Chris Manion

Why I Started Writing:

Outside of school assignments, as a young girl I poured my first writing teen into a five-year 4 by 5 diary with an easily picked lock. I wrote then and now in order to explore my thoughts and feelings, to find expression, and make sense of my soul stirrings. I've written poetry, songs, magazine articles, and business motivational newsletters for decades. It wasn't until I wrote my first book, however, that I considered myself a writer. I hand wrote the words; I am a writer. When I did so, I remember taking a deep breath to own that energetic truth. 

The writing of various experiences and encounters with God, and his desire to deepen our relationship, took over eleven years. Without writing it, I would still not understand all that God has done in my life. I write to think clearly, to inspire others, and now that I'm writing fiction, I write to entertain and play with words the way children play with sand and blocks.

Authors Who Have Influenced Me:

Children: Dr. Seuss, Ludwig Bemelmans, Shel Silverstein, E. B. White, A. A. Milne, Mo Williams, Virginia Lee Burton, Robert Munsch, Julia Donaldson, Watty Piper.
Nonfiction: Thomas Merton, Jack Canfield, Norman Vincent Peale, C. S. Lewis, Romano Guardini, Thomas Keating, Mary Oliver, Elizabeth Barrett Browning, Richard Rohr, Maya Angelou, Toni Morrison.
Fiction: Sue Monk Kidd, Amor Towles, Charles Dickens, D. H. Lawrence, Mesu Andrews, Robert Harris, Anthony Doerr, Laila Ibrahim, Ken Follett, Francine Rivers, Anita Diamant, DiAnn Mills, Michelle Medlock-Adams.

Books I Have Written:

  • God's Patient Pursuit of My Soul (Redemption House, 2017) earned two Catholic Press awards for spirituality and first book.
  • The Light We Cannot See (Elk Lake Publishing Inc, 2021)
  • The Grateful Boat (Elk Lake Publishing Inc, 2022)

I am also published in two compilation books: 

What I'm Working On Now:

I'm editing and revising my next two picture books. My granddaughter loves my bedtime dragon stories, so I'm writing those as well. My most ambitious work-in-progress is my first novel, a historical novel set in 15th century Italy during the Renaissance and the Great Schism when three popes reigned. The story centers on the wife of St. John Capistrano, who feels abandoned when God takes her husband away in order for him to become a famous monk. Will she win her mother's love and carry on her father's heritage in a patriarchal society of loose morals, loyalties, and a few secrets?

The Light We Cannot See

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