owl in winter

owl in winter

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

The Proofs Have Arrived

The proofs of my novel were waiting on my doorstep for me when I got home from work last night.

Yes, the proof copies (I goofed up and ordered two rather than one). And here they are, proof that this book exists. It's out of my head and sits between a front and a back cover.

Thing was, I couldn't stop looking at them, touching the cover, flipping through the thing to see this page or that, did the acknowledgements turn out okay and I realized, I felt this way when I gave birth to my children. In particular, I'll compare it to the birth of my first child, Michael.

"The first time's a novelty," a more seasoned mother told me after church one day as we dismounted the church steps. "The second time is a pain in the ass."

Oh. Well, I'm still in the throes of the thrill, thank you.

When I was pregnant, I was filled with such awe that such a thing could be taking place in my body, that a tiny egg could germinate to a living being, that the living being was being nourished and nurtured within my body, growing to fruition to a point when it would emerge, it's own person, separate and apart from me. I wondered so many things. Who will you be? Will I be able to raise you well? Will I protect you, teach you, will I love you enough? Will you have all your fingers and toes, will you be healthy? and at times, when I was overtaken by sheer terror, Can we call this whole thing off?

And then Michael arrived, all eight pounds one ounce of him, and as I held him in my arms I was stunned, filled with an all consuming joy, head over heels, fierce, relentless and never ending. I fell instantly in love.

It's not that different birthing a book. All the steps that led to this point are similar in nourishing, protecting and giving birth to a child. Laying the baby on my chest for the first time reminds me of bringing the germ of an idea to fruition. Reading through my story last night gave me a lot of pleasure. When I finished proofing the same feelings flooded back as when Michael was born. I still love the story. I still love the characters and I'm pleased with how they turned out. And I hope others will be when they read it. My first character, Julie, is not so likable at first but her growth process pleases me more than the other two, I think. I'm proud of her, actually.

How do you feel when your work is published? Do you feel the same, that the process is similar to giving birth to a human child?

Sunday, January 18, 2015

Now Available for Pre-Order as an E-book on Amazon!

Just a quick note - this is so exciting!

The Discovery of Joy is now available for pre-order as an e-book on Amazon! Get your copy today. All reads and reviews would be appreciated!

Saturday, January 10, 2015

A Short Review of The Discovery of Joy

I am so excited about this, friends. What an awesome review of my women's fiction novel, from....a man. Holy cow.Jumping up and down, blowing party whistles, throwing glitter all about, my party hat askew, dancing to Roy Orbison. Well? Wouldn't you?  

What affirmation. I mean, really. Still dancing. 

But the clock strikes midnight and well, we have to get dignified (crap) in spite of our very best selves, and so...here we go. 

My friend, RIckey Pittman, graciously agreed to review my novel prior to release and wrote this "short" (not so short) review. Just a bit of history here - I met Rickey a few years ago, at the Ozarks Creative Writers' Conference, in Eureka Springs, Arkansas. Since that time, RIckey and I joined forces in reviewing one another's work, and giving critiques and reviews of and for each other. So, I was so pleased when he agreed to review my women's fiction novel, The Discovery of Joy. Rickey is an accomplished novelist, songwriter, musician and storyteller, as well as being an educator. And, he is a dear friend, while we're at it. Here is a link to his website: https://www.bardofthesouth.com/. With that, here is the "short" (not so short) review of The Discovery of Joy." I intrude a bit, notice the italics.

The Discovery of Joy by Yvonne Erwin: A Short Review (hahahah - that's me laughing)

The Discovery of Joy is a first novel by Yvonne Erwin.  I think this novel will help set her on her way as a romance writer. (Romance? DId he say romance? I like, even though I never thought of myself as a romance writer. Oops, Rickey, go on.) And yes,  this is a romance novel—reminding the reader of how easily and quickly one can fall in love and the price one may have to pay for those forays into love’s territories.

Erwin writes with a strong sense of narrative, a style that reminded me of Candace Bushnell. In her writing, (Candace Bushnell? Sex in the City? That's big, baby) I see scenes rich in vivid imagery and emotion. For example, the early scene of the moving van is one that will not be easily forgotten.  Many of the scenes are quite sexy and she accomplishes this without being graphic. (OMG, this means he read it, he read the freaking book. Wow.)

After reading the book, I feel like I know the characters well, even down to the interior conflicts and conversations—the talks  and questions we have as we experience life and question our own value and sanity. The reader will gain insights into what Erwin describes as the “caustic void” of the legal world, and the heart-rattling realities of divorce. Erwin’s writing causes us to think about the angst, the secrets, the lies, the memories, years and “twisted, gnarled roots of our life” that sit between people. There is a wide variety of characters that the reader is sure to identify with in this (to borrow a phrase of Erwin’s) “waltz of discoveries." (Mhmmm, mhmmm.) The reader will encounter the sincerely religious, the crazies, the cruel, and the fair-weather friends. The reader will feel how marriage and conquest change people, about secrets, about lies. (And, you're gonna eat a lot, or at least thing about eating a lot. This is a foodie book as well.)

Though there are men who are key characters, this is a story about women—the women of Springfield, Missouri.  We discover their self-doubts, the struggle with self-image, about what a woman feels when she is caught in the rut of a dead-end job and existence, how it feels to be fired without explanation, and how marriage can be a paradise or a nightmare, exceeding or disappointing our expectations.

If you are a reader or a writer of romance, you are sure to enjoy, The Discovery of Joy by Yvonne Erwin.

Thank you, Rickey Pittman. Looking forward to your next work.