Welcome today, Ruth Ann Dixon. She is an aspiring author with an inspirational story – one of never giving up her writing dreams even in the face of disability, surgery, and going back to school to learn how to write. We all have a story. Thanks for sharing yours, Ruth.
One Writer’s Story
by Ruth Ann Dixon
Growing up on the farm, I had little reading material so I began making up “books” in my head, something I would continue throughout my life and I still do. Only now, I write them down in real books.
I began my writing career at forty when I wrote my first book, A Hard Lesson, which was never published but it gave me some writing experience. I kept getting rejection slips. It was then I realized I needed some real writing experience so I went to college to study journalism at the age of forty-two.
When I graduated, I went to work as a reporter and assistant Lifestyles editor for the Lewisburg Daily Journal and the Milton Daily Standard. I was later promoted to Lifestyles editor for the Lewisburg Journal. Soon I was Lifestyles editor for both papers. I also wrote a weekly column that ran in both papers.
At age fifty I had to quit because of a disability caused by using the computer too much. The doctor called it repetitive motion injuries (RMI). I had elbow problems. I quit work but I continued writing. At that time, I was still writing in notebooks and a typewriter. I found though, that with my journalistic experience, publishers became interested in my work but I still wasn’t hitting the mark. In discouragement, I quit writing. But I still kept an ongoing book in my head.
At age 60, I had my knees replaced and needed something to occupy my time. I started writing again. Two years ago my son, who lives with me, bought a new computer (My old one died.) and printer. He said, “Now you better sell those books.” I’m working on it.
Each story begins with an idea. Often it is a mundane thing and a lot of what iffing. Once I have a cast of characters, I can expand on it if I have time to think about. Often I must put it aside for some more important event. I may or may not remember. Occasionally, I start with a dream. That is what happened with Sandover’s Woman. I took a dream and expanded on it. My sister has been after me for years to get that one published. But there only so many hours in a day and I tire a lot quicker than I used to.
I spend some time each day in touch with other writers on the internet. They are full of ideas and can be very helpful. The daily contacts help for me not to feel isolated. I no longer have a car so my son and daughter take me where I need to go. I also have friendly across the street.
I am now working on a mystery, Lost Memories, which I plan to have published when it is finished either in print media or by e-publishing.
When Antonia Blum witnesses her parents being brutally gunned down, she goes into the FBI’s witness protection program.
But people she becomes close to begin dying. The first is her roommate in Little Rock by an apparent suicide. With a new identity she moves to Spokane where she is kidnapped by three men, one of them the FBI agent who is her FBI contact. When she escapes from them and flees in the wilds of Montana, she falls down a cliff and hits her head on a rock. Nearby hikers see her fall and call for a helicopter to airlift her to a hospital where she has life saving brain surgery. After being in a coma for three weeks, she wakes up with no recollection of who she is or where she belongs.
Then the psychiatrist who is helping regain her memory is murdered in front of her and she flees for her life. Hitching rides with truckers, she crosses the country trying to get to Boston where she feels she’ll be “safe.” She gets as far as New York City where there are two more attempts to abduct her and more bodies.
The FBI wants to put her back in their witness protection program and homicide detective, Lt. Drew Ward, wants her back in his bed. Running for her life, she crosses the country trying to stay beneath the radar of her abductors and the FBI.