Amanda Dickson, Author of A Gentle Thief Chats about Writing About Characters Who Capture the Imagination

Friday, November 18, 2011

Meet Amanda Dickson:

Amanda Dickson is a radio announcer, author, newspaper columnist and speaker based in Salt Lake City. Amanda earned her B.A. in English and her Juris Doctorate at the University of Utah. She practiced law for a brief time before returning to her first love of radio. Amanda taught Mass Communication Law at the University of Utah, becoming a favorite professor among the students. Amanda published her first book in the fall of 2007, Wake Up to a Happier Life. Her second book, Change It Up, came out in October of 2009. Her new book, Friends For Life, is due out in January of 2012. Amanda is married and the step-mother of three children. She is also the indulgent mother of two children.

Synopsis from Media Guests: Maddie Johnson loved Shakespeare. Unlike everybody else she knew growing up, she seemed to understand him, enjoy him, more with every reading. It was partly because of this love that she drove from her home in rural Pennsylvania to college at Southern Utah University, home every summer to the Utah Shakespearean Festival. It was partly that, and partly the desire to get as far away as possible.

Maddie thought being in Utah would help her forget, that the stark beauty of the scenery and the power of the metaphor would be enough to clear her. They weren’t.

In her freshman year, she met and, after graduation, married a much older man, Robert Able, the first person Maddie had ever known who understood her love of Shakespeare.

At 21, Maddie felt too young to be married. At 23, she felt too young to be divorced.

Maddie was found dead on New Year’s Day, clutching a gun to her chest. Everyone assumed she committed suicide. Everyone except her father.

A Gentle Thief is Maddie’s story, and that of her father and the young attorney he hires who becomes devoted to him and the truth of his cause.

A Gentle Thief is a book nearly 20 years in the making, inspired by a case the author worked on while a lawyer.

Coming to Amazon soon!

I would like to welcome Amanda Dickson, author of A Gentle Thief to Emeraldfire's Bookmark. Ms Dickson was kind enough to write a guest post for me and here it is below in her own words:

I was blessed in A Gentle Thief in that many of the characters are based on real people, people who had already captured my imagination, whose circumstances and bravery and drama so thoroughly grabbed my heart, that twenty years later, I find myself finally writing their story. As I began to bring their story to life in this novel, and to add other characters to the plot, I felt compelled to honor them, their lives, their struggle, in the only way I knew how - to write a narrative worthy of the heroic challenges they faced.

What makes these characters capture the imagination is the same for all characters who accomplish that feat - we can feel ourselves in them even as they face circumstances we cannot imagine. They are us, our sisters, our husbands, our friends, only they are confronted with a depth of challenge we have not personally known and hopefully will never know.

We are captivated by them, in part, because we want to know how we would handle it if life dealt us these unthinkable cards. These captivating characters don't always rise to the occasion, as we might not always, but we learn from them. We might even love them. But in every case, if we writers do our jobs, we feel for them.

- Amanda Dickson Author of A Gentle Thief
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May you read well and often