What does crazy look like? Let Deborah tell it, it’s the reflection that looks back at her in the mirror. She has a career she loves, two beautiful children and a handsome and successful husband. Her life seems to be the blueprint almost every woman she knows would kill to live. But working full-time, being a full-time mother, full-time wife and a full-time Sunday only Christian seems to be taking its toll on her. With all the scheming and shenanigans Deborah orchestrated to get this lifestyle, she might have to come up with a whole set of new ones to maintain it.
Lynox is Deborah’s husband who she thanks God for putting back into her life after a game of cat and mouse that defies the laws of romance. He feels that all Deborah needs is to let her hair down, maybe make some new friends and live a little. When Deborah agrees and then suspects Lynox of having an affair with the woman that he suggested she form a friendship with, will he live to regret his own advice?
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Interview with Joylynn M. Ross
When did you realize you had a book (or some books) inside you?
I have been writing since the days of elementary school journals and rainy day writings. I started out writing poems, then short stories. My first self-published book, Please Tell Me If the Grass Is Greener, is a mixture of poetry and short stories. Well, actually it’s poetic short stories; short stories told in a rhythmic flow. Kind of like a Dr. Seuss book for Grown-ups-LOL. I love La La Land. Growing up, my escape from reality was the La La Land I invented with pen and paper.
Remember when your teacher would ask you to write about what you did or where you traveled to during summer or spring break?
I’d sit there looking at my teacher and saying in my head, Woman, my momma and daddy are both strung out on heroine. They may have been taking a trip (a mental drug trip), but I didn’t go anywhere. Figuring that wasn’t going to get me an A+ on my journal writing assignment, I made up something.
In my journal I’d traveled to Fort Lauderdale like all the white teenagers did on the black and white beach movies I’d watched. The journal entries would sound so believable that, heck, I thought I’d really gone to some of those places. The imagery and description I used was so impressive that my teachers would always choose me to stand up in front of the class and read my journal. The kids would be mesmerized by my words. That’s when I saw the power that I had in my pen. With my pen, I could go wherever I wanted to go. I could be whoever I wanted to be. I could rule the world with my pen. Most importantly, I could escape from my own reality while at the same time giving others a place to escape as well.
Why is the theme of this project important?
Although I did not do a great deal of the things the character in my book did, I went through the exact same emotions that my character experienced. I felt, for a lack of a better term, crazy. My mind was on overdrive. I’d learned in church that Jesus was a mind keeper, yet on so many occasions I felt like I was losing it. It didn’t feel like the prayer and the, well, ‘God thing’ was working.
One day I said to myself, “There has to be a pill for this.” But in order to get a pill, you have to get a prescription. In order to get a prescription you have to see a doctor. In order for a doctor to give you a prescription, you have to tell them what is wrong. That is where, I believe, so many people end up in a bad place. They don’t want to ask for help. They don’t want to admit to themselves let alone anyone else that something is wrong and that they need help making it right. That’s difficult to do when you’ve spent a lifetime putting on the façade that everything is right. It’s even more difficult when you’ve started to believe the façade your own self.
There are so many women out there who feel like they have so much going on in their life that they are about to lose control. It was important for me to write this book because I need them to know that to lose control is a good thing…when you plan on letting God take control.
What did you learn about yourself while writing this book?
I learned that I’m not crazy; I’m human.I learned that I’m not crazy; I’m human. Click To Tweet
How do you find time to write?
I don’t find time to write. That would be much too easy with the many hats I wear. Being a mother, wife, author, editor, agent, founder of a charitable organization and literary consultant, I have to make time to write. I strongly believe that people find the time and/or money to do the things they really want to do in life. Writing and everything literary is my life, so no matter what—even if the hours in a day went from 24 to 20—I’d definitely make the time to write.
If you could work on a writing project with anyone (dead or alive), who would it be? Why?
I’ve already collaborated with my favorite author in the universe, Brenda Jackson. Back when I wrote secular books under the name Joylynn M. Jossel, we did a book together titled An All Night Man. The title earned the Borders bestselling African American romance award. I’m now collaborating with Nikita Lynnette Nichols on our “Angel” series project. Book 1 is titled She’s No Angel.
About Joylynn M. Ross [EN Joy]
Joylynn M. Ross, now writing as BLESSEDselling Author EN Joy (Everybody Needs Joy),
is the author behind the “New Day Divas,” “Still Divas,” “Always Divas” and “Forever Divas” series, all which have been coined “Soap Operas in Print.” She is an Essence Magazine Bestselling Author who wrote secular books under the names Joylynn M. Jossel and JOY. Her title, If I Ruled the World, earned her a book blurb from Grammy Award Winning Artist, Erykah Badu. An All Night Man, an anthology she penned with New York Times Bestselling Author Brenda Jackson, earned the Borders bestselling African American romance award. Her Urban Fiction title, Dollar Bill (Triple Crown Publications), appeared in Newsweek and has been translated to Japanese.
After thirteen years of being a paralegal in the insurance industry, E. N. Joy divorced her career and married her mistress and her passion; writing. In 2000, she formed her own publishing company where she published her books until landing a book deal with St. Martin’s Press. This award winning author has been sharing her literary expertise on conference panels in her home town of Columbus, Ohio as well as cities across the country. She also conducts publishing/writing workshops for aspiring writers.
Her children’s book titled The Secret Olivia Told Me, written under the name N. Joy, received a Coretta Scott King Honor from the American Library Association. The book was also acquired by Scholastic Books and has sold almost 100,000 copies. Elementary and middle school children have fallen in love with reading and creative writing as a result of the readings and workshops E. N. Joy instructs in schools nationwide.
In addition, she is the artistic developer for a young girl group named DJHK Gurls. She pens original songs, drama skits and monologues for the group that deal with messages that affect today’s youth, such as bullying.
After being the first content development editor for Triple Crown Publications and ten years as the acquisitions editor for Carl Weber’s Urban Christian imprint, E. N. Joy now does freelance editing, ghostwriting, write-behinds and literary consulting. Her clients have included New York Times Bestselling authors, entertainers, aspiring authors, as well as first-time authors. Some notable literary consulting clients include actor Christian Keyes, singer Olivia Longott and Reality Television star Shereé M. Whitfield.