More than 60 people gathered at the First Assembly of God on Friday night to welcome best-selling author Wm. Paul Young during a Scott City stop on the signing tour for his new best-seller "Cross Roads."
Young's first book, "The Shack," sold more than 18 million copies and has been translated into 41 languages. 'Cross Roads', his second book, came out on Nov. 13 and currently sits at No. 10 on The New York Times Best Seller list. It has been translated into 20 languages.
Pastor Randy Morse connected with Young through a mutual friend, and it worked out that Young had some time open in his upcoming book tour and added Scott City as a stop.
Scott City residents Amber Edgar, 18, and Keyton Livingston, 17, attended the signing. Livingston brought his copy of "The Shack" to the gathering.
"I haven't read the new one," Livingston said. "This one ("The Shack") was inspiring. It actually made me believe in God more than I did."
Young wrote "The Shack" as a Christmas gift for his children at his wife's request. He had 15 copies printed at Office Depot and gave six copies to the children. It started a chain of events.
"It was a God thing right from the start," said Young.
In 2007, it was published after being turned down 26 times. The secular publishers turned it down because it was too edgy, and the other publishers declined it because it was too religious.
The imagery in the book is disquieting to some readers.
"Good fiction, music, creative arts all push the boundaries out," Young said.
A new member of First Assembly, Debbie Anderson from Scott City, was impressed with Young's first book.
"It was powerful. Such a unique take on the trinity. I realize it was controversial in some circles. It made me think, could I do this, could I get through this?" Anderson said. "The power of forgiveness and how it can set you free."
Young said success has not changed his life in any way that really matters.
"Everything important was already in place before I wrote the book," Young said. "I don't write with an agenda. I answer questions and see where it takes me."
In "Cross Roads," the story centers on a man who falls into a coma and his journey examining the choices he has made in his lifetime.
On Friday afternoon Young spoke to Scott City junior and senior high school students during an assembly.
"They were fastened to him," Morse said. "He had their total attention."