The idea for THE FACE stemmed from a TV show I saw on the Discovery Health Channel. The special was about Juliana Wetmore, a little girl born with Treacher Collins syndrome . . . the most severe case ever recorded. This child was literally born without a face. (Photo: a current photo of Juliana. I love her spirit!)
Now, my book is not about this child, who is very young and still undergoing the many surgeries she will need in order to have a “normal” face. You can read this little girl’s story on her web site here.
As many novelists do, I took the truth of her story and asked myself, “What if?” What if another child were born like this? What would happen if she didn’t have all the surgeries necessary to be accepted in society? What would happen if we fast forwarded 20 years and she were a young adult?
Add to that mix my ALIAS infatuation and desire to write about the CIA, stir together my fascination with facial expressions and their link to emotions, and add a sprinkle of family relationships–and that’s how you come up with a story like THE FACE.
My main purpose, however, wasn’t to discuss faces–those were a means to an end. I kept thinking about that song, “We Shall See Him As He Is” and about how we don’t discover our true self–the person we were meant to be–until we meet Christ. But certain things are necessary–certain sacrifices have to be made–before we are ready to begin a new life as a new creature. So I used this story to illustrate a spiritual truth. I hope it will resonate with you.
If you haven’t read it yet, I hope you enjoy the story. And do check out Juliana’s page–this is a Christian family, and they have faced incredible struggle and pain in order to help this precious little girl grow and gain confidence. I know they would appreciate your prayers.
Tomorrow: the research.