Singer-songwriter Rory Feek shared the spotlight with his wife, Joey, as the duo Joey + Rory, until her death from cancer in March of this year. Feek will share his heartbreaking, yet ultimately inspiring story, not only of his life with Joey, who died at age 40, but also of their daughter, Indiana, born with Down syndrome in February 2014. But in a blog post announcing the book, which will share its title with the blog, This Life I Live, Feek reveals that the book will also chronicle his turbulent life before stardom, matrimony, fatherhood and tragedy.
Sharing the story of an encounter in the garden section of Home Depot with a woman who told him that he and his wife had inspired her, Feek says he left there thinking, “She has no idea. No one can understand what it means to me to be part of such a beautiful love story, unless they have had the chance to hear what a corrupt person I was before Joey came along. How far God has brought me in the last 15 years.” Feek adds that he was probably “the least likely guy that you would have ever thought would go on to be part of inspiring others by how I love and have been loved.”
Although he says he had always wanted to write a book, Feek recalls that literary agents told him – while Joey was living – that he and his wife weren’t famous enough to warrant the publication of their life story. That situation changed late last year and offers to publish came pouring in. In February, just weeks before Joey’s death, Feek received a call from Nashville-based publisher Thomas Nelson, an imprint of publishing giant HarperCollins, and was moved by their approach, which was not to solely focus on the tragic turn of events of the past couple of years. The book will arrive in stores on Valentine’s Day, February 14th, 2017.
On a particularly poignant note, Feek writes, “[Ernest] Hemingway once said, ‘There is nothing to writing. All you do is sit down at a typewriter and bleed.’ And I believe that he was right. Except, for this book to happen… I did the first part, and Joey did the last.”
Feek’s documentary film, To Joey, With Love, about the final years of his wife’s life, will premiere later this year. Feek also wrote and directed the Civil War-themed film, Josephine, which was screened at the Nashville Film Festival earlier this year.