Today, we welcome author Larry A. Lee to Interviews & Reviews. Larry is the author of Out of the Field. This memoir talks about when he chose to defend his mother against his alcoholic father’s physical abuse. Three years later his mother died. Alone and abandoned this memoir shares how Larry found hope again.
Larry is a retired First Responder and writes from his home in Yukon, OK, and today he will talk about his book Out of the Field, giving one printed copy and two Kindle editions away.
Larry, welcome to I & R!
How long have you been writing?
As a child, I hid myself in words to escape my abusive childhood. Words on paper made me feel I wasn't alone. I learned to be honest with myself through writing. I wrote about what I saw in the world. I have always felt the emotions attached to words and sounds. Writing lets me dream, think, and feel the world around me.
My personality is introverted, intuitive, feeling, and judging (INFJ). It took me my whole life to realize I had always wanted to be an author. I studied all the forms of writing on my own and developed my style. Blessed, I found the key to my soul, and each day I unlock my mind's eyes and write to discover the things I didn't know about myself.
What inspired you to write this book?
At work, I always sat and listened quietly to my co-workers talk about their families. Family is family, and in the eyes of most, family is everything. I always avoided the conversation until, one day, I felt comfortable sharing the insanity of my childhood and being homeless. Then, one day my friend Emile told me I should write a book. Writing Out of the Field revealed my insight into cutting ties with my family as a child. With each page written, I released my family from judgment. By the end of the book, I was grateful for each of them to have been in my life. Henceforth, I found a miracle in my heart to overcome anything and experienced all the blessings of God's forgiveness.
Is there a message in your book that you want your readers to grasp?
You can change the circumstances of the life you were born into through hard work, compassion for others, and forgiveness.
How were you saved?
In a Christ-like action, Janice took me, a homeless kid, out of the field. Her single act of kindness saved my life and opened the door to becoming a reborn Christian. On October 31, 1978, I gave my life to God and was baptized. On December 24, 2019, I went to see Janice in Dallas after not seeing her for over twenty-five years. She was in Hospice care. I asked her why she took me home to her family that day. She answered, "I saw the good in you."
Tell me more about Janice.
Janice was the church secretary who rescued me from living in a field. She took a chance on me, and her single act of kindness changed my life.
What an amazing story! What do you do when you aren't writing?
I like to go on long walks with my dog. It helps me think about how to move forward in the next chapter. I also work a lot. I am a Finance Section Chief on a national Incident Management Team. I usually manage large wildland fires throughout the west. In addition, I have worked at several hurricanes, the Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill, the Space Shuttle disaster, and a Covid-19 Vaccination Center in Oakland.
You have another book in there somewhere! Is there anything you would like to say to your readers?
I decided as a child that I would never listen to the fears of others. I impeded much resistance throughout my life, not cowering to mainstream thoughts and values. Knowing my needs, I developed selfish habits. Being true to myself, I became brave, a communicator, beautiful, and wise. I found that the human heart is the source of miracles. Thus, the moral of my life is that the unattainable will remain impossible until one trusts oneself.
But isn't it more important to put one's trust in God rather than in oneself? Please clarify your statement.
Yes, the source of miracles is God, and I believe everyone gets a miracle or miracles in their lives. However, I believe one has to trust in oneself to see the miracle. Otherwise, there is no miracle. It is when one see the miracle and trusts in oneself we find the treasures/gifts God intended us to have.
What is your favorite Scripture verse, and why?
James 1:5-6, "If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to you. But when you ask, you must believe and not doubt, because the one who doubts is like a wave of the sea, blown and tossed by the wind."
As a homeless high-school dropout, even when I had people lend me a hand, I found life overwhelming. Finally, I got down on my knees and asked God for wisdom. I failed many things, yet I learned and grew from each failure. Struggle and loss blessed my life with wisdom. Never, never give in to mediocrity.
When is your next book due out, and can you tell us about it?
My next book is fiction, The Federal Plantation, which will be out in November 2022. Here are a couple of paragraphs from the summary.
Institutions are not what people think they are. Liam saw the Federal Service as an intimidating giant. Yet, he recognized the very thing that made the giant robust made it vulnerable. Liam knew a powerful institution was something he could not fight back with only hope and the thought of fairness. An institution is not even somebody. It is nothing, and one cannot fight nothing. Liam knew an institution loses its power once it has a human face.
The physical world assaults Liam's faith. The result is an unusual perspective of some of the most ossified traditions in the Federal Service and eye-opening lessons that can be applied when David meets Goliath on the battlefield again.
Thank you for visiting with us today, Larry. If you want to win a copy of Out of the Field, fill out the form below. One printed copy will be given to one person in the U.S.A., and one Kindle copy will be given to two people outside the U.S.A. This giveaway will end on October 31, 2022.
Congratulations to Linda Klager!