(1) Welcome to the Writing Prompts Crew. Tell us a little about yourself.
Harriet: God blessed me with an interesting life. I was born in the jungles of Africa, in the eastern part of Nigeria, near the Niger River Delta, where my parents served as foreign missionaries. I went from Africa to quintessential America when my parents came back to the states and settled in the mountain town of Bluefield, West Virginia. Graduating high school in the 1970’s gave me a taste of classic small-town American life including being a cheerleader for a state championship football team.
I met my husband at church one day and married him less than a year later. We have now been married for going on 37 yrs, have three grown sons, a grown daughter, and one grandchild (my daughter’s child.) One of my sons and his wife just announced they are starting the process to adopt so I will soon have another grandchild and I am so excited! My first grandchild has my heart wrapped around his little finger and I am sure my next one will too.
(2) How did you become interested in being a writer?
Harriet: I always loved writing but had so much trouble with spelling and punctuation that I never saw myself as a writer. In high school I would receive two grades on every paper; an A+ for content and a C for writing mechanics. Tired of all the red marks, I majored in nursing in college. But a few years ago, in 2003, to be exact, a loved one suffered a trauma. Her situation drove me to a personal search of prayer as it is explained and portrayed in the Bible. This study took four years and I recorded my findings along the way. At the end of the four years, I had a manuscript written and had caught the writing bug.
I attended a writer’s conference in 2009 where I learned about freelancing small pieces so I came home and tried my hand at it. I sent my first submission in July of 2009 and had my first contract in November of the same year. I fell in love with freelancing nonfiction pieces—articles, short stories, and devotions—and just kept doing it. Today I have hundreds of published pieces and now speak at writer’s conferences about freelancing and devotional writing. I also speak at women’s conferences on the topic of prayer. I am hoping to expand my speaking ministry in the days to come as well as my writing ministry.
I currently have two books available on Amazon. One is a seasonal devotional I co-wrote with a childhood MK (missionary kid) friend, and the other is the manuscript on prayer. Released by Pix N Pens Publishing, it is titled, Prayer: It’s Not About You. I am working on my first fiction book which I hope will be out by the end of 2016. It has a “Call to Missions” theme and is a fictionalized version of my parent’s story.
(3) Can you tell us three unique things about you that we may not know?
Harriet: I lived through a war when I was a child—the Biafran war, I have a bachelors in nursing, work as a substitute teacher at a Christian school, but my passion is writing. And my family is interracial. I have a Nigerian brother and sister-in-law who are now US citizens. Their daughter married a Caucasian a few years ago and just gave birth to a beautiful biracial child, who will be good company for my precious grandson, who is also biracial.
Born in Nigeria, West Africa, as the daughter of missionaries, Harriet E. Michael is a writer, gardener, substitute teacher, wife of over 36 years, mother of four, grandmother of one and soon-to-be grandmother of two.
She holds a BS in nursing from West Virginia University but has discovered her passion for writing. Since her first published article in 2010, she now has over a hundred and fifty published articles and devotions. Her work has appeared in publications by Lifeway, Focus on the Family, David C. Cook Company, Bethany House, Standard Publishing Company, Judson Press, and more.
Harriet is a member of American Christian Fiction Writers and Louisville Christian Writers. She has authored two nonfiction books and is working on more—both nonfiction and fiction.