Then my husband (also a writer) and I began to write non-fiction books together, again about “issues” close to our heart, as well as doing quite a bit of coauthoring—i.e., coming alongside an expert resource person with “something to say” and offering our writing skills to bring their books to life.
And then my husband—Mr. Idea Guy—came up with the idea to write a series of historical fiction novels for young readers about great Christian heroes. We both fell in love with researching the history and storytelling! Together we wrote forty Trailblazer novels (Bethany House Publishers) for the eight-to-twelve age group, realizing the “power of story” to communicate. And fun! Writing fiction—even historical fiction—was addictive, learning how to make the characters come alive, learning how to communicate important truths in the middle of human struggles without preaching.
By this time, I was in a comfortable writing rut, content with being half of the Dave-and-Neta-Jackson writing team, letting Dave come up with the ideas and I’d jump in and off we’d go. Because the other part of me was immersed in a new adventure, a multi-cultural women’s prayer group that God was using to turn my prayer life and spiritual life upside down—or more accurately, right-side up.
God said yes.
They said yes.
Finally I said yes.Well, at least I’d try. It would give me a chance to share some of the amazing things God was doing in my life without having to have all the “answers.” All I had to do was take my readers on a journey along with my characters, all of whom were at different places in their spiritual lives, all of whom had faults and weaknesses and wisdom and strengths—just like me and the women in my prayer group.
The meaning of Yada
Okay, so the Yada Yada novels are hard to classify. It doesn’t matter. The cover artist, the promo people, the marketing teams—they’ve all worked hard to “get the word out” and I’m grateful. (But the best promotion in the world is word-of-mouth, and I have my readers to thank for that!)
Parallel novels—what’s that?