2013-02-06 / Local & State

Wells Tannery Man Pens First Book

Christian fiction book “The Jesus Rock” a hit with local residents
By Chanin Rotz-Mountz

Cover of “The Jesus Rock,’’ a Christian fiction book written by Dana Ford Cover of “The Jesus Rock,’’ a Christian fiction book written by Dana Ford NEWS EDITOR

A technical writer by trade, Wells Tannery resident Dana Ford has always possessed the gift of prose. Whether it was his first attempt at co-authoring a book with a fifth-grade classmate or penning feature articles on unique cars in Gasser Magazine, Ford’s passion for writing is evident even in his most recent work.

Putting word to paper in his very first published book called “The Jesus Rock,” Ford shares with readers the life and struggles of Big Jim Dunning. A character described as unforgettable with an “imposing persona,” Dunning’s life is turned upside down in this Christian fiction piece available to the public only last month.

Ford, 55, admits that he never really took his writing seriously until several years ago. Taking his natural talent for writing granted at times, Ford said he has been blessed with a handful of mentors dating back to an excellent high school English teacher to several college professors who “polished his abilities and encouraged him to write.”

“ Several years ago, I wrote a short story for a literature class I was taking. Part of the exercise was for the class to exchange their stories with classmates and critique them. When several of my classmates told me privately that my story moved them to tears, it really took me by surprise. It was at that moment that I thought that maybe I should take my writing more seriously,” Ford told the “News.”

Ford, who writes under the name D.L. Ford, said the title for “The Jesus Rock” actually came to him before there was even a story line or Big Jim Dunning character.

“I was just thinking about what kind of story it would be one day, and the character just came to me all at once. The rest of the story flowed from there,” stated Ford, who added that he didn’t exactly chose Christian fiction as a genre. In fact, he believes that Christian fiction chose him.

“I was actually working on a sports-related book when the inspiration for this one came to me. My favorite author is Frank Peretti, so this is a genre I have some familiarity with, at least from the consumer perspective,” Ford said.

Typing the first words of “The Jesus Rock” in July of 2012, Ford picked up his writing efforts several months later in September, vowing to write at least 400 words daily. His dedication paid off as an initial draft was ready around Thanksgiving, and the book was subsequently released to the public last month.

“It’s hard to describe the feeling of holding a proof copy of the book and seeing what the finished product would look like for the first time. It was very exciting,” Ford exclaimed.

“The Jesus Rock” is available through Amazon.com for $8.50 in paperback and $2.99 for the Kindle edition. Amazon Prime subscribers can also borrow the book for free. Local residents interested in purchasing the book can contact Ford directly or like “The Jesus Rock” Facebook page for more information.

The reaction from northern Fulton County residents and the surrounding community has been nothing but supportive. The sheer excitement of this adventure leaves the local author hopeful that readers will enjoy the positivity and lessons learned by Big Jim Dunning, especially the power of prayer and God’s unconditional love. Even though he would like to return to working on the sports-themed book he previously began, Ford concluded he’s pretty sure Dunning’s character will undergo additional adventures in the future.

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