Nicole Seitz, Author of Southern Fiction
Home About Books News Events Photos Blog Guestbook Contact

BEYOND MOLASSES CREEK
Reviews and Buzz
Overview
Read an Excerpt
Buy the Book
Reader's Guide/Book Club Questions

THE INHERITANCE OF BEAUTY
Reviews and Buzz
Overview
Read an Excerpt
Buy the Book
Reader's Guide/Book Club Questions

SAVING CICADAS
Reviews and Buzz
Overview
Book Trailer
Read an Excerpt
Buy the Book
Reader's Guide/Book Club Questions

A HUNDRED YEARS OF HAPPINESS
Reviews and Buzz
Overview
Read an Excerpt
Book Trailer
Buy the Book
Reader's Guide/Book Club Questions

TROUBLE THE WATER
Reviews and Buzz
Overview
Read an Excerpt
Buy the Book
Reader's Guide/Book Club Questions

THE SPIRIT OF SWEETGRASS
Reviews and Buzz
Overview and Origin
Read an Excerpt
Buy the Book
Reader's Guide/Book Club Questions
Gullah/Sweetgrass links
Recent Progress in Gullah/Geechee and sweetgrass culture

RECOMMENDATIONS
A Partial List of Authors/Books I Adore

 

 

 

books - The Spirit of Sweetgrass

Overview of The Spirit of Sweetgrass

Essie Mae Laveau Jenkins is a 78-year-old sweetgrass basket weaver who sits on the side of Hwy. 17 in the company of her dead husband, Daddy Jim. Inspired by her Auntie Leona, Essie Mae finally discovers her calling in life and weaves powerful “love baskets,” praying fervently over them to affect the lives of those who visit her roadside stand. When she’s faced with losing her home, her stand, and being put into a nursing home, Daddy Jim talks her into coming on up to Heaven to meet sweet Jesus, something she’s always wanted to do. Once there, she reunites with Gullahs and African ancestors; but soon, her heavenly peace is disrupted. Now Essie Mae, who once felt powerless and invisible, must find the strength within her to keep her South Carolina family from falling apart.

The origin of The Spirit of Sweetgrass

Expecting her second child, Coulter, Nicole was struck with the idea for The Spirit of Sweetgrass while driving home past the quaint roadside stands of Mount Pleasant sweetgrass basket weavers. She recalls a sense of urgency to get it all down--she found a scrap of paper and begin writing while driving. (Do not attempt this at home.) After research (including learning to weave at Boone Hall Plantation), the novel began to take shape.

A month after beginning The Spirit of Sweetgrass, Nicole went on bed rest for the remainder of her pregnancy. She tried to settle in to what might be a very long couple of months. Nicole found she was unable to write, but she reveled in the stories and loving care of a friend of the family, a Lowcountry basket weaver. Just two weeks later, Coulter was born, small but healthy. The circumstances of his birth left Nicole awed and grateful for the blessings of a second chance at life and a healthy child. She soon found the voice of the weaver, Essie Mae, louder and more persistent than ever. She recalls having to wake in the middle of the night to put the story on paper--that of Heaven and family ties.

 

HOME | ABOUT | BOOKS | NEWS | EVENTS | PHOTOS | BLOG | GUESTBOOK | CONTACT | ARTWORK
Copyright © 2007 Nicole Seitz. All rights reserved.
The Spirit of Sweetgrass Trouble the Water, coming February 2008!