Jackie Shannon Hollis in Conversation with Annilee Durfey Hyre
We are pleased to welcome Portland author Jackie Shannon Hollis to read from her new memoir, This Particular Happiness: A Childless Love Story, published by Forest Avenue Press. Joining Hollis in conversation will be her niece, Annilee Durfey Hyer, to discuss the many ways of being a parent and mentor to the children in our lives.
As a farm girl in eastern Oregon, feeding bottles to bummer lambs and babysitting her little sister, Hollis expected to become a mother someday. After a series of failed relationships, she met Bill, the man she wanted to spend her life with--a man who never wanted children. Saying “I do” meant saying “I don't” to a rite of passage her body had prepared her for since puberty.
Told in short, nonlinear chapters, This Particular Happiness explores the fracturing of female identity as Hollis questions her decision, navigates her roles as daughter and wife and sister and friend, and ultimately learns to listen to her own heart. This debut memoir is about what we keep and what we abandon to make space in our lives for love.
Jackie Shannon Hollis, a lifelong Oregonian, resides with her husband in a home her friends call the tree house. Her education and work as a counselor pushed her to hold up the mirror to her own self. Her writing has appeared in various literary magazines including The Sun, Rosebud, Inkwell, High Desert Journal, VoiceCatcher, Nailed, and Slice Literary. In addition to thinking she would be a mother, she once dreamed of being a June Taylor dancer or a racecar driver.
Annilee Durfey Hyre is an artist, graphic designer, and storyteller. As the mother of two sons who came to her by way of adoption, she is a fierce advocate of adoption as another path to parenthood.