#ContemporaryFiction: The Willow Tree

by Elan Carson



The Willow Tree is a heartbreaking coming-of-age book similar to White Oleander and with profound introspection akin to that ofThe Bell Jar.
In this book, Emma must learn to fight for her emotional stability and life after her mother remarries. She engages in a stormy relationship with her abusive step-father, while her mom slips away to depression.

Both book-smart and painfully awkward, she struggles to connect with her peers and eventually finds friends with students who are considered outcasts.
Outside of school, her home life becomes more and more turbulent. The bond between Emma and her mother dwindles to only occasional encounters, while her step-father remains present in her waking life and nightmares.

Fraught with hiding the stress from deep concerns about her friends’ misjudgments, Emma hides the torment of her step-father’s unrelenting sexual abuse. After his sudden suicide, her feelings she developed for him dangerously lead her down her own self-destructive path.



Bio: One of today’s best new authors, it was no stretch of the imagination that Elan Carson would grow up and evolve to be a successful author.
A born creative writer, Elan Carson started crafting short stories at the age of 6. With help from her grandmother who worked as an English teacher, Elan excelled in reading & writing. Though shy in person, and oftentimes too scared to raise her hand in class, she passionately channeled her voice on paper and through her fictional characters. She learned how to use her imagination to a playful advantage.

Elan’s parents knew she would grow up to be a strong writer when she was disqualified from an elementary school writing contest, the judges citing that the story Elan had submitted could not have been written by her.

Disheartened but still passionate, Elan continued to hone her writing skills, eventually testing out different mediums throughout the years. She dabbled in poem-writing, journalism, and songwriting.
By the time she reached high school, she started what would soon become the first draft of The Willow Tree.
It wasn’t until college, and with a stroke of fate that she landed a spot in the completely full Fiction Workshop I course, that Elan began to flesh out the full story of The Willow Tree. With help from her peers and her mentor Patricia Geary, she had finished the first draft of her first book by senior year.

Elan works today as a search engine optimization specialist.

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Jan 19, 2014
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