Friday, May 13, 2011

Hooray For Jennie

I wrote this post yesterday, but it somehow never showed up except to subscribers, so I'm reposting it today. was out of commission for over 24 hours, so that may have had something to do with it.

When we got home from a few days at Lake of the Ozarks in Missouri, there was a box on our front porch. I hadn't ordered anything, so I couldn't imagine what it was. The return address told me that my friend, Jennie Helderman, had sent it. Jennie is in my online writers group and has been my roomie at our conferences, and I consider her a good friend.

Puzzled, I opened the box to find a shiny black gift box tied with a hot pink ribbon. Inside the gift box was a hardback copy of Jennie's book. The book was originally published as an oversized paperback. As I held the book and admired the cover, I noticed that printed at the top was Limited Edition. Inside a couple of pages it said Numbered Limited Edition 17 of 250 and on the title page, Jennie had written a note and signed it.

It felt wonderful to receive something so very special from a gifted writer who is also my friend. 

Last night, there was news from Jennie. She wrote   

"I've just been notified that As the Sycamore Grows is an award-winning finalist in both the Nonfiction Narrative and Women's Issues categories for the 2011 INTERNATIONAL BOOK AWARDS. Many countries represented and books from 2009-2011." 

Her words gave me goosebumps and brought a lump to my throat. 

Jennie spent five long years gathering material, writing and rewriting this book. She subbed many chapters to our online group for suggestions and to have more objective eyes on her precious words. Those of us who followed the story through her subs and heard of all the trials and tribulations involved, felt very much a part of the entire publishing process. We cheered with her when good things happened and we commiserated when they didn't. She persevered and achieved publication through hard work.

Jennie's nonfiction book tells the story of an abusive marriage and the woman who had the courage to walk away and start a new and successful life. As The ?Sycamore Grows has rceeived recognition  more than once since its publication. You can read more about it and order the book at (the Kindle editon) and paperback edition) There are editorial reviews and customer reviews at both sites.

Hooray for Jennie!

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