Being a Parent Makes you Vulnerable: Author of The Lost Girls, Jennifer Spence on the Mother-Daughter Relationship

Being a Parent Makes you Vulnerable: Author of The Lost Girls, Jennifer Spence on the Mother-Daughter Relationship

About The Author

Jennifer Spence has worked as an English teacher, a scriptwriter of soap operas and a technical writer. She is the author of three children’s books and a crime novel. She lives in Sydney.

Purchase a copy of The Lost Girls here

Read our full review of The Lost Girls here 

Words // Jennifer Spence

When writing fiction from a woman’s perspective, it’s hard to stay away from the deep emotional implications of the mother-child relationship. Starting with one’s own mother, there are as many variations on the mother-daughter relationship as there are people, but for most of us it’s a profound part of who we are.

When I started ‘The Lost Girls’, my main idea was to write about the experience of meeting your own self from an earlier time, and viewing your past life from a different perspective. Sixty-something Stella slips back twenty years in time and comes face-to-face with forty-something Stella. Getting on with each other is not as easy as you might think. The older Stella can virtually read the younger Stella’s mind, but that doesn’t always help.

But we are more than a single person. I soon realised that in this period, twenty years earlier, Stella’s mother would be still alive, and that of course the older Stella would need to visit her. For older women like me, the fantasy of seeing your own deceased mother one more time has a deep poignancy. Many of my friends who have lost their mothers share feelings of unfinished business, of things left unsaid, of a failure to fully grasp a relationship that might have faded into the background but is still central to our lives. For me, writing the scenes between Stella and her mother Anne was a powerful experience as I thought about what it would be like to see my own mother one last time.

But in ‘The Lost Girls’, there is more. Stella revisits her own children, at a younger and more impressionable age. She views them through the prism of their future lives, and at a tantalising distance because she can’t tell them who she is. She can try to advise them to make different choices in their lives, but if you change one thing in the future, the danger is that everything might change.

Many parents have shared an awful realisation, on the birth of their first child: “What have I done?” Being a parent makes you vulnerable; the joy comes with a great fear of seeing your child suffer. In ‘The Lost Girls’, Stella believes she has been given an opportunity to intervene and save her daughter; but any action she takes will come at an unforeseeable cost.

Related Articles

Discovering the Lost Girls: Read an extract from Fish out of Water

Kids & Ya

17 September 2019

Discovering the Lost Girls: Read an extract from Fish out of Water

A profound inner journey: Review of The Lost Girls #2 Off the Map

Kids & Ya

17 September 2019

A profound inner journey: Review of The Lost Girls #2 Off the Map

Sharing the travel experience with young people

Kids & Ya

17 September 2019

Sharing the travel experience with young people

A journey of self-discovery: Review of The Lost Girls #1 Fish Out of Water

Kids & Ya

17 September 2019

A journey of self-discovery: Review of The Lost Girls #1 Fish Out of Water

The Unlikeliest Location of Literary Bliss: Author Jenn J. McLeod Tells Us Where she Finds Books on the Road

News

9 September 2019

The Unlikeliest Location of Literary Bliss: Author Jenn J. McLeod Tells Us Where she Finds Books on the Road

    Where the Light Enters Author, Sara Donati Shares 5 inspiring books with trailblazing female characters

    News

    3 September 2019

    Where the Light Enters Author, Sara Donati Shares 5 inspiring books with trailblazing female characters

      One Book Can Lead to Another: How Greg Growden Was Compelled to Write Major Thomas

      News

      6 August 2019

      One Book Can Lead to Another: How Greg Growden Was Compelled to Write Major Thomas

        Friendships Always Seem Like They Should Come Easily: Sophie Green, Author of The Shelly Bay Ladies Swimming Circle, Talks About The Beauty of Friendship

        News

        1 August 2019

        Friendships Always Seem Like They Should Come Easily: Sophie Green, Author of The Shelly Bay Ladies Swimming Circle, Talks About The Beauty of Friendship

          I am Living on the Most Magical Place on Earth: An Article from Dave Glasheen, Author of The Millionaire Castaway

          News

          1 August 2019

          I am Living on the Most Magical Place on Earth: An Article from Dave Glasheen, Author of The Millionaire Castaway

            Na tschuss denn, or Good-bye, Then: An Article by Confession with Blue Horses Author, Sophie Hardach

            News

            29 July 2019

            Na tschuss denn, or Good-bye, Then: An Article by Confession with Blue Horses Author, Sophie Hardach

              Synopsis

              A haunting tale of love and loss that will make you think twice …What would you do if you had the chance to change a pivotal moment from your past?How far would you go to save someone you loved?These are just two of the fateful choices a woman must face in this highly original and hauntingly evocative detective story of love and loss.At the core of the enigmatic Stella’s story, past and present, is a mystery she is compelled to solve, a beautiful young woman who went missing fifty years ago – and a tragedy much closer to home she must try to prevent.As Stella unravels the dark secrets of her family's past and her own, it becomes clear that everyone remembers the past differently and the small choices we make every day can change our future irrevocably.This utterly original, gripping and mind-bending tale will stay with you long after the last page.'A beautifully compelling book that dares to not only ask “What if?” but to explore that question with heart-busting yearning, wry humour and masterful storytelling.' Kate Mulvany, playwright and actor?‘The Lost Girls is a wonderfully unsettling novel about anger, loss and hope. Tightly written and compulsive, its twists had me frantically turning the pages.’ Emma Viskic, award-winning author of And Fire Came Down and Resurrection Bay
              Jennifer Spence
              About the author

              Jennifer Spence

              Jennifer Spence has worked as an English teacher, a scriptwriter of soap operas and a technical writer. She is the author of three children’s books and a crime novel. She lives in Sydney.

              Books by Jennifer Spence

              COMMENTS

              Leave a Reply

              Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *