Local author relates life ‘along the dirt road’
Haley Aaron, Hartselle Enquirer
Harold Fanning is a man known for his stories.
He’s been writing and telling stories since his childhood and he has published numerous newspaper and magazine articles over the past 12 to 15 years. For many years, Fanning has entertained his family and friends by retelling stories from his childhood.
However, it wasn’t until 2005 when Fanning published his first collection of short stories, “Life in the Skillet,” that he realized what an effect his writing truly had on others. “It has been amazing to me the reaction that people have to it,” he said. “It makes people feel good, and that’s what it’s all about.”
Fanning’s newest book, “Life Along a Dirt Road,” provides additional stories from the author’s childhood in Lick Skillet.
Snipes and snakes populate the stories, and Fanning provides commentary on Southern life and its occasional peculiarities. From the many uses of discarded tires to the “freight train theory”, “Life Along a Dirt Road” covers a wide range of topics and traditions that will appeal to Southern readers. Many of the experiences Fanning recounts from his childhood will be familiar to readers of his generation.
While Fanning’s stories are primarily meant to provide a humorous account of Southern life, he also uses the stories to introduce spiritual commentary and life lessons at the end of each chapter.
Fanning said there is a great need for humorous and inspirational stories such as his.
He hopes his books will allow those going through difficult or stressful times to find some momentary relief and laughter and from the responses Fanning has received, it seems that his books have served their purpose.
He has received many calls and emails from readers who have enjoyed his books and have funny stories of their own to share. He has started recording many of the best stories and is planning to write another collection of humorous stories, although he is not sure when it will be published.
“Everyone has a story,” he said, “and I’m willing to listen to anybody’s stories.”