Great Granddaughter Writes Novel Based on His Story

Melkon Jenanyan – an Armenian, Christian Preacher who died in 1956 – came back to tell his story. That is what his great granddaughter, Heather Martin, says. From Melkon’s wish to share his trauma related to the Armenian Genocide, Martin is now the author of the novel based on Melkon’s life story. It is entitled Reclaiming Konia: A Tale of Love, Loss and the Armenian Genocide and is now available in print and Kindle on Amazon. “My father was really, really clear – Melkon, his grandfather – wanted nothing to do with the old country,” say Ms. Martin, the author. “Melkon’s children were not taught Armenian or Turkish, even though he wrote his sermons in both languages. He never spoke of any violence he experienced, violence which caused them to leave before the 1915 genocide killed 1.5 Million Armenians, Assyrians and Greeks. It wasn’t until I was inspired to write his story that he began to vocalize many pent up regrets and pain. I’m not a psychic – but every writer is inspired by some unknown force, I just happened to know who it was that was influencing my creative process.”

An entire generation of Armenians was hesitant to discuss their past experience with the massacres from 1894 – 1915 because of the pain it caused them. It is the author’s hope that as more people read Reclaiming Konia and other works about the genocide, that the Armenian generation will begin to heal their trauma surrounding it. Ms. Martin also hopes that it will bring more awareness to non-Armenians about the political challenges surrounding the massacres, which Turkey has refused to call genocide for over 100 years. “The United States government has also been a complicit partner in this crime, by refusing to call the massacres genocide. Production of an MGM movie on the topic was shut down in the 1900’s because it was too politically controversial for Turkey. When freedom of speech is being curtailed, you have a grave injustice on your hands,” says Ms. Martin. “Ultimately this novel was about more than just the political component. I had the chance to help my ancestors heal from a trauma that occurred over 100 years ago through my writing. In the process I have rekindled the family legacy and joyful memories of those who have passed on.” In addition to this, readers have expressed the ease and enjoyment of reading the novel on the intense, but critical subject.

“You are really rooting for Melkon and his family,” said many readers. Others have said that the history is subtly weaved into the story in a beautiful way. Heather Ruth Martin is the CEO of Heather Martin Inc. (a consulting firm) and a writer for Huffington Post. For more information visit: www.reclaimingkonia.com.

CONTACT INFO: Heather Martin, hmartin@reclaimingkonia.com, 551-208-6979

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