For Killeen resident and military spouse Miriam “Miso” Nowon, writing is a way of life. From a very young age, Nowan wrote short stories before turning to poetry, songwriting, and most recently, a children’s book.
“Honey in the Woods” started as an assignment at Florida State College at Jacksonville where Nowon was attending for a certification in creative writing in 2012.
Soon, the idea began to flourish into an interactive fairy tale, rich with vocabulary, Spanish and reader creativity.
“I’m so excited that I’ve achieved my dream,” said Nowon. “Persistence is just the most important thing. It took me from 2012 to 2017 to have this project realized. If you’ve got it in you, you just have to keep doing it and love it.”
The book follows a little girl who meets three bears while venturing into the woods in search of the perfect flower for her mother. The “color and read” book unfolds in a blend of literacy, storytelling and lessons in friendship and the healthy parent-child relationship.
Nowon said she owes the book to her daughter, Jada Solomon, 11, who is the inspiration for the main character.
“Had my daughter not been in my life, I don’t think this story would have came out at all,” said Nowon. “She was a huge part of it and she’s been able to see process as time has gone on. Now, since she’s older, she’s able to help with creative design, editing, website creation and social media set-ups.
“I wanted to show her that it all starts with an idea in your head and that we were able to manifest this idea with our hands. I’m glad that we were able to share that and grow together.”
“Honey in the Woods” was made possible by a crowdfunding kickstarter campaign Nowon created in October. She set out with a goal of $625 and ended with $960. She said the book was a collective effort with help from her college professor, her daughter, mother, husband, friends, publishing coach, mentors and local teachers and parents from the Killeen Independent School District.
“I think the nicest thing about it all was getting people that supported me but didn’t know me,” Nowan said. “It was awesome to see these people believing in and supporting the project. I couldn’t believe it. ... Because we had an overflow, we give coloring pencils to each child that purchases the book while supplies last so they can start coloring. I’m able to say a little thank you that way.”
She wrote the book under the pen name Miso Agogo, and it was illustrated by Kade Norman.
Nowon is a Florida and Georgia native and a military spouse, mother, and freelance editor living in Killeen. She holds a bachelor’s degree in English, creative writing and drama. Nowon’s next steps are to publish “Honey in the Woods” in multiple foreign languages and to produce a play based on the story.
Copies of the book may be purchased at www.honeyinthewoods.com and on Etsy.