A Memoir by Lisa Vaughn

Lisa was conservatively raised in a Catholic family in no-where middle America, where excitement is scarce and dreams are for sleeping. Little did she know, at age thirteen, she would suddenly find herself on a totally different path.

Through an unlikely chance meeting of a fellow classmate, she's surprisingly mesmerized, almost consumed, to befriend a girl who is obviously from the other side of the tracks...the cool side. Lisa does whatever she has to just to be accepted into this small club of coolness. Little did she realize, she was signing up for a lot more than social status. The two best friends find themselves innocently taking their relationship to a foreign level neither had experienced or saw coming.

A rollercoaster ride littered with choices and challenges Lisa never fathomed facing, especially in no-where middle America. She will find out what she is made of as she faces the consequences and struggles that come along with going against the grain.

Throughout their six year relationship, you will witness a touching story of human nature at its best...and at its worst. Showing just how far the human spirit can be challenged and pushed to a point where your “fight or flight” instincts naturally kick in. Struggling just to survive in a world where you are not like everyone else, but at the same time you really are. The daily struggles - both internal and external - are exhausting, yet necessary in their quest for one simple human need....love.

Finally breaking through all constraints that hold them back, reaching levels of one-ness that few actually obtain in a lifetime with their partner...only to find once they've reached that special place, it's not quite the right fit...for one of them, at least.

This contemporary story, told in the voice of the teen that lived it, will lead the reader through highs and lows, giving insight to the everyday challenges of the socially unaccepted, which will no doubt leave them rooting for the underdog. A true story of human resilience and the power of love...plain and simple.

*Please be advised, this memoir is real, honest, and raw. If you're looking for your typical 'sterilized' read, I'm not your girl - but if you're looking for a read that is written from the heart, certain to impact you on a human level, follow me! Have I got a story for you!

Monday, September 26, 2011

Monday's Mindset of a Hippie-Chick: Hail the Underdog!

Here's this weeks glimpse inside my somewhat quirky mind... 

I noticed something about myself last week while on my typical morning bike ride. First off, I'm a lucky gal - I live near the gulf coast in SW Florida, so most of my bike routes include following the gorgeous shoreline along the key of my choosing. But please note, I do not live out there -  that area is reserved for a population much wealthier than I, in fact Stephen King has a house or two on one particular key. (Yes, I have had the honor of running into him on his morning walks, occasional bike ride, and even at the grocery store where he graciously signed a book for me!  But that's a story for another day!)

Anyhoo, as I ride along the winding roads that hug the shoreline, surrounded by mansions that make you wonder, Exactly what DO these people do for a living?!, I realized the houses that always seem to catch my eye time after time are the unassuming, modest homes that almost seem to be swallowed by their monstrous neighbors. Most  disheveled and  in need of maintenance and repairs - I picture how I could fix them up (on a budget) and make them shine, regardless of their inferior size. In fact, I always say if I ever won the lotto, I would rather purchase a home out there 'in need' than one 'newly constructed and fairy-tale perfect'. Oddly, I find myself almost feeling sorry for the houses.  And that leads me to my Mindset Of The Week: The Underdog! 

If you've read my memoir, you know I am a strong advocate for the underdog, as I am one myself at times. The weak, the misunderstood, the forgotten, the dismissed - all get my attention and pull at my heartstrings. Of course people (and animals) that fit this category get a special pass from me - I'm more willing to help, more willing to understand. But even weirder,  inanimate objects have made my list too - just like those houses on the key. This is nothing new for me, in fact, I do believe I was born with this special 'quirk'. Let me share an excerpt from my book, The Gifted Ones, to show you exactly what I mean.

Set up: My mother and I are shopping for school dresses, she is questioning my choices, but I stick to my guns, swearing I like the dresses, promising to wear them.

 I called them my “fat dresses” and refused to be seen in them. My mother had a conniption, questioning why I bought dresses that I obviously did not like, and had no intentions of wearing. There was no denying, they really were the ugliest dresses on the planet! The truth was, however, I felt sorry for them. Knowing how ugly they were, and how nobody would ever want or love them. Unable to leave them on the rack, to be passed by and ostracized, I sacrificed my wardrobe to give them a home. My empathy for the clothes was not counter- felt by my mother, however, as that absurd reasoning certainly did not fly with her, which resulted in constant fighting over those stupid clothes. Regardless, I hardly wore them but maybe a few times that year, mainly out of guilt for their feelings, not hers. Empathy, one of the main qualities I had developed early, had made me, at times, an overly sensitive kid - an easy target for ridicule. But not from my peers as you would expect, no, my main source of ridicule would come from my own mother.

I am well aware not everyone holds this 'empathy gene', as I call it. Obviously my mother did not. But I embrace my strange, somewhat overly sensitive quirk. I think it allows me to see the world at a slightly different angle than most, which certainly helped me through some tough years, and continues to guide me through my journey of self-discovery.  Maybe clothes and houses do not have feelings...but what if they did? I know the people connected to them sure do. My favorite line from the movie 'Indecent Proposal' is Woody Harrelson explaining to his architecture class that "even a brick wants to be something". And that's how I see the world - we all want to be something - to be heard, to be seen, to be accepted. And who am I to stand in the way of that? 

So hug an underdog today - with your patience, love, and understanding - after all, it takes all of us to make the world go 'round, and who's to say who the underdogs really are? ***

~If you enjoy peering into my world of wackiness, perhaps you would enjoy my memoir. Available on Amazon and Smashwords - ebooks and print ~ links above.  


  1. Go underdogs! Mansions are nice to look at, but I have no idea what I would do with one. Too many rooms.

  2. I don't think you're wacky at all. I tend to want to champion the cause of anybody I think belongs in the underdog camp. Of course, this trait comes out big time during movies, the few times I actually watch them.


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