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King University News :: King Student Publishes First Book in Trilogy

BRISTOL, Tenn. Oct. 24, 2014 – When Hanna Martin had the idea for her book first book in eighth grade she never realized it would eventually be published. The senior from Oklahoma published her first book in a trilogy this past summer titled “Pierced” under the name Cam A. Stekk. Martin says that King and its professors played a significant role in making the publishing of her book a reality.

The professors and advisors at King have played a role in giving her the motivation to publish this book, including Wendy Traynor, Dr. John Gilmore, Dr. Simeon Pickard, Finley Green, and Drs. Joseph and Vanessa Fitsanakis. She said, “They genuinely care about how I am doing and want to see me succeed.” However, when it comes to her book, the main motivator was Dr. Vanessa Fitsanakis, associate professor of Biology. “When I finished the book last January, I told her about it and she was immediately giving me ideas about what I should do, how I should send it in, and ideas about a cover letter,” said Martin. “It was really cool to not only have someone who thought I should get it published, but also whole-heartedly believed that I could get it published. It was something that gave me the motivation to believe in myself, and that’s why I ended up self-publishing.”

Martin decided to publish the book under the name Cam A. Stekk to prevent comparison from future books that she is perusing to write in a different genre. “Cam A. Stekk came from all the initials of different people that have been an inspiration me,” says Martin. “So every time I see the name it reminds me that the book is not just about me but about everyone that has positively impacted me while writing this book.”

Martin will be graduating in the December with a Neuroscience major. Although her major at King does not coincide with publishing a book Martin says, “I love writing, but I haven’t enjoyed English classes and that is main reason that I never perused a degree in it. However, I have always had a passion for it growing up with my brother and making up whimsical stories for fun and then writing them.”

When she first got the idea for the first book she was running an errand for her art teacher in eighth grade. She immediately wrote her idea down. The prologue for the first book is what she wrote in the eighth grade.

The book is a spiritual fantasy that deals with angels and what it means to live a life to the fullest extent. The angels in the book experience many hard times, but they always display the trait that no matter how many times you knock them down they get back up and stay strong.  The series is about struggle and that bad things happen to people, but if you have one happy, bright spot in your life you can make it through any situation.

“I want them to be able to look at Serenity, the main heroine of the book, and realize that she went through some hard situations, but it never kept her down,” said Martin, when asked what she wants readers to take away from the book. “The story or situations in the first book may not make sense until the second or third book; but, after finishing the trilogy I want readers to take aspects of inspiration and perseverance from the characters. I want the books to impact the reader’s life in a positive and spiritual way.”

Martin is very passionate about her writing her stories and deeply immerses herself into her writing. She describes herself as a “great multitasker” making it easy to balance writing a trilogy, as well as her difficult course load from her neuroscience major. She does not force her writing process and will multitask by doing homework as well as writing when ideas for her book come into her head. She finished the second book six months after completing the first and is now in the middle on the third and last of the trilogy.  In addition to writing the trilogy, she is in the process of writing a contemporary Christian story that is loosely based off of her own life experiences that she hopes to pursue publishing after the trilogy is complete.

After graduating in December, Martin wants to continue writing as a hobby, but peruse a career in research alternative treatment methods for special needs children. She wants to teach children struggling with problems such as ADHD to use their brain the way it is without the alterations of medication.

Martin wants all of her readers and fellow writers to know that no matter what you goals are, don’t let anyone tell you that you can’t do something. “We are all capable of really great things, but the world around us as well as ourselves beat us down,” says Martin. “If you believe in yourself you can do anything. One of the greatest gifts God gave us is our force of will. Crossing the barrier can be the hardest thing, but it is possible if you believe in yourself.”