Writer Terry A. Degner
Born in northern Minnesota in 1945, writer Terry A. Degner, spent the first three years of his life with his grandparents in the heart of the north woods. At the age of four, he was placed in an orphanage, and later, at the age of eight, he was adopted by a farm family in western Minnesota.
Not able to read or write, Terry repeated second grade, which turned out to be a blessing. His new teacher worked with him after the noon meal for six solid months; at the end of which he was reading, not children’s books, but adult books.
The love of that one teacher changed Terry’s life. Due to her patience and willingness to give up part of her noon break, Terry became an avid reader of both fiction and nonfiction.His adopted mother would stand at the foot of the staircase and shout, “Terry turn off your flashlight and get some sleep.”
He read the Bible from cover to cover by the time he was out of sixth grade, and he gained a reputation at church for throwing lots of questions at the Sunday school teacher. At the age of nine, he asked, “How could Adam and Eve be the first humans on earth, if their firstborn son married the daughter of a local chieftain?” For an answer, the teacher ran to find the pastor.
Once, when he answered a question at school, a fellow student scoffed, “What wall did you scrape that off of?”
The teacher responded, “No, no, I know it’s not in your class book, but he has a good point.”
The Author Finds His Gift
It wasn’t until he took the LSAT test that he found out why he questioned everything. He scored in the top two percent in the nation when it came to identifying incongruence. He also scored high in his ability to quickly grasp the big picture of whatever he happened to be studying or working on. This made it possible for him to take complicated material and simplify it; a gift he went on to use as a writer in the business world.
Terry earned a BA in speech (broadcast) journalism at the University of Minnesota, and he has written and produced hundreds of multimedia and video productions. Terry retired in 2004 but he continues to write. Recently he wrote a book about his life up to the age of eight. Published in 2011, it is titled My Brave Little Man. He is currently working on two more books, one of which he hopes to have published by the end of the year.
Besides writing, the author is a father and grandfather, and occasionally he teaches business to third graders. He also continues to read and is a long-time reader of The Urantia Book.