Staying chaste until marriage, a commandment of my faith, was one of the most difficult challenges of my young life. I had a powerful sense that if I did not get a grip on my identity, my ethics, and my religion, I would go off the rails.
Law and order is a social service. Crime and the fear which the threat of crime induces can paralyse whole communities, keep lonely and vulnerable elderly people shut up in their homes, scar young lives and raise to cult status the swaggering violent bully who achieves predatory control over the streets. I suspect that there would be more support and less criticism than today's political leaders imagine for a large shift of resources from Social Security benefits to law and order - as long as rhetoric about getting tough on crime was matched by practice.
There have been so many moments in our young life and our young career, but looking back it would have been great to share some of those with my family members, or have not worked so hard, I would always just be working during some of the fun times.
I think that our whole country needs to have more love and compassion for all children. All life is valuable and a gift from God. Pregnancy is not something that "just happens." Pregnancy is a gift from God. I think it is God telling us "OK, you are responsible enough to raise this new young life that I, God, am going to give you." And for people who can't conceive children, God may be asking you for an even more generous response - to adopt and raise a child.
[M]y first published book had just appeared in stores. The last year of my life-the year of finishing it, editing it, and seeing it through its various page-proof passes-ranks among the most unnerving of my young life. It has not felt good, or freeing. It has felt nerve-shreddingly disquieting. Publication simply allows one that much more to worry about. This cannot be said to aspiring writers often or sternly enough. Whatever they carry within themselves they believe publication cures will not, I can all but guarantee, be cured. You just wind up with new diseases.