We Were Smiths: A Memoir
In my memoir, We Were Smiths: A Memoir, I reveal the consequences of leaving the Mormon Church as a descendant of the Joseph Smith family, the Mormon Church founder and prophet. The repercussions of apostasy are immense; not only the loss of my family, community, and culture but my very sense of self as special, singled out and honored for my heritage. I'm a Smith. It is at the very fabric of my being.
In throwing off the shackles of the Mormon Churchs' authority to define my existence and give meaning to the world, I rejected outright any possibility of the reality of God. We Were Smiths: A Memoir chronicles the path I took in abandoning the Mormon Church, fleeing to Manhattan, sight unseen, only to find that it was not so simple to jettison God, childhood faith, family beliefs, and my haunting family legacy.
Threaded throughout my story is the warning siren of my sister's rebellion from the family and faith, as well. While close allies in our family of eleven, we rebelled in contrasting ways but remained close despite our divergent lifestyles. My sister's path took her San Francisco, singing in dive bars, looking for love in a Hell's Angel's posse, quickly spiraling downward into self-sabotage and tragedy.
Although knocked off my pedestal as the “golden child" of the family when I left the faith, I find my footing in NYC, still pursuing outside success and validation. I get an MBA at NYU and launch a career in the emerging high tech world, avoiding the traps of love and commitment, but trying to outrun my demons in the raucous party scene at Studio 54 at night.
Our rejection of the faith cracked open the fragile façade of our family’s perfection and creates an irreparable schism between believers and heretics—including my parents-- who eventually divorce in the fallout. In the aftermath, some family members adhere rigidly to the Church, while others search for a new truth in a polygamous outpost or living off the grid in rural Mexico. The family scatters both geographically and emotionally, casualties of a legacy that requires secrets and deception to survive.
I have obtained literary agent representation with Don Fehr, Senior Vice President at Trident Media in NYC. I hope to finish my revisions and complete We Were Smiths: A Memoir sometime in 2020