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A Heroine's Journey From Anxiety
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Tracy Shawn -- Anxiety Fiction Novelist Tracy Shawn -- Anxiety Fiction Novelist
Santa Barbara , CA
Monday, July 07, 2014

 

A Heroine's Journey From Anxiety

My intent in writing The Grace of Crows was to present readers with a heroine's journey that would help them feel less alone with their anxieties and irrational fears, as well as let them know that there's hope. Purposely crafting it with the goal that it would become the kind of novel I would have wanted to read when I had been stuck in the darkest years of my own anxiety, I'm pleased to say that reviewers and bloggers have shared how they've related to the protagonist's struggles.

The main character, Saylor Crawmore, is just like any other person battling with anxiety in that she also has to deal with the outside forces of work, family, and friends. Although Saylor's family doesn't actively suppress her goal in trying to banish her anxiety, the dynamics of dealing with a checked-out husband and problematic teenagers doesn't make it any easier. Her narcissistic mother does throw up some unconscious roadblocks to Saylor's mental health by constantly turning things around and blaming Saylor for their contentious relationship.

Exhausted with her family and desperate for an answer, Saylor wonders if she'll ever be free of her unrelenting depression and anxiety.

Then Saylor discovers her childhood friend, Billy, living under a pier in Malibu. Homeless and ignored since his teens by a celebrity father and an eternally-absent mother, the odd, intuitive Billy sparks Saylor's journey to gain insight into her strange fears. In turn, she is able to summon the courage to help both herself and her family.

A poignant novel that won the 2013 Jack Eadon Award for the Best Book in Contemporary Drama, Second Place for General Fiction for the 2013 Readers Choice Awards, and Runner-Up for 2013 General Fiction with the Great Northwest Book Festival, The Grace of Crows was also listed in the prestigious Santa Barbara Magazine's Hot List Arts Scene Winter Issue 2014.

Reviewer Sara Hartley with ForeWord Reviews says, "The Grace of Crows is a painful but valuable story about how a struggling woman learns the importance of forgiving and helping others and, more importantly, letting them do the same for her."

Kerry Methner, PhD with CASA magazine writes: "Shawn's narrative is intriguing, as turns and twists in the plot reveal generational secrets and events that were pushed out of sight and mind, but still impact the present. It is written with a sophisticated understanding of psychological dynamics and personalities."

Tracy Shawn lives and writes on the Central Coast of California. Her educational background includes a master's degree in clinical psychology. Her debut novel, The Grace of Crows, is about how an anxiety-ridden woman finds happiness through the most unexpected of ways—and characters. Dubbed a "stunning debut novel" by top 50 Hall of Fame reviewer, Grady Harp, The Grace of Crows has also been hailed as an accurate portrayal of generalized anxiety disorder and a healing opportunity to the reader. 

 

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