In doing research when writing this novel Soiled Diamond, my main source of data was retrieved from www.childwelfare.gov specifically under the Child Abuse and Neglect Statistics column. I was alarmed by what my researched revealed concerning the statics of child abuse, not only worldwide but in the United States of America! It’s a sad reality that child abuse is more of a widespread problem than I imagined. Generally, we don’t pay a lot of attention to the things that don’t affect us.
I have worked with young people for most of my adult life in Youth Ministry at my church, with volunteering with the school system, and several nonprofit youth programs throughout the city. I’ve dealt with youth maneuvering through low self-esteem, self-image and acceptance issues, bullying, poverty, hunger, and their basic needs being met. I’ve assisted youth in dealing with hurtful words spoken by those in authority. I always encouraged them to rise above the negative stigmas that try to define them. I haven't encountered a situation like I wrote about in my fiction novel. Sadly, I realize that it doesn’t mean it never existed in the lives of the youth that I mentored. It just wasn’t revealed to me.
In writing this book I dealt with so many emotions because I know my character’s story is some scared little boy or girl’s reality. I have expressed countless times in describing the nature of my book that although the characters are fictional the content is real. As I realize there are millions of children that fall victim to childhood abuse.
It is my prayer that relief from their tragic circumstances is obtained. I hope this book will shed light on this dark evil currently plaguing our world. May it offer hope and ultimate freedom to some child that is currently suffering. I relate the character to a diamond because like a diamond she is tough. She endured so much pain and heart ache from the refining process. Just as a diamond is soiled with coal and must go through a rigorous process to sparkle. She too is covered with the weight of the world pressing her down.
There is hope for her as she realizes her own self-worth and value. She finally embraces the truth that although she is soiled at this particular time in her life…she is still a diamond!