Ann Levingston Joiner, 1943 - 2015
Ann Levingston Joiner grew up in Orange, Texas, married, had three children, and divorced before moving to Houston. An English teacher, she intensively studied comparative mythology and mythological heroes.
She was born Martha Ann Levingston in 1943, and attended public schools in Orange. She graduated from Luthcher Stark High School in 1961, and attended Lamar University in Beaumont, Texas during 1962 and 1963 before her marriage to William S. Joiner. Her children, two girls and a boy, were born between 1967 and 1971. During the years she was married, she spent much of her time working with such volunteer associations as the Orange Service League, the City of Orange Junior Museum, the Orange Public Library, Orange Memorial Hospital, and the local Salvation Army. Returning to school after her divorce, she earned her BA at Lamar in 1979. While attending, several of Ann's poems were published in the university’s literary magizine, Pulse
. One of those poems, Lady Audrey
, won the school's Eleanor Poetry Award in 1978, a second poem, The Rest Home
, placed third in the same competition. The Rest Home
also won second place in the Texas Creative Writing Teacher’s Association that same year.
In Houston, Ann taught for 14 years at the Aldine Contemporary Education Center, or ACE. As part of her job there, she authored over 25 instructional booklets which were used as textbook supplements for self-paced English classes. After transferring to the district’s night high school, she developed the English and Language Arts portion of the school’s computer-based credit recovery program, and wrote the 10th grade English Supplement for Plato Pathways, a computer software company. It was during this time that she developed interests in comparative mythology and Jungian psychology, both factors which led to the writing of her first books: And Adam was a Gardener
, a fantasy set in her own Northwest Houston area, and A Myth in Action: The Heroic Life of Audie Murphy
, a study of the typical mythological hero as described by mythologist Joseph Campbell and psychologist Rollo May.
She retired in 2002 and moved to San Antonio to be closer to her children. A Myth in Action
was published in 2006.A Myth in Action: The Heroic Life of Audie Murphy
relates the life of a Texas farmboy who enlisted in the Army in 1942. By the end of WWII, at five feet six inches and barely twenty years old, he had been field commissioned and had won more medals for valor than any soldier in American history. Coming home a legend, he spent the rest of his life portraying heroes in Hollywood films. He died tragically at forty-five. His story echoes those of mythological heroes described by comparative mythologist Joseph Campbell (Hero with a Thousand Faces), psychologist Rollo May (The Cry for Myth) and others. Heroes’ lives follow an “archetypal” pattern, from Homer’s Perseus through the Arthurian Percival, to Luke Skywalker—and Audie Murphy.
Find Ann's books here: Amazon.com