Salina native Courtney Miller, recently authored a compelling book “Why I Didn’t Leave” describing her journey from surviving abuse to finding hope and healing. In an exclusive interview in conjunction with her book signing event hosted by local bookstore Red Fern Booksellers, Courtney opens up about her inspiration, message, and family support.
When asked if she always aspired to be an author, Courtney candidly admits, "No. I never thought I was going to write a book until the Lord put it on my heart. It was an itch I had to scratch." As a catalyst for her writing journey, she credits a class she took emphasizing the idea that everyone has “at least one book in them.” She decided to delve into the painful subject of abuse because she didn't want others to endure what she had experienced. "I don't want people to go through what I went through. I don't want others to follow the same mistakes," she shares.
Courtney's book aims to offer hope and healing to survivors of abuse. "In anything in life that you've gone through, specifically relationships, there is hope and healing within you," she explains empathetically. Her goal is to empower readers to invest in themselves, break free from abusive relationships, and reclaim what was stolen from them. "The devil only comes to steal, kill, and destroy, and we don't realize how much is stolen from us in an abusive relationship," she asserts.
Acknowledging her family's reaction to her book, Courtney said her husband stands as her biggest supporter, making the book possible by handling many family responsibilities. Despite the emotional challenges of reading about her experiences, her mother expressed pride in her daughter's bravery. Her father and sister have also been instrumental in promoting her book, highlighting the importance of families being educated on handling situations like hers.
Although Courtney is open to writing more, she emphasizes that any future projects will depend on divine inspiration. "If the Lord drops this in my lap, then I will do it," she states. Meanwhile, she encourages survivors of domestic violence to seek help from local churches or organizations.
Courtney's book “Why I Didn’t Leave” is available at Red Fern Booksellers and on Amazon. Additionally, she will be a guest speaker on Monday, February 12th at Kansas Wesleyan’s Lunch n Learn at 12:15 pm in Peters Science Hall 201, and at Monday Night Alive at Kansas Wesleyan’s UUMC Sanctuary at 8:00 pm, offering further insights into her journey and message of hope.
Photos of Courtney's book signing event by Jarah Cooper: