|New Author Elizabeth Rye|
JK: What happens in your story?
ER: Blair and Derek have been divorced for two years when out of the blue Derek calls with an odd request. His Aunt Agnes is dying of cancer and has invited the couple to spend Christmas with her. The problem is that she doesn’t know about the divorce and Derek doesn’t want to tell her. Instead he calls Blair for help. “I was hoping you’d consider being my wife for the weekend,” he asks.
Despite his hostile attitude, Blair agrees. She’s never stopped loving him and decides that now is the time to fight for what she wants — what she wants is her husband back.
Will this Christmas be one of joy? Will Blair and Derek be happily reunited? To answer these and other questions, read “Weekend Wife” by Elizabeth Rye in A World of Joy.
JK: Where did the story’s inspiration come from? How does it reflect the holidays for you?
ER: The story came over time. One day around the holidays several years ago, Blair introduced herself to me. All I knew was that she was divorced from her husband and that he’d called because his aunt was dying and wanted to see them, not knowing about the divorce.
That was the story I had. I didn’t know what the end was. All I had was the beginning. When the holidays ended that year I had gotten no further and the inspiration for a Christmas story wasn’t there in February for me and so I put it away. I didn’t look at it again until I saw requests for the ASMSG anthology, A World of Joy.
This time, when I picked the story up, Blair was talking again, leading me onward to what her story was. Years ago I’d thought her story would be a novella but I soon realized that it wasn’t that complex. It was a simple story.
For me, Christmas is a time be thankful and a time to be with those we love. That is Blair and Derek’s story.
JK: What else do you write?
ER: I began as a writer of children’s stories and simple poetry. As the journey continued, my word vocabulary grew and I began to write adult fiction, though I still dabble with the latter two from time to time.
Currently I’m working simultaneously with a collection of essays chronicling historical events in America that have been forgotten, two romance novels and a mystery novella.
I find writing to be fun and above all, a learning experience. From all walks of life, a story waits and it is the writer who must pounce like a cat or spin a web as a spider does to catch the prey that will become our next book.
Though my short story, "Weekend Wife," will be my first official publication, I have published dozens of articles on my blog. These range from self-help essays for writers, writing exercises and advise, to historical and modern disasters and others that take on a lighter side. I believe a writer should never limit themselves. To that end I write what interests me, be it popular or neglected thoughts and dreams.
JK: Any other happy tid-bits to share?
ER: I have an old car with a warm heater. I still have enough money in the bank to pay off my Avon bill – I sell. My family and friends are supportive of my writing whether they understand/agree with it or not. In time, every story finds an ending.
ER: This Christmas I’ll deck the house out. This includes a green tree in the living room and a pink tree somewhere else. I don’t know if it’ll find its way to the dining room, entranceway or the landing – it’s been in all places over the years. I have my mini village from Wal-Mart/Walgreen’s/Dollar General to put up – that’s when the buildings still cost a dollar each. Stockings, of course, go over the mantle. Upstairs, I place Christmas Little Golden Books over each of the bedroom doors.
I plan to make several batches of cookies and let someone else clean up the mess. Naturally, I get to eat the first ones out of my 1926 Peoples Gas oven. I think we’ll have ham this year and I’m going to see a big mound of real mashed potatoes and cranberry sauce next to it. Surrounded by my family and my two year old turtle, Sparky, this Christmas will be one of joy.
JK: Do you have any other writing coming out soon?
ER: At present I don’t have anything else scheduled for publication. I have many irons, as they say, in the fire, with several nearing their final stages. Some of these will go the agent/publisher route, others I will self-publish.
JK: Thank you so much for being here.
ER: Thank you, Jessica, for taking the time to conduct this interview and for all your work in the writing industry. Writers' work hard and it is in these moments that our dreams are realized.
A World of Joy is available now for free download.