Tag Archives: Washington D.C.

Jenny’s Spring 2017 Calendar: Join Me at GBF!

Hope you’ll join me for one or all of these upcoming events:

Inspirational Women in Literature virtual conference, Saturday, March 18th from 9-6. These are some high-powered women! I’ll be speaking at 9:40 about some the strong women who inspired me to write. Contact me for login information.

Maryland Writers’ Association 2017 Writers Conference, Saturday, March 25th at the Crowne Plaza in Annapolis, MD from 8-7. I’ll be presenting “From Family to Fiction” at 11:00, and I’m thrilled to be following the always-inspirational Austin Camacho, though he’s a tough act to follow.

Kensington Day of the Book, Sunday, April 23rd on Howard Avenue in downtown Kensington from 11-4. It will be tough to beat the beautiful weather we had last year, but this is a vibrant and growing book festival with lots to see and do no matter what the weather holds. It’s great for families! Plus, I’ll be sure to have good chocolate!

Books Alive! 2017 Washington Writers Conference, Friday and Saturday, April 28th-29th at the College Park Marriott Conference Center (Friday from 6-8:30 pm and Saturday 8-5). I’m chairing this conference, which is one reason I’d love to see everyone there, but I’m also on a panel with luminaries Michael Dirda, long-time book critic at the Washington Post, and Tom Shroder, author, ghostwriter, and former editor of the Washington Post magazine. We’ll be talking about “The Twilight Zone: Between Memoir, Fiction, and Family History” at 2:50 pm with Chloe Miller, memoir writing instructor at Politics and Prose.

Gaithersburg Book Festival, Saturday, May 20th on the City Hall green in downtown Gaithersburg from 10-6. This is one of the largest book festivals in the DMV and draws nationally and internationally known authors. I’ll be moderating the Historical Mysteries panel with authors David O. Stewart and Burt Solomon at 11:15 in the Dashiell Hammett Pavilion, and signing books from Politics and Prose after that.

Listen In! Jenny talks about HOME on Epic City

caroliviaRecently, I was honored to join author and talk show host Carolivia Herron on her weekly book program, Epic City, on the brand new Takoma Park radio station WOWD, broadcasting worldwide on takomaradio.org. Carolivia and I met through Upshur Street Books when I read there in July, and–among many other things–she is very interested in the underappreciated Battle of Fort Stevens. We discussed that in detail during the hour-long program, and I read from the chapter in Up the Hill to Home that’s all about the battle, “Jubal’s March”. We also talked about D.C. voting rights, the various characters in the book, and the surprising parallels between black and white family experiences in the then-segregated city.

You can listen to the discussion section of the program by visiting Epic City Broadcasts and scrolling down to the October 18th entry. The program is separated into four sections.

The music used in the program is not included here, but Carolivia introduced me to a haunting song written and sung by Bob Weir called “Lay My Lilly Down”, which she played during the broadcast. You can listen to it here.

The Civil War in Washington: Two Perspectives


Join me and Jeff Richards at Upshur Street Books (827 Upshur Street, N.W.) on Tuesday, July 19 at 7:00 p.m., when we discuss our respective views on the Battle of Fort Stevens, in which Confederate General Jubal Early nearly marched into Washington, D.C.

Fort Stevens is located in what is now the Brightwood neighborhood of D.C., where most of my my novel Up the Hill to Home takes place, and the battle is described in the chapter “Jubal’s March”.  Jeff’s Civil War novel Open Country visits the aftermath of the battle, which includes an appearance by “Uncle Walt” Whitman, who was a fixture at army hospitals throughout D.C. during the war as he visited wounded soldiers.

Jeff and I will take turns reading from our novels, and we’ll discuss our approaches to writing about the war. We hope to see you there!

WIROB Review of Up the Hill to Home

In today’s edition of Washington Independent Review of Books, reviewer Katy Bowman offers a lovely and detailed critique of Up the Hill to Home. Ms. Bowman says, “Yacovissi shines in her descriptions of daily life, whether that life is taking place in Civil War-era Washington as Jubal Early and his Confederate troops are closing in, or in the crowded mid-1930s household that Lillie calls home as the book begins.” Particularly gratifying is her assessment of the book’s “complex characters,” in which she notes, “She brings the people and the places to life in such a way that they take up residence in your imagination, fully formed and breathing.”

Listen in! Interviews and Reviews

Things have been busy around here! Take a look at what’s been going on:

Review by Gary Garth McCann of Late Last Night Books, 20 April

Interview on Big Blend Radio’s Champagne Sunday with Lisa and Nancy, 3 May  **LISTEN**

Review and Interview at Curled Up with a Good Book, 6 May

Highlight on Book Release Daily, 7 May

“Perfect 10” Review at Romance Reviews Today, 8 May

Stayed tuned for lots more coming up throughout May and June!



Book Launch Party Draws a Crowd

Thanks to everyone who came to the launch party for literary historical novel Up the Hill to Home, held at the Hotel Monaco in D.C.’s Penn Quarter on 29 March, just a day after the book’s official release. Beautiful weather out in the courtyard set a perfect stage for celebrating the big milestone. The Hotel Monaco, with its stunning architecture by two of federal Washington’s most esteemed architects, Robert Mills and Thomas U. Walter, was originally the General Post Office, which plays a pivotal role in the book. The courtyard was where the horses and wagons used for mail delivery were originally stabled. Now it just makes a great spot for a party.

Congratulations to Sam Gordon, the lucky winner of the drawing for a signed hardcover edition of Up the Hill to Home. Sam–who did not need to be present to win–was eligible for the drawing because he had signed up for Jenny’s email list. Stay tuned for the start of another quarterly drawing; everyone on the mailing list is eligible to win, so sign up today!

Kirkus Reviews UP THE HILL TO HOME

It’s no foolin’ that April 1st was a banner day in the life of Up the Hill to Home, because Kirkus Reviews–that granddaddy of all review sites–published a wonderful online review of the book (just beware the spoiler!). Some of the highlights include:

“The author creates believable characters whose lives contain plenty of passion and tragedy . . .”

“. . . history itself is the novel’s best feature. The author has done her homework, infusing her work with convincing details of 19th- and early-20th-century city life . . . ”

“. . . this student-run publishing house has turned out a good book.”

Final Cover Design is Here!

With just a few weeks left before publication, we’ve finalized the cover of Up the Hill to Home. Many thanks to the contributions of Cathy Helms of Avalon Graphics, designer and producer of the upcoming book trailer; Angela Render of Thunderpaw, designer of my website; and of course all the folks at Apprentice House; the designs of all three work together very well. Look for the trailer here soon!

Join us for the Launch Party!

Save the date to join in celebrating the release of Up the Hill to Home. The party is on Wednesday, April 29th from 7-9 p.m. at the Hotel Monaco in Washington, D.C., just a day after the book’s official release. Come soak up the history and gorgeous architecture, along with some fine food and drink, and raise a glass to the publication of this D.C.-based literary historical novel.

Why this location? Why, it’s part of the book, of course! The building that houses the Hotel Monaco was originally the General Post Office, designed by Washington Monument and Treasury architect Robert Mills, and later expanded by Capitol Architect Thomas U. Walter. The Post Office plays a significant role in Up the Hill to Home: it’s where Charley and Emma’s courtship gets its start.

The Hotel Monaco is located at 700 F Street, N.W., Washington, D.C. 20004. It’s across from the Portrait Gallery and Verizon Center, as well as the Gallery Place/Chinatown Metro station.