southern writers

Who would have thought that years in corporate America would be the business background of a newly-published Gwinnett author?

Michael Brown
Michael Brown

Michael Brown, a Loganville, Ga resident, has now had two books published. We read his Somewhere a River, a 268 page novel from Deeds Publishing of Atlanta, and found it most enthralling. It is set in Alabama, the story turning around growing up in the South, high school and college football, and the entanglements we can get ourselves in both when younger and afterward. Later parts of the story take place in a different setting… Wyoming, of all places, as a struggling Southerner finds redemption and contentment where he does not expect it. It’s a story, somewhat haunting, that develops out of, and makes sense in, the modern world.

Part of the setting of this book it at an Alabama college, where a football coach who wears a checkered hat has teams that find success. Somehow this guy is never named… but you get the idea.

Brown writes about this naturally, since he grew up in Birmingham, graduated from the University of Alabama, and became an industrial engineer, never thinking that one day he would turn to writing.

For 34 years he and his wife, the former Judy Whitehurst from Macon, lived in Lilburn before moving to Loganville 11 years ago. Brown was with Frito Lay, Zep Manufacturing and the Sports Authority before retirement, and Judy ran a floor covering business out of their home, which they continue today.

Looking back at his career, Brown, at age 73, says that “writing fills a void in my life. There was nothing like it in my background, in that I never wanted to be an English teacher or even have a writing career.

But I found a pleasure out of hunt-and-peck writing these stories, which really come from my background when growing up. It took about nine months to write the first book. I haven’t done it to be a big deal trying to make money and I don’t like tooting my own horn. I simply want to write to have people enjoy the story.”

Michael-Brown-BooksHis first book, Promise of Silver, was published after Somewhere a River. The first book is situated on the Georgia coast, the story of two seniors who meet in a retirement community, and have a second romance. The title comes from the man seeing “silver” not gray, in his new friend’s hair.

These days Michael Brown is wrapping up a sequel to the Silver book, set in the North Georgia mountains. This one will be titled Promise of the Hills. Michael is also beginning to think about a plot for a fourth book.

Once starting to write, he turned to the members of the Atlanta Writer’s Club to help his efforts. That was seven or eight years ago. He found difficulty in getting published while friends were getting published out of the club. He says the Writer’s Club was most beneficial to him. “Several groups critiqued my work, and basically, these people taught me how to write, especially about developing a plot and characters and to create interest for the reader. I had to learn that.”

Now Michael Brown is soon to take the leadership in the Atlanta Writer’s Club, as the incoming president beginning this month. The group has over 700 members, and meets monthly at Perimeter College in Dunwoody.

For more about Somewhere a River, go to The books are available online and in softback form.

Editor's Note: This story originally published at the Gwinnett Forum.
Elliott Brack

Elliott Brack

Elliott Brack is a native Georgian and veteran newspaperman. He published the weekly Wayne County Press for 12 years; was for 13 years the vice president and general manager of Gwinnett Daily News, and for 13 years was associate publisher of the Gwinnett section of The Atlanta Journal and Constitution. He now publishes, in retirement, Web sites on Gwinnett County,, and Georgia news,