Akin to the Truth is Paige Strickland’s memoir about her adoption. In 1961, adoption was still one of those private and taboo topics. Not much identifying information was provided for adoptive families or for birth parents by the agencies. In Ohio, records were sealed forever. Adoptees and birth mothers were supposed to be thankful for the adoptive family and never look back. Adoptive parents thought their deal was signed and sealed.
As a child and teenager, growing up adopted was like a Scarlet Letter "A" if anyone ever found out the truth. At least, that's the way author, Paige Strickland felt as she muddled through social situations and other interpersonal relations. She always loved her adoptive family, but realized she wanted not just more, but what other "regular born" people had: real roots, accurate health history and authentic family lore. She wanted freedom from shame, more dignity, authenticity and a full identity.
Then, through random chance, a local TV talk show in 1987 revealed that certain records were open if you were born before 1964 in the state of Ohio, and the author's life would never be the same after that program.
During her quest, (pre computer), for her identity, her adoptive father struggled with his own self image and sense of belonging, so both father and daughter embarked on separate and unique parallel missions to find what was missing in their lives.
This is the story of how being adopted affected Paige growing up in the 1960s, 70s and early 80s. It shows how one adoptee has embraced and learned to view family more globally. She tells the saga of a loving but dysfunctional family of both blood and choice, trying to cope with typical and not so typical life alterations during the decades of social revolution and free love. She learns that the most fascinating family stories are discovered by those passionate enough to question and search.
Paperback: 256 Pages
Publisher: Idealized Apps, LLC (September 8, 2013)
Twitter Hashtag: #AkinStrickland
Akin to the Truth is available as an e-book at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and IndieBound.
Book Giveaway Contest:
To win a copy of Akin to the Truth, please enter using the Rafflecopter form at the bottom of this post. The giveaway contest closes this Friday, August 8th at 12:00 AM EST. We will announce the winner the same day in the Rafflecopter widget. Good luck!
About the Author:
Paige Adams Strickland, a teacher and writer from Cincinnati, Ohio, is married with two daughters. Her first book, Akin to the Truth: A Memoir of Adoption and Identity, is about growing up in the 1960s-80s (Baby-Scoop Era) and searching for her first identity. It is also the story of her adoptive family and in particular her father’s struggles to figure out his place in the world while Paige strives to find hers. After hours she enjoys family and friends, pets, reading, Zumba ™ Fitness, gardening and baseball. Visit her website at http://www.akintothetruth.com/.
----- Interview by Crystal J. Otto
WOW: Paige, Thank you for taking time for a WOW tour. It has been such a pleasure reading your story and sharing it with other. I am always inspired by the courage of the author of a memoir. Speaking of inspiration, who inspired your love of writing and how did they inspire you?
Paige: I was inspired by grade school teachers who praised my work and gave me writing opportunities. I was also inspired by reading Anne Frank’s diary and encouraged by my junior year creative writing teacher in high school. He had lots of great prompts and assignments.
WOW: I’m sure your teacher greatly appreciates the credit; he’s probably tickled to know he played a hand in Akin to the Truth. I’ve found many of my writing friends to be inspirational; my writer’s group is my biggest support. How do you feel about writer's groups and book clubs and why?
Paige: Every writer should have a good writers’ group or two. I have a local one, which meets once a month. I am also a part of a few on-line groups. I wish I had time to join a book club and be consistent as a reader. However, I am learning to network with other local book clubs for the purpose of marketing my book.
WOW: Well, it never hurts to network with others! Now onto a less flowery topic...the dreaded writers block. How do you overcome that?
Paige: My block comes from not having enough time to focus and do it. It’s rare that I cannot write. The challenge for me is time and distractions. I write late at night when most other people are asleep, and that usually does the trick. I used to work with a guy who said he would isolate himself from his family and friends for a few days and write like mad, but he paid a high price to do that. I can’t do that. Good thing I’m a night owl!
WOW: I don’t think isolation would work well for many of us. Who turned you onto journaling?
Paige: See Question number 1. Reading/studying The Diary Of a Young Girl in 5th-6th grade was my first exposure to journaling. I kept a journal/diary from 6th grade through college. After graduation, life got too hectic, and I didn’t have time to journal or write anything that wasn’t school/teaching-related. I journaled with each pregnancy but couldn’t stick with it while kids were small. I got back to it after they were older and in school. One of my birth cousins, whom I found while doing my family search, is also a writer. That helped me get back into writing! Part of the reason I got back into writing was because of finding her. She and her husband started up a local writing group, and then the book began to unfold!
WOW: Thank goodness for your birth cousin!
Did you ever have that moment when you said "pinch me" because you couldn't believe you were publishing your story?
Paige: It was pretty amazing the day my proof copies came and when that first box of “real” books arrived! I’ll also never forget hitting the “Yes” button at Amazon Kindle and Apple iBooks when my husband helped me upload the ebook versions! The next phase is the marketing phase. Marketing will be a forever process as long as I want to sell books. There’s always more to learn!
WOW: There certainly many differing opinions and schools of thought about selling books; you’re right there’s always more to learn!
How did your family feel about your publishing Akin to the Truth?
Paige: My birth family has been very supportive of Akin to the Truth. My adoptive family doesn’t seem to be interested in either reading or promoting it. They may be concerned that I presented them in a negative light, which I didn’t really do if you read the whole story. My husband and kids have been awesome. My husband helped with all the technological details, (his talent!). My daughters, as teens and young adults gave me a lot of input about what they like to read in a story and what they think young adult readers might appreciate and relate to most.
WOW: It sounds like Akin to the Truth certainly is a family adventure!
What's next for you?
Paige: My next book project will probably be about my experiences as a teacher, tutor and classroom aide. I still work in these fields, so that story unfolds a little more, each day I report to school. It’ll be a while before that one is finished, but I suspect that all my writings about my career will become a book one day.
WOW: What do you hope readers "get" out of reading Akin to the Truth? What did you intend the take away to be?
Paige: Akin to the Truth: A Memoir of Adoption and Identity explains what it felt like to be an adopted kid and young adult in the 1960s-80s, during a time when most adoptions were still sealed, secretive and rather closeted. The general attitudes regarding adoption made me (and other adoption-triad people from my era) feel shameful, guilty and separated. It affected me socially, spiritually and even professionally because feeling accepted and taken seriously were huge challenges for someone who didn’t really know their complete identity. I want readers to understand this issue and to know how I overcame it. I’m not blaming anyone in particular. It was how society was then.
WOW: I love that you’re not playing the victim—it’s definitely inspirational! Any words of advice for other up and coming authors/memoirists?
Paige: Keep writing. Don’t be afraid of what other people might think of your story. Writing can be therapeutic, however if your writing goals become more than just an urge to write, and your project grows to be a book you want to publish, you should read other memoirs by authors who dealt with similar topics to learn about style and the art of story-telling for the reading public. Know who your reading audience might be and design your story around your possible readers.
WOW: Awesome insight and advice Paige; thank you so much for allowing WOW! to be part of your journey!
----------Blog Tour Dates
Monday, August 4 (today) @ The Muffin
Stop by for an interview and book giveaway!
Tuesday, August 5th @ Create Write Now
Paige Strickland writes a guest post for Create Write Now and tells us about her writing process in a guest post titled: "Getting it Write" and how it helped her develop her adoption memoir Akin to the Truth.
Thursday, August 7th @ Words, Crazy Words
Tara Meissner reviews Paige Strickland's adoption memoir, Akin to the Truth and offers a giveaway to one lucky reader!
Friday, August 8th @ Sierra Dawn, Write On
Sierra Dawn reviews Paige Strickland's adoption memoir, Akin to the Truth. Find out what Sierra thinks of this fabulous memoir and see if you are the winner of her giveaway (for your very own ebook copy of Strickland's book)!
Monday, August 11th @ Choices
Paige Strickland and her memoir Akin to the Truth make a stop at Choices with Madeline Sharples and Paige shares her thoughts about "Child Development."
Tuesday, August 12th @ The Lit Ladies
The Lit Ladies interview Paige Strickland and readers can find out more about Paige's adoption memoir, Akin to the Truth.
Wednesday, August 13th @ I’d So Rather be Reading
Join Paige Strickland as she writes a riveting Guest Post about "Pets" & offers a Giveaway of her memoir, Akin to the Truth.
Thursday, August 16th @ Nutshell Newsletter Press
Join Sheila Gazlay as she reviews the adoption memoir Akin to the Truth written by Paige Strickland.
Monday, August 18th @ Sioux’s Page
Sioux reviews Akin to the Truth, the highly recommended adoption memoir by Paige Strickland. Sioux is also offering a giveaway for one lucky reader!
Tuesday, August 19th @ Romance Junkies
Today's interview at Romance Junkies gives us a glimpse into the writing life of Paige Strickland and her adoption memoir, Akin to the Truth. This is a "can't miss" blog stop!
Monday, August 25th @ Lori Schafer
Join Lori Schafer as she reviews Paige Strickland's adoption memoir, Akin to the Truth.
Tuesday, August 26th @ Selling Books
Check out the interview today at Selling Books and find out about today's spotlight author, Paige Strickland and her adoption memoir, Akin to the Truth.
Wednesday, August 27th @ Words by Webb
Join Jodi Webb as she interviews Paige Strickland about the 5 W's and learn more about Paige's memoir, Akin to the Truth.
Monday, September 1st @ Blue House Review
Lauren reviews the moving and expertly written adoption memoir Akin to the Truth written by Paige Strickland. Lauren has also been given a copy to giveaway to readers; don't miss this fabulous WOW! blog stop!
Monday, September 1st @ Steph the Bookworm
Steph the Bookworm offers a Review & Giveaway for the moving adoption memoir Akin to the Truth by Paige Strickland!
Thursday, August 28th @ Memory Writer’s Network
Jerry Waxler interviews Paige Strickland to learn more about her and her memoir Akin to the Truth.
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