When I was growing up, I hated to read. But now I'm an author. My ninth-grade teacher would drop her jaw in shock if she knew. Frankly, the transition shocked me, too.
Twenty-five years ago I was in a major car accident that laid me up for about three months. At that time I turned to reading. After reading a lot of books, with strong conviction I said to God, "I can do this." And in my spirit I heard a whisper, "Yes, you can."
At that very moment the first idea I ever had for a book came to me. It started with the title Accidental Romance and the rest followed. With the hand that wasn't bound in a cast I managed to start writing. The novel flowed until I had four spiral binders filled. I still have those binders today. The joy of reading that story and seeing where God started my writing career and where He has taken me today thrills my very soul.
After writing 17 novels—some partials, some completed—my first book was published. The year before my first book was released, God connected me to The Writer's Edge, a publisher screening service, via Lucille Montgomery, the owner of The Christian Book Store in Baton Rouge, LA. Lucille edited Be Not Afraid, my first romance-suspense novel, and declared that I was meant to be a writer. When it was accepted by Writer's Edge, we both rejoiced. Two years later, all in God's time, Ramona Tucker of OakTara accepted it and it was published! Lucille has since gone to be with the Lord, but I will never forget her support of me as a writer.
I love the surprising way God reveals ideas to me for my books.
I got the idea for Be Not Afraid while working on the night shift as a dispatcher for a major trucking company. The company was set out on the River Road, the outskirts of town, away from most everyone. Around 2:00 a.m. I heard a peculiar sound and peered through the vast window. All I could see was my reflection, because it was very dark outside, with the moon partially hidden by clouds. When the noise came again, I rose and turned down the radio. Thoughts of going outside to see what it was crossed my mind, but before I made the move, another thought hit me—an idea for a book.
What if a woman working the night shift at a trucking company heard a bizarre sound that drew her outside? And then across the highway on the levee she saw the silhouette of a man strangling a woman? Being a victim once herself, without hesitation, she would run back inside to call 9-1-1, then shoot back out to try and distract the killer...hopefully giving enough time for help to arrive and save the woman. Being a good citizen would turn her life upside down as she became the serial killer's next target....
I was blown away as the ideas for this story ran rapidly through my mind. At that moment, I couldn't wait to get off work so I could go home and start writing. Be Not Afraid was the beginning of the Samantha Cain Mysteries. A Testimony of Innocence will be published in 2012, and I'm well on my way in writing book three, The Truth Revealed.
And what's even more fun, God keeps pouring out his blessings of ideas on me. Although my books are fiction, there is no doubt ever in my mind that God is real. My greatest hope is that, as readers are entertained by my books, they will also feel the presence of God in their lives, as I have in my own life.
Deborah Lynne, the author of Be Not Afraid (OakTara), as well as three other novels—Grace, a Gift of Love, All in God's Time, and Passion from the Heart, worked at a trucking company for thirty years, so a small piece of her life is entrenched firmly in each of the Samantha Cain Mysteries. www.author-deborahlynne.com