Netflix's 'Maid' Is Based on a Bestselling Memoir By Stephanie Land

Shannon Raphael - Author

Oct. 4 2021, Published 2:34 p.m. ET

Source: Netflix

Netflix's newest binge-watch worthy series is Maid, a drama that showcases the power of a mother's love.

The 10-episode miniseries follows a single mom named Alex Russell (Margaret Qualley) who, after leaving her boyfriend, Sean Boyd (Nick Robinson), begins working as a housecleaner.

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Alex works tirelessly to create a better situation for herself and for her daughter, Maddy (Rylea Nevaeh Whittet), and to bring them out of homelessness. The compelling plot will keep viewers on edge throughout, and they may be interested to find out that the show is based on a true story.

Source: Netflix
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Is 'Maid' based on a true story?

The harrowing Netflix original series is based on Stephanie Land's 2019 New York Times bestselling memoir, Maid: Hard Work, Low Pay, and a Mother's Will to Survive. The names in the series have been changed.

Like Alex, Stephanie began working as a maid to support herself and her child (who goes by Story) after a tumultuous breakup with an abusive ex in 2008.

Stephanie and Story moved to a homeless shelter for 90 days after her split. The author struggled to find work, which meant that getting a grant for childcare was not an option for her.

As Stephanie notes on her website, the daycare facilities that would accept the aforementioned grant were often only open during weekdays from 9 a.m. until 5 p.m. These restricted hours meant that Stephanie could not continue working in restaurants, like she had been before.

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She then began cleaning houses, and she went on government assistance.

On her website, Stephanie discussed why she decided to pen her memoir.

"In writing MAID, I hoped the book would change the stigmas that surround single mothers, especially those living in poverty," she explained. "The stigmas that say we somehow deserve hardship because of the terrible decisions we made to get us there."

Source: Netflix
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"I hoped people would see how hard we work to make ends meet, and how fiercely we love our kids. How much we struggle to be enough while the government scolds us, telling us we're becoming dependent on things they call handouts, [but] we call means to survive," she added. "I also hope that you’ll begin to notice the millions of workers who invisibly clean up after us for minimum wage."

Where is Stephanie Land now?

In 2014, several years before she published Maid, Stephanie obtained a bachelor's degree in English from the University of Montana. After about a decade of working as a housecleaner, Stephanie began working as a freelancer. She also gave birth to her second child.

In 2015, Stephanie published an essay about her time as a housecleaner on Vox. The popularity of the essay allowed her to get a book agent, and she got a deal with Hachette Books to write a memoir less than a year later.

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The memoir became a smash success, and Stephanie now continues to write and to speak at events about her own experiences.

Outside of her career, Stephanie is married to Tim Faust. The two have four children between them in their blended family.

All 10 episodes of Maid are available to stream on Netflix now.

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