Episode 043 – Paula Wallace is an ex-victim of trauma and abuse, writing women’s powerful stories in a her book Bloom in the Dark.
- In this powerful interview, Paula Wallace shares stories of overcoming trauma and abuse. She was born to missionary parents in Peru. Raped at the age of five, Paula was caught in a cycle of damage and abuse, which lasted into her thirties. From sexual abuse to later mental, emotional and even spiritual abuse, Paula developed a victim mentality, which fueled decades of continued abuse. As a high school senior, she took a creative writing class in college and received an A in the class. Shortly after, she received an extreme critique, which caused her to stop writing for 25 years – believing she didn’t have any writing talent. Paula wrote Bloom in the Dark by interviewing women who had suffered some kind of trauma or abuse. Then she turned the interviews into stories, poems, and letters of brokenness – about how those women had found hope and life and a new start. It’s the story of the trauma and abuse in her life too. The book’s theme is hope and redemption. Paula does a great job of sharing how difficult it was a to write and compile the book. She candidly says she wanted to quit even as she got stated writing. Sharing the stories beaks the bond of isolation and starts the healing process, breaking through the shame and guilt that accompanies the trauma and abuse. Paula talks about the writing process as she wrote the women’s stories and often went into the dark places of their stories. Her advice for struggling writers shows the determination she gave to her writing – and it can help you too. Paula’s goal was to let broken women know that they are not alone and that there is hope. She nailed it. Her book is beautiful.
My Writing Obstacles
- There was the time issue, the money issue, the not having written creatively for almost 25 years issue, finding and getting the stories, finding an attorney to help with the legal issues, and more. It was a high-risk project and I needed to protect those whose stories I told, including myself.
My Writing Motivation
- My motivation was remembering where I had been before I got help, remembering how my life was on a downhill spiral and how broken I was, and desperately wanting to reach women before they hit that level of brokenness and tell them there is hope.
The Best Advice I Have Ever Received
- Write from the heart – and then edit.
What I Would Like to be Remembered for as an Author
- I’d like to be remembered for being real. The stories are raw and direct because I want them to be real and authentic. For being willing to step into a discussion that most people run and hide from – because the end value is worth it.
What I love Most About Writing
- I love communicating heart. It’s trying to communicate the depths, the guts of a heart and soul, in both brokenness and in beauty and healing. For every bit of brokenness I relived as I wrote, I got to to relive the hope and redemption too, and that is an absolutely amazing place to be.
My Best Advice for Struggling Writers
- Don’t let any one or anything stop you. I found experts. I searched for people who could help me. I set very tight goals.
What Writing Success Means to Me
- Being successful for me is finding out that what I’ve written has changed someone’s life. Their perspective has changed, their heart has changed, they have hope. They are actually taking steps to change their future because of something I wrote.
My Favorite Book on Writing
- On Writing Well, 30th Anniversary Edition: The Classic Guide to Writing Nonfiction by William Zinsser.
The Author That Inspires Me
- I’m inspired by Karen Kingsbury – the fun part is that I know her personally. She was the one who encouraged me to write Bloom in the Dark.
How To Find Me
- Paula’s website
- Paula’s Facebook page
- Paula’s Twitter page
- Paula’s Pinterest page
- Paula’s email
- Bloom in the Dark T-shirts and necklaces
- Ex-Victim T-shirts and necklaces
About Paula from Her Amazon Author’s page
- Born in the jungles of Peru to missionary parents, Paula’s beginning in life was anything but typical.
- Raped at the age of 5, Paula was caught in a cycle of damage and abuse which lasted into her thirties. From sexual abuse to later mental, emotional and even spiritual abuse, Paula developed a victim mentality, which fueled decades of continued abuse. The trauma she experienced caused her to develop a variety of psychosomatic illnesses which, at times, left her bed-ridden.
- Broken beyond endurance and suicidal, Paula cried out to God for help. He miraculously intervened, faithfully walking with her through a dramatic healing process. Along the way, Paula learned to stand up to her abusers and stop attracting predators. She now knows, from personal experience, the healing, deliverance, and hope that only God can bring.
- As an ex-victim, Paula’s passion to help others resulted in her writing Bloom in the Dark, a compilation of true stories shared by women who have walked through personal darkness and abuse. Each story tells how God met, healed, and restored an ex-victim. Readers discover that they are not alone and that there is lasting hope and healing!
- Through the ministry of Bloom in The Dark, Paula focuses on writing and speaking to female abuse victims–raising awareness about abuse, bringing hope to victims, and partnering with ministries to help victims recover.
- A single mom living in Nashville, Paula homeschools her three sons, ranging in age from six to fourteen. The boys are a key part of Paula’s support team and her biggest fans. Together they enjoy swimming, hiking and roller skating.
From My Perspective
- Because of the length of the interview, rather than a From MY Perspective spot, I simply encourage you to purchase a copy of Bloom in the Dark for someone you know that has gone through trauma and abuse, or gift them a Kindle version.
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