Welcome to another edition of 3 Questions Wednesday, and welcome Sheila Ingle. Sheila is a multi-published author that likes to write about the bravery of Patriot women. Lets get started!
Who is your favorite author?
Sheila: This is a most difficult questions, because I have so many favorite authors. From age twelve until now, I have been a voracious reader. Every two weeks, mother would take us to the library that summer. I would come home with fifteen books, the library’s limit, every two weeks. Now used book stores and mark downs on Amazon are my favorite shopping places!
On the Anvil was the first book of Max Lucado’s that I read. As the mother of a teenage boy, I felt like I was stuck on an anvil, and the title grabbed me. Lucado’s writings are like that. If it isn’t the title, it’s a story that pierces your heart. And sometimes, it is just one sentence in one chapter. His books have their own shelf on one of my bookcases. I have shared his children’s books, You Are Special, The Crippled Lamb, and Because I Love You in Sunday School classes and ladies Bible studies. This is the third year I have used his daily devotional guided, God is with you Every Day, during my quiet time. Hearing him speak in person two years ago was delightful; his folksy, humorous, and kind voice gave credence to the godly and thoughtful author I had been reading. His honesty about his own mistakes makes me admire him. He is a storyteller, and this narrative style grips both my mind and heart, as well as his heart for individuals. His writing encourages and challenges me.
A couple of years ago, I was introduced to author, Charles Martin. Another talented storyteller and Christian fiction writer. Hard to put down his novels. And admit to staying up way too late to finish one. His characters and plots pull me into the book. Trouble has a critical edge in the plot, and not all the books end up with “they lived happily ever after.” But the struggles are real and poignant and thought-provoking. The details in his research are impeccable, and the settings are genuine. His books are love stories with authentic problems; there are unimaginable twists and turns. Each one has brought me to tears. I haven’t read his latest book, What If It’s True. In this one, he uses his imagination to pierce Jesus’ ministry on earth, as well as Jesus’knock to the author’s life. Yes, it is the next one on my table.
I do love reading anything by Max Lucado, but I haven’t stumbled across Charles Martin yet. I will have to look him up 🙂 Now here’s a fun question—
If you could write about anyone or anything fiction/nonfiction who or what would you write about?
Sheila: I am curious about the strength that makes ordinary people do extraordinary things. In writing about three South Carolina Revolutionary War heroines, I looked for an answer to that conundrum. To put it simply, I believe they did the hard things because that was the next thing. Threatened with a reaping hook around her neck, Martha Bratton refused to tell the Tories where her husband was. Elizabeth Jackson walked into the office of the commander of the Camden prison to demand her two sons be released. Perhaps their hearts overruled their common sense, but they could do nothing else.
So I’m looking for another woman that stood strong in the face of hard times. I have read about a Huguenot woman who fled France with her two brothers and landed penniless in Carolina. Not being familiar with the plight of the Huguenots in a country that was ruled by Catholics, what I have read is fascinating. There was no safety for almost 100 years, and flight became the only option. This is a new branch of our Carolina history that I want to know about, because I believe in knowing and sharing the stories of those who lived out their beliefs. Religious conviction is not to be tampered with. Look at what happened after Martin Luther lit a fire by nailing his complaints against the Catholic church? She might be my next heroine.
I love these ideas! Last question—
If you could spend time with a character from your book or another book whom would it be? And what would you do during that day?
Sheila: Victorian England was not a place for a strong woman like Jane Eyre. As the narrator and protagonist of this book, I applauded her forte. Though as an orphan, she was taught compliance and inferiority by her aunt and cousins, even abused by the household. But Jane had gumption and believed in herself; she knew there was a place and family for her. She could have become Rochester’s mistress, but she wasn’t willing to compromise what she knew was right.
I would like for us to talk over tea and biscuits about this struggle. I have lots of questions. She could have taken the easy way out. Why did she rescue Rochester from the fire? She is described as plain; has this bothered her? Why does she go back to check on Rochester, rather than going on to India? Are the moors depressing? Has she ever wanted more say in her life? What about fighting back against her aunt? How did she keep on keeping on from childhood to adulthood against so many odds? What did she mean when she said, “It is a pity that doing one’s best does not always answer.”
After the questions, perhaps she will want to know about my independent life in the 21st century. Perhaps we could compare her life as a governess and mine as a teacher. I wonder if we have read some of the same books? Knowing I would think her flowing gowns would be beautiful, I wonder what she would think of my clothes. (I do wear long skirts.) My hair is short, and hers is probably long and pinned up.
All this sounds like a time of girl-talk. Maybe we would take a walk, and I might borrow one of her bonnets and parasols. As Jane said once, “I would always rather be happy than dignified.”
This sounds like a happy afternoon to me….
Yes it sure does.. Thanks, Sheila, for visiting us on 3 Questions Wednesday, and allowing our readers to know you better.
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Tales of a Cosmic Possum: From the Appalachia Mountains to the Cotton Mills
Eight short stories of women who worked in the cotton mills in upstate South Carolina share the legacy of three generations of one Appalachian family.
Sheila Ingle’s husband John was brought up in Ingle Holler in Union, South Carolina, with eight other Ingle families. They worked together in the mills, shared their gardens, attended church, and enjoyed the playing and singing of the songs from the Grand Ole Opry. When five of the brothers went off to war, those who couldn’t fight took care of their families. The Ingles stuck together, just like they were taught in the Appalachian hills of Erwin, Tennessee.
Love of God, love of family, and love of country were modelled in each home. In fact, one year Make Ingle put his sons and grandsons together to build Hillside Baptist Church. Adults kept up with the newspapers and the radios; world happenings were important. Any type of sickness brought a barrage of soup and cornbread, because children still had to eat.
On those twenty acres, the children played in the creek, cowboys and Indians, and hide-and-seek. They built their own wagons and sleds to race down the hill on the dry, hickory leaves. All the boys learned to shoot a .22 caliber, and John’s mother Lois could light a match with her shots. Living in Ingle Holler was home, where each one was accepted.
Sheila C. Ingle
A graduate of Converse College with both bachelor’s and master’s degrees, Sheila Ingle is a lifelong resident of S.C.
Her published books, Courageous Kate, Fearless Martha, Brave Elizabeth, and Walking with Eliza focus on the bravery of Patriot women living in Revolutionary War South Carolina. Tales of a Cosmic Possum, not only shares Ingle family history, but also South Carolina and cotton mill history.
Serving on the board for eight years of Children’s Security Blanket (a 501c3 organization that serves families that have children with cancer), she is the Board Chairman. She is also a member of Chapter D PEO, where she served as vice president and chaplain; Circle 555(a local women’s giving group), where she has served on the grant committee; and a board member of Spartanburg County Historical Association, serving on the Walnut Grove Committee.
Married for thirty-eight years to John Ingle, they have one son Scott. Besides being avid readers, the South Carolina beaches are their favorite spots for vacations.