The Anointing by Martha Mabey
And then in 1982 I wrote a novel about snakes, the Holy Spirit and sex. Called THE ANOINTING, it was published by Dell Books as an original paperback. In it a beautiful young girl with special gifts of seeing and hearing (Moiria Taylor) accompanies her preacher father deep into the Kentucky mountains to confront the leader of a snake-handling church who represents perversity and evil. Moiria meets an innocent young man (Scottie) whose mother is a member of the snake-handling church. Together with the preacher (Hiram Taylor), Moiria and Scottie try to stop the evil and are almost destroyed in the process.
When THE ANOINTING was published, I was certain my career was launched. But something similar to the critical reaction by my fiancé happened. My family and close friends were horrified. “How COULD you write a book like THAT?” they said.
Instead of thinking that maybe I had something interesting to say since people were making such a fuss, (THE ANOINTING is a very scary story--mix sex and spirituality and you've got a really hot topic) I was crushed. My creative juices dried up.
I thought I had only two choices: continue writing from some deep place or loose approval of people I loved.
Forgive me for the decision I made. I was young and scared.
Finally in 1996 I wrote a publishable novel again, and it was mostly for fun.