Ryan Jones, the author of More Than Us, which released August 6, 2020, began writing in grade 12 after she had taken a creative writing class and found a passion for writing novels. Throughout her entire life, however, she’s been an avid reader, surrounded by stacks of books.
“What I enjoy most about writing is being able to be vulnerable, open, and truthful to myself without judgment,” Jones said. “It’s just you and the blank page and the words you’re pouring onto it. I learn a lot about who I am as a person through writing.”
With a blend of her love for writing and her history with grief and depression, Jones’s idea of More Than Us, a YA contemporary that revolves around mental health, personal development, and romance, blossomed.
“I didn’t have the best childhood and upbringing and I’ve experienced a lot of tough things, so grief definitely inspired the plot,” Jones said. “Also, I wrote this book when I experienced depression for the first time. I didn’t know what was causing it, or what to do; I poured all of my emotions into this book.”
The book, More Than Us, is dedicated to the Butcher-Hagell Family, whose son committed suicide. Jones knew him and his sister in high school, so this event also inspired the book.
“Grief has always painted my life, as cliche as that sounds,” Jones said.
Jones has a bookstagram, @bibliovirgo, where she shares her love for books, tea, and advocates for mental health. She often brings up mental and physical wellness on her platform, being a beckon of light for those in the Bookstgaram community.
“I think my best piece of advice would be to take life day-by-day and cater to yourself for what you need for that day. Listen to your body and listen to yourself,” Jones said.
Jones plans to continue writing, her current projects being a teen contemporary fiction that is currently being queried, writing another YA contemporary, and working on her first children’s book. She doesn’t know if she’d like to continue Bookstagram.
“While a large following is nice, people may not understand that [Bookstagram] takes a lot of work and pressure,” Jones admits. “Will I eventually give up Bookstagram? Where I’m at right now, probably. For now, I’ve found a happy medium where I don’t feel too much pressure – I’m just posting what I love.”
Some of her favorite books include Afterworlds by Scott Westerfield, the Delirium trilogy by Lauren Oliver, and Turtles All The Way Down by Jon Green. Her coping mechanisms and self-care activities include drinking tea (her favorites being orange pekoe and earl grey), reading, taking baths, and yoga.
Ways to reach Jones:
Instagram: @ bibliovirgo
Twitter: @ bibliovirgo_
FB: Biblio Virgo Reviews
Links to purchase More Than Us: