Take Chances - School Violence Aftermath
Welcome to today's Tuesday Blog. Take Chances is my book of this week. My motivations behind this book are as powerful as the story it tells. I am a parent of children ranging in age from their forties to eighteen. One of my biggest fears was that one of them might experience this nightmare. Luckily, they didn't but they can't help but be affected by the shootings they've seen on the news or heard about from various sources.
For so long I would ask myself how does one cope with this situation? What happens afterward? How does a person move forward after such terror?
The normal aftereffects of such a situation have been examined until most of us can repeat them in our sleep. The flashbacks, bad dreams, invasive thoughts, numbing emotions, feelings of guilt, worry, and depression are normal. Then I ask myself is there another way to deal with these feelings than the accepted norm? What else can a person do to overcome the memories of a few seconds of absolute terror?
Julie Bond is a teen who grew up with a nomadic life in Europe. Her parents were in the military. This gave her a set of survival instincts far above the normal student in a rural high school in the United States. She was used to dealing with leaving close friends behind. She didn't like this, but it was expected with the jobs her parents had. Julie had even experienced school violence in kindergarten, something she never talked about until just before what would become another day of terror in her life.
In the aftermath, she had no time to go through the normal emotions associated with a school shooting. Yes, she felt anger and a bit of depression, but she was also tugged into fighting back for another survivor who faced charges for something he didn't do. Her remaining friends and she had to step into fighting back mode. They were handed the opportunity to make a difference.
Instead of thinking about what happened, her focus turned to the future. In this future, she discovered she didn't have to take the path she had designed for herself. She and those who walked away from the violence grabbed onto new and different experiences, ones that would give them a chance to heal while also discovering new vistas.
What Julie discovers about herself, about her friends, is what makes Take Chances a novel teens will connect with and enjoy.
About the Author:
KC Sprayberry started writing young, first as a diarist, and later through an interest in English and creative writing. Her first experience with publication came when she placed third in The Freedoms Foundation at Valley Forge contest while in the Air Force, but her dedication to writing came after she had her youngest child, now in his senior year of high school.
Her family lives in Northwest Georgia where she spends her days creating stories about life in the south, and far beyond. More than a dozen of her short stories have appeared in several magazines. Five anthologies feature other short stories. She has three books that are Amazon best sellers: Softly Say Goodbye, Who Am I?, and Mama's Advice. Her other novels available are: Take Chances, The Ghost Catcher, Family Curse … Times Two, Secret From The Flames, Where U @, The Wrong One, and Grace.
The German word for attention echoes through my head as I sit in the last French class I'll ever take. In an instant, the comforting cream-colored walls of Landry High School vanish. I'm crouched under a table with tears streaming down my face. Three men and two women point huge, black automatic weapons at my classmates.
Julie Bond grew up in Europe as a military brat. She found her very first permanent home in Landry, GA as a teen going into high school. Almost four years later, she's having pre-graduation jitters and flashing back to an incident of school violence she experienced in Europe. She attempts to convince herself that it can never happen again, but continually finds herself flashing back to that day no matter how hard she tries.
The people around her present any number of problems for Julie, and she's hard put to keep from drowning under all the issues. Then Michael--a cool guy she's had a crush on for the last three years—returns from traveling the US as a photographer, and Julie now has one more thing to distract her as she prepares to leave high school. One thing she firmly believes in: no one will ever invade her classroom with violence again.
Once again, the impossible happens. Once again, she's in a classroom with a madman holding a gun. Once again, she must survive.