, others and especially God. A book filled with fresh starts, new tomorrows and incredible hope.

Hodder & Stoughton

The Heart of Success

Rob Parsons
Authors:
Rob Parsons

Jack's father was one of the most successful entrepreneurs of his time - the only problem was that the old man had no time, no friends, and died early. The prospect of following in the family tradition seems less than appealing to Jack but on the first day of his MBA he meets a retired professor who offers him a class that wasn't exactly on the curriculum: how to make it in business without losing in life. Over a series of memorable evenings the professor shares with Jack seven laws to turn his life around.Don't settle for being money rich - time poorBelieve that the job you do makes a differencePlay to your strengthsBelieve in the power of dreamsPut your family before your careerKeep the common touchDon't settle for success; strive for significance

Hodder & Stoughton

The Sixty Minute Father

Rob Parsons
Authors:
Rob Parsons
Hodder & Stoughton

Loving Against the Odds

Rob Parsons
Authors:
Rob Parsons

Here is a book for all couples - those with strong marriages who want to protect their relationship, those going through difficult times, and those considering marriage.With humour and honesty it deals with issues that are relevant to every marriage, including; communicating more effectively, over coming financial pressure, why interest in sex sometimes dies, the affair, and dealing with conflict.

Hodder & Stoughton

The Sixty Minute Marriage

Rob Parsons
Authors:
Rob Parsons
Hodder & Stoughton

The Money Secret

Rob Parsons
Authors:
Rob Parsons
Hodder & Stoughton

Teenagers!

Rob Parsons
Authors:
Rob Parsons

Rob Parsons explains how to cope with this often disruptive period in a family's life and how to continue feeling close to your teenagers as they grow up and become increasingly independent. He gives clear and easy to follow advice making sure that you will not feel on your own and you will be able to make the most of your precious time with your children.'Insightful and practical. It will help every parent navigate those turbulent teenage years.' - David Lumsdon, Educational Psychology Academic and Professional Tutor, University of Newcastle-upon-Tyne 'This incredible book will save not just our relationships with our children, but our sanity. And the really lucky ones will discover it before their kids are teenagers.' - Parentalk 'It was as if somebody turned on a light. This book whispered to me, 'You're not the worst mother on the face of the earth. This stuff with your teenager is normal.' - Jennie, mother of three teenagers

Hodder & Stoughton

What Every Kid Wished their Parents Knew

Rob Parsons, Lloyd Parsons
Authors:
Rob Parsons, Lloyd Parsons

Adrian Plass

Adrian Plass is one of the most-loved Christian writers in the UK. He is the bestselling author of The Sacred Diary of Adrian Plass Aged 37¾ - which with its various sequels has sold millions of copies around the world. A somewhat bemused Anglican, Adrian and his wife Bridget live in the north of England travel widely to speak in churches, prisons, schools, and at festivals and literary events in the UK and around the world.

Alison Jean Lester

Alison Jean Lester was born to an American father and a British mother, and educated in the US, the UK, China and Italy. She spent twenty-five years working, writing and raising her children in Japan and Singapore before relocating to the UK in 2016. She is the author of the novel Lillian on Life and has had short stories published in Ecotone, Good Housekeeping, Synaesthesia and Barrelhouse.

Andy Jones

In one form or another, Andy has always been a writer. At school, he passed notes in class and scribbled rude words on lampposts. At University, he wrote a PhD in biochemistry and forged tickets to various balls. And as an advertising copywriter, has written commercials for everything from baby food to booze. But it wasn't until he was well into his thirties that Andy stared writing fiction. If he could write a letter his younger self, it would urge him to stop messing about and get on with it. FOUR is his fourth novel, but should probably be his tenth. Find Andy on Twitter and Instagram @andyjonesauthor, and Facebook /andyjonesauthor.

Anna Jacobs

Anna Jacobs grew up in Lancashire and emigrated to Australia, but still visits the UK regularly to see her family and do research, something she loves. She is addicted to writing and figures she'll have to live to be 120 at least to tell all the stories that keep popping up in her imagination and nagging her to write them down. She's also addicted to her own hero, to whom she's been happily married for many years.She is the bestselling author of over eighty novels and has been shortlisted for several awards, and Pride of Lancashire won the Australian Romantic Book of the Year Award in 2006.You can find out more on her website, www.annajacobs.com or on her Facebook page, www.facebook.com/Anna.Jacobs.Books.

Craig Canapari

Dr Craig Canapari, M.D., is Director of the Yale Paediatric Sleep Center and an attending physician in Pediatric Pulmonology at Yale-New Haven Hospital. He served previously as Director of the Paediatric Sleep Center at Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston. He graduated from Yale with a degree in English, and attended medical school at the University of Connecticut. Canapari's work has been published in numerous academic journals as well as publications including the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, the Washington Post, US News and World Report, and the Boston Globe. He lives outside New Haven with his wife and two sons.

Dr Mike Shooter

Dr Mike Shooter CBE is a former President of the Royal College of Psychiatrists and was the first child psychiatrist to hold that post. He is now an honorary fellow of six Royal Colleges and has spoken from public and professional platforms, written and advised governments in many parts of the world. An ex-journalist, Mike is a passionate believer in the power of stories and the need to share them - those of his patients and his own. He still lives in the Welsh Valleys, amidst a large family, many animals, and the community with whom he worked for more than 40 years.