Domingue, Ronlyn 1969–
Domingue, Ronlyn 1969–
PERSONAL: Born September, 1969, in Baton Rouge, LA; partner of Todd Bourque. Education: Louisiana State University, bachelor's degree, 1993, M.F.A., 2003.
ADDRESSES: Agent—Jandy Nelson, Manus & Associates Literary Agency—West, 425 Sherman Ave., Ste. 200, Palo Alto, CA 94306.
CAREER: Writer. Former municipal lobbyist; Gemini Consulting, LA and Dallas, TX, former administrative coordinator; on staff of nonprofit training program for Volunteer Baton Rouge!; Louisiana State University, Shreveport, project manager in School of Social Work Office of Social Service Research and Development; independent consultant for nonprofit organizations; Bertman and Associates (fund development and philanthropy firm), staff member.
AWARDS, HONORS: National Scholastic writing awards, 1985, for short-short story and dramatic script; Evelyn Scott Award for Creative Nonfiction, and Robert Olen Butler Short-Story Award, both Louisiana State University, both 2003.
The Mercy of Thin Air, (novel), Atria Books (New York, NY), 2005.
Short stories have appeared in New England Review, Clackamas Literary Review, and New Delta Review.
WORK IN PROGRESS: Another novel.
SIDELIGHTS: In her novel The Mercy of Thin Air Ronlyn Domingue tells the story of Raziela "Razi" Nolan, a young New Orleans woman whose desire for immortality is fulfilled after an accident leaves her a ghost living in what is called "The Between" while waiting to see what comes next. In the meantime, Razi has the ability to influence the lives of those still living. She eventually finds that her wait is longer than expected, and seventy years after she died, she tries to retrace the life of her one true love to see what happened to him. Fortunately, she can trace his life partially through the scents he leaves behind on things he once owned and places he has visited. She soon becomes attached to a young couple who buy an old bookcase her lover once owned. As she looks for clues about her lover, Ronlyn observes the couple's disintegrating marriage as the wife deals with a ghost from her own past. The novel is "filled with vivid descriptions of scents, sounds, and marvelous human sensations," wrote Susanne Wells in a review in the Library Journal, adding that the story "gets under one's skin." A Kirkus Reviews contributor called the lead character "the story's compelling narrator" and felt that The Mercy of Thin Air contains "sweet, entertaining love stories." Writing in Publishers Weekly, a reviewer noted, "A gothically tinged historical take on The Lovely Bones, this debut novel manages to carve out some of its own territory."
BIOGRAPHICAL AND CRITICAL SOURCES:
Kirkus Reviews, July 1, 2005, review of The Mercy of Thin Air, p. 701.
Library Journal, July 1, 2005, Susanne Wells, review of The Mercy of Thin Air, p. 65.
Publishers Weekly, July 18, 2005, review of The Mercy of Thin Air, p. 180.
Louisiana Book Festival 2005 Web site, http://lbf.state.lib.la.us/ (October 1, 2005), brief profile of author.
Ronlyn Domingue Home Page, http://www.ronlyndomingue.com (October 1, 2005).