A compliment from her high school English teacher over 50 years ago served as the spark for Page Publishing author, Peggy Baumgardner, to pen her novel “Andersons Survive the Civil War.” Created initially as a high school project assigned to Ms. Baumgardner by her then English teacher Jim Avey, the manuscript was critiqued by Avey with the annotation “Good story. I hope you finish it.” at the top of the paper. Ms. Baumgardner paid little attention to Avey’s words at the time and simply filed her story away with other keepsakes. It wasn’t until decades later that Ms. Baumgardner came across the graded high school paper and decided to elaborate upon and finish the story.
As a tribute to the man who motivated her to complete her novel, Ms. Baumgardner dedicated her book to Mr. Avey, not having seen him in almost 50 years. She looked him up and the two have reunited! Mr. Avey, at the age of 83, agreed to accompany Ms. Baumgardner on her book signing events.