Long and Short Reviews welcomes Ava Hayden who is here to talk with us about her newest release.
I’d like to thank Long and Short Reviews for allowing me to guest blog about Dreamspinner Press’s release of my new novella, The Timpanist and the Stagehand, yesterday, on April 13.
The novella is set in the world of music, behind the scenes with a city orchestra. Music forms the backdrop of Ren and Christoph’s world. While Christoph is a professional timpanist, Ren is also a musician. He works as a stagehand to pay the bills, but he’s still performing with the same gang of people he’s been playing with since high school. Where there are teenagers and new adults, there will be music—and not just the earbud variety.
Maybe it’s generational. I can’t say for sure. But when I was in high school and later at university, if a group of friends sat around a bonfire or a campfire, someone was bound to start a singalong, and it usually began like this: “Almost heaven, West Virginia…” Next was sure to be Rocky Mountain High. (Yes I know I’m dating myself.) And a few brave souls would try to make it through Calypso, with everyone joining in on the chorus (because who can’t yodel?).
Once we’d exhausted John Denver’s oeuvre, we’d work our way through the Eagles and whatever other seventies hits people knew most of the words to, and when those ran out, we’d start working through the sixties (because let’s face it, Disco did not yield a lot of good campfire songs).
A friend of mine, a few years older than me, once said that he knew for a fact American Pie had 187 verses because he had to listen to every single one of them crossing the English Channel on a ferry transporting lots of guitar-carrying, hostel-destined backpackers (about forty years before anyone invented the term “new adult”).
The perfect singalong or campfire song has a rousing chorus that everyone can join in on. And harmonies. Everyone likes to harmonize. My campfire song list is sadly dated, but I’ve heard some good candidates lately. Here are two new-fashioned singalong songs:
Sonny’s Dream – McGinty (also John McDermott, Ron Hynes, and many others – this song gets covered a lot)
Ren Murphy is a stagehand. He’s also a loyal friend, a gifted musician, and an inspiring teacher—but most people don’t see past his job. Ren knows that crushing on the Oilton Philharmonic Orchestra’s principal timpanist, Christoph Theoharis, is a waste of time. Christoph brushes off highly eligible would-be suitors regularly. What chance would a stagehand have? Christoph doesn’t even notice Ren’s existence—until one fateful night when chance or luck or maybe fate gets Ren Christoph’s undivided attention.
Old betrayals overshadow both men’s lives, yet each sees something compelling in the other, something that won’t let either walk away. Ren and Christoph may be each other’s best hope of finding a happy-ever-after, but to do that they’ll have to forgive old wrongs. They’ll have to let go of the pain in their past before it destroys their hope for a better future. Most of all, they’ll have to find a way to believe—in possibilities and each other.
About the Author:Ava Hayden lives and writes in Canada but grew up in the southern United States. When not working the day job or writing, she loves reading, baking, seeing plays, going to the symphony, and hiking. Her favorite places to hike are Banff and Jasper National Parks, Kananaskis Country, and Vancouver Island.