When ten-year-old Lucy Spencer goes missing from her sleepy Texas town, her parents, the police, and the township all brace for the worst, assuming her body will soon be found. They imagine her case will follow the deadly fate of the other recent, unsolved kidnappings in the area. But Lucy’s sister, Leah, begins having dreams about Lucy and insists that she is still alive; that her dreams are messages from her sister, clues about what might have happened.
As the deluge of grief threatens to pull apart the once close-knit Spencer family, fourteen-year old Leah sets out on her own investigation, risking everything in her secure world to find her sister. Carl, Lucy’s father, slips further away from himself and his family as he tries to reconcile the fact that his little girl slipped out of his hands one morning, while Roz, Lucy’s mother, must come to terms with the reality that some things lay beyond her control. But it’s Sylvia, a reclusive widow across town who witnessed something years ago who might hold the key to finding Lucy, if only she can find the courage to come forward.
Set against the backdrop of 1980s small-town Texas and the feverish rise in paranoia surrounding satanic cults, BIG WOODS is a literary thriller about the enormity of grief, the magical bond between sisters, and a small town’s dark secrets.
BIG WOODS was selected as the winner in the 2015 Writer’s League of Texas Manuscript Contest and was also chosen as the winner in the 2016 NaNoWriMo Pitchapalooza Contest.
The Man Who Cried Fire
THE MAN WHO CRIED FIRE tells the story of the late jazz musician, Rahsaan Roland Kirk, through my eyes--a young woman who feels inexplicably drawn to him. Kirk was best known for his miraculous ability to play three saxophones simultaneously. During his brief life, he defied staggering odds--from blindness, to prejudice, to a paralyzing stroke--in order to play the music that came to him through dreams. Twenty years after Kirk's death, I stumbled across his music in a jazz appreciation class--a chance encounter that altered the course of my life, sending me on a several-year, serendipitous quest to retrace Kirk's footsteps.