|Texie Susan Gregory|
As writers, we’re aware that words can encourage and inspire, but there’s also a flip side to that power. Author Texie Susan Gregory shares what almost stopped her journey to publication. ~ Dawn
The Power of Words
Every night when I was a little girl, Mother sat on my bed and with her expressive voice and face brought life to a Bible story. I knew the stories so well that sometimes the people seemed like distant relatives—grandfather Abraham, Uncle Paul, cousin Esther.
After discovering Elizabeth Speare’s book, The Bronze Bow, I realized people other than those I ‘knew’ had lived and loved and laughed during Bible times.
Searching for other Biblical novels, I was dismayed to discover there were very few in the school library. Thus began both the dream to see my book on a bookshelf and the quest to write the stories of the unknown people of Biblical times.
As a ten year old, my first attempt—an ambitious undertaking about Mary Magdalene - was typed on onion paper. (Remember that thin, easily erasable paper?)
Fast forward to college when I dared show a short story to an esteemed professor. His words still echo through my mind. “If you enjoy it, keep writing but nothing will ever come of it.”
Devastated, I quit writing.
A harsh response? Yes, but so much more—a lesson in the power of words.
Years later as a young mother, an understanding of the significance and incredible influence of mothering bubbled up and over. Words spilled onto pages, first as letters to my children, then as vignettes that I performed as monologues at conferences and churches.
The bulb of a dream which had ‘hibernated’ for years, strengthened by life and nourished by the prayers of a mother who continued to believe I was a writer, pushed its little head out of Fear and into Hope. I joined a writer’s group in our church and attended the Mt. Hermon Christian Writer’s Conference where writers are encouraged to approach editors and agents.
Abject terror might begin to describe my fear as I approached first one and then another editor/agent. Without exception they were kind, attentive, and encouraging.
When an agent advised developing one of the vignettes into a novel, I was dumbfounded. Was it possible? How do you do that?
Choosing Jochebed, the mother of Moses as ‘dough’, I pulled out my writer’s rolling pin, dusted the surface with prayer and began to shape the story into being.
The theme? A lesson I learned years ago—the power of our words ripple through years and lives. The incredible influence we wield as writers/parents/teachers carries enormous responsibility.
Jochebed’s Hope is the story of a mother’s influence, of frayed hope and the search for faith. It is a story of relationships between a mother and daughter, three childhood friends, and the love story of the most powerful man on earth.
Texie Susan Gregory holds a master’s degree in Counseling from Appalachian State University and a Master of Religious Education from Golden Gate Baptist Theological Seminary. She has taught in both public and private schools, worked as a hospital chaplain and been a ministry wife for thirty-one years. She and her husband moved to Maryland a year ago. They have two children, Tyler (28) and Elizabeth (26).
You can learn more and connect with Texie at the following online sites:
Author website: www.texiesusangregory.com