Thursday, November 1, 2012

Not ashamed to feature Amy Ferris and Hollye Dexter...plus a book giveaway

**Giveaway is now closed**

We are pleased to introduce you to Amy Ferris and Hollye Dexter, co-editors of Dancing at the Shame Prom (reviewed here). In this anthology, 27 brave women share the stories of shame that had kept them small in the world. We found out about the book a few weeks ago and knew it would be a perfect fit for Chick Lit Central. When we contacted Amy and Hollye, they were more than accommodating! They're incredibly sweet and have very interesting stories to tell through their blogs and in the book! They also teach writing workshops, helping others to find their authentic voices.

You can find them at their website and Facebook!

Here's some more information about these lovely ladies:

Photo by Erin Doyle
Hollye Dexter recently completed a second memoir, What Doesn’t Kill You. Her essays have been published in anthologies, such as Chicken Soup For the Soul.  A singer/songwriter with four albums out, she also founded the award-winning nonprofit Art and Soul, running workshops for teenagers in the foster care system. She is on staff for the San Miguel Writer’s Conference and a visiting author at UCLA extension. She lives in Southern California with her husband and three children, where she hikes, plays music and blogs about living an authentic life. You can also find her on Twitter at @hollyedexter

Photo by Ken Ferris
Amy Ferris is an author, editor, screenwriter and playwright. Her memoir, Marrying George Clooney, Confessions From a Midlife Crisis (Seal Press) is off-broadway bound, CAP21 Theater Company, March 2012. She has contributed to numerous anthologies, and has written everything from Young Adult novels to movies and films. She serves on the Executive Board of Directors at The Pages & Places Literary Festival, Peters Valley Arts, Education and Craft Center, and is on the Advisory Board of The Women's Media Center. She is also on faculty at The San Miguel de Allende Writers Conference. Her number one goal, desire and dream is that all women awaken to their greatness. She lives in Pennsylvania with her husband, Ken. Follow her tweets at @amyferris and visit her blog, as well.


Thanks to Seal Press, we have FIVE copies of Dancing at the Shame Prom for some lucky readers in the US and Canada!

How were you able to assemble the group of writers for your book, Dancing at the Shame Prom?

AF: Both Hollye & I know (individually and collectively) pretty amazing talented women - writers, artists, authors, activists, memoirists, performers - so we put our wish-list together, sent out an email to all of them with our proposal, and much to our grand surprise they all said, "Yes, please include me."

HD: Amy and I both knew some pretty phenomenal women with fascinating life stories- just lucky I guess. We didn't reach out to only writers, but all types of women: songwriters, actors, therapists, and even an episcopalian priest. We sent emails out to about 32 powerhouse women, asking if they'd write essays about their deepest shame, and they all said yes.

Which story in the book, aside from your own, spoke to you the most?

AF: Truthfully, for me, each essay is so completely different, each shame story is so unique, so courageous and so brave, I would have to say that because of that - the courage and honesty in each one - that each essay speaks to me, touches me deeply. Each touches a piece of me differently.

HD: It would be so hard to choose, as I found a piece of myself reflected in all the essays. From the themes of mother guilt to family dysfunction to having a gay dad (I have two gay brothers) to being just ashamed of who you are, and even though I'm not a hoarder, I have a hard time letting go of certain things (you should see the inside of my purse) so I really related to most every story.

What inspired you to compile Dancing at the Shame Prom?

AF: Everyone (well, most everyone I know) has shame. Shame and guilt and oh so many secrets that get tucked away. Buried. What inspired us? Honestly, we both write blogs that are pretty truthful and ballsy, and we (Hollye & I) spoke (and speak) often - the topic of shame came up throughout our many conversations - so it was an organic experience. It was much more of an Aha moment then a "hey, let's write a book" moment. We had so many conversations - shared experiences - with other women - friends - who had tucked away, buried their shameful stories, or shared only bits and pieces of them. What became abundantly clear was the need to share every piece of those stories. Every detail. That was a big glorious moment. The 'let it rip' moment.

HD: Amy and I had a year-long conversation about our own issues of shame, which were holding us back in life. We dared each other to blog about a scary personal shame, posting our blogs on the same day. What happened next shocked us. We were overwhelmed with responses, some from friends but most were strangers, all were sharing their own shame stories. That's when we knew this wasn't just a conversation between two friends, but a conversation the whole country needed to be having.

Would you consider doing a sequel with chick lit novelists sharing their stories, and if so, which authors would it be imperative for you to include?

AF: Jennifer Weiner. Helen Fielding. Candace Bushnell.

HD: I'll bet Candace Bushnell has some juicy shame stories!

Did you go to your prom? If so, what was the best moment of the evening for you? If not, what did you do instead?

AF: Well, I didn't graduate from high school (I have a GED), so I'm not sure what I was doing instead - maybe (probably) doing quaaludes.

HD: My long time boyfriend Vince hated school and especially school dances. For months, I begged him to take me to Prom and finally, the day before (after many tears on my part), he broke down and relented. I rushed out and bought a dress, although there wasn't much left on the racks. Once there, he refused to dance, complained about how idiotic it was, and we left early. Yeah, so it was pretty much a bust. After that he got drunk in the parking lot with his buddies. It definitely did not live up to my expectations!

What is your biggest addiction?

AF: Hmmm. Well, here goes. Emotional addiction: worry. Spiritual addiction: goodness. Sexual addiction: my husband, Ken. Clothing addiction (2012): tee shirts. Clothing addiction (2001 to 2009): shoes.

HD: Writing.

What is the last thing that made you laugh?

AF: A really big laugh - like side splitting - the other day, sitting outside Beth and Erin's house with Hollye when they (Beth, Erin & Hollye) were sharing a few wonderful, hysterical stories with me.

HD: My youngest kid, Evan (7 years old), makes me laugh every day. My husband Troy is also really funny, and then there's Amy Ferris. She is hysterical!

With Thanksgiving coming soon, share your favorite Thanksgiving memory.

AF: Twenty-one years ago on Thanksgiving, my husband asked me to marry him. That's my favorite. I am so very thankful and grateful for him. So very.

HD: In 1994, a week before Thanksgiving, our house burned down in the middle of the night while we were sleeping. My husband, four-year-old son and I barely got out alive. I have never felt more grateful in my life than I did that Thanksgiving.

Thanks to Amy and Hollye for shamelessly sharing their stories and Seal Press for sharing their book with our readers!

How to win Dancing at the Shame Prom:
Please comment below with your e-mail address. (Please note: Entries without an e-mail address will NOT be counted. You can use AT and DOT to avoid spam. Or provide a link to your facebook page or blog if you can receive messages there.)  

Bonus entries (can be listed all in one post):
1. Please tell us: What is your shame story?  We're all friends here...we don't judge! (Or if you don't want to share, tell us someone you're ashamed of from the news/media/etc.)
2. Follow this blog and post a comment saying you are a follower (if you already follow, that's fine too).
3. Post this contest on Facebook or Twitter or in your blog, and leave a comment saying where you've posted it.
4. Join Chick Lit Central on Facebook. Edit settings if you don't want to receive a lot of messages at your e-mail account. Please read our posting guidelines as well. (If you're already a member, let us know that too.)

5. Follow us on Twitter and/or Pinterest.
6. Add a friend to our Facebook group. (Tell us who you added.) Be sure to remind them to edit their settings.


US/Canada only. Giveaway ends November 6th at midnight EST.

11 comments:

Marthalynn said...

That's awesome that all 32 women responded yes to writing the essays.

There was a time in my life when I blew through an insane amount of money and savings on a party lifestyle full of drinking, shallow friends, and instant gratification. Now that I'm in a healthy state of mind, I'm ashamed of how much money and time I wasted that could have gone toward the greater good.

I follow.

marthalynn16 at gmail

matters that matter said...

These two women are such exceptional human beings. They understand the value of vulnerability as a teaching and learning tool. The book is remarkable. I promise, anyone who reads it will find a piece of themselves, their own shame and the steps that will lead them to their own shamelessness. It's a good thing!

Na said...

I procastinate and often try to justify this by telling myself I work better under pressure. That may be, but it's definitely not relaxing!

I'm a GFC follower.
Cambonified(at)yahoo(dot)com

bn100 said...

I think "celebrities" who only party and are famous for nothing should be ashamed of themselves.

I follow via email.

bn100candg(at)hotmail(dot)com

Cyndee said...

I am ashamed that I married when I felt so pressured at the end of my 20's. I stayed 9 years too long, trying to provide for us,go to a Masonic organization meeting when I was tired, visit his family who were toxic,freeze in Winter, no a/c in summer. I just tried to survive and people wondered why?but the real shame..going to get a Master's Degree and not ever working in my dream career. My choices were filled with shame! I think this book is for all Women. We carry shame and its our baggage that we need to pack up and put it all in the past! I need to work on this..step 1..read the essays and understand I was vulnerable and wore my heart on my sleeve .
I am a follower every way but twitter:)
Enjoyed the interview! Cyndee(dot)thomas0(at)gmail.com

Nova said...

sparkle40175@hotmail.com
i am ashamed of all the "mud slinging" in the local, state, and federal election commercials and the amount of money spent on "campaigning" is staggering. i think it could be put to a better use.
CLC follower on google+ and by email.
CLC follower on facebook.
CLC follower on pinterest.

Margaret Literary Chanteuse said...

Ashamed at times that I don't make an effort to connect with family and friends. I've become a bit of a recluse and spend most of my time reading instead of calling up a friend and meeting for a coffee or calling family to see how they are.

-blog follower
-tweeted
-member of CLC on fb
-follower on pinterest and twitter

Margaret
singitm(at)hotmail(dot)com

StereoQueenBee said...

Let me begin by saying I REALLY REALLY WANT TO READ THIS BOOK!!!

1. Please tell us: What is your shame story? We're all friends here...we don't judge! (Or if you don't want to share, tell us someone you're ashamed of from the news/media/etc.)

I am ashamed of so many things but usually it is the truly idiotic things that make me cringe. Like I recall telling my mom I hated her as a child. Stupid and probably I wasn't the only kid to have done this but it still makes me crings today!

2. Follow this blog and post a comment saying you are a follower (if you already follow, that's fine too).

Already a follower.

3. Post this contest on Facebook or Twitter or in your blog, and leave a comment saying where you've posted it.

Facebook - Sabrina-Kate Eryou
Twitter - stereoqueenbee

4. Join Chick Lit Central on Facebook. Edit settings if you don't want to receive a lot of messages at your e-mail account. Please read our posting guidelines as well. (If you're already a member, let us know that too.)

Am already a member.

5. Follow us on Twitter and/or Pinterest.

Follow on Twitter.

queenofcrunk@gmail.com

GoGreen said...

Like the sound of this unique book. Email can be found clicking on Blogger icon.

1. I tend to look at things in a negative way more than positive.

2. I am a blog follower.

3. Posted contest on Twitter @greenurlifenow

4. Member of CLC on FB. (Bonnie Yee)

5. Following on Twitter.




Bonnie

rubynreba said...

I am ashamed that a lot of Sunday mornings I would rather stay in bed than go to church and have to talk to myself and get on the right track again!!!

I am a follower.

Facebook fan.

pbclark(at)netins(dot)net

Bridget O'Neill said...

I think that politicians should be ashamed of all of the negative ads attacking their opponents instead of positive ones about their plans if they are elected.

I follow the blog
I'm a member of CLC on facebook
I follow on twitter

bjoneill@hotmail.com