COLUMBUS, GA (WTVM) - After several setbacks because of some bad life choices involving drugs and alcohol, a Columbus man says he's a changed person with a goal to inspire others with a new book he wrote, titled "A Story of Hope."
Norman Quarles of Columbus spent several years behind bars and hopes his first book will help keep other from making bad choices. This is in a city where there have been seven homicides this year, according to recent crime stats.
Quarles knows what it's like to live reckless and without a care in the world. He overcame several addictions to drugs and alcohol, and even claimed to be a big time drug dealer.
"I started selling drugs when I was 13 years old in the late 80s. I started using drugs around the same time. It progressed into real stronghold and addictions. I found myself making less money and doing more drugs," said Quarles.
But one day, he says it was the power of God that prompted him to change his life once and for all.
"Because he said your story can give hope to another person to let them know that they can come out of the situations and environments that they are trapped in," explained Quarles.
Quarles, now an ordained minister in Columbus, documented his past experiences in a book that took three years to write.
In the pages of his book, Quarles talks about three separate prison sentences for drug related offenses and hopes this book inspires change and hope in others headed in the wrong direction.
"We had a lot of murders recently and the association of people, the places you go, all of these things have to be thought about before you go out into a situation where they're can be potential danger," said Quarles.
Besides his book, he also mentors those living in his own neighborhood, the Wilson homes, a housing project in Columbus.
"I just ask God to point me to the one's he's trying to deal with at that moment" said Quarles.
Quarles hopes the 53-page book will having a lasting impact on our community and says his pastor Ann Hardman helped bring his story to the public.
"She's able with her publishing company and with the resources she has to be able to bring this book to fruition," said Quarles.
Quarles says the book should be available for order in the next two weeks. Norman Quarles can be reached at QuarlesNorman@yahoo.com.
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