Glenwood Springs mom authors wine book
Pairing wine with dinner is a fairly common practice, but local author and mother of two Katrina Epp says pairing wine with your mood is even more important — the food portion of your evening’s menu will follow.
“As I got older and had kids, time was essential for me,” Epp said. “So those few quiet moments that I’d have, if I wanted to have wine, I really took into consideration what mood I was in. If I was in a happy, celebratory mood, maybe I’d have some champagne or a Riesling or something white and light, something bubbly. But if I was in a chill, relaxed mood or had had a rough day, a deep red is just better for that.”
This idea of pairing a wine with a mood is applied in her new book, co-authored by Leah Speer, “Pour Me Some Wine: A Toast to the Mama Sisterhood.”
The book, which came out in October and is available on Amazon, Barnes and Noble and anywhere else books are sold online, consists of short stories and anecdotes that illustrate emotions common among mommies.
There are chapters for when the reader is feeling guilty, frustrated or overwhelmed, and also celebratory or grateful.
“I go through periods as a mom where I feel guilty — I’m working a ton, and I feel guilty the most,” Epp said. “But then there are times when I feel like celebrating as well. I’ve made enough time; I’ve balanced work, and I’ve balanced cooking healthy dinners, getting them to school with everything, and I feel successful. There are times I feel frustrated, and that’s when I want to pick up the book and read something out of that chapter. We picked the emotions that we related to the most and that our friends, other moms, said that they related to as well.”
It follows the popular “Chicken Soup for the Soul” format, where standalone, digestible chapters make up a larger story — in this case, the mom experience.
But Epp and Speer took the book one step further by pairing wines with each emotion. It became more than a book full of stories. It became a “mommoisseur” handbook, complete with an easy-to-read chart in the back that suggests a list of wines for each mood explored in the book’s chapters.
Epp said choosing the wines required a lot of research.
“We didn’t want to put a lot of expensive wines in the book because we wanted wines for the everyday mom,” Epp said. “We picked fun, popular wines, but then some not-so-popular wines with fun names because doing a pairing in the book was going to be easier if it had a cool, savvy name. And then we picked a couple of our favorites as well to put in there. But there was definitely a lot of research. It was a good excuse.”
The free-flowing book indicates that Epp and Speer are best friends, kindred spirits. And maybe they are, on some level, but in fact the two will be meeting in person for the first time next month when they appear on their first national television spot: HLN “Weekend Express.”
“It’s a crazy story,” Epp said. “I’ve never actually met her in person, which makes it pretty exciting. We’ve written this book totally just via Skype and the Internet.”
Epp was put in touch with her writing partner because she took a writing class from Speer’s mother.
“A lot of the things that I would write about were my kids, so she would often mention that her daughter was going through a lot of the same stuff; we were close to the same age and had kids the same age,” Epp said. “So she was like, ‘You know, you should reach out to her sometime.’”
The two worked together on their first book, “Must. Have. Wine.: A Toast to Motherhood,” which they self-published. But they knew they had to get more creative if they wanted to reach a wide audience.
“One of the things that some of the agents mentioned when we were submitting is that there’s a plethora of mommy books out there, and you need to really set yourself apart,” Epp said. “So we were like, ‘Well, let’s write another one but make it different.’ And it was really Leah’s idea to add the wine pairing to each story.”
For “Pour Me Some Wine,” the duo teamed up with an editor from “Chicken Soup for the Soul” and worked through a publisher to gain a wider reach than they could by self-publishing.
After more than a year of getting the book together, Epp and Speer will finally meet in person. The two are working on a few more ideas, including a book in a similar format about how to balance being a wife with being a mother, but for now, Epp is focused on marketing and enjoying “Pour Me Some Wine.”
“We wrote the book that we wanted to read,” Epp said. “I think a lot of times you feel bad admitting that you’re not perfect. You feel this need to be everything. You’ve got to be the chauffeur, the cook, the person who cleans the house, the wife in most cases, and it gets overwhelming. And you see so-and-so down the street doing it flawlessly, you think, and sometimes it’s hard to admit, you know what, I’m not perfect. I’m struggling. But that’s OK.”
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