Amy J.L. Baker Ph.D.

Caught Between Parents

The Misery Checklist

Writing Fiction about a Nonfictional Problem

Posted Apr 28, 2015

There are a lot of stories out there about parental alienation. Most are written from the perspective of targeted parents (such as "Surviving parental alienation: A Journey of hope and healing"). We also know a fair amount about the experience of alienation from the child's point of view (e.g., "Adult children of parental alienation syndrome: Breaking the ties that bind"). But virtually nothing has been written from the point of view of the alienating parent. This is so for several reasons including the fact they don't readily identify themselves as such and are not likely to agree to participate in my research.

It is for this reason that I decided to write a novel from the point of view of the alienating parent. My novel is entitled The Misery Checklist and is based on many years of studying and thinking about the problem of alienation. My goal in writing the book is to generate increased understanding and awareness. I wanted to capture the outrageous sense of entitlement that alienating parents possess as well as their utter disregard for the separate needs and experiences of their children. It was fascinating to write and I certainly hope it is fascinating to read.

However, the fiction arm of the publishing industry is not easy to break into, even for someone with my publishing history and credentials. That is why I submitted the book to Amazon's fiction competition, Kindle Scout. Between now and May 25, readers can check out the first 3 chapters of the book and nominate it for publication should they deem it worthy. I am pasting the link below for anyone who wants to sample the book for themselves. Please feel free to share the link, especially if you believe that sometimes real problems are best told through made up stories. You may have to paste the link in your browser and you can always go directly to Kindle Scout and find the book that way.