Author Sue William Silverman BWS Forum Guest in August!
Ask Sue questions beginning August 1, 2009

A Conversation about Writing and Publishing with Sue William Silverman

Ladies, we should feel honored to have Sue with us for the Month of August. I've read three of her four books and had a hard time putting down every single one of them. She captures your attention on the first pages of her books.


I was born in Washington, D. C., where my father was a high government official in the Truman administration. Later, we moved to the West Indies where he was president of a bank. He was also a child molester. The juxtaposition of this double life—seemingly perfect in public, dark and scary in private—is what I write about in my memoir, Because I Remember Terror, Father, I Remember You. In my second memoir, Love Sick: One Woman's Journey Through Sexual Addiction, I show how I replicated this double life as an adult. In public, all seemed fine—I attended Boston University, worked on Capitol Hill, was married. But this image was a mask that hid my secret world of sexual encounters with dangerous men, a shadowy life of obsession.

From about 1980 to 1992, I tried to tell my story as fiction. Looking back, I realize that the five or six (unpublished) novels I wrote during this time lacked an authentic voice. It was my therapist, ironically, who finally suggested I write my own story. At first I resisted. I had never considered nonfiction and thought I had nothing to say about myself. Finally, just to humor him (I told myself), I acquiesced, even though I believed I'd only be able to write a paragraph at the most. Maybe a page. The moment I began to write "Terror, Father," however, I felt as if I'd just learned to speak, that I heard my real voice for the first time. I completed the manuscript in three months. And even though it took much longer to write Love Sick, I was finally writing what I knew. One thing I most love about writing memoirs, is that they provide me the opportunity to meet many courageous women. In fact, the responses that mean the most to me come in whispered phone calls and handwritten notes from my readers who thank me for telling their stories, too.

Now, Fearless Confessions: A Writer's Guide to Memoir, I share my experiences learning how to write, with the hope it'll help and encourage you to tell your story, too.

For more information about the book, click on the title on the right-hand column.


Do you like to journal, or are you interested in writing your story? If so, please join Sue William Silverman in our forum community during the month of August where she will meet us on a regular basis to answer all our questions about writing.

Her most recent book Fearless Confessions: A Writer's Guide to Memoir, has led me to believe she is the queen of memoir wiring. Her expansive knowledge on the subject will jazz you to write your story with guidance, confidence and know-how. Sue is also the author of two memoirs. Because I Remember Terror, Father, I Remember You, won the Association of Writers and Writing Programs Award Series in Creative Nonfiction. Her memoir, Love Sick: One Woman's Journey Through Sexual Addiction, was made into a Lifetime TV Original Movie. Her poetry collection is Hieroglyphics in Neon.

As a professional speaker and writer, Sue has appeared on programs such as The View, Anderson Cooper 360 on CNN; a John Stossel Special on ABC-TV; CNN-Headline News; the Montel Williams Show; the Ricki Lake Show; the Morning Show with Mike and Juliet; and both the U. S. and Canadian Discovery Channels. She was also featured in an episode of "The Secret Lives of Women" on WE-TV.

Sue teaches in the low-residency MFA in Writing Program at Vermont College of Fine Arts.

Be sure to stop by and join the conversation.
Founder of Boomer Women Speak and the National Association of Baby Boomer Women.

Edited by Dotsie (07/20/09 04:33 PM)
Founder Emeritus of Boomer Women Speak and the National Association of Baby Boomer Women.