Today I'm lucky to have my good friend and fellow Evolved Publishing Author stop by and talk about her new book, TORN TOGETHER. Because of the personal aspects of writing this book and the emotions that went along with it, she chose to set it on fire.
Yeah, she totally did burn her own book. I will let her explain why.
Be sure to enter the giveaway below for a chance to win a copy of her book.
On August 31, I started a fire and threw my book into the middle of it. No, it wasn’t a temporary lapse. I’d been planning to do this for months. I spread the news of my perceived misdoings on Facebook and even made a video to document the book-burning ceremony.
“But why? Why would you burn your own book?” everyone wanted to know. Many were disgusted by my actions, citing them as no better than the hypothetical world of Fahrenheit 451.
“It was never a possibility for me not to burn this book,” I answered before explaining my reasoning. This blog post should provide further insight into my pyrobibliac insanity.
From that first seed of the idea to the moment I set it ablaze, the making of Torn Together has proven an emotional journey for me. I often joke that the novel serves as my prophetic autobiography. If you read the story and consider the events that followed, the metaphor should be perfectly clear.
It’s also the first novel I wrote—period. It's the book that taught me how to be a writer. I made all my mistakes and discovered the publishing world with Torn Together in hand. By the end, this novel saw more than eleven unique drafts and ended up being my third published novel, despite the fact it was written first.
While my agent was shopping Torn Together (then called “Trick of Fate”) to publishers, my husband and I decided to get a divorce, and I decided to abandon the traditional publishing model and offer my battle-weary manuscript to Evolved Publishing.
Now, divorce is horribly difficult even under normal circumstances, but Torn Together made it even harder than it should have been. I wrote the first draft three years ago, back when we were happy. I based it off our love story. The male lead, Kashi, still is the spitting image of my ex. Although it is fiction, a great many anecdotes and characters were pulled from my own life and travels.
Torn Together was published sixteen days before my divorce was finalized. In the weeks leading up to publication, that manuscript became my full-time job as I tweaked it into the best novel it could be. And, boy, did the process drive me crazy. I didn’t want to read about Kashi and Daly’s happiness when mine had been lost so recently. I couldn’t bear to hear readers find fault with her yet swoon for him. My self-esteem just couldn’t handle it.
Still, I knew I had to publish our story in order to free myself from it. The divorce was finalized on August 31, 2012, and I burned the fictionalized version of my own love-lost story that same evening.
Call me crazy if you will, but sometimes you just need to burn a book and move on.
Don’t forget to stop by the Evolved Publishing pre-holiday blog hop. We’ve got 20 autographed books up for grabs! From thrilling young adult adventures to suspense nail-biters, thought-provoking literary novels, bright and cheery books for children, an uplifting memoir, and hot-and-steamy romance, we’ve got something for everyone on your holiday-shopping list.
About Emlyn Chand: Emlyn Chand emerged from the womb with a fountain pen clutched in her left hand (true story). When she's not writing, she runs a large book club in Ann Arbor and is the president of author PR firm Novel Publicity. Best known for her Young Adult novels, she is also developing a small, but devoted, following to her children's book series and is beginning to dapple in other genres as well. Emlyn enjoys connecting with readers and is available via almost every social media site in existence. Visit EmlynChand.com for more info. Don't forget to say "hi" to her sun conure Ducky!
About Torn Together: From her cheating boyfriend to her dead father and cold, judgmental mother, Daly knows she can’t trust others to be there when it counts. This cynicism begins to melt away when she meets Kashi, a light-hearted charmer from India, who decides he cares too much to let her fade into the background of her own life. After a series of false starts, their quirky romance carries them to India, where Daly must win the approval of Kashi’s family in order to seal their “forever.”
Meanwhile, Laine struggles to cope with the pain of early widowhood, fleeing into the pages of her well-worn library and emerging only to perform her duties as a social worker at the crisis pregnancy center. Although her daughter wants nothing more than to work as an artist, Laine doesn’t know how to redirect Daly to a more suitable profession without further damaging their tenuous relationship.
Can Laine look past her pain to learn from an unlikely mentor? Has Daly finally found someone whom she can trust? Will the women recognize their common bonds before the relationship is broken beyond repair?
"Torn Together," Emlyn Chand’s first sojourn into Literary/Women's Fiction, illustrates how our similarities often drive us apart.
11/13/2012 03:41:07 am
Thanks so much for the warm welcome, Angela. I'll admit I've become a little addicted to the idea of burning books since taking that initial step with Torn Together. I'd now like to burn any book that causes me great distress. This includes Fifty Shades of Grey... Obviously. :-P
10/8/2013 05:32:58 am
Not at lot of much pleaser. Thanks.
11/13/2012 10:08:35 am
We all exorcise our demons in some way. Burning them seems just about as good as any.
11/13/2012 09:13:06 pm
Thanks, Lane. You should totally try burning something when we get through this hectic launch period. Fifty Shades of Grey makes for a nice campfire :-)
11/13/2012 10:28:56 am
I'm proud of you for taking this to completion, and it makes total sense that you burned a copy! It's not easy writing from that space, but you made it happen!
11/13/2012 09:14:11 pm
Thanks, Kimberly. You were a big help getting me through that tough period. You also showed me it was okay to embrace happiness again <3
11/13/2012 10:39:00 am
11/13/2012 09:17:13 pm
Thanks, JL! I'm telling you, book-burning can be a great activity if there's a reason for it. It also helps to have good friends with you... oh, and to make s'mores after :-)
11/13/2012 10:53:14 am
I have read this book and love it. I "know" Emlyn and love her. We went through similar things at similar times and I never questioned her choice of burning this book. Great post :)
11/13/2012 09:15:18 pm
I love you, Becca. It's been a rough year for both of us, but think of all the amazing things that happened too. Can't wait to read YOUR novel. EEEEEE!
11/13/2012 12:58:58 pm
Having written a memoir, about an experience with a character I also changed views of drastically, I can totally relate. It's hard for me to swallow the lofty pedestal I used to put my former friend and idol on, but I had to in order to portray the ups (and later downs) of the story and how it affected me. I know how much courage it takes to put such a story down on paper despite all of the sadness you feel reading and remembering it, so cheers to you for doing so. I can't wait to read your book!
11/13/2012 09:12:00 pm
You're right, Megan. Torn Together is something of a memoir, although it wasn't meant to be. It's kind of like Life of Pi--there's the reality, and then there's how I perceived the reality. Both stories are true.
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