I was searching for information on the Wright Brothers and Kitty Hawk for a story I’m writing. The local library’s online catalog brought up about 4 or 5 promising titles, mostly in Children’s Nonfiction. I scrolled down to the bottom of the page and noticed a listing for a fiction book called Hatteras Girl by author Alice J. Wisler. Cape Hatteras is in North Carolina’s Outer Banks, as is Kitty Hawk and the Wright Brothers memorial, hence the computer-generated connection.
I read the summary and was intrigued. The heroine of the story, like me, was a journalist and was, also like me, an older single who has had her share of unpromising blind dates. Another thing that caught my attention was that the book was put out by a Christian publishing house, Bethany House. The last time I read a “good” mainstream novel there were so many bad words and compromising scenes in it that I had to put it down in disgust, even though it was captivating, well-written, and had won numerous awards.
Because of life’s craziness and lack of leisure time, I haven’t read a book “just for fun” in about six months. I decided to indulge — and read the book in three days. I liked how the author created such a warm and complex main character and also the inviting way in which she described the Outer Banks, with so much local color sprinkled in. There was a lot of real, human emotion in the book.
As I read, I was reminded of a novel of my own I had begun many moons ago but put aside to pursue more “serious” writing, i.e. the kind that pays the bills. Currently, the manuscript sits in my laptop under several layers of virtual dust. The file has the optimistic label “My First Novel.” I first started it in 2003 and haven’t written in it (or thought much about it) since 2005.
Tomorrow, I head out to the East Coast for a writers retreat in the Outer Banks. I’ve decided to take “My First Novel” with me and see if I can’t resurrected it. Might even give it a more exciting title. Thanks for the inspiration, Alice J. Wisler!