Georgia Witness


I was born in England to a mother who served as a WAFF on eight RAF fighter stations during World War II and a father who served as a navigator in the Pacific during that war on the USS Taylor, a Fletcher class destroyer that earned nine battle stars.Much to my good fortune, our family relocated first to Alabama, then Georgia, where I grew up on a small barrier island off the Georgia coast.St. Simons (now a resort area) is a low-country boil of clashing cultures. Timucua Indians, Spanish missionaries, English settlers, slaves and plantation owners, Confederate and Union soldiers, and Saltwater Geechee have all taken their turns on its stage, supplanting one another as lords and masters of the island.St. Simons is now the domain of middle and upper class families, though one trailer park still survives.Evidence of the area's past still abounds, and from it I draw much of the inspiration for plots and characters.

The island I grew up on happens to be on the 31st Parallel north of the Equator, which includes the geographic area below Savannah, north of the Georgia-Florida border, and everything east and west of that.Down on the 31st and 32nd Parallels, you're in the Deep South of the "Deep South".Look at all the writers who come from those strips, and don't surprised if you start to see some similarities in their works.It has to do with their shared history, the geography, and the people who inhabit those realms.Many of the early Georgia settlers traveled directly west to settle regions in Alabama, Mississippi, Louisiana, and Texas.They took their histories and their stories with them.Partof the Southern writer's job is to resurrect those stories and their histories in creating new works.It's recycling of the highest order.

I have a business degree from the University of Georgia and a masters from Vanderbilt University where I work.

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