As a Christian, wife, mother, former nurse, and lifelong volunteer, Marci shares her unique insights, servant’s heart, and love for God’s world through her writing. Her devotionals have appeared on SermonIllustrator.org. She and her husband Jeff have three wonderful sons and recently celebrated their thirtieth wedding anniversary.
Marci’s ability to relate easily with others, combined with her willingness to work diligently in any capacity, has exposed her to a rich tapestry of life experiences and gifted her with diverse skillsets and unique perspectives. Whether she’s brainstorming with surgeons about vascular health issues, encouraging stroke survivors, leading workshops, critiquing doctoral sermons, working on healing/prayer ministry teams, or guiding palliative care patients and families through their end of life journeys, she carries the fragrance of compassion, discernment, and respect into all of life’s endeavours.
Marci’s keenly trained nurse’s eye and documentation skills capture the details and nuances of her surroundings. Filtered through a Christian heart, she transforms simple observations into inspiring relatable stories.
Author Marci Maxwell has just published her first book, Keeping the Crocodiles at Bay. Word Alive Press sat down with her to discuss her writing process and find out what’s next for her!
WAP: Who do you think this story will resonate with and why?
MM: Although this story is about our family’s journey following an unexpected health crisis, I believe the elements contained within it hold universal appeal. Like an onion being peeled, it’s a rich story about the human condition and complexities of life. It exposes the challenges and blessings of relationships with others, self, God, and the world around us. The clinical aspects of the story will resonate with anyone involved in the healthcare system, as well as those who move through the system as a patient or with a loved one.
WAP: Why crocodiles? At what point in your family’s journey did the idea of crocodiles first come to you?
MM: Great question! The idea came to me almost immediately, because as a child I was genuinely afraid of the imaginary crocodiles hiding under my bed. Crocodiles were a perfect metaphor for this story because of their appearance and nature. Some crocodiles are big and aggressive. Others lie submerged in the water, in silence, waiting for an opportunity to attack. Although these crocodiles pose differing degrees of danger, they all seem to be smiling! People do this, too, in their own way; sometimes we see it and sometimes it takes us by surprise. When we come under crises and struggle to navigate the unfamiliar, it can feel like being thrown into murky waters filled with life’s crocodiles.
WAP: Which crocodile posed the biggest danger to you as you struggled to keep all the crocodiles at bay?
MM: Hands down, it was the crocodile of betrayal. A wounded heart affects one’s outlook on life and the choices one makes. It really makes walking in love an intentional choice that is made minute by minute. Forgiveness plays a huge part of overcoming the crocodile of betrayal.
WAP: Now that Keeping the Crocodiles at Bay is published, what’s next for you? Do you have any other books planned?
MM: I’m currently working on a companion book called Crocodile Wisdom. Over the next few months, I’ll be travelling for book signings and speaking engagements. I’ve finished a series of Mr. Muggzie stories for children and have tucked them away while I work on the illustrations. As God speaks to my heart, I write devotionals and share them on SermonIllustrator.org. I am blessed to be able to do all these things while also enjoying my life with Jeff. Blessed is the man who trusts in the Lord.
WAP: How would you describe your publishing experience?
MM: Publishing my first book with Word Alive Press was a tremendous experience. Navigating the ins and outs of the publishing industry can be time-consuming and overwhelming. The good folks at WAP made the entire process of transforming my manuscript into a real book a pleasure. The process and timelines were well laid out and a support person was designated and available to help me every step along the way. I’m looking forward to the next phase of the publishing journey—meeting and chatting with people at book signings and events.
WAP: Do you have any advice for new writers?
MM: My only suggestion would be to follow your heart and write what you know and love. When the act of writing and creating something brings you joy, you’ve already achieved a measure of success. The learning curve is almost a vertical line for the untrained writer, so being passionate about your subject is really helpful. Enjoy the journey.
Keeping the Crocodiles at Bay is available through Amazon, Chapters/Indigo, and wherever fine Christian books are sold.
Marci Maxwell is the author of Keeping the Crocodiles at Bay. As a Christian, wife, mother, former nurse, and lifelong volunteer, Marci shares her unique insights, servant’s heart, and love for God’s world through her writing.