Kelly Norman always dreamt of writing a novel, just like this one, for as long as she can remember. The fact that you are reading this biography proves that she has succeeded. Way to go, Kelly!
Growing up, Kelly found joy and comfort between the pages of a fantasy novel, often at times when she really should have been studying. Luckily for her, she also loved writing, which, incidentally, turned out to be useful when her English assessment was due the following day.
Kelly’s passion for the written word has crossed her path in every way possible. At home, her bookcases are crammed with all kinds of books.
From cooking books (Italian is her favourite!) to mystery novels (the bad guy is always who she least expects. Always.) to comic books (yes, she is a self-confessed Marvel fanatic!), Kelly loves them all.
Many years ago, Kelly was given the opportunity to work in a high school library, surrounded by hundreds of wonderful books, and has never looked back. She discovered that promoting a life-long love of reading to children was the most rewarding job she could ever imagine, so she plans on being a school librarian for many more years to come.
Not so long ago, Kelly followed her best friend’s advice to pursue her dream of writing her very own book. This definitely didn’t come easy; in fact, it was a lot trickier than she ever imagined, but Kelly never gave up. Did we mention that Kelly is also really stubborn and persistent? Sometimes that can definitely be a good thing!
Understanding Molly is Kelly’s first novel. Through writing it, she realised that she had a wonderful opportunity to give a voice to those who sometimes struggle to find their own. She believes that books have the power to create change, and, if her novel can change even one person’s perceptions, then Kelly feels that she has achieved that goal.
Kelly lives in sunny Brisbane, with her wonderful husband and five beautiful children. She also has the world’s sweetest dog, by the name of Mia and a quick-tempered cat named Ally.
What’s it feel like?
Imagine being trapped on a swing during a windstorm. Your anger and frustration propels you back and forth. Faster and faster. You want to get off, but you’re not strong enough, big enough or quick enough. Holding on becomes impossible, draining you of any energy you have left.
Somewhere in the distance, you can hear people yelling at you. They’re demanding that you get down. But how can you stop when your feet can’t touch the ground?
It eventually becomes too much. So, you stop fighting. You let the swing take control and wait for the storm to pass. Most of the time you don’t even remember how or why it happened.
Feeling guilty and ashamed, you sit there and think about ways to try and avoid it next time. Were there any warnings? Why did you climb up on the swing in the first place? What would you do differently? All of this swirls around in your head, but reflection seems kinda useless.
Because, as hard as you try, you can’t control what happens.
“Are they ready yet? Can’t you see I’m literally dying from starvation here?”
The question leaves me sounding more like a whining puppy rather than a hungry kid waiting for breakfast. Everyone knows I don’t handle hunger well.
The intoxicating smell of pancakes and syrup fills the kitchen, making my mouth water in anticipation and my stomach grumble so much it hurts.
“Mum! How long?” I plead, cradling my stomach.
“Yes, alright, they’re coming Molly,” exclaims Mum. “I’m going as fast as—”
An ear-piercing scream escapes my body and cuts her off. My hunger, annoyance and impatience has created its own recipe for breakfast.
The deafening sound of the scalding hot frying pan crashing to the floor snaps me back to reality. Half-cooked pancake batter splatters between us—an unfortunate casualty of sending Mum into a state of instant shock.
She looks at me horrified. I look at the pancakes-to-be spread across the tiles, wondering if they’re still edible.
One thing is for sure. This is not the start to the last day of holidays that either of us had hoped for.
Tomorrow will be my first day of Year 6, my final year of primary school. It also happens to be the start of the 30-day countdown to my birthday.
My dad has referred to this milestone as ‘the dawn of the awkward stage’… whatever that’s supposed to mean. I should probably take a moment to pause and fill in some blanks for you.
My name is Molly Jenkins, and I am nearly eleven years old. I’m not overly smart or a sporting superstar, and, when it comes to the social ladder,
I like to think that I am somewhere around halfway up. Not that this bothers me too much as the concept of fitting in has never been high on my priority list.
The most interesting thing about my life is that I am a twin. My brother Michael was born six minutes before me and never lets me forget it. I actually love being a twin, it’s something that sets us apart from everyone else, our own little exclusive club. I just wish Michael and I weren’t so opposite.
My family is huge, and I’m stuck right in the middle. I live with my dad Nick, my step-mum Katie (who I call ‘Mum’), my older stepbrother James and younger sisters Amelia and Maddison. Before you ask, being a twin doesn’t give you superpowers. Michael and I can’t talk to each other telepathically and, if he stubs his toe, I don’t feel it. I’ve been asked that so many times, but people are always super disappointed when I tell them the truth.
Being a part of such a large family has advantages and disadvantages. On the one hand, it’s nice to always have people around. You never get lonely when there are four other kids in the house. You can be sure that at least one person will be doing something remotely interesting at any given moment. On the other hand, my alone time has become almost non-existent. I don’t even have a bedroom to call my own. I have to share with my stepsister, Amelia. She’s six and super annoying, copying everything I say and do. My parents tell me I should take it as a compliment. But it drives me crazy.
Oh, and as you’ve probably already worked out, living my life in the “green zone” doesn’t come easy to me. Having ADHD and ODD (which stands for Oppositional Defiance Disorder), makes sure of that. Basically, it just means that I have trouble concentrating, and I tend to lose my cool a lot quicker than other kids my age. No big deal. As long as everything in my life is running smoothly, and no one makes me cranky, you wouldn’t even be able to tell. I’m just an average kid in most ways.