*This is a guest post written by Rachel Coker*
Hello, my name is Rachel Coker and I wrote “Interrupted: A Life Beyond Words”. Actually, it feels really funny to write that. I remember when I was a little kid, daydreaming about the day that I could see a book sitting on my bookshelf with my last name on the cover. I never would have thought that day would come before my seventeenth birthday.
I’ve always loved to write. When I was in elementary school, I had notebooks full of doodles and poems and little tidbits. But it wasn’t until I was in middle school that I recognized my gift for fiction writing. My mom and dad were very supportive of my passion and hired a writing “coach” for me to work with. For over a year, I poured myself into developing my writing skills and techniques. But after many months of hard work, I realized that I still needed to find my voice, and that it would take something that no one could teach me.
There were a lot of things going on in my family at that time. My forty-six year old uncle was dying of a brain tumor. My family took constant back and forth trips to my cousins’ house following his death. It was probably the hardest patch I remember going through as a child. I was only twelve years old, but for the first time I started asking the “why?” questions. Why must there be death and suffering? Why do those we love leave us? And why does it hurt so bad?
That was about when I started developing the idea for “Interrupted”. I pictured a character that felt my pain and knew what our family had gone through. The book centers on the life of a teenage girl, Allie Everly, who loses her mother very early on to a brain tumor. When Allie is forced to move across the country and live with an adopted mother, she struggles with a lot of the same things I did. Bitterness. Confusion. Anger. And yet, by the grace of God working in her life, she becomes a stronger person in the end because of it.
It’s been over four years now since my uncle died. And nearly two since I wrote “Interrupted”. But somehow I feel as if that book was my diary, helping me get through that rough spot in my life and bring me out of it stronger.
Allie’s story took place over sixty years ago, and my own nearly half a decade, but that pain and that journey are both still relevant today. Throughout the years, Christians have endured so much heartache and pain, but have also been able to experience happiness and joy despite it. The true beauty of life, and the heart of “Interrupted”, is about God bringing us through the tears and the trials into a better place of happiness. Allie’s life was tainted by death, and war, and loneliness, but it was filled with the grace of God. The same goes for all of us. If there is one thing I want my readers to get out of “Interrupted”, it is that all of our lives have the same potential for joy, no matter how deep the sorrows.
My book will be released in a little over two months. It’s been a long journey since I started it, and my life is much different now than it was then. But through writing “Interrupted” I have come to realize that God will always walk me through my trials and give me the strength to endure them. And I pray you come to the same conclusion, too!
Readers can follow Rachel’s vlog to learn more about her remarkable road to the publication of her first book: http://www.youtube.com/user/JCoker1960#p/u
ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Rachel Coker resides in Virginia with her parents and two sisters. She has a passion for great books, and has been surrounded by them all her life. Her gift for writing became apparent at the age of eleven, at which time her parents signed her up for a year of lessons with a professional writing coach. Rachel also has a deep love for classical music and old black-and-white movies. When she is not writing or playing the piano, Rachel enjoys spending time with her family and friends and serving God. www.rachelcoker.wordpress.com