Local author publishes 10th book in series

BARBOUR COUNTY — West Virginia author Carol Ervin has published the 10th book in her Mountain Women Series, “The Promise of Mondays.”

The popular series brings to life the struggles, triumphs, friendships and loves of three intertwined families in Winkler, a small West Virginia town in the early 1900s.

The town of Winkler is fictional, a composite of actual settlements in West Virginia that began as lumber and coal camps, Ervin says. At the start of the series, (“The Girl on the Mountain”), the town has grown up around a sawmill. In the second and third books, the lumber boom is over, and the settlement has become a ghost town, but in the fourth through tenth, coal mining has given it new life.

The series is available in paperback and as Kindle ebooks from Amazon.

Originally from southeastern Ohio, Ervin has lived for nearly 50 years in Barbour County near the logging and coal industries that provide the backgrounds of these novels.

“Research helped me authenticate and populate the stories with details,” she says, “but I had personal experiences that made me comfortable with them. I have friends who are coal miners, farmers, and loggers and I know the look and sound of sawmills.

“I’ve ridden an old logging train, climbed steep hillsides to pick blackberries, dug potatoes, made maple syrup, stepped through creeks, raised and chased pigs, participated in hog butchering, ridden horseback up and down hills, gone to old-time church revivals and used pen and ink to keep account books.

“I was familiar with people who grew up in the times I write about, and I named many characters after ancestors, so I didn’t have to research to know if the names were valid for the period,” she said.

Ervin says she’s been surprised at the success of the series. At one point, “The Girl on the Mountain” made the Amazon “best seller” list, and in one month, sales of her ebooks led to her designation as an Amazon “star author.” Her author rank in Kindle historical fiction has consistently been near the top 100 authors.

“I never intended to write a series,” she says, “but readers enjoy the characters, and they keep wanting to know more about their lives.”

Ervin, a master’s graduate of West Virginia University, now divides her time between residences in Florida and West Virginia. She may be contacted through her website, www.carolervin.com.