By Mei Kuan
After the successful launch of the book titled “After-Rain Skies: A Million Stars” in 2019, the second edition of the compilation of true and inspiring stories of abuse and violence in prose and poetry is set to be released worldwide on Amazon and Kobo tomorrow (March 8) in conjunction with International Women’s Day.
Ipoh Echo spoke to Amazon bestselling author, Michelle Ayon Navajas in order to learn more about her latest paperback.
The Ipoh-based Filipino writer, blogger, educator and mother of four explained that the second edition took her over a year and a half to complete: “There weren’t many difficulties in terms of writing. It was more of an emotional ordeal. It was honestly difficult and heartbreaking to write stories of abuse and violence.”
“I included in the second edition of “After Rain Skies” sexual abuse or most commonly known as rape. This is something I did not include in the first edition because the stories were so heartbreaking and it was so difficult for me to write without crying. Two years later, the cases of abuse and violence are still very alarming. So I decided to include this,” she expressed.
Michelle hoped to create awareness that the perpetrators or abusers could be just anybody around: “They could be hiding as your friend, relative or neighbor, thus it is important to be aware of the ‘red flags’ and at the same time be brave enough to fight back. With the pandemic, women and children are forced to stay at home, thus making them even more vulnerable to abuse and violence.”
To be available in print, Kindle and ebook, the proceeds from the sales will go towards Perak Women for Women Society (PWW), a registered, apolitical and non-profitable NGO set up in 2003 to enhance the status and lives of women in Perak irrespective of their race, religion and social background.
According to her, the responses for the first edition were overwhelming as people from all walks of life extended their love and support by buying the physical copy as well as the ebook published on kobo.com. It was her first published book.
“Since then, I have been receiving emails from women all over the world telling and sharing their stories of abuse and violence,” she shared.
The ebook/Kindle copy of “After Rain Skies – Second Edition” is priced at US$2.99 while the paperback is at US$5.99. In addition to Amazon and Kobo, it will soon be made available in The PWW Shop along Market Street in Ipoh.
To date, the writer cum poet has published five books. Two of them, ‘I Would Fly To Where You Are’ and ‘I Will Love You Forever, Too’ became Amazon best selling poetry books where the latter emerged number 1 on Amazon and Kobo in less than 24 hours of release.
The amiable Michelle, who enjoys penning narrative poetry and poetic verse, added, “The pandemic has given me enough time to write. It’s not easy finding balance between motherhood and writing/publishing but it is very possible. You just need to work on managing your time better.”
In conjunction with International Women’s Day, here is her precious advice for all women out there especially in the pandemic: “An empowered woman is a woman who is not afraid to fail and commit mistakes – someone who bounces back stronger and better. The pandemic is just one of those many trials we are bound to face in our lifetime. With courage, determination, perseverance and tenacity, we will all get through this. Finally, understand who you are and live your purpose.”
For more updates, check out her social media handles as follows:
Amazon Author Page: Michelle-Ayon-Navajas
Facebook: Poetry by Mich
Goodreads: Goodreads author Michelle_Ayon_Navajas
YouTube: Poetry by Mich