Oceanview Publishing Announces THE TROUBLE WITH CHARLIE by Merry Jones Now Available in Hardcover, All Digital E-Book Formats, and Audio Book
THE TROUBLE WITH CHARLIE is available in Hardcover (ISBN: 978-1-60809-074-7, Thriller, Retail List: $25.95), All Digital E-Book Formats (ISBN: 978-1-60809-075-4, Retail List: $14.95), and Audio Book.
The author, Merry Jones, shared this information in a recent interview:
Relying on the Unreliable
"Authors are faced with an endless array of choices and possibilities when they begin to write a book. For example, should the protagonist be male or female, tall or short, funny or serious? Sexy? Quirky? The goal is to make the character appealing and believable as well as unique. Each decision has consequences; a tall serious sexy male has different potential than a short funny quirky female. The nature of the protagonist affects the nature of the story."
In the following interview, author Merry Jones discusses the process of creating protagonist Elle Harrison (THE TROUBLE WITH CHARLIE) and explains why she chose to take Elle off the mainstream by giving her a psychological disorder.
1. Elle Harrison, the protagonist in THE TROUBLE WITH CHARLIE and its upcoming sequel ELECTIVE PROCEDURES, is what we would call an "unreliable narrator." What about Elle makes her point of view unreliable?
"Elle Harrison has been diagnosed with depersonalization disorder, a type of dissociative disorder triggered by trauma or stress. Elle has a tendency to disconnect from her surroundings; that's why she can't be considered a reliable narrator. She is likely to drift off in the middle of threatening conversations, detach from tense moments, or mentally separate from dangerous situations. These wanderings make it difficult to rely on her point of view."
2. What exactly is Depersonalization Disorder? How is it treated?
"Have you ever had a sense of being outside your body? Or of being caught in a dream where nothing is quite real?
If you answered 'yes,' you-like about one in ten other peoplehave experienced depersonalization. For most, the sensations pass quickly and occur rarely. But sometimes, when depersonalization occurs too frequently or interferes with normal functioning, it's considered pathological, a type of dissociation disorder.
Elle Harrison has this disorder. During episodes, she recognizes that she is disconnecting and knows that her disconnects are temporary. Even so, she can neither control nor prevent them. At best, by minimizing the triggers (stress and trauma), Elle might reduce the duration and frequency of her episodes. Various therapies might also help her cope with and minimize them. But the disorder has no cure."
3. So, why create a character like Elle Harrison? Wouldn't readers benefit from a narrator they can rely on?