Knighthawke author visits Murfreesboro

Published 9:05 pm Sunday, October 25, 2009

Jerry Minchew is a guy with a dream.

Minchew’s dream has been developing not for weeks or months, but for years. It has flickered and dimmed, but never been completely extinguished.

And last week, in Murfreesboro, it burned brightly.

That’s a good thing because Minchew is a good guy.

Minchew’s dream was to become an author and he has done that.

He’s written a thriller titled “Knighthawke.”

I’ve read “Knighthawke” and I enjoyed it. It’s an easy read, but tough to put down. I read it in an evening.

I got to visit with Minchew and with his wife Vickie last week at a book signing at The Commons in Murfreesboro. Minchew and Jen Hodge, who owns The Commons, were friends where they grew up in Alabama, and have remained friends through all the intervening years.

Minchew left that little Alabama town to join the Air Force. He became a chaplain and he continues in that capacity today with the Civil Air Patrol. Today he is responsible for security at a Tennessee Valley Authority nuclear power plant near Chattanooga, Tenn.

Talking with Minchew, I thought it was interesting that early on, people tried to tell him that writing was his calling. But he was intent on becoming a minister and did not heed what they were telling him. Only after he had fulfilled that first passion did he eventually pursue the second.

Jerry Minchew’s job today involves a lot of waiting.

He wears a gun and other, bigger guns are quickly at hand.

And he sits and waits.

If ever terrorists do try to compromise that plant – and that is a distinct possibility at any such facility – Minchew is the plant’s first line of defense.

But in the meantime, he waits.

The waiting affords him the opportunity to write.

He wrote “Knighthawke” by hand, before it was okay to bring a personal computer to the power plant.

Talking with Minchew, it became clear that writing a book is a lot more work than you and I realize. Minchew has rewritten Knighthawke several times, to satisfy himself and then at the behest of the publisher.

Now Minchew has written another book, this one a continuation of sorts, of his first. But expect a different publisher for the second book. Minchew gained a lot of experience with and through that first book. Now he has an agent and will be much smarter as he brings the second to market.

You can get a copy of “Knighthawke” at The Commons in Murfreesboro. The supply is not unlimited, but at this writing some remain available.

David Sullens is president of Roanoke-Chowan Publications LLC and publisher of the Roanoke-Chowan News Herald and the Gates County Index.