Brent Brantley

Why I Started Writing:

Since my childhood, my love of reading has partnered with my love of writing. However, it was not until I was thirty-one when a life-threatening head wound ended my career in law enforcement and formed the catalyst for serious writing, that I began. The gunshot left me unable to speak, do simple math, and affected my cognitive reasoning. My surgeon said I would never speak again. I was destined to be disabled for the rest of my life. However, God had other plans for me. 

During this dark time, I found the Lord as my Savior and the Healer of my body. After a long battle, I regained my speech and my health, embarked on a career in missions, and, enabled by the Great Physician, acquired two master's degrees and a doctorate. It was then I returned to my love of reading and writing in earnest, primarily in the academic arena. I taught college courses in worldview, community development, and cross-cultural communications, and I discovered a useful tool. I began telling and writing short stories for my students to enhance their educational experience. It was through lesson-laced stories I was led to write fictional suspense/thrillers. 

Authors Who Have Influenced Me:

As a teen I was fascinated with the world created by Edgar Rice Burroughs in his Tarzan series. Mark Twain’s tales about Huckleberry Finn and Tom Sawyer pierced my imagination. However, it was his folksy tongue-in-cheek lectures, letters, and short stories that formed my desire to model that humor if I ever wrote. As an adult, I became intrigued by the writing of authors such as Tom Clancy and James Patterson, specifically their attention to detail and character development. Later, in my Christian walk, C.S. Lewis planted in me the desire to write entertaining fiction with a deeper message.

Books I Have Written:

You Cannot Grasp the River is my maiden voyage. It is about a boy from a stone-age culture with no word for forgiveness who embraces Christianity, but his desire for vengeance is awakened when he meets the murderer of his parents. The experiences of Benjad, the main character, are often humorous and sometimes provoke self-reflection. The suspenseful tale ends in a showdown between Benjad and his nemesis with an unexpected conclusion. This, my first-time effort, is the result of ten years working among the Papuan societies in remote parts of Indonesia.

What I'm Working On Now:

The Waxman is the story of a disenchanted Chicago cop who loses his zeal for the action on the streets and returns to his roots in rural Kentucky. His hope for a laid-back, idyllic life as a quiet county deputy sheriff is soon shattered. He finds his life complicated by an old enemy, a romantic interest, and a bizarre character nicknamed the Waxman. This fast-paced story of the human yearning to find beauty in the ugly to escape the grip of bitterness leads the reader through this entertaining thriller to a surprise finale.

Melissa Chambers

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