MGC’S JOY WILSON-YOUNG PUBLISHED IN FRONT PORCH JOURNAL
(Cochran, GA) – Joy Wilson-Young, a Middle Georgia College associate professor of English, has had her story “Water Ransom” published in Front Porch Journal’s Spring edition.
“Water Ransom” is a nonfiction piece about Wilson-Young’s mother who, after retirement, moved to Oklahoma and struggled with getting the water turned on at her house. “I was shocked when my mother moved into her home in Oklahoma and discovered that because her home is just outside of the city limits she would not be able to simply pay a moderate fee and have her water turned on,” she said. “Instead, she had to pay a Co-op for water.”
Wilson-Young was surprised that the Co-op charged her mother $1700.00 for water hookup, when all that was needed to be done was to flip a switch for water. “The lines are in place, the former owners of the home had water, and there is no digging required for this service,” she said. “Someone in an office just needs to radio in the request and a field member will flip a switch for water. Somehow, this $1700 deposit will cover that work.”
Outraged, Wilson-Young began to research water shortages in America, and was shocked at what she found. “Not only are water reservoirs in rural areas of the U.S. drying up, they’re drying up because of inadequate infrastructure built by Co-ops and Water Companies, poor rural planning, and the damming of rivers and tributaries,” she said. “Because there is little, or no, government regulation on water, these companies can charge whatever they want to customers. “
Although families living in rural communities have the option to drill on their land in hopes of finding a water source, many cannot afford the money for the equipment, said Wilson-Young. In addition, many people without water are living in urban areas, where they are unable to dig wells. “So my mother, who served as a government employee for over 20 years, is living without water in a country that touts itself as being developed,” she said. “I couldn’t remain quiet about that issue.”
Wilson-Young earned her B.A. in English from the University of California, and has a M.F.A. in Creative Writing from the University of Mississippi. Her work has been published online and in print, including “The Whistling Fire,” “Apple Valley Review,” and “Damselfly Press.”
Dr. Crystal O’Leary Davidson, the MGC Humanities Division Chair, said of Wilson-Young’s publication, “It’s a nationally recognized journal and we are very proud of her contribution.”
Front Porch Journal is the online literary journal of Texas State University’s M.F.A program and features fiction, nonfiction, poetry, and reviews. The newest issue featuring Wilson-Young as well as Joyce Carol Oates and Sherman Alexie can be found at www.frontporchjournal.com.