Denise Wallace, author of upcoming true crime original DADDY’S LITTLE SECRET, with be on True Crime Uncensored with host Burl Barer on Saturday, July 16th, at 2pm PST. Denise will be discussing her debut true crime book, which will be released by WildBlue Press on July 26th, 2016. DADDY’S LITTLE SECRET: A Daughter’s Quest To Solve Her Father’s Brutal Murder details Denise’s struggle with finding out about her father’s secret life when detectives assigned to the case persuaded her to assist them in the capture of her father’s killer. Tune in to the interview here: http://truecrimeuncensored.com/
From the author: Somewhere in my closet there is a sketch of my father and I do not know where it came from. My oldest daughter, Marissa’s high school sweetheart was an artist. Perhaps he sketched the drawing of my dad from an old photograph; I never asked who drew it. Instead, I just pushed it toward the back of the closet to gather dust.
A decade went by before I came across the sketch again one day while rummaging through the closet. As soon as I realized that it was a drawing of my father, I quickly turned away. Who was this man? I loved him so much, yet it occurred to me that I had no idea who he really was. Why couldn’t I look at his face?
Once I had written the first draft of my book, I decided to take a novel rewriting class at UCLA. In their course catalog, I came across the instructor Dan Fante, who was also an author. His motto was “If you like your prose vodka-soaked, soulful, and bleeding on the page, then Fante is your man.” I knew right then that Dan would be the perfect instructor for my book, and I was right. He loved the seediness of my story and was fascinated with my father’s character. The fact that my father was an alcoholic only made him more endearing to Dan. The rewrite was going well.I realized that I could not keep pushing my father out of my mind. What else was I not dealing with in my life if I could not even look at a picture? I decided then and there that I was going to dig up my father’s past and learn who he really was. Then I would write a book about him, and about how he died … his murder. I would order the court transcripts from the trial of his killer, but only after I had exhausted all of my memories with my father first. He had a larger-than-life personality and I wanted people to know the father I knew. Only then would I seek to uncover the father I did not know.
Then came the night that I brought in the chapter about the gay cruising park. There were fundamental problems with the chapter, mainly because I had no idea that the park my father frequented was a pick-up place for gays. This was soon explained to me by a fellow writer in the class, who quickly saw through the censored testimony of one of the witnesses at the trial. The witness had also frequented the park, but claimed he went there to “listen to the planes land on his scanner.” My classmate was not buying the man’s story. Suddenly I found myself having to immerse myself in the world of the gay man, which was definitely new to me. I was by no means naïve to the world of drugs and alcohol, but gay men were new territory. It was there that I discovered who my father really was. Only then could I look at his sketch and not turn away.