Author Tara Ellison asks, where does anyone get the audacity to go and write a book?
Before this adventure, I certainly had no clue. This book-writing business was completely foreign to me when I first started this project nearly eight years ago; it was just another unattainably lofty goal. Completing a novel was something that would surely require deep wells of discipline (and one quick glance at my life would tell you that was something that I didn’t have) but once I started, it was almost like this little story was demanding to be written. I had no choice but to make myself available to it. But let me start at the beginning.
Sometimes in life you find yourself in a position where you feel horribly stuck and the sad joke is that the more you struggle against it, the worse it seems to get. The main catalyst for my own version of this malaise was a highly unpleasant divorce and my inability to move past it. I had a new existence as a single mother and a host of economic and other worries to contend with, not to mention that it was all terribly, terribly dull. I had become dull. I could barely remember what ‘fun’ was anymore. I would watch other people laughing and enjoying themselves and think what a grand luxury that was. How I wished to feel carefree again and be able to laugh at silly television shows! It occurred to me that my predicament was likely not unique to me. There had to be other women out there struggling to start over and they were probably in dire need of a few laughs, too.
In order to avoid that dreaded feeling of emptiness or restlessness that crept in whenever I had too much free time, I began composing short stories. I had always loved to write and a dear friend gave me his old laptop, which was this heavy, bulky thing, but it gave me such a sense of freedom because I would cart it everywhere with me to cafés and set up camp for a few hours and get lost in the stories. I could create this crazy world of characters. They could be as wickedly funny as I wanted and say or do outrageous things, or juggle similar challenges to the ones that I had faced. It was my own literary playground and it soon became addictive. Suddenly I had a purpose and became very excited about the whole writing process. Significant internal shifts were taking place and slowly my life started to improve on all fronts. My girlfriends – and sometimes even total strangers I met – were only too happy to share their romantic tales with me (people do like to share things when they hear you’re writing a book about romantic foibles!). I soon had a great abundance of material to work with, plus my own active imagination! I used my life as a jumping off point and threw everything into the mix to create a modern fairytale for women of all ages.
After toiling away on it for an absurdly long period of time, those stories have now become my debut novel, Synchronized Breathing. It’s lucky I had no idea how much work this book would be, the very long gestation period it would require and what the entire process would demand of me – or I would never have had the courage to get started. My dearest wish for this book is to share it with other women who are in need of some humor and help them forget their troubles for a while. And who knows, they might even end up feeling inspired by Scarlett’s adventures and more hopeful for their own futures in the process.
Nothing announces the failure of one’s life quite as loudly as having to move back in with your mother at the ripe old age of thirty-five. Unfortunately for Scarlett Spencer, her marriage has recently imploded and she’s headed to Beverly Hills — toddler in tow — to move in with her oversexed mother, CeCe. But maneuvering life back at home isn’t the only challenge . . . After being a stay-at-home mom, Scarlett wades back into the Hollywood employment pool with hilarious results. Even more terrifying is the prospect of reentering the dating world. She soon learns that balancing motherhood with the unique demands of Hollywood men creates a new twist on the dating dilemma. Tired of dating jerk after jerk, Scarlett goes on a self-imposed “man-diet,” which isn’t easy when her mother is perpetually on a manhunt. But in the quiet of this new man-free existence, Scarlett discovers what is really important in her life.
Synchronized Breathing is a cheeky, light-hearted story about moving on and realizing that mother doesn’t always know best.
Tara Ellison was born in London and raised between Sydney and Hong Kong before coming to the United States. After moving to Los Angeles for a career in acting, Tara realized she was a better author than actor. Synchronized Breathing is her first novel.