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Where the River Bends…and the stories never end

When Christy Kyser Truitt lived here in Demopolis, she had a fairly typical childhood. She rode around with friends, took part in several activities at school and pretty much enjoyed life in Demopolis.

Small wonder, then, that the author of two books based much of her settings on this area.

Truitt is the author of “Where the River Bends,” which took third place in the romance division in the Christian Choice Book Awards. The book is her second, following her debut work, “Serenity Point,” and she has a third, “The First Drop of Rain,” a story about domestic violence, coming out soon.

Truitt was the guest speaker at this month’s “Lunch at the Library” on Tuesday. She spoke to a well-attended gathering about her years growing up in Demopolis and how she went from working as a loan official to becoming an award-winning novelist.

“Dan Wilson told me something that my uncle, Charles Mayton, told him,” she said. “He said, ‘Go after life while you can still climb the rock, because pretty soon, all you’ll want to do is look at the rock, and then, there will come a time when you can’t get to the rock. He said, ‘So, go after life like you can still climb the rock.

“So, all these things we want to do, go do it now, while you can climb it, not while you’re going and looking at it.”

After talking about her writing career, Truitt sold and signed novels, with the proceeds going to the Demopolis Public Library. Hometown fans in attendance at “Lunch at the Library” included two of her English teachers, Kayte Melton and Beverly Youngblood.

Truitt said she had advice for those like her growing up in Demopolis and enjoying writing.

“The most important thing they need to do is read,” she said. “I go to Career Day at the schools all the time, and I tell them, ‘Read, read, read.’ They should find what’s in their genre, find the critically acclaimed writers from that genre and learn how they write, study how they write. Study how they build the characters; study how they weave a plot; study where the climax is in the story.

“Then, just write, but don’t be intimidated. I can read Anne Rivers Siddons and not write for a week because I will never, ever write like that. But, the point is: She writes like Anne Rivers Siddons. I’m going to write like Christy Kyser Truitt, and there is an audience for both.

“Then, keep on writing,” she said. “There is a story in just about anything. Don’t write for somebody to read it. Write because you have a story in your heart that has to come out.”

Those wanting to order any of Truitt’s novels or find out updated news about her career can go to her Web site, www.christytruitt.com.