Something Old – Something New!

There are particular events in an author’s life when they are invited to do something really special. This happened to me in the autumn of 2015.

The two books shown above are tribute pieces. The gentlemen who told me their life stories are now gone. However, their youthful tales will live on in the “When Boys Were Men – Life In The Woods” series.

I learned two valuable lessons from listening to the stories of Si King in Book One of When Boys Were Men and Jack Chambers in Book Two.

First, it is worth making any effort to be an active listener to our loved ones, asking them questions to stir their memories from the dust. Then, write it down. Time passes so quickly and once they are gone — the memories are gone as well.

Both men never hesitated to share not only their successes and their failures. What I realized was how trusted I was to have them share such intimate details with me. Yet, it wasn’t solely for me. It was for them as well. Neither man was ready to die, yet they stared it in the face with quiet dignity. What they held in common was the desire to be remembered and the desire to be assured that their time on earth held value. They were hardworking, humble men who tried to finish out their lives in the best way they knew how – by sharing their lessons learned with those they loved.

So, if you have the opportunity or can make the opportunity to do this for your elderly or terminally-ill family members, please do so. You will have no regrets.

A special thanks to Sarah Johnson for the amazing covers. How does she do this?



  • Sheila L. M.

    I have so many books I want to read. These are being added to the pile. I used to have a Grandparents’ Day when I was a kindergarten teacher and put together a newspaper with all the stories of the grandparents’ youth so that it was memories saved in a small way. The children made up the questions, i.e., What kind of toys did you play with when you were young?

  • mrspaul1

    Joy…words cannot express the happiness that I feel, and the gratitude that is in my heart to you, for you, because you have done such a loving thing for these two incredible men. Because of your generosity, both of these men were able to let their lives end peacefully, with an accomplishment that was so very important to them. There is no greater gift at the end of someone’s life, than to be able to die with the dignity and grace that you gave to Jack and Si. Death is hardest on those who are still alive. But when there are stories written, and memories shared, then we never forget our loved ones. And that’s what they want. To not be forgotten. Thank you, Joy, so much!!! I Love You!!!

  • Robin Helm

    What a wonderful idea for a book series, Joy! I remember the things my mother and father told me about their growing up years. I’m starting a blog feature called “Deep-Fried Wisdom,” and I’m going to draw heavily from their lives. They both had great character forged in poverty and faith.

    • J "Joy" Dawn King

      You will have no regrets, Robin, I promise you. As my sister, Rita (mrspaul1), stated so eloquently, it is a gift your loved ones will treasure. Even if nobody other than family reads them it is still a win.

  • Sandra Jantze

    I know this is not the subject this particular conversations is about but I have been looking for a way to ask “Where are the sequels to A Father’s Sins which should have come out this past Summer? I enjoyed your last two books “One Love-Two Hearts and “Compromised” but am still waiting for the above. Are they cancelled or still on the “more to come” list?

    • J "Joy" Dawn King

      I appreciate you asking, Sandra. I’ve started and stopped my Bingley/Jane story about a dozen times. It is still my intention to write it, but I’ve been distracted with Darcy and Elizabeth. I broke my right arm last Saturday so I am not writing at the moment. This left-handed hunting and pecking is FRUSTRATING.

      • Sandra Jantze

        Thank you for replying to my question. I’ll just be patient and wait. Sorry about your broken arm. Have you ever used “Dragon” on your computer to dictate your words without typing? Hope your back in prime writing condition soon. You P&P writers can’t write as fast as I can read unfortunately. You are in my top 3 favorites. I plan to order the 2 books about the boys. Thanks again for your speedy reply…didn’t expect that.

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