My first novel, Exile Child, is an historical fiction novel, which is the same genre as my latest book, Soul Force. Therefore, I can confidently say I am drawn to powerful, inspiring stories of heroic women. I strongly believe that women’s historical dramas are a vital platform to showcase women’s belief in themselves, not only in our modern society but also from history. Despite women’s past oppression and current challenges they face as a writer, we have no difficulty in managing to hold on to life’s most treasured emotion - hope.
When I began my journey as an historical fiction writer, I was blissfully unaware of the prejudice that awaited me. I was told – in no uncertain terms – that as a white female writer, I had no credibility to write the life stories of a black or Indian woman. Publishers in South Africa shied away from my first novel, Exile Child, stating that South Africa was politically unstable at the time.
The phenomenal international success of my first novel, Exile Child, has proven – beyond doubt – that there are zero prerequisites for a female writer in our modern society. As women, we are able and justified, to write about whatever intrigues us, or stirs us to inspire other women. I believe that women’s true-life stories must be brought to light as they are universal in theme, therefore the world will learn and understand the plight and courage that our fellow heroines of history have shown.
My Journey Continues
My latest novel, Soul Force, accurately tracks the life of a young Indian girl who takes part in Gandhi’s South African Satyagraha during 1913, and although this story is set in the early 1900’s I would recommend anyone reading this incredible life story to inspire, stir acknowledgement and create fearless women in today’s modern world. Soul Force conveys a very important social message, especially for the youth all around the world. Soul Force will inspire the world to ‘push’ on despite difficulty and/or oppression.
In our modern social media age, Soul Force has a distinct power to influence women, and in fact, all people in need of encouragement. Soul Force is a ‘true’ story so it will undoubtedly motivate and convey hope for all for a better life. Although Soul Force is set in South Africa during the early 1900’s, this young woman’s story is universal and extremely relevant in today’s modern world. This is the story of one girl’s indomitable strength to dedicate her life to fighting injustice of a colonial regime and continued struggle against the Asiatic Laws.
My dream is to be an am ambassador of historical life stories that feature incredible life lessons and bravery of women and to inspire our youth to take up their desire to write and have the courage it takes to pen their thoughts, dreams and stories.
Suzanne Franco is a South African author based in Johannesburg and after 20 years of democracy she remains inspired by the commitment of the people of the “Rainbow Nation” to make South Africa a better place for all. Uncovering forgotten stories within Southern Africa intrigues her and historical novels provide a platform for her story telling.