Every issue, IN presents INside Authors, a look at authors from around the world who have significantly caught our attention and deserve a little space and recognition. The following two authors are this month's choices, based on the heat arising from their corners. Our hope is to provide a glimpse, a snapshot, an overview of some of the finest writers of our time making waves both tidal and ripple.
Bob Jamison, Nonfiction Religious Author
Background INfo: Over the years of my ministry, I have learned that God gives us our passions. One of my passions is helping the poor and needy through writing. I lost my excuse for not writing a book when, at age 71, in mid-2003, my wife and I left Corpus Christi and my ministry. We moved to the beautiful Texas hill country outside the town of Bandera, and I faced the choice of buying a rocking chair or starting to write. I chose the latter with the desire to write nonfiction interpretation of scripture. I first wrote a short book for practice called Viewing Heaven to see if I could write a book. Then, in 2004, I began in earnest writing the book What Was John Thinking? published by WordWright.biz.
INfluences: My older sister encouraged me in all my undertakings. Several months before she went to be with the Lord in 1989, I wrote her an encouraging letter every week from revelation I received from the Gospel of John, two messages per chapter. I kept a copy of these letters, which formed the basis of my book, What Was John Thinking? Then in 1990 a fellow elder in my church decided to publish a quarterly pamphlet and asked me to write a contributing article for each issue. I agreed, titled my article Our God Cares, and made each article a testimony of how God has cared for me in my Christian walk. To my surprise, these testimonies then fit the messages in my book, and therefore became a part of each chapter. The pastor of that church and others told me I had the gift of writing.
Advice: Find your passion! Address your true feelings and write about what fills your heart with a burning desire. I found my passion in helping the poor and needy and helping them find Christ. Since my book addresses both of these issues, I worked hard to write and market it. Passion should be your motivation.
Internet Presence: I have an email address, but that is all. I have had offers to set up a web page, but no action to follow the offer; so I haven’t worried about it.
The Future: I plan to write two sequels to What Was John Thinking? I don’t believe a rocking chair is in my near future!
What Was John Thinking? WordWright, 2006
Constance Wimberley, Children's Book Author
Background INfo: I was born and raised in the small town of Melbourne Beach Florida. As one of five children I learned very quickly to go after what I wanted. I was a bit of a tomboy growing up and still am. I met my husband Dan while in high school and married him shortly after graduating. We moved to Texas in the early 80s, and ended up settling in the town of Spring where we raised our three children.
Even though I was primarily a stay at home Mom, I managed to find time to earn a black belt in Shotokan Karate. I even learned to ride my own motorcycle and have enjoyed it. I have always loved a good challenge; but how I discovered writing still amazes me.
My last child had just moved out of the house. Like most parents, at first I was really happy to get my house and privacy back, but that soon went away. I started thinking about what I was going to do with myself. But what could I do?
I had taken a few courses at the local community college and had really enjoyed a writing class. I thought that I might try writing something for a contest. I sat down to my computer and wrote a children’s story in rhyme entitled Grandma Rides A Harley.
After a lot of thought, I managed to get up the courage to let members of my family read it. Once I passed their test I enlisted my mother to illustrate the book, this was what I needed to complete the story. With my words and my mother’s illustrations, my first children’s book was born. Strange how some things come about.
INfluences: One of my all time favorite movies is The Wizard Of Oz. It captivated me. Things were not as they appeared. Dorothy had to see things differently, as if she had new eyes. I think that is why I enjoy writing for children; they see things through new eyes. Watching my granddaughter discover something new truly inspires me to write. The joy she expresses when she finally gets the right shape in the right hole and it drops in the ball. I could watch her for hours.
Advice: If you think it, you can achieve it. Don’t let the fear of failure stop you from going after your dreams. You are only a failure if you never try. All these are clichés but true.
Internet Presence: I currently have a website: www.grandmaridesaharley.com. I am at the beginning stages of my writing career and am a big believer in the Internet and the amount of business it can bring you. I expect my website to change and grow as I do.
The Future: My plans for the future are to continue to write. I have two other children’s books I would like to see published and am currently working on my first chapter book for pre-teens. This is a part of my life that came unexpected, and I want to take it as far as I can. I am enjoying the path that I am on, and I hope my books bring joy to all who read them.
Grandma Rides A Harley, WordWright, 2006
Penelope Jensen considers herself a citizen of the world, aligning herself at this moment with the purposes of IN, where you'll find her writing articles and interviewing authors, among other things. You can reach Penny at: PenJen@inorbit.com.
Steve Neubauer is a co-founder of the publishing firm WordWright.biz, Inc. The company serves as an incubator for new authors and works with professional speakers and consultants to create books about their specialty areas. Steve focuses on helping new writers establish themselves and fulfill their publication dreams. http://www.wordwright.biz/index.html