POINT PLEASANT, W.Va. — Local author Hilda Austin recently published her second book “Granny Moon.”
Austin, who published her first book, “Grace’s Journey,” at the end of 2019, said both books are part of a planned trilogy. Austin said she already finished the third and final book, which will be sent to the publisher soon.
Austin described the series as being “about life in general during the mid-1800s.” Austin said she has been fascinated with that particular time period for most of her life.
This second book outlines “Granny’s” life and how she became a respected member of the community in which she lived, according to Austin.
“Life was very simple,” Austin said. “She lived in a very remote area and lived off the land.”
Austin said the book also discusses values of people that she thinks have left our society — including beliefs in God and helping community members.
The character “Granny” is a combination of some of the “old folks” that Austin’s father used to speak about. She said she learned about people through her dad.
“Granny Moon” took Austin about two months to write.
“All this information, all this stuff and all these scenes came to me and I lived them as if I was there. It was kind of strange — a good strange,” Austin said.
Austin said she started the first book at the age of 75 and was not sure why she waited so long.
“I’m still kind of overwhelmed. I started this at the end of 2017 and I just was not prepared. I didn’t know I was going to write books and I don’t know if I’ll write any more — maybe I used up everything I knew or could think of.” Austin joked. “A lot of it was imagined. Some of it was dreams.”
Austin said she believes she was meant to write these stories.
“I would write so fast that I couldn’t write it down fast enough, and I wrote it longhand and then come to the office in my downtime and I would transcribe it on the computer. But, I would be exhausted and I would go to bed to sleep. When I would wake up, that group of characters would be waiting for me to tell them what to do. It was meant for me to do this and I think it was inspired by God. Well, I know it was,” Austin said. “I know he did it for me and I feel good for having gotten it out there. I feel like I was called to write these four books and that may be the end of it.
Aside from the trilogy, Austin also wrote a book that is based in the same time period, but is a standalone novel with different characters from the trilogy.
“Granny Moon” is available on Amazon, Barnes and Noble and at the Mason County Chamber of Commerce office on Main Street in downtown Point Pleasant.
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Kayla (Hawthorne) Dunham is a staff writer for Ohio Valley Publishing. Reach her at (304) 675-1333, ext. 1992.