Hickman, Martha Whitmore 1925-
HICKMAN, Martha Whitmore 1925-
PERSONAL: Born December 9, 1925, in Holyoke, MA; daughter of George Deming (a lawyer) and Ruth Olive (Carr) Whitmore; married Hoyt Leon Hickman (a minister of United Methodist Church), December 16, 1950; children: Peter Carr, John Whitmore, Stephen Hoyt, Mary Esther. Education: Mount Holyoke College, B.A. (cum laude), 1947. Politics: Democrat. Religion: United Methodist. Hobbies and other interests: Painting, drawing, swimming, travel.
ADDRESSES: Home—2034 Castleman Dr., Nashville, TN 37215. E-mail—[email protected]
CAREER: Writer. American Baptist Convention, Philadelphia, PA, assistant editor, 1947-50; nursery school teacher in New Haven, CT, 1951-52. Consultant, Information Services, Nashville, TN, 1974-80. Adjunct faculty, Tennessee State University, 1975-76.
AWARDS, HONORS: Friends of American Writers award in Juvenile Division, 1976, for I'm Moving; Golden Kite nomination, 1987, for Lost and Found; Associated Church Press Fiction Award, 1991, for "The Last Hour," and for "The Last Son," 2003.
How to Marry a Minister, Lippincott (Philadelphia, PA), 1968.
Love Speaks Its Voice: The Sights and Sounds of Life, Word, Inc. (Waco, TX), 1976, published as The Growing Season: The Sights and Sounds of Middle Life, Upper Room (Nashville, TN), 1980.
I Will Not Leave You Desolate: Some Thoughts for Grieving Parents, Upper Room (Nashville, TN), 1982.
Waiting and Loving: Thoughts Occasioned by the Illness and Death of a Parent, Upper Room (Nashville, TN), 1984.
Prayers and Devotions for Teachers, Abingdon (Nashville, TN), 1989.
Fullness of Time: Short Stories of Women and Aging, Upper Room (Nashville, TN), 1990, reprinted, Abingdon (Nashville, TN), 1997.
Healing after Loss: Daily Meditations for Working through Grief, Avon (New York, NY), 1994.
Such Good People (novel), Warner Books (New York, NY), 1996.
A Day of Rest: Creating a Spiritual Space in Your Week, Avon (New York, NY), 1999.
Wade in the Water: Fifty-two Reflections on the Faith We Sing, Dimensions for Living (Nashville, TN), 2003.
Contributor to books, including Days of Grass (anthology), Channel Press, 1965; Images: Women in Transition, Upper Room (Nashville, TN), 1976; 365 Meditations for Women, Abingdon, 1989, 365 More Meditations for Women, Abingdon, 1992, and The Storyteller's Companion to the Bible, Abingdon, 1993. Also contributor to periodicals, including Good Housekeeping, Christian Science Monitor, Pastoral Psychology, Presbyterian Life, Christian Herald, Creative Years, Image, and Weavings.
I'm Moving, illustrated by Leigh Grant, Abingdon (Nashville, TN), 1975.
My Friend William Moved Away, illustrated by Bill Myers, Abingdon (Nashville, TN), 1979.
The Reason I'm Not Quite Finished Tying My Shoes, illustrated by Jim Padgett, Abingdon (Nashville, TN), 1981.
When Can Daddy Come Home?, illustrated by Francis Livingston, Abingdon (Nashville, TN), 1983, published as When Andy's Father Went to Prison, illustrated by Larry Raymond, Albert Whitman (Niles, IL), 1990.
Eeps Creeps, It's My Room!, illustrated by Mary Alice Baer, Abingdon (Nashville, TN), 1984.
Last Week My Brother Anthony Died, illustrated by Randie Julien, Abingdon (Nashville, TN), 1984.
(With Nancy Harris Blackwelder) Good Manners for Girls and Boys, Crown (New York, NY), 1985.
When James Allen Whitaker's Grandfather Came to Stay, illustrated by Ron Hester, Abingdon (Nashville, TN), 1985.
When Our Church Building Burned Down, illustrated by Sandra Speidel, Abingdon (Nashville, TN), 1986.
Lost and Found, illustrated by Joe Boddy, Abingdon (Nashville, TN), 1987.
And God Created Squash: How the World Began, illustrated by Giuliano Ferri, Albert Whitman (Niles, IL), 1993.
Robert Lives with His Grandparents, illustrated by Tim Hinton, Albert Whitman (Morton Grove, IL), 1995.
A Baby Born in Bethlehem, illustrated by Giuliano Ferri, Albert Whitman (Morton Grove, IL), 1999.
Then I Think of God, illustrated by Higgins Bond, Albert Whitman (Morton Grove, IL), 2003.
WORK IN PROGRESS: Novel, children's book, and short story.
SIDELIGHTS: Martha Whitmore Hickman writes books for children and adults that look at life-changing events from a Christian perspective. Beginning with the lighthearted How to Marry a Minister, she has moved through the loss of a child and the death of her parents, and has used her own experiences to shape both fiction and nonfiction for people in similar straits. Although she is herself a United Methodist, Hickman writes from a perspective that admits all faiths and creeds into her works.
Hickman's 1996 novel Such Good People tells the story of Laura, a homemaker who has put her career aspirations aside to raise her children and care for her aging mother. When Laura's teenaged daughter dies in an accident, the grieving mother seeks solace and compassion from friends, even as her somewhat distant husband does the same. According to Trudy Bush in Christian Century, Hickman never sentimentalizes either the family dynamic before the teenager's death nor the brutal aftermath of the sudden accident. To quote Bush, "Books, seminars and support groups on loss abound, but few novels deal so sensitively and movingly with the subject. . . . [Hickman's] novel involves us in the feelings and lives of memorable characters, deepening our understanding of life, and our ability to survive its losses."
BIOGRAPHICAL AND CRITICAL SOURCES:
Booklist, March 15, 1993, Julie Corsaro, review of And God Created Squash: How the World Began, p. 1359; February 1, 1996, Lauren Peterson, review of Robert Lives with His Grandparents, p. 938; September 1, 1999, Susan Dove Lempke, review of A Baby Born in Bethlehem, p. 148.
Christian Century, May 14, 1997, Trudy Bush, review of Such Good People, p. 488.
Publishers Weekly, March 15, 1993, review of And God Created Squash, p. 85; March 25, 1996, review of Such Good People, p. 61; February 1, 1999, review of A Day of Rest: Creating a Spiritual Space in Your Week, p. 67; September 27, 1999, review of A Baby Born in Bethlehem, p. 62.
School Library Journal, May, 1993, Patricia Dooley, review of And God Created Squash, p. 85; October, 1999, Lisa Falk, review of A Baby Born in Bethlehem, p. 67.
Martha Whitmore Hickman Web site,http://www.marthawhitmorehickman.com/ (January 28, 2005).