2. LUCKY, The Backstory: Reality

Our group wasn’t the first such program in this area of Charlotte. Before I came out there, the church already had a Wednesday evening meal for area children. My husband and others had also helped facilitate several programs among Southeast Asians in neighborhoods not far from our site, one in a large downtown church, another…

3. LUCKY, The Backstory: Settling In

It wasn’t long before more volunteers arrived and the Cambodian pastor and his congregation moved to the same site. Soon these programs were welcoming neighboring children and the programs were sharing the church and field.  Volunteers from Charlotte churches began providing meals for the Wednesday and Sunday evening events and soon a program director was…

4. LUCKY, The Backstory: Travels

It began with a beach trip. Loading up the ministry bus, which the Cambodian pastor drove, we spent several days at a place at Myrtle Beach we’d found to host our group at a reasonable cost. After this trip, in which one of the guys broke his leg playing basketball at a nearby gym, we…

5. LUCKY, The Backstory: The Last Act

My goal as a volunteer had been to remain with the program until the first participants, still the core of the group, graduated from high school. And they all did graduate, among them several with honors. So I had expected to leave at the end of that summer, which I’d already  announced. But a more…

Writing the Historical Novel, Part 1

When I began writing fiction, I never thought of myself as a historical novelist. Yet my two published novels tell stories that involve not only historical events but include chapters set in two epochal wars of the 20th century: in Absolution, Vietnam, in A Stone for Bread, World War II. My as yet unpublished novel…