Jonna Ivin Dishes About Her Memoir & Dishes Out Advice

To celebrate Jonna’s new  advice column here at MsBehaved, her memoir Will Love For Crumbs will be FREE Sunday, April 8th – Monday April 9th on Amazon Kindle. No Kindle? No problem.  It’s also available in paperback.

Jonna will be providing zero b.s. counsel on love, sex, and grabbing life by the balls. She’ll be here every Wednesday with answers to help you over the mid-week hump. Got a burning question?  No topic is too taboo.  Send your emails to jonna@msbehaved.com.

She’s been through it all, so you don’t have to.   But you don’t have to take my word for it… Just read the damn book!

Synopsis – Will Love For Crumbs

Raised by an alcoholic mother and without a father, Jonna learned at a young age to put her needs on the back-burner. After her mother dies of cancer, she goes on a spiritual journey looking for enlightenment and a purpose for her life. Eventually, she ends up as a volunteer in the relief effort following Hurricane Ike. There she meets a man that will forever change her life.

In the swamps of Louisiana and the hills of Arkansas, Jonna follows her heart to build a life with an American hero – a 20 year veteran of the Army Special Forces. Only after uprooting her whole life, leaving everything and everyone she knows behind, do the pieces of this fairy tale start to unravel. Realizing the man of her dreams is actually the stuff of nightmares; Jonna must once again go within and discover why she is a woman willing to love for crumbs.

Jonna kindly let me bend her ear and  told me all about giving birth to her bouncing baby book. Read on:

Did you always know you wanted to be a writer?

Growing up, I spent a lot of time hiding out in my room, making up stories in my head.  It wasn’t until I was in my late 20s that I decided I wanted to be a playwright.  I didn’t have any experience, so I looked at some plays and studied their structure and just got to it.  I also got lucky.  I sent my first play to a theatre and they produced it.  Up until that point, I didn’t know stage left from stage right.  Those were my “college years” as far was my writing is concerned.

At what point did you decide Will Love for Crumbs would be written?

I knew I would write it while I was still living actively living the story.  I knew I would be leaving the relationship I was in, but I didn’t know when or how.  When I got to Washington and had some time to reflect, I started sharing story page by page via email with a friend.

Tell me about your writing process.

Every couple of weeks, my friend would ask me to share more of my story with her.  That’s what really got me going in the beginning.  Once I told her I would write a memoir, there was no backing out.  I was working full-time, and by the end of the day I was drained, but I’d return to a quiet, empty office on the weekends and write from about 8 in the morning until 10 at night.

How has your book been received by your family?

I did not share my work with my family before publishing.  I didn’t want to ask permission. Everyone has reacted positively, though.  It also helped me reconnect with my older sister, Jodi.  She was upset with me at that time the story took place, and I understand why.  The truth is, she was right and I was wrong but I couldn’t see. On the other side, I think reading  the book helped her to gain insight about my perspective at the time.

Your mother passed away many years prior to publishing.  Did that make it easier for you write candidly about your experience and her alcoholism?

If my mother hadn’t passed away, I am not sure there would have been a book.  She may have told me that she didn’t think that the relationship was right for me, and I may have listened to her. Then again, knowing me, I may not have. I performed readings in the past where I talked about her drinking – and she was in the audience.  It was uncomfortable, but being uncomfortable is not something I shy away from.

You self-published Will Love for Crumbs.  Was there ever a time where you considered traditional publishing?

Never.  Again, I wasn’t willing to ask permission.  I didn’t want to waste energy on the submission process, be dissuaded by rejection letters, or held up by the back and forth of it all.  I didn’t want to have to submit a few chapters, and then wait some more.  I was going to see this project through, and that meant being in total control.

What are you currently working on?

Shortly after the release of Will Love For Crumbs, I began getting letters, mostly from women, sharing their experiences.  I wanted to give others a platform to tell their stories, and so I am compiling an anthology, Loving for Crumbs.  I am also recording an audio version and working on a screen adaptation of my book. And of course my advice column– I am so excited to be a part of Ms. Behaved!

Here’s the scoop on Jonna.

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Comments

  1. evevawter says:

    Yay!

  2. Reblogged this on Jonna Ivin's Blog.

  3. Jonna is an incredibly brave and insightful woman… I admire her tremendously.

    I am currently working on my memoir and I had been, until recently, ‘on-the-fence-, so to speak, as to whether I wanted to go traditional or self-publish. I’ve now pretty much decided that self-publishing is how I need to go… if for no other reason then because I have, like Jonna, come too far and gone through too much to relinquish this to someone else. I have to finish this.

    I am looking forward to Jonna’s column.

    Veronica Marie

    • Good luck with your memoir. It’s very exciting to embark on this new journey I wish you all the best with it.

      Let me know when it is available!

      • Thank you, Jonna… I will be sure and let you know.

        It is very exciting… a little frightening too… this journey of more than just miles and minutes… time and distance. Our pasts are more than just memories… they are a force at our backs… pushing and guiding us… toward truth and redemption… peace.

        🙂

  4. Reblogged this on Veronica The Pajama Thief and commented:
    Congratulations on your new column, Jonna! 🙂

  5. karen beaux-barron says:

    I’m so excited Jonna is writing for Ms. Behaved! I love what you’re doing here, Sarah! You have a keen eye for talent & are quite the writer yourself. I love your stories. xoxo

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