In 2005, God gave me a gift, a fictional character by the name of Charlie Smith. He started out as a little 'seed' stuck in my brain, a thought about a little boy living in the old west who meets Santa Claus at Christmastime. As Charlie grew from a seed to a thought, he stretched my imagination and pulled at my memories. He pushed me out of my comfort zone as he outgrew the little corner of my brain where I kept him. He became relentless in his demands that I write. It had been years since I'd written anything, but I learned when God gives me something, I don't ignore him. In November of 2005, I finally sat down at my computer and put Charlie on paper; however, I changed the original plot to a little boy who, instead of meeting Santa Claus, finds the true meaning of Christmas. So there I was, typing, editing, sweating, typing...night, day, night, weekends, and did I mention nights? When I finished, I sat and stared at my work, bewildered at what I'd accomplished. The time, the effort, I didn't know whether to laugh or cry. There lying on the desk in front of me was my manuscript, and it was ten whole pages. Ten Pages! Yes, that's all, just ten pages. I knew there was no way Charlie was going to let me get any rest after that, so I went back to the drawing board, or should I say the computer. After months of agonizing brain torture trying to write something that resembled a book, I eventually penned my first novel, White As Snow, a Christmas Story. From there, I've written a series of four books entitled Mysterious Ways and I'm happy to report the other three books came a bit easier than the first. Mysterious Ways is a frontier fiction series set in 19th-Century Colorado Territory although The Crimson River, the fourth and final book of the series, has a wonderful twist to it, sure to please the reader. This series portrays some of my own life's challenges through Charlie, although I never had him try to write a book. :-)
In my spare time, I became an ordained minister. I did so because I wanted to officiate a dear friends wedding, and now I'm available to perform weddings for whoever would like me to officiate theirs. I am also available to speak at graduations, ladies retreats, elementary school events, etc. so if you would like me to come speak about the old west, or how to write a book, or how to just be happy being a Christian, please send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org. or fill out the comment form on the NEWSLETTER tab and I'll get right back to you.
Donna Westover lives and works in Colorado.