Ms. Mel Bancroft has written poetry and articles on a wide range of subject matter: self-help, spirituality, marketing, business, family, and relationships. Notably, the poem “Jena Six: Our Strangefruit Is Still Hanging,” emphatically questioning how far African Americans have come, was published in TRIBES Magazine. She is a contributing writer for Healthy News and Regal Magazine, the preeminent online magazine for African American men.
Introducing Debut Memoir: The Melody of My BitterSweet Blues
The Melody of My BitterSweet Blues is a riveting, true story which is narrated through the eyes of a woman who has endured sexual abuse as a child, struggled through coming of age, finding herself in abusive relationships as an adult. Not only is the story told candidly and graphically, revealing the secrets that lurk behind abuse, the narrator takes the reader inside a journey of spiritual healing and unbridled courage through poetic enlightenment and poignant imagery. Listen to the interview with Mel Bancroft on BAN Radio.
What led you to create this book?
Actually it was God-inspired. As someone who has survived several forms of abuse, it has been on my heart for many years to share my strength with others who may still be trying to find their own empowerment.
Who should read The Melody of My BitterSweet Blues and why?
There are several groups, I believe, that can benefit from this book: adult survivors of abuse, victims of spousal abuse, even those who have been perpetrators of abuse who aspire to change how they deal with problems. This book serves as a reminder to those who have suffered from such dysfunction, that they are not alone, and encourages them to seek their own healing.
What issues in today’s society have you addressed in the book?
Many issues such as coming of age, teenage depression and attempted suicide, generational patterns of abuse, as well as drug addiction are covered, along with a range of obstacles that contribute to questioning one’s ability to overcome what appears to be utter hopelessness.
What sets your book apart from other books in your genre?
I’m not familiar with everything that’s published in my genre. However, from what I have noticed about some depictions of abuse is that often we don’t get to see the process of overcoming abuse as closely as we could or the systemic foundation of abuse, such as how families are broken down for generations as a result of the code of silence. These elements are critical to understanding the role everyone plays in allowing abuse to exist. I think my book makes an honest attempt to really focus on that as well as show the methods of therapy that were utilized—the emotional and spiritual mechanics behind the process of healing that the main character underwent to find her way through the pain and out of darkness.
What was the most powerful chapter or scene in the book for you?
There are several, so I’d have to say one of the most powerful scenes is when I realized that my teenage crush had become an extremely abusive man. It was too late, after I had married him, and I nearly died.
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