“The Gift of Tongues” Author Commentary

Gift of Tongues cover copyEver since I decided to get married instead of go on a mission, I have wanted to write a story about a missionary. I tinkered with ideas of missionaries with magic abilities, but I couldn’t come up with a plot that went beyond the cliché “Your power is good for something!” trope.

While I had planned on submitting to the Mormon Lit Blitz again this year, I didn’t hear the actual call for submissions until two weeks before the deadline. So I madly started to brainstorm and while gardening, I hit on this idea of trading powers, and I really liked it. And then I started to madly write and revise.

The weirdest thing for me was writing this story in present tense. It was a last minute revision, made because I came up with an awesome first line that didn’t work in past tense.

For the interested, the bird that came to visit Sister Morgan is a black-chinned sisken. While looking through Wikimedia commons for a picture of the black-chinned sisken for my cover, I came across this one by Dominic Sherony, and I really liked the creepy vibe it gave. I use it under a creative commons license.

Many thanks to my beta readers Julia Jeffery, John Parsons, Emily Debenham, and Daniel Lemmon (who corrected my Chilean dialect). I dedicate this story to all the sister missionaries who choose to serve, and especially my cousin Morgan.