Single chapter turns into a book
By Norma B. Dennis
It was not the book Brenda DeMoss Lanz planned or the one she pitched to publishers, but it was the one they wanted her to write.
“When I told them about a chapter in the book I was writing, they told me that it should not be a chapter, but a book,” Lanz said. “I literally started over.”
The result is How to Heal Old Wounds and Find Your Voice, which was published in September. Lanz will have her first book signing since the release of the book on Oct. 12 from 6-8 p.m. at the Jamestown Public Library.
“The old adage, ‘Sticks and stones can break your bones, but words can never hurt you,’ is not true,” Lanz said. “Words can hurt.”
Lanz’s father began to preach when she was 10 years old. She said when people found out she and her three siblings were preacher’s kids, their attitudes towards them changed.
“It was like living in a glass house,” Lanz said. “We were often criticized by others if our behavior was less than perfect.
“Words hurt until we deal with them,” she added. “It took me decades to find my healing.”
Lanz, who lives in Jamestown, spent two years researching information for her book, relying on her brothers and sister to help fill in the timeline of events. She also talked with friends from her youth group and others who shared similar childhoods.
“The book deals a lot with our lives as preacher’s kids,” Lanz said. “I end each chapter with scripture, but people who are not religious also can read the book for healing and to find peace. Everyone is looking for peace and comfort in this crazy world.”
The major topics of the book deal with love, unity, forgiveness, thankfulness and peace.
It was only recently that Lanz began to feel compelled to write. She began her working career as a nurse, was a terminal manager in the trucking industry for several years and later worked in medical sales. Burnt out with corporate America and the travel her job required, she decided to quit. Too young to retire and looking for something to do, she found a writing class through Proverbs 31 Ministry and felt lead to attend.
It was through the writing conference that publishers advised her to turn her chapter on “Family Matters” into a book.
She is currently working on her next book “Briefcase to Calling,” which she had originally planned to write first.
“I have learned so much in the process of writing and publishing,” Lanz said. “I am going back to redo the first book and hope to have it ready by next spring. It is very different, it involves my prodigal years.”
Lanz not only spends time writing, but also serves as a motivational speaker to groups and organizations about the detrimental affect careless words could have. She offers hope and healing and explains how her faith has helped her overcome – to become a stronger person.
In addition to volunteering at her church, Lanz is chairperson for the Compassion International Triad Walk to raise money for disaster relief worldwide. She also sponsors three children through Compassion International.
For the past two years, Lanz has worked as a short-term missionary for Joni and Friends, which provides a summer camp experience for children with disabilities.
“I believe in giving back,” Lanz said. “I have not had a dull moment since I quit work. I have never regretted my decision or looked back. I told God, I am working for you now.”
How to Heal Old Wounds and Find Your Voice is available on Amazon or from Lanz’s website at bklanz.wixsite.com/wordsmatter. She will also have copies available for purchase at her Oct. 12 book signing at the library.