Ask the Author (#4)

“How hard was it to write dialogue in your book and how did you accomplish it?” -Virginia, age 15

Wow, I really love this question!!!  :)  Thank you, Virginia!

I was thirteen when I wrote St. Philomena’s story.  My family had urged me for years to write about St. Philomena, but I put them off for a long time.  Finally, I gave in and told them I would write it when I was thirteen, the same age St. Philomena was when she was martyred.  Because I was the same age as St. Philomena, it was easier to write from the perspective of a teen girl.


I think I was about 10 when this was taken with my picture of St. Philomena from her shrine in Italy.

Having a personal relationship with St. Philomena helped a lot.  When I was younger and I would pray to her, sometimes I could hear her reply in my heart.  Reading the account of her life that she gave to Sr. Lucia in the 1800’s also helped me see from her point of view.

I know that St. Philomena had to be pretty spunky, considering all she did in standing up to her parents and Emperor Diocletian.  I tried to make that spunkiness come through in her words, thoughts, and actions.  It helped that I’m a bit stubborn myself!  :)

Writing St. Philomena’s words was a lot of fun (unlike all the research!).  She definitely prompted me along at times.  It sort of felt like she was just sitting with me over a cup of coffee and telling me her story while I typed.  I hope that it reads like she is talking to you, because I wanted those who read it to feel the same way that I felt when writing her story.  I always refer to her as my “little buddy” and I just tried to write the words of the girl that I’ve gotten to know and love!

Thanks for your question!  If you’d like to submit a question and get an answer, please click here!

-Courtney C. Filomena Lee


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