Learn more about Carol Parker, the author of The Fish Dress, published by Kat Biggie Press (October 2020).
Q: Why did you write this book, and who did you write it for?
A: While living in Maine for thirteen years, my sister and I often visited thrift shops in search of eclectic items. At one shop, I spotted the fish dress, black and white with fish bones and strange symbols, and had to buy it. I noticed that when I wore it, acquaintances and strangers seemed mesmerized by the dress and heavily complimented me. At some point, I asked myself, “What if….?” and before I knew it, I had a story idea of a magical dress that empowers its wearer to overcome obstacles and discover her true self. My most likely readers are female millennials and up, who enjoy reading books that have a unique story line, engaging characters, and strong dialogue. A reader might want this book solely for entertainment, or perhaps she might like books set in a New England coastal town. Also, she might like books with magical elements and time travel. She might choose this book because it deals with mother-daughter relationships, romantic liaisons, and letting go of the past, to heal.
Q: What is your favorite part of the book?
A: I like the past life regression scenes with Nora and psychic Rosie Deerborn best. They take three journeys, where Nora discovers she is Marguerita de Roche, born in 1832, in the mountains of Andulasia, Spain, rescued by gypsies after a blizzard kills her family, and later kidnapped by soldiers and taken to be raised by nuns.
Q: When did you start writing books?
A: I started writing poetry at eight years old. I began writing my first novel when I was ten—historical fiction. I have never stopped writing, and also enjoy composing music and writing song lyrics.
Q: How is this book different from other books on the same shelf?
A: Originally I thought my book fit the Magical Realism genre, but I was told by an editor that it is not Magical Realism but “Fiction with Magical Elements”, the reason being that my story is not set in a magical world that operates according to specific rules of that world. My book is not set in a magical world, but with the time travel component, it is different than most fiction novels.
Q: Where does the tension in your novel come from?
A: Nora Jenkins, a divorced teacher in her forties living in Maine, feels heartbroken that her daughter has cut off all contact. Nora turns to her sister Grace for emotional support and advice on how to get her daughter back into her life. Nora feels helpless and like a failure as a mother when her sister tells her she just has to wait until her daughter is ready to talk.
Angelica Jenkins, 19-year old daughter of Nora Jenkins, is dealing with heroin addiction and is in prison for drug offenses. She feels like a loser and too ashamed to accept her mother’s and family’s support and refuses their attempts to contact her in prison. Deep inside, all Angelica has ever wanted is to make her mother proud.
Thank you, Carol!
The Fish Dress is available on Amazon and wherever books are sold.