Beauty Pill ~ Ruled By The System

A hard-luck Oregon TV weather girl on the verge of being fired takes one last desperate shot at redemption when she joins the clinical trial for a miracle drug.

As Cathy participates in the clinical trial, she receives a twice-weekly dosage and attends a stagecraft workshop, intended to ‘make the brain malleable’ for the drug to work. Her trajectory at the TV station rises, and she’s called to interview at a bigger Portland station.

Cathy Macallan’s social world centers on her workplace, Southern Oregon television station KHRM-TV. At 27, she’s been conned by her narcissist mother to abandon a good job to move home to Ashland and help with Mother’s fictitious illness. Cathy’s main thing is to get a promotion at work so she can move out, but Mother’s illness, and her explanations for losing her house, are weird and sticky.

Anchored in achieving success by telling her viewers what is true, Cathy’s core difficulty is to balance Mother’s criticism with the self-approval she feels from her secret identity, an imaginary superheroine she invented at age 8 and calls Nova Girl. Cathy never stops seeking enlightenment… from her constant investigations, from Nova Girl, from her struggle toward self-realization and her openness for what wisdom might arise.

Helped by her least-likely friend, a cameraman at the station, Cathy recognizes that it might be Nova Girl who holds the answer; Nova Girl whispers a logical conundrum and Cathy knows she alone must solve the puzzle to learn the truth. Or invent it.

Beauty Pill is women’s literary fiction with a brain, a heart,
and a double mystery, targeted at the cruelest fiction
perpetrated on American women, the Beauty Queen.