Yesterday, after completing the fourth of nine interviews for my book, I was left with a feeling that I didn't know my dad's mother at all. I was an adult when she passed away, but I never really knew her. I knew she that she was intelligent, kind, talented and tough, but she was so much more. Though she came from meager means and horrid circumstances, she was nothing short of a genius and a miracle. She was more complex than any character I have read or could create in my wildest dreams. She was a study in contrast--traditional but revolutionary, humble but proud, quick-tempered but tender-hearted, poor but generous,spiritual yet potty-mouthed, cultured but trapped at the end of a gravel road in Pioneer, Louisiana. She was full of spirit, fight and passion until the day she passed into eternity.

I deeply regret that I did not know her in life. I have embarked upon an unexpected adventure, and one book just will not do. I would only be scratching the surface with one book. The world needs to meet this woman because she is an inspiration, a voice that reminds us that we were created to "be somebody." I am so thankful that the Chapmans have great memories. This is my opportunity to know her--through what they can recall. I am much less than halfway through my research, but I'm already proud to have her blood coursing through my veins.