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Hear us Roar

Nov 9, 2023

This week’s podcast guest is Judith Turner-Yakamoto (Loving the Dead and Gone, Regal House, September 2022). We discuss how she pulled her manuscript just before it was going to press because she realized she needed to “kill someone”, how even though she worked for 20 years as a publicist, she still considers the publishing business a deeply strange pond, how getting comfortable with sharing deeply-personal posts on Facebook has helped grow her readership and brought her speaking opportunities, and how she found her publisher through becoming a finalist for the Petrichor Prize, an annual fiction writing competition.

Judith Turner-Yamamoto’s debut novel LOVING THE DEAD AND GONE, a Mariel Hemingway Book Club pick, won the 2023 Independent Publisher Book Awards Gold Medal in Southern Regional Fiction. The North Carolina Society of Historians recognized the novel with the 2023 Historical Novel Award. Shortlisted for the 2023 Eric Hoffer Book Awards Grand Prize, the book was also honorable mention in General Fiction and finalist for the First Horizon Award for Debut Fiction. Judith’s other awards include two Virginia Arts Commission fellowships, an Ohio Arts Council fellowship, the Thomas Wolfe Fiction Prize, and the Virginia Screenwriting Award.


Judith’s publications include StorySOUTH, Mississippi Review, Deep South, and many anthologies. Her articles have appeared in Elle, Travel & Leisure, AARP, and the Los Angeles Times, and her interviews aired on NPR affiliate WVXU. A Kentucky Humanities Speakers Bureau scholar, Judith speaks at conferences and book festivals, including the Chautauqua Writers’ Center, Chautauqua Institution, the Santa Barbara Writers Conference, and Gaithersburg Book Festival. She lives on the Kentucky/Ohio border where her love of travel and place continues to inspire her writing.

To learn more about Judith, click here.