Author signs in Selma

Published 9:30 pm Friday, July 31, 2009

Michele Waters never meant to become an author.

“I already had a career,” she laughed. “I didn’t even know I could write.”

But when life overwhelmed her — investing in a real estate project, the housing market going crazy and tenants walking out — she had to have something to settle her down.

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“I felt like I couldn’t turn my brain off,” Waters said.

She began writing.

The result of that is the self-published novel “Can’t Let Go.”

Now, the California native with Selma roots has returned home to sell her book. The Frame Shoppe hosted a book signing for her Friday. She’ll appear at The Selma Mall today from 4 to 8 p.m.

“We were happy to do this,” said Steve Grossman, who co-owns The Frame Shoppe with his wife, Laura. “We are glad she has come back to sell her book. It’s a good one. I’ve read it.”

Waters is the granddaughter of David Hall. Most people know him as the owner of the property that was the first campsite for protestors during the Selma-to-Montgomery march in 1965.

Waters said she is proud of her grandfather for his part in the struggle.

“For many people, when they hear of what Granddaddy did, it seems like it’s not much,” she said. “But to me and my family, it was a lot. My grandfather was strong, brave and giving. There were so many men and women who lost their lives during that time and he took such a brave stand in what could have led to his own death as well.”

Hall offered his land as a resting place for marchers after he observed the clash between law enforcement officers and protestors on what has become known as “Bloody Sunday.” Now that land is a historic site.

Her novel, “Can’t Let Go,” is purely fiction, Waters said, although she admits she put some of herself into the story of characters who try to let go, but can’t because of the destructive obstacles in their way.

She’s working on another novel now about an interracial couple, born and raised in Selma, but they move to California. Their child is grown and has discovered a secret about her parents. But that’s all Waters will reveal.

“It’s going to be quite interesting,” she said.