Growing Up Wilder.jpg

Dancy Wilder and her sister Marla are navigating a somewhat successful childhood in spite of their father’s crazy romantic encounters, including a spiritualistic grass-smoking hippie, a double-D cup kleptomaniac known over the CB airwaves as Hot Ginger, and an olive-skinned Greek  goddess.

 

Dancy and Marla's father, Everett is raising his two girls alone. A perpetual bachelor and successful lady’s man, Everett can have just about any woman he wants. Problem is he wants them all—and likes them all a little crazy.

 

Follow Dancy and Marla as they grow into strong, capable, common sense women, who have taken something of benefit from each of their father’s many love interests, including their Momma Lou who they learn has a secret profession keeping the Wilder financials in the black.

Print: $14.95

Audiobook

Kindle: $4.99

Nook: $4.99

Available in all other e-Book formats

House of Cleaving.jpg

Re-release coming soon.

Annie Cleaving watched her young son take his last breath trapped inside the mangled wreckage of her car. The drunk driver walked away without a scratch. A year later breast cancer took Annie's mother, a tender and genteel woman.

 

As a means to escape painful memories Annie attempts to sell the old Cleaving house, leaving the only home she has ever known. Only then she discovers the botched deed and her only choice, to find her mother's siblings and convince each to release their claims.

 

From crazy Aunt Veda, who thinks a televangelist is sending her secret love messages, to Uncle Asher who has given up his Wall Street career and joined a hippie commune, Annie is thrust into a bizarre new world where it seems the Cleaving family history has been altered. Her journey reveals the many secrets woven throughout the Cleaving family, including a murder, involve her mother.

Print: $16.95 

Kindle:

Nook:

Available in all other e-Book formats

eBook optimized Cover.jpg

Re-release from original printing in 2009. 

 

Eighty-seven year old Viola Garland has secrets that have tormented her for over sixty years. She kept these secrets because she believed her family would be protected. When a skeleton is discovered at a Rayes County building site, the choice she made as a young woman threatens to come to light.

 

She knows the lie has kept the family disjointed but she is sure the truth will destroy it. Set in 1936 rural Kentucky and Northern Ohio, Sister Blackberry is a story about women -- friends, sisters, mothers, daughters and granddaughters, and how their relationships are affected by secrets and lies of the past.

 

When the truth surfaces, these women learn things about themselves and the family matriarch that shake each woman's idea of who she is and how she fits into the only family she's ever known.

Print: $15.00

Kindle: $4.99

Nook:

Available in all other e-Book formats

Melissa Newman is an award-winning journalist and Appalachian writer. She is also the president of Martin Sisters Publishing and its imprints and holds a doctorate degree in Education.

Below is a bit more about Melissa – how she became a writer and how and why she started a book publishing company. 

Melissa Newman.jpg

Before I can even begin to talk about why I created a publishing company, I owe a responsibility to speak a bit about my life as a young writer growing up in the heart of Appalachia – more specifically, Knox County, Kentucky.

​Most who grow up in the mountains have a natural storytelling ability -- it's a cultural thing. Anyone who says it isn’t, is sorely misinformed or just plain unwilling to listen. Like so many others before me, I was unaware that my art of yarning a tale was anything unique. Assuming that writing good stories was akin to learning to tie shoes or ride a bike, I thought everyone could do exactly what I was doing – and in my defense, I had heard stories all my life – amazing stories about ordinary and extraordinary happenings. Most of us didn’t write them down – didn’t need to – these tales were mostly so good that the listener wasn’t likely to forget -- storytelling was something we all did.

​It wasn’t until my first year of undergrad that a college professor pulled me aside after class to talk to me about a story I had written about an old pair of tennis shoes that I had stolen from the girls' locker room in junior high. She wanted me to submit my essay to a regional writing contest named for William Faulkner. I thought she was just trying to build my confidence – she must be pulling other students aside, right? She asked me to type it up, using my best grammar and punctuation and bring it back to her. I didn’t take her seriously, so I didn’t type the paper. I had other things to do. She typed it for me and submitted it on my behalf. It was about a month later that my professor asked me to drive down to this awards ceremony. I had no time for that – I had a job, I was busy, I had obligations. She brought my award to class the next day. I was stunned and then scared … so scared – I had written my truth and people somewhere had read it and would still be reading it … it was going to be published. It was then that I started to listen as my professor began to talk to me about a career as a serious writer.

As someone who now teaches college students, I cannot ignore how amazing this professor was and the impact she had on my life and so many others. She is also a role model for how I teach my own classes. We are still in touch, of course. 

​I learned quickly that artists are “starving” for good reason, so I became a journalist instead.

 

For years I wallowed in disbelief of what my professor had told me -- my words, my truth had power. How could they? Real writers, you know – the ones who make you think, feel, and ponder -- live in New York City, not little knock about towns like mine.

​One and a half decades would pass before I gained the confidence to tell another story in my own words and finish my first novel, a second came a year later and then a third two years after. After my first book sold 5,000 copies, I began receiving requests to read dozens of manuscripts and listening to even more story pitches. Would-be authors wanted my opinion of their work and wondered why they couldn't gain the attention of a publisher. I gave these folks so much of my time and attention so freely that it morphed into a company.