The Meaning of Us, The Mountain Women Series, Uncategorized

The story goes on…

I love a series, though I confess I’ve watched more than I’ve read, with the exception of all the time spent writing my own, the Mountain Women Series. If a work has a good cast of characters, a series gives readers as well as the writer an opportunity to learn more about them and to see them grow and change.

If you’ve read any of my stories, you know they have lots of characters, but not all are featured in every book. I love bringing back characters we haven’t heard about for a while.

The enigmatic, rather mysterious character of Charlie Herff has a larger role in the newest book in the series, The Meaning of Us. Charlie was nine in the first book; he’s about 30 now, and he’s had a troubled life. M2_The_Meaning_of_Us

In this book there’s also an important reappearance of Silby, the young girl first portrayed in The Boardinghouse. 

In following a series, we not only learn more about the characters, we begin to think of them as people we actually know, an extension of our neighbors, friends, or family. Great series characters may become part of our culture, like Hawkeye Pierce and the other memorable people of MASH, a series that may have helped change our ideas of war.

A number of readers have said they feel close to the people in my series, and some have said the fictional town of Winkler, West Virginia, was surely based on their own home town. Since I like the town and its people, I love hearing comments like that.

The Meaning of Us is now available in ebook, and the paperback is coming soon. You can read the first chapter here or download the ebook.




adventure, Carol Ervin novels

6th in the Mountain Women Series…

Number 6 in the Mountain Women Series, Kith and Kin, picks up where The Boardinghouse ends.KK.300x450

The ebook is now available at Amazon for $2.99. The print edition should be available soon.

About this book: Problems abound for May Rose, her family and Winkler friends in the spring of 1920. Her half-brothers are trying to steal her inheritance; her stepdaughter is in the midst of a risky pregnancy; and 16-year-old Evie, her step-granddaughter, wants to marry a boy from a bad family. When Evie runs away, the task of bringing her home falls to May Rose.
Kith and Kin is the sixth book in the Mountain Women Series, presenting the struggles, triumphs, friendships and loves of women in a small West Virginia town in the early 1900s.

Mental Illness, The Mountain Women Series, West Virginia tourist attractions

The old lunatic asylum

—In several books of the Mountain Women Series I’ve mentioned the Weston State Hospital in West Virginia, (formerly the Trans-Allegheny Lunatic Asylum), now closed.

In its early years, reasons for committing people to that institution were often sad, capricious and downright criminal. The attached image, which I copied from a brochure, shows a list of some of those reasons. Take a look. They’re hard to believe!


Today the facility is a tourist attraction. See it at