GALLIPOLIS — Local author Jenna Ashlyn has announced the release of her second book, “Sheila’s Men,” a prequel to her first novel, “Within the Gray” that was released in 2020.
According to information about the book found on Amazon, where the book can be purchased, “Sheila’s Men is a fictionalized account of one woman’s real-life struggle to escape abusive relationships and is intended, in part, to help others recognize and escape such relationships.”
The Launch Party for Ashlyn’s latest work will be held in Gallipolis this Saturday, January 29, at 5 p.m. at Zach and Scotty’s on Court Street. Guests are invited to attend the launch, where Ashlyn will be signing copies of “Sheila’s Men” and fielding questions about the piece. She said that by sharing her story, she hopes people can see what is on the other side of the abuse.
“I don’t hold back,” she said. “I share my thinking and my feelings. I want people to know that it is worth it to go through the process of healing, that life is better on the other side.”
Both Ashlyn’s books are available at most booksellers, including Amazon, whose website also describes “Sheila’s Men” as a dark modern fairy tale that follows the life of Sheila, a naïve romantic living in poverty who blindly marries in the hopes of providing a better life for herself and her child only to encounter a seemingly endless onslaught from manipulative and abusive men.
“Sheila’s Men” is a traditionally published book through a publisher who invested in her story, according to Ashlyn. She said that together they are looking to give a voice to the voiceless, and that appears to be happening. With the release of the book, Ashlyn has received what she characterized as a “tremendous international response.” The author said she has garnered coverage from social media influencers, and been a guest on numerous podcasts since the book’s release.
“I have talked to many, many people about sexual assault, domestic violence, narcissistic abuse and the healing process,” she said. “I am doing everything I can to reach as many people as possible with a message of hope after survival. I am making a tremendous effort to bring awareness and a voice to those who don’t have one.”
Ashlyn said her journey has taken her from being a victim to becoming a survivor. Along with her writing, she has become a trained advocate volunteer for Southern Ohio’s Survivor Advocacy Outreach Program. The program works to engage the community through prevention, advocacy and education, to provide and coordinate resources for victims, survivors, and communities of Southeastern Ohio. The crisis line can be reached at 740-591-4266.
“This is an effort that has started small and will make a difference for those that hear my story, read my book and find comfort in knowing that they are not alone,” she concluded.
You can follow Ashlyn on Facebook and see links to her podcast appearances and other media at https://www.facebook.com/AuthorJennaAshlyn/ or visit her website www.JennaAshlyn.com for more information.
About the author
She studied creative writing at both the University of Rio Grande and Marshall University, where she worked for the campus literary magazine Et Cetera. Jenna’s writing has appeared in numerous literary magazines, including Night Roses, The Atwood Review, and Poet’s Choice. In 2015, she won the overall writing award in the StarJewel Nationals and Talent Showcase arts contest, and in 2019, she was nominated for a Maier Award, which celebrates the best writing by Marshall University students.
Lorna Hart is a freelance writer for Ohio Valley Publishing.