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Forward from "Through the Eyes of Alex"

Updated on November 28, 2012


Had you told me even a year ago that I would be sitting down to write a first-person narrative I would have said you were crazy. In tenth grade I led a boycott of the book Robinson Crusoe and in eleventh grade I had a very detailed argument with my English teacher over whether or not The Old Man and the Sea should be a literary classic.

Indeed I have disliked almost everything I’ve read that was written in the first-person style until I had the joy of reading Suzanne Collins’s Hunger Games trilogy. For the first time I was completely absorbed in the story and felt as if I were sitting on top of Katniss Everdeen’s shoulder watching events unfold along with the heroin. Suzanne Collins has a great talent for bringing the reader into the story and making them feel like they’re a part of it and for the first time I decided that maybe first-person narratives weren’t so bad after all.

The story I decided to tell is one I think almost everyone can identify with whether they’ve dealt with learning disabilities and mental illness or not. The main thing that drives Alex to the brink of ‘insanity’ is the feeling that she’s an outsider and I’m sure most people have felt like this at one time or another.

Another thing I know people will want to know is: Is Alex based on me? To answer that I will simply say that all writers draw from their own experience and only those who are close to me know how much of Alex’s story parallels my own.

The other characters are also based on various people in my life or in some cases a combination of people. I made sure not to use any real names so I wouldn’t have to worry about offending anyone and those who are directly linked to a select group of characters know who they are and are the kind of people I know won’t try and sue me.

I also feel I should warn people who aren’t open to homosexuality that I am a lesbian and that is reflected through the character of Alex. She is far braver than I will ever be, however, and though we both overcame similar obstacles, some of the things Alex says out loud are things I only wish I had said.

I also realize that by publishing these books that my sexual orientation will now be known to everyone and if you’re reading this and you’re okay with who I am then great, if not please keep it to yourself. One thing Alex and I do share is the knowledge of who we are from a very early age and whoever disagrees with the fact I’m gay is welcome to think what they want but there opinion is not going to change me.

As always I’d like to thank all those who have inspired this story, both good and bad. And I hope all those who read it enjoy it and take something from it and think twice about how their words or actions impact others. May you all find the love you deserve and may you find the ability to make peace with your own demons.


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    • b. Malin profile image

      b. Malin 5 years ago

      Hi dcollins, As Writers, we take many chances when we write a Novel. I worried when I wrote mine, that people would say, "That's you, right"? We all do incorporate some of ourselves in our work, especially a First Novel. But don't EVER make excuses for your Sexual preference.

      I now look forward to Following your Hubs. I'd also like to add, Welcome to Hub Pages, we are like a "Family" of Writers here.

    • shiningirisheyes profile image

      Shining Irish Eyes 5 years ago from Upstate, New York

      I read one of your works and became a fast fan and I look forward to delving into this as well.

      I do have to say, and I apologize in advance if this offends. I must live in a different world than others as I was rather surprised you needed to defend your personal preference. Where I come from, that isn't an issue. My lesbian and gay friends don't need to state they are gay any more than I would state I'm straight.

      I am sorry there are still parts of the globe where people must defend this. To me, it is a ridiculous notion and rather archaic as well.

      I am a fan and think you have a gift for writing.

    • Gypsy Rose Lee profile image

      Gypsy Rose Lee 5 years ago from Riga, Latvia

      Learning disabilities I do believe are one of the most difficult subjects to deal with.