Photo credit: Vladimir Velociraptor Vukmirovich


My next book is about ready for publishing and in the next month Bookbaby will produce, design it, and publish digital and printed versions. It is generally recommended to put a manuscript aside and forget about the novel, so when going back to it with fresh eyes, the last draft might become a better product. I put it aside for a year and a half, to write my third novel, which is now waiting for a professional editor.

It’s generally recommended to put a manuscript aside and forget about the novel when you think it is finished, so when going back to it with fresh eyes, another draft might lead to a better product. I put it aside for a year and a half, to write my third novel, which is now waiting for a professional editor will work on soon. In the meantime, I reviewed and re-wrote my second novel: Guardians’ Betrayal. This novel is meant as an addition to the scant material available for prospective adoptive parents.  The novel is written from the point of view of the three main protagonists in the story, the so-called Roshomon Perspective. No one character has the truth in this story, and the reader decides what version of the events are closest to the truth, as they read it.

GUARDIANS’ BETRAYAL  is meant as an addition to the scant materials available to prospective adoptive parents beyond the often-dry, scientific excerpts of books on the attachment theory that social workers in the adoption field provide to prospective adoptive families.

GUARDIANS’ BETRAYAL is written from the point of view of the three main protagonists in the story, the so-called Roshomon Perspective. No one of these three characters holds the truth. The readers decide what version of the events depicted in this novel is closest to the truth, as they interpret it. An individual reader brings their own life experiences to the act of reading and takes away – from any novel – that what fits into their perspective.

Inspiration. I was inspired by foster parents that I observed in real life who opened their homes and hearts to someone else’s abandoned children and carried on as if this was the completely normal thing to do. Their hard work deserves attention and the joy of the children that were allowed to be kids, and then become whole, should be an inspiration to other parents.

Some time ago, I answered questions about GUARDIANS’ BETRAYAL for a blog-hop event. Knowing what the story is about may generate more interest, so I am repeating the information here.

  • Genre: The genre is literary fiction, but it could fit the genres of contemporary fiction, romance, and perhaps even Young Adult. I have some hesitation calling it YA, as the sex scenes might not pass the official category YA. I am including it anyway, as I believe that kids over 18 have already a lot of sex and this novel could help to mature YA readers. Developmentally, it is appropriate to be interested in sex at that age. I would not mind getting readers’ feedback on my ideas of the classification YA.
  • Goal. I wrote the novel to raise awareness of the difficulties that adolescents might experience. Don’t be fooled by what on the outside looks like a completely normal family, and don’t assume normal is all that’s going on behind closed doors. The novel might wake up parents, who assume the kids are alright. While making money and pursuing our own goals as parents, we are all too busy to pay attention to our children. The teen in your home might experience tremendous alienation from her parent growing up in isolation, in emotional pain, and see no other way out than turning against herself. In the novel, that led to Shayla’s cutting, shoplifting, drug and alcohol use, and seeking peer approval through sex.
  • Actors I envision for the characters. As actors for the main roles I would select the following: For sensitive and troubled 17-year-old Shayla, I would select Saoirse Ronan, who played Susie Salmon in The Lovely Bones. I could see Ellen Pompeo in the role of Shayla’s mother, Bernice – the hard working social worker who adopted Shayla and her sister. Bernice is nice and easy going; her unfaithful husband, Tom, is perfect for actor John Cusack, while the part of his love interest, the young and charming Marla, should be given to Amanda Seyfried. Shaya’s long lost biological father, the mysterious and handsome Gabriel, should be played by Johnny Depp. These are the four main characters in the novel.


  • One sentence synopsis of GUARDIAN’S BETRAYAL: Shayla’s birth-dad shows up around graduation time – seven years after her adoption – which happens to coincide with her adoptive father starting an extramarital affair and his abandonment of the family, and marriage breakdown, which leads, in turn, to Shayla’s breakdown.


  • Publisher. This novel will be self-published as an E book and in print, using Bookbaby.


  • How long it took to write: about a year and a half from when the idea first came to me (writing on Sundays mainly) to submitting the first draft to my editor, and another year to work through edits. Then, I took it up this April this year again and rewrote the draft, now completed.


  • Other books compare to my new novel only to some extent, as each has their own story beyond the subtext of neglect and how a child heals as she becomes an adult: The Glass Castle (Jeanette Walls), The Girl in the Mirror (Cathy Glass), Little Women (Louisa May Alcott).
  • Reviews: If you are interested in reading this novel and providing your review, please, respond on this WordPress website or on my Goodreads page so I can send you a free copy.

I would like you to rate this post at the top of the page. Thank you.

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Your comments are very welcome.


About BABYBOOMER johanna van zanten

My name is Johanna van Zanten. I am a baby boomer, interested in writing and connecting with other writers and readers to engage in discussions and information sharing, to share a point of view about current global issues, writing, and publishing, diversity, immigration, travel, music, life, specific baby boomer issues, and dating/relationship issues. I have written a novella, ON THIN ICE about baby-boomer Adrienne and will link this blog with the information website for this novella. Right now, I am trying out the blog.
This entry was posted in adolescents, Agents, Author circles, Blog Hop, book review, Canadian publishers, Children and child protection, Creative fiction, drug use., latest news items, Mental health, Parenting, Publishing, shoplifting, The truth, Uncategorized, Young Adult books. Bookmark the permalink.

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