Have you ever thought about the power of stories? Sure, they are entertaining, but they can also be a wonderful way to reach people, especially teens. Good stories can explore topics and provide examples without being heavy-handed and preachy. As Catholic moms, we want our children to learn about our faith and be surrounded by positive messages. Our kids, however, can be more interested in finding fun novels to read. Unfortunately, all too often the books our society offers teens are full of topics that do not line up with our Catholic values.
This problem is actually how my journey to become an author began. I had no plans or thoughts of writing a novel. I was just a mom searching for appropriate books for my son. He was always a great reader and by the time he was in fifth grade, he was searching for YA novels. I had a difficult time finding any that would be fun, adventurous, and also reflect the values we were trying to instill in him. I remember wondering why no one was writing the kinds of books I was searching for, not knowing that I would eventually become one of those people. But, God had other plans. One day I woke up and the story of The Perfect Blindside popped into my head. Ideas and characters kept flooding my brain until I finally had to start writing them down.
While mysteries have always been my favorite genre, I love creating stories that combine many elements – mystery, adventure, humor, sweet innocent romance, and of course, faith. My characters are regular teens who turn to God when they face difficulties. Even though my books are fun adventures, they each also have a deeper, underlying theme: finding and using your gifts from God, discovering the person God wants you to be, having the courage to saying “yes” to God’s call, and understanding how to live a Christian life in our society. I pray that by exploring these messages, readers can grow in their own faith journeys.
My newest adventurous mystery, Where You Lead, explores God’s calling for our lives, in big and small ways. This is a particularly special theme for me since I felt called to become an author and I continue to say “yes” to where He leads me. God’s plans for our lives are often unexpected and surprising. My own writing journey has changed as well and now includes spreading the word about other faith-based books by reading and reviewing Christian and Catholic YA novels. I can’t wait to see what exciting adventures He leads me on next.
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Copyright 2018 Leslea Wahl