Alumni Spotlight: Keith and Nancy Wood

Nancy (Patton) Wood has loved writing since high school. 

Now with three books and one novella under her belt, she is getting ready to launch her fourth book (the third in a series) this year! 

Based on that number of completed titles, it may surprise you to learn that Nancy is a very recent TBC graduate, having earned her Bachelor’s degree in Interdisciplinary Studies from TBC in 2018.  She actually published her first book while living in the residence hall and earning her degree at TBC!  That is a determination and focus that not all college students possess!

Nancy grew up in Hungary as a missionary kid. 

Her experiences there and her relentless desire to do the right thing, please everyone, and not make a mistake were the inspiration for her first book, “Perfect”.  

It wasn’t long before Nancy recognized similar patterns of insecurity and striving for perfection in many teens today.  This is a burden she has taken to heart. She purposely directs her creativity and love of writing to make a difference in the lives of others, always with the underlying purpose of pointing others to Christ.  While still in college, Nancy had the opportunity to discuss the theme of her book, “Perfect” with groups of teen girls, and that inspired her to do even more.  She now shares blog posts, vlogs, and devotionals regularly in addition to her books.

The past two years have been full of adventure for Nancy. 

One of the most important adventures is her marriage to fellow missionary kid Keith Wood.  Keith spent most of his growing up years in Germany and he graduated from TBC with a bachelor’s degree in Business Management & Ethics in 2018.  He met Nancy in college and they were married in the spring of 2019. 

Like many newlyweds, “What’s next?” was a big question in their minds with no immediate answer. 

But it didn’t stay that way for long.  Within a year, Keith’s interest in philosophy prompted him to apply to Biola’s Talbot School of Theology in Los Angeles. He was quickly accepted to the Master of Arts in Philosophy, which, of course, required a cross-country relocation from Florida to L.A.

Picture of Keith and Nancy
Keith and Nancy Wood

Even though they had traveled extensively during their respective childhoods, neither of them had ever been to California nor had any connections.  With no definite plans set in stone apart from Keith’s acceptance to Biola, the move was an adventure in every sense of the word.  The relocation felt more like a one-way cross-country road trip with lots of question marks on the other end.  Where would they live?  Where would they work?  How would they ever meet anyone? Was this a bad idea?

After a year on the west coast, Keith and Nancy have settled in.

However, they are still learning to navigate the ebb and flow of current restrictions in their area. 

Nancy has found the transition both challenging and enjoyable.  The natural beauty of CA fuels her love for beauty and adventure.  The nearly unlimited options for entertainment is exciting… but March 2020 happened and that has taken a hit.  With so much change in such a short period, she feels like there is no comparison to her life before L.A.

“Literally everything has changed.  Not just the physical move, but even just the way life works now.  It’s completely different.” 

The cultural differences between the two coasts tend to pop up in unexpected ways. 

Keith says one of the marked differences they have noticed has been through their experiences in local churches.  He observes this with a chuckle:

“Everyone talks about CA as the land of the heathen, but we found several solid churches here in our area and have settled in with one that we really love.  One of the unique things we’ve found is how interested church people are in hearing about our salvation experience.  You know, in the south, you show up as a visitor at church and people kind of automatically assume you’re either saved or have a church background of some kind.  Not here.  We have been asked for our salvation testimony more since we’ve been here than at any other time in our lives.  It’s been really interesting.”

Nancy continues to do a lot of what she loves – writing!  

She works as an editor and proofreader and also works on her own books and blog.  Keith is busy with school, work, and making new connections through his love for magic shows and magic – something he was known to demonstrate now and again while at TBC.

For now, life has settled into somewhat of a routine, and the Woods have plans to stay in L.A. for at least 2 more years or until Keith completes his degree.  Then, (if not before), the “What’s Next?” question will come up once again.  If their life since graduation is any indication, they will go far!  We look forward to seeing what that “next” will turn out to be! 

The “Perfect” book series continues the story with the titles “Different” and “Alone”.  The final book in the series, “Focused”, will be released this year. 

She has also published a stand-alone novel, “I’ll Take the Lie”

You can find Nancy’s books, blog entries, and more at https://www.nancyewood.com

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