I just released my tenth novel, Dream A Little Dream. It is a little different than my other novels in that one of the main characters is hearing impaired. When I wrote Moonlight In His Hand fifteen years ago, (I know, I promise it’s going to be formatted for kindle), I made the baby that Kimberly and John Lansing adopted deaf. When I wrote the book, I wasn’t thinking about the possibility that I would write about the children of the main characters. But now they have all grown up and have each been given their own stories. Seamus Lansing is on of the main characters in Dream A Little Dream.
I have always found the concept of how hearing impaired people interact with the hearing world interesting. I have a deaf cousin, and whenever we saw Brenda, I couldn’t help laughing at my grandmother who, God rest her soul, yelled and yelled verrrry slowly, as if Brenda could hear her, or worse yet, was too slow to understand what she was saying. Brenda was the first person who taught me a few words in sign language. In college I took a class in sign language, learning to speak fairly well and how to interpret songs in sign. I used it fairly regularly when I worked at special ed school, but haven’t used sign terribly often since then, and must admit I am no longer fluent, but can still read a little and sometimes still ‘see’ songs play out in sign in my head.
As I was doing research, I found Heather Whitestone’s story very inspiring and helpful. In case you don’t remember she was the first deaf Miss America. She lost her hearing as a toddler due to a high fever, In her autobiography Listening With My Heart, Heather explains what it is like to be deaf and communicate with the hearing world. She also discussed the opposition to speaking by some members of the deaf community which is an issue in Dream A Little Dream.
I enjoyed the opportunity to show a strong character who has adapted well to his handicap, yet is challenged to think about his disaiblity as an adult and wonder what he might have been missing due to not being able to hear. Dream A Little Dream also explores a romantic relationship between Seamus and Madison Walker, who is hearing. It was an interesting novel to write and includes characters from previous books , Look To The Rainbow, Only For You and Just Thinking Of You.
Check out Dream A Little Dream and my other books at www,booksbylynnmurphy.com