Thomasville woman goes from trucker to successful author

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THOMASVILLE, N.C. -- When you walk into Rotha's Formal and Tuxedo in Thomasville, you see rows of tuxedos and white dress shirts on one side of the store. On the other side, long evening gowns hang gracefully. Above the gowns, there's a picture of Rotha Dawkins' former career.

"I wasn't there too long before I realized that it was too costly to have someone deliver for me and to rent the vehicles," Dawkins said. "So I just bought a truck."

For 15 years, Dawkins drove her big rig to New York to deliver furniture. And when she got there, Dawkins was dressed for success.

"Most of the time when I arrived in New York, it would be important for me to be dressed up because I would be meeting customers and people," Dawkins said.

Dawkins would wear pantsuits and dresses. But it was her shoes that got all of the attention.

"I became known as, 'Here comes red high heels.' And it was a lot of fun too," Dawkins said.

That's right, Dawkins drove a truck from North Carolina to New York while wearing red high heels. The shoes sort of took on a life of their own. Friends encouraged her to write a book about her travels. It only made sense that the title of the first book had to be...

"'Red High Heels' is about a woman that blindly starts in the trucking industry with a rental truck," Dawkins said.

"Red High Heels" turned into a series. Dawkins wrote other books too like cookbooks and how to make your own doggie clothes. But it's her novels about trucking that mean the most. Dawkins explained trucking is a career path women should consider.

"There's good money in driving a truck. Companies are very kind to lady drivers and they will work with you if you have family. Investigate it," Dawkins said.

The main lesson Dawkins learned during her 15-year big rig driving career, be comfortable behind the wheel.

"Actually it's easier to drive a truck in red high heels. So I recommend that to all of the truckers," Dawkins joked.

Dawkins' latest novel "On Call" should be released early next year.

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