As the date of a book release gets closer, I usually become more distant from my sanity. I told myself the stress is due to all the steps it takes to put quality work into reader’s hands, that my family suffered through Mercy’s release because the Forever series is a very personal milestone for me. So, as I’m preparing for another release, Scar Me, the sequel from a different series, I was baffled to why I am yet again in a panic.

The truth finally dawned on me.

I am a survivor of more sexual abuse than I wish to speak of. So I write.

I write to not only release books but to release the demons my abusers left behind; the darkness of self-doubt, the loneliness in feeling unworthy, and the haunting shame—the residue of sick perversion.

My character Delilah struggles in my novel, Scar me, because the act of violence is not left in the bed where the gruesome assault took place. Just like the act of betrayal is not left in the room where a child was molested. It is not left in the night when a man beats his wife, nor it is left behind in the vehicle where someone was forced to perform an act he or she didn’t’ want. But, it is left in the heart, the spirit, and the soul of the abused.

I am a damaged soul.

And I am writing for every man, woman and child to know that we are not used goods. We are not tainted to the point that we’re not worth saving. We are simply… hurt. And even though it may have been years for some of us, or yesterday for others, the pain lingers and affects us in so many ways of our everyday existence, that it can be debilitating at times.

I won’t give up this fight—always trying to stand again after a memory has recaptured me. And I ask that victims around the world don’t give up either. If you are still experiencing the abuse, reach out, call for help, tell someone. Just maybe that someone will listen.

Delilah wishes she would have spoken the truth… as do I.

We may be injured, but we are strong. The proof is in the fact that we are still here.

You are worth the fight because damaged souls are worth saving.