The ponderings of a local school teacher turned into a promise to his nephew. That promise has now turned into a book.
New author Jake Wiens will launch his first title, this coming week. It is titled Life's Ultimate Questions: Exploring The Stories That Shape Our Everyday.
It was a response to the intellectual challenges his nephew was raising while stepping outside the Christian faith he had been raised in. Wiens said problem-solving was built into his nature, so addressing his loved one's loss of faith was almost automatic.
The mechanics of writing a book are at once specific and complex. It takes a lot of work. The wish to write a book can come on a whim, but actually accomplishing the feat requires dedication, commitment and toil.
Wiens had a head start.
"I'm a journaling person," he said. "I like to process life - the troubles that come your way, the insights that come your way - by turning to a journal. I collected these little articles over the years. After awhile I started to ask the question how can we, the older generation, help the younger generation stay true to their convictions? That's when my promise was made to my nephew."
He said no one in his circle of friends and family is more surprised than himself to see his name on the front cover of a book. He didn't set out to be an author when he was journaling, or even when he told his nephew he was going to try answering the questions and issues about faith with which the youth was wrestling.
"What's happening in culture? What's happening in Christianity? What's happening in the world? I look at those things," said Wiens, who taught school in both the public and the private arenas, most recently at Cedars Christian School.
Life's Ultimate Questions is a point-by-point case made for Christian belief. He was already committing these contemplations to paper in his habit of journaling, he just had to smooth out the themes and line up the musings in a logical order. Then he self-published the book using the Friesen Press service.
"I'm anxious to hear some meaningful feedback now that it's out in print," he said.
The public gets their first opportunity to take in Life's Ultimate Questions at the official book launch tonight at Art Space (upstairs at Books & Company).
Mingling gets underway at 7 p.m. followed by a short author's talk by Wiens at 7:30. He will follow the audience's lead as he answers any questions, discusses the topics between the covers, offers thoughts about the writing process, and signs anyone's copy.
There is no admission to the event. Books & Company staff will be on hand to sell copies of this brand new title in the library of local writers.