by Joan Sowards, Guest Blogger
1. I am a songwriter, but what you don’t know is, as a girl of about twelve years old, my friend and I were into Wanda Palmer music—big time. We loved playing and singing her songs. I was in awe that someone (not just someone, but someone I knew) could create songs. One day while leisurely walking home from my friend’s house, I looked up into the tall trees lining Westwood Avenue—probably humming “Consider the Lilies”—and a little voice said, “Joan, one of the greatest gifts God can give is the ability to write songs.” It wasn’t until years later that I realized the Spirit was preparing me. I am not a great composer, but I offer freely what I write at http://www.joansowards.com/
2. I am a wife and mother, but what you don’t know is that I got married at age 27 to a man I had known for years. It just took me that long to open my eyes and realize he was the one I should marry. I was looking for a tall, dark tenor. Well, it turns out that my tenor is a short, balding blond who can’t read music. I love him dearly.
3. I am a fiction writer, but what you don’t know is that I didn’t grow up knowing that, as did a lot of you. Even though I wrote poetry and lyrics, and enjoyed making up stories, I never attached the title of writer to it. I now know that writing is one of my favorite pastimes, and have written four novels. Haunts Haven is available as an ebook under my pseudonym at http://kerryblair.com/curiosity.php My first novel Bridges of the Heart was written because I was shoulder-deep into family history. One of my “end lines” was illegitimate and I longed to know the story of his beginnings. Through research, I found the name of a woman I believed to be his paternal grandmother and wondered what she would say in an interview. I began writing down what I imagined she said, and the story evolved from there.
4. I am a family historian, but what you don’t know is that I spent seven years consumed by it. I’d run to the Family History Center every spare minute I could find, stay up until wee hours of the night working, and even took a trip back east to visit the homeland. It is surprising that I also took care of babies and had dinner on the table every night during these years. After my trip back east, I came home thinking I was done with that line, with being consumed, and ready to move on to other things in life. But there was a presence in my home that I could not shake. It was like unseen people were following me around, talking to me all at once. I knew they were spirits from another line related to the one I had just “finished.” They cried continuously to me while I cooked, showered, played the piano, or just breathed, that they wanted their work done. Frazzled after three days of this, I went to my room, got into bed and threw the covers over my head. “Leave me alone!” I cried. “I promise to do your work!” The room suddenly became quiet. I kept my promise and have thoroughly researched and done the work for that line.
5. I am a daughter of God. You all are, I know, but I wanted to add it because it continues to amaze me. He has sustained me through the hardest times of life: the heartaches of youth, loosing boyfriends and best friends, leaving home, my parents’ divorce, my mother and mother-in-law’s passings—times that are well known to all of us. He will sustain all his children if we let him.
I want to serve him well through my family, songs and writing.