Local woman publishes first novel

Jami Christine

Jami Christine Papenberg (Heidel), of Red Bud, had a unique dream since childhood of one day being a published author. Finally, at age 34, she fulfilled that dream by publishing her first of hopefully many novels on Nov. 11, 2020.

“The Transcendent is a story about a 17 year old girl with the unique, yet involuntary, ability to assist souls to the Other Side when they’re dying alone, all while leaving her physical body behind in a daze until her own spirit returns when the job is complete,” Jami explained. The idea was inspired after she was present, along with other family members, for her grandmother’s passing in 2013. “Granny left this world with her loved ones surrounding her. It made me wonder what happens when people die alone. That’s what sparked the idea to create a character who takes care of that issue, and a story unfolded from there.”

Like most authors do, Jami infused a bit of herself in each character, from personal life experiences as well as the lessons she’s learned from them. Jami explained further, “This is a story about accepting life’s hardships as opportunities for growth rather than setbacks, becoming stronger and wiser through pain, and finding blessings in challenges. It is about self-love, spiritual growth and compassion toward each individual’s unique journey through life.”

For more on this story, please see this week’s print edition.