Some people put down Erotic Romance novels, or any kind of Romance novels, as inane trash or even refer to it as porn. All I have to do is open my daily e-mails or look at these postings and private messages to know that what I write makes a difference. I’ll proudly continue to write and share my stories about wounded (but NOT broken) people finding hope, love, and healing.
Since I wrote Masters at Arms in 2011, I have gotten so many messages from people saying how my Rescue Me series affected them–and, in some cases, changed their lives. I strive to write books that will touch readers’ hearts and be more than a temporary escape to be forgotten after each “the end,” but some of the stories from readers have gone beyond my expectations. For instance, I knew child sexual abuse survivors would find healing in Nobody’s Perfect. What I didn’t expect was to hear from three readers telling me that they asked their hubbies to read it and that, for the first time in years (or even decades), their husbands understood what they’d been trying to convey but couldn’t put into words.
Recently, I asked readers on my Facebook timeline and Facebook author page to share their stories. I welcome yours in this blog, too, so please post them in the comments below. I’m looking for even minor ways a character or story line touched you. So don’t worry what someone else says, but if you had some kind of epiphany (aka Oprah Aha Moment!) or just came to see yourself in a different way after reading them, please share! Responses here are viewable by the public. So, again, if your story is too private to share publicly, feel free to e-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org. Those commenting (either telling their own story or commenting on someone else’s) will be eligible for a drawing. See below.
And here are some that I’d like to share with you (some from public posts and some private ones):
I wanted to thank you (like many others probably have) for writing such amazing stories! I’d heard of people saying books had helped in personal situations but never experienced that myself, until I read yours. I was sexually abused as a child and again at 19, had the counselling, suffer depression but never found an outlet that helped. Just reading your books has helped massively with my demons and for that alone… THANK YOU!
I have to say that Nobody’s Perfect affected me the most. I was molested by my uncle from the ages of 9-12. So when I read Savi’s issues about being touched and how she views her body I thought “that is me.” I’m [age-withheld for anonymity—several decades older] now but I still have issues with my body…I don’t like being touched either. For a long time I would hide under baggy t-shirts and jeans and it’s only been in the last couple of years that I have learned to show off my figure a bit more. I tend to dress tomboyish and I know I sometimes get mistaken for being gay because when I get nervous around a guy I tend to act kind of boyish. I think this is my defense mechanism going into place.
I think the most profound section of the book for me was when Damián did the breathing technique with Savi. Breathing for her… I broke down and cried and cried. I can’t adequately describe how it made me feel but it touched me in a way no other book ever has… I want to say thank you for validating what I’ve been feeling all these years. Although my experience isn’t as brutal as Savi’s we still share the same emotional scars. I’m still looking for my Damien and I’m hoping one day I find him.
Your Masters at Arms/Rescue Me series was very heartfelt. I laughed, I cried, and I felt the pain of their active duty stories. I am an Army wife for the past 27 years, and I was a Navy brat before I got married. My husband has been deployed to Korea, Iraq, and Afghanistan, he made it back and alive, but we did have someone we considered family, a brother, and Uncle to our kids who was KIA in Afghanistan 9/29/2010 trying to save another soldier. He was Special Forces Medic. I enjoyed reading your books. They gripped me and I found them hard to put down, but I do have to work [on an Army base] for a family clinic, so I also see some of our patients in the clinic that have been wounded. My oldest daughter served Army for 6 years in mortuary affairs. She is out now, and the deployments affected her. She is labeled PTSD and goes to the VA. So yes, I relate in so many ways. Thank you for your books, your writings, your stories, and for the pleasure I had reading them.
I know this will sound silly in comparison to those that have found healing through your books, but for me these stories have really renewed the passion in what I want to do with my life. I have known for years now that I really want to help those with PTSD, especially veterans. I have a Masters in psychology, and am trying to go for a Ph.D., and I have worked and done research in the VA system. And it’s for these amazing veterans (like Damián) who have PTSD, or need help readjusting to civilian life after war. I think I’ve gotten bogged down in how to get there, but when reading your books, I remember thinking “This…this is why I want to help.” I remember the people at the VA and the passion I have for helping them somehow. I don’t know if I’ll ever get there or how much help I’ll be, but I really want to support those who have given so much for us.
Secondly, I’m also with a women’s center that works with survivors of domestic violence and sexual assault. Sometimes, I can’t help but think “maybe I’m helping a Savannah or a Cassie.” Mostly, I just give information and refer to support groups and counseling or other resources, but sometimes I’m the first person that a survivor has talked to. It means so much to me that they get the support they need to leave the situation they are in or heal from what they are dealing with. Sometimes it’s hard to hear their stories and help them decide what to do. I mean, sometimes I can’t stop thinking about what someone has been though, or I have really bad dreams for quite some time. Kally, your characters are so real, and sometimes they help me remember why and how much I really want to help both populations I work(ed) with. Especially when I’m feeling a bit…lost.
When I first read this series, my husband and I were already married 24 years and have 4 kids. Obviously we were doing something right. But, it’s almost like we were missing a tiny piece of something, but didn’t know what it was.
I found your books, and our lives changed for the better! In particular, Nobody’s Angel affected me more. The struggle of Angelina wanting the lifestyle, it actually gave me the courage to express to my husband what I wanted. I became more open with him, read parts to him and was able to say “I want that!” He listened… Oh boy, did he listen!
With your resources listed, we researched techniques and safety. We joined an on-line community, and have made several new, wonderful friends! We just celebrated our Silver Wedding anniversary this past spring, and I will tell you without hesitation, this past year has been the best yet!!
I am proud to be married to a Marine. But as a side effect I am also married to a man with PTSD. After reading Nobody’s Perfect I saw my husband in Damián with nightmares and triggers. One of the main symptoms of PTSD is the need to control every situation in order to feel safe and secure. So one night I decided to try light bondage on my husband and by him letting me have control he was more relaxed and didn’t feel he always had to control every situation. That he could rely on me.
I got your books after my son Dane had taken his life after struggling with PTSD for 4 years. I saw my son in your men, so much, that it was hard to get through them without crying my eyes out. Damián reminds me of Dane. These books hold a special place in my heart, I know that Dane would have loved them too. Oh he would have blushed and flashed his handsome dimples, but he would have devoured them. When the evenings get tough and I find my heart hurting, I pick up one of your books and connect with all of them again. Your books make me smile and give me that push I need to continue to help our wounded warriors. So thank you Kally from the bottom of my heart. [For a beautiful photo of Dane Sattler, please see the dedication page of Nobody’s Perfect (also visible in the previews if you don’t have the book). Sue found my books soon after Nobody’s Hero was published and she touched my heart with hers and Dane’s story.]
Oh, and if you haven’t see my Facebook and Twitter posts, Somebody’s Angel is slated for a December release! No specific date yet. Cover reveal will be on or after Nov. 25, and I’ll post it here on the 27th of next month, as well! I should have a release date set by then, too!
To one commenter chosen by a random number generator, I’ll be giving away a swag pack (trading cards, Masters Brat button, two pens, bookmarks, promo card), “Eyes on Me” hand fan, and e-book of the winner’s choice (including the next release, Somebody’s Angel as a gift from a major bookseller that permits book giving. Prize open to international winners.