Two weeks or so ago, my author's copies of Sleeping Helena arrived. I've been hoarding them ever since, like a dragon with its gold, not really wanting to share what is for me a very personal achievement. Which is silly, because the whole point to having a book published is so that other people can read it, and to hopefully enjoy it as much as I do.
The book actually made its first appearance in the wilds at the World Fantasy Convention in October. I wasn't there to see it, but I did manage to swipe this photo of the publisher's table in the dealers' room (always my favorite place to visit at events like that). Prime Books went out of their way to produce the most excellent cover, and Terri Windling and Carolyn Turgeon were heroic in providing blurbs on a tight deadline -- my own fault for not sending them the manuscript until the last minute.
Seeing my book on a dealer's table is naturally a real pleasure, but I think most authors will agree with me when I say that it's an even greater joy to see one's book on their own bookshelf. I've managed to amass an inspiring collection of anthologies and zines since the publication of my first short story in 2005. While I'm by no means a prolific author at this time in my life, my ultimate goal is to expand across the entire width and then into the shelves beyond.Library Journal reviews the book here:
"Gifted in her infancy with beauty, talent, grace, and various skills by her eight elderly aunts, the orphan Helena grows up strangely lacking in virtues such as compassion. She’s also fascinated with discovering the meaning of the ambiguous gift of her eldest aunt Kitty, a gift that has something to do with death. Raised in a secluded house in the forest, prevented from encountering sharp objects, mirrors, or anything that could be shattered, Helena discovers the true family heritage and the terrible choice she is called on to make. The author of The Bone Whistle (writing as Eva Swan) gives the tale of Sleeping Beauty a fresh spin that retains classic overtones while introducing a new element to the timeless story. VERDICT YellowBoy’s interest in myths and fairy tales shines in this deceptively simple story that resonates with multiple levels of meaning."
And the best review comes from one of my daughters, and if anyone thinks that I’m not taking her words to heart, they are wrong.
“I just finished your book this morning. It was wonderful, of course. It wasn’t predictable and it honestly kept me guessing until the end. It was full of wonderful surprises and I really enjoyed it. It both humbled me and awakened me. Well done, mother. Well done.”