Prior to writing Child of My Heart or I should say, all my life, I wanted to be a mother. Way past my childbearing years I came across a book by Barbara Cooney and Jane Boulton, Only Opal: The Diary of a Young Girl.
This book changed my life. Opal Whiteley, a child born in 1898, changed my life. She is the child I should have raised and whether you want to believe me or not, she came to me in a vision. She inspired me to write a fictional story about my life. And so my writing career began.
From CHILD OF MY HEART:
Pg 261: Eugenia placed a copy of The Story of Opal, by Opal Whiteley on the desk in front of me. I opened it and began to read, My mother and father are gone. The man did say they went to Heaven and do live with God, but it is lonesome without them. The mama where I live says I am a newsance. I think that is something grownups don’t like to have around."
Pg 248: My hands trembled. I dropped the book. A newspaper clipping fell out. I picked it up and read. "These words are taken from the turn-of-the-century diary of an extraordinary six-year-old girl named Opal Whiteley. This child, who was a friend to animals, had been given to a family in Oregon when her French parents died."
Thank you, Opal. xoxoxo