Lavinia Moxey, “The Hesitancy of the First Moon”

The Hesitancy of the First Moon is Lavinia Moxey’s first novel, and was runner up in the 2011 James River Writers and Richmond Magazine Unpublished Novel of the year.

Lavinia is the author of “The Hesitancy of the First Moon,” which (as of April 15, 2014) is unpublished.

The Hesitancy of the First Moon is the story of a widowed Yemeni woman who lives in a remote mountainous village. Although it is the early 1980s, Naomi’s life is similar to that of her grandmother in the time of the Ottoman Empire. Her daughter, Miriam, attends the village school and dreams of becoming a school teacher, but society and Naomi are preparing her to become a child bride. But when the family is made homeless by an ambitious sheikh, change comes hammering at the great wooden door of Naomi’s house. After such a devastating blow to the family’s honor, Naomi’s teenage son runs away to the capital. Now Naomi must leave her village for the first time. Instead of finding her son, Naomi finds the way to reclaim her home and the courage to challenge her sheikh. She becomes an advocate for the education of girls, and supports Miriam’s dreams.

A little bit about Lavinia:

Lavinia trained as a nurse midwife and joined the British Volunteer Programme (similar to the Peace Corps), to help some of the world’s poorest people. North Yemen was her first assignment. Lavinia has also lived and worked in Sudan, Sierra Leone and Senegal, but her first overseas experience in Yemen has remained closest to her heart.

Where did the idea for The Hesitancy of the First Moon come from?

Lavania wanted to tell a story inspired by the amazing Yemini women who opened their hearts and homes to her during her time abroad. While the novel is not based on any one individual, some parts are inspired by actual events. 

What makes the book distinctive?

The setting and the characters. Few people know anything about Yemeni women, and Lavinia draws sympathetic characters that readers want to succeed.

Lavinia’s Writing Process:

Lavinia mostly finds herself writing in the evening and on weekends. She prefers to let the story flow uninterupted, which usually means a great deal of editing later. She loves to read, sometimes paying attention to the style of the writer but often just for the pleasure of the story. Some of her favorite novels are: Barbara Kingsolver’s The Poisonwood Bible, Ian McEwan’s Atonement and Elif Safak’s Honour.

I’d like to wish Lavinia the best of luck in getting published! The novel is amazing, and I’m certain great things will happen soon!



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