The Narrow Journey

a novel


Deborah Clawson Johnson
















Lucie's Photo Album






Author Biography


I was born and raised in Lake Charles, Louisiana long before being Cajun was cool. As a true child of the 60's, it took many years for me to finally figure out what I wanted to be when I grew up. Until that time I tried all sorts of things: I went to school and almost got a degree, got married and went back to school and DID get a degree, had two exceptionally wonderful daughters and worked hard to raise them, became a teacher, got more degrees, and somewhere along the way discovered an insanity called writing. It wasn't something I consciously chose to do; it kind of found me. My Cajun background is one with a long oral tradition, so it shouldn't have come as a surprise that storytelling was something I was drawn to, but it did. For a long time I fought it, ignored it, denied it, hid its effects in my desk drawer, but it would not go away. And here I am.

I've been writing steadily for the last fifteen years. I've have my work published in several local and regional newspapers and magazines. I've also been fortunate enough to win a few awards for my work including the South Carolina Arts Commission's Fiction Project Award in 1991 and 1993, the Green River Writer's Competition for Short Fiction in 1994, and in April was awarded third place for the Novel/Novella at the Sandhills Writer's Conference in Augusta, Georgia.

I live in Columbia, South Carolina with my patient and understanding husband and two beautiful daughters. And while writing is still my first love (after my family, of course), I teach to help put bread on the table.

The Narrow Journey, is my first novel. While I wait to see where that journey leads, I'm hard at work on a new book.








What do you do when you are 16 years old, plain as the underside of a flat rock, lust after your sister's fiancé, are poor, ignorant, and illiterate, determined to get away from your miserable life in Louisiana, and the year is 1877? The Narrow Journey is a story about the resiliency of youth, the story of a young Cajun girl named Lucie Trosclair and how she survives the narrow journey we all must travel to adulthood by sheer determination, a quick wit, a sharp tongue, and a wicked sense of humor.

The Narrow Journey chronicles Lucie's search for self-worth and her desire to rise above her life of poverty. One of eleven children, Lucie is thrust from the nest at an early age due to circumstances set in motion by the death of her father and her own over-active libido. Like everyone else in her family, Lucie cannot read or write, but neither her illiteracy nor her poverty can dull the relentless hunger she has to see the world beyond Barrineau, Louisiana. Being a particularly unattractive girl only further serves to whet her appetite.

Her journey takes her from the swamps of Louisiana to the gambling dens of New Orleans to the brothels of Leavenworth, Kansas to the silver mining camps of the Colorado Rockies. Along Lucie's meandering route through Life she meets alligator wrestlers, gypsy faith healers, saloon keepers, prostitutes, buffalo hunters, Cajun cowboys, a peg-legged chef who wears a prosthesis named Louis XIV, and lots of just plain folks. The story is told in Lucie's own words: the language of humor, compassion and an iron-willed determination. Lucie is, above all, a survivor, and come hell or high water she aims to do just that . . . survive!

Click here to see pictures from Lucie's Photo Album.






How to Order


The Narrow Journey can be ordered from HERE

By phone=1-888-795-4274 ext. 273



The cost per book is $16.00 US for trade paperback, plus $4.95 shipping and handling (shipping costs increase with additional books ordered), or $10.00 for the electronic version.

Bookstores and qualified wholesalers may order books at a discount. Please phone to receive the discount.

The book is also available at the following places: In Association with

Barnes & Noble








What is Xlibris? Xlibris is a print on-demand and e-publisher. This means that as each copy of the book is ordered, it is printed and shipped. Xlibris also offers the book in electronic PDF version. Thanks to Xlibris and companies like them, authors can now enjoy greater control over their work and its publication. If you would like to learn more about the publishing possibilities offered by Xlibris, visit their web site at






Excerpts from The Narrow Journey

and Other Works of Fiction



The Narrow Journey - Chapter One "Lucie"

The Narrow Journey - Chapter Five "Charles"

Crossing Abbey Road - short story

Second Sight - short story

Lucie's Photo Album






Favorite Links



The Louisiana and Cajun Web Site Directory

Josie Belle Coffman's Site - Dyke Duffy and the Dog Days of Killarmon


Louisiana Hot Links - Your "Link" to Central and South Louisiana

Terry D. Broussard - Photography of Acadian (Cajun) People, Homes, Churches, etc...

Cajunlou - Welcome To My Front Porch, A Cajun Experience

Bayou Productions

The Gumbo Pot - KBON 101.0 FM - Eunice, LA

Dan Stevenson & Friends - Columbia Area Writers & Artists







Charleston Daily News

(please scroll down the page in order to locate the review)

Lagniappe Magazine, "December, 2000"

The Country Chronicle, "February, 2001"

The Star Reporter, "March 29, 2001"

Lake Charles American Press, "April 6, 2001"

Baton Rouge Advocate, "April 29, 2001"




Book Signings

December 9, 2000 - Publication Party & Book Signing

April 5, 2001 - 5-7 PM at The Happy Bookseller in Columbia, SC

April 8, 2001 - 3-5 PM at Books-A-Million in Lake Charles, LA

April 9 & 10, 2001 - LaGrange High School in Lake Charles, LA

April 13, 2001 - 12-2 PM at Books-A-Million in Alexandria, LA

April 21-22, 2001 - SC Humanities Council Book Festival

May 7, 2001 - Greenwood Book Club, Greenwood, SC

June 25, 2001 - University of South Carolina Library School, Columbia, SC

September 6, 2001 - Kershaw County Friends of the Library, Camden, SC

September 12, 2001 - Shepherd's Center, Columbia, SC

September 15, 2001 - Marion County Friends of the Library, Marion, SC

October 18, 2001 - Pawley's Island Friends of the Library, Pawley's Island, SC

October 23, 2001 - Allendale Women's Study Group, Allendale, SC

October 25, 2001 - Devine Literary Society, Columbia, SC

October 30, 2001 - Walterboro Friends of the Library, Walterboro, SC

November 13, 2001 - "Histories & Mysteries" - Richland County Public Library, Columbia, SC







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