Yvette is a forty-one year old woman struggling to cope with losing both parents during her twenties—one to terminal disease and the other to life’s complications. Over the years, she learned to repress the pain of watching her mother die and the resentment of having her father casually walk out of her life. Now as she packs her bags to return to her Georgia hometown and the house where final goodbyes were never spoken, a growing sense of uneasiness intensifies.
Vera is the kind-hearted stepsister Yvette never imagined nor wanted. She was an innocent teenager in search of answers when Yvette’s father, the Pastor, entered her life. Although broken from the loss of his beloved wife and daughters, he gave Vera the love and affection she so desperately needed. However, a childhood secret threatens to compromise everything Vera holds dear.
When the Pastor’s health takes a turn for the worse, both daughters must decide if they have the strength and courage to no longer be confined to burdens of the past. Will Yvette overcome feelings of abandonment and forgive her father before it’s too late? Does Vera’s childhood secret hold the key to mending this family’s broken relationship?
Yesterday Mourning is a heartfelt and poignant novella about two women learning invaluable lessons of forgiveness, love, loss and ultimately—peace. It is an impressive debut from an author with an authentic voice and a love for storytelling.
Thank you, Mrs. Renita Bryant
What it takes to transform serious issues in an attractive story?
Because this story was personal to/for me, it took a lot to write it and even more to publish it. I write about dating and achieving your passions on my Renita’s Mynd Matters blog but Yesterday Mourning required an exploration of feelings usually locked away and ignored. I had to not only make the sadness, grief and pain real for readers. I also had to give them hope, laughter and love. It is a well-rounded story that offers the full range of emotions.
Daily language suffers modification, shortcuts. How important is for a story the language used by the author?
Language, dialogue, punctuation and grammar are key! In order for someone to get enthralled in a story, they have to first be able to read and comprehend it. They must find themselves easily gliding over words because there’s a familiarity with what their eyes are seeing. I wanted Yesterday Mourning to be simple enough for teenagers but elevated enough for the well-read craving a tale of love, loss and hope.
What are the advantages of using first person POV? Are there any disadvantages?
Because I wanted readers to embrace the characters in Yesterday Mourning and accompany them through such an emotional journey, I elected first person narrative. There are some downsides from a storytelling point of view but I believe it was most effective at allowing my overall vision to materialize. When Yvette is caring for her mother, readers sense tension, love, and hurt. As Vera struggles with her own secrets, readers will feel her guilt and fear. I’ve received emails, calls, reviews and more regarding the tears people shed because of Yesterday Mourning. They’ve found peace in loss, chosen forgiveness over anger and found the entire experience of reading this novella to be therapeutic. While I’m humbled by their responses, I believe writing the book in this way fostered those deep connections.
Why is Yesterday Mourning a novella?
It’s actually book 1 in the Mourning Series, book 2 is in the works. I wanted to give readers an understanding of this family, their history, their struggles and their unbreakable connection. Setting the stage with the right framework is important and Yesterday Mourning is a great set up for what’s to come in the series.
How different is to write poetry? May we have a taste of your poetry, please?
I’ve been writing poetry since I was in junior high school. It has always been near and dear to my heart. Expressing your emotions in simple sentences over one page or a few pages is affecting. Poetry is musical; there’s a natural cadence in which I find pleasure. On my blog site (www.renitabryant.com), your readers can download a FREE copy of my poetry collection, Remember Me Not. Here is the title poem from the collection:
Remember Me Not
Remember me not for the love I offered but the time I lost
Pursuing prospects with no focused aims of securing me
Left as an abandoned notion in their converged minds and hearts
Escaped ideals freed by time’s powerful reality
Know not my life by her constant chimes of discord
Melodies clouded with unscripted lines saturated in sympathy
Requesting nothing in return as innocence was shrouded in ignorance
Unrequited emotions locked in a sea of intrigue and mystery
Speak not of my wasted moments and manipulative assaults
Birthing remnants of a life meant only for yesterday
Too ashamed to reveal itself in the wake of day’s light
Shrunken dreams feigned surprise to my narrowly forgotten way
Gaze not upon my downcast eyes rather mourn my grief-filled musings
Stolen years and borrowed lifetimes sully the sanctity of familial bond
Whispered expectations by pursed lips and unheard through strained ears
Unions forever broken, purity forever gone
Remember me not as a writer, sister, lover, or friend
As an urged spirit rarely exalts those roles above selfish motivation
Chased by perfect imperfections on a journey to be everything
Stymied by the dysfunction of life’s mis-education
In a single breath I was both all and nothing I ever thought I could be
If you so choose to reflect on my life
In that moment is how you must remember me.
- Renita Bryant
Renita Bryant, a native of Fort Valley, Georgia, had visions of being a writer from an early age. "There's something magical about using words on a page to emotionally propel someone into another time and place."
Since obtaining her BS & MBA, Renita has worked for some of the world's largest companies on many of their most recognizable household brands. Although she finds the work rewarding, her passion for writing pushed her to complete and publish her first novella, Yesterday Mourning, in May 2013.
Renita currently resides in Ohio and stays actively involved in social media with her blog, Renita’s Mynd Matters, Twitter (@Mynd_Matters), Facebook (YesterdayMourningBook), and Goodreads pages! She's currently working on multiple projects including book #2 and a collection of poetry.
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