Tag Archives: great reads

Off to my version of the Wonderful World of Oz…RWA2016!

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In just a few days, I leave for San Diego for the 2016 RWA annual conference. Can I tell you just how excited I am?! I’m like a kid waiting anxiously for Christmas morning. I’m like that 18-year-old waiting for the college acceptance letter to come via snail mail. I’m like that bride-to-be the night before her big day. I’m like….okay, you get it!

This will be my third RWA conference. The first one I ever attended was in 2014 and that conference shaped my life to come. Dramatic much, you ask? No, not really. I’ll tell you why.

At the RWA14 conference held in San Antonio 2 amazing things happened that turned my life as I knew it then, completely around. First, I met the person who would become my first editor at The Wild Rose Press. I had submitted my manuscript Skater’s Waltz to WRP after winning a contest. Rhonda Penders was the judge and she asked me to submit. I had been exchanging emails with this editor for the champagne line for a few weeks, and she told me she would be at the conference and would like to meet up, so we arranged a time to do so. When we met she told me that  by the time I got home from the conference there would be an acceptance letter in the mail from WRP for my book, along with a contract. I was so stunned I couldn’t put a coherent sentence together. A legitimate publisher was going to put my book into print! Momentous event number 1.

Life changing event number 2 was when I met, talked with, and cried to Nora Roberts. Oh, and got a picture with her, which currently sits on my writing desk. Why did I cry, you ask? It was NORA ROBERTS!!!! And she was so damn normal and nice. We spoke for a few minutes ( well, I babbled between sob sniffs!) and she encouraged me wholeheartedly to go all balls out for my dream of writing and publishing romantic fiction.  She said no one could write the romance story I wanted to tell but me. Me! Holy Macaroni!

Holy Macaroni!

She said she knew she’d be seeing my at the Literacy Book signing someday, at my own table.

I left that conference with enough enthusiasm and good will to last until the RWA15 conference. At that one, I volunteered to work at the Literacy Book-Signing and was assigned to Jayne Ann Krentz! No crying this  time, but she was amazing. I learned an awful lot about being a gracious and  receptive author from her.

This year, RWA16, I’m volunteering at the Librarian’s luncheon and moderating 2 courses with some of my fav authors. Oh, and I’m doing the Literacy Book signing this year as …drumroll…. a SIGNING AUTHOR. God bless Nora Roberts’ prediction.

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So, if you’re in San Diego this year, join us for the Book signing. If you’re a first time RWA conference attendee, whether you’re an author or a reader, be sure to look for me around the Marriot and in classes and stop and say Hi!

And remember: dreams come true every day, in every way. You just need to dream them.

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Filed under Author, community advocacy, Contemporary Romance, Life challenges, Literary characters, love, NHRWA, Romance, Romance Books, RWA, The Wild Rose Press, WIld Rose Press AUthor

Summer reading – the beginning….

Someone who read a recent blog of mine blog asked me “why do you re-read your old writing texts and “how to” books over the summer? Didn’t you get enough out of them the first time? Did you miss important stuff? Instead of answering the question directly, I asked this instead: “Haven’t you ever read something – a book,or an article – that was just so good you read it again just for the pleasure of it?” The answer I got back was typical of most people: “No. Once I read something, that’s it. I’m done.”

A sad, but a very common occurrence among  people. Most people will see a movie more than once if they like it – this is evidenced based fact: look at how many movie DVD’s are sold each and every day, not rented. Or, they will listen to a song endlessly. But to re-read a favored book? Not happening.

I’ve read Gone with the Wind  13 times. Cover to cover. And I could read it again tomorrow if I had the time to devote to it.

I’ve read To Kill A Mockingbird 8 times. I can quote descriptions and dialogue when prompted.

Last year I re-read every “In Death” book by J.D.Robb again, starting with the first one in the series, Naked in Death and finishing with the most current one, straight out. I didn’t read anything else until I finished all of them. Re-reading the list in order, the way it was written, was very powerful for me.  I could see and watch how J.D.Robb grew her characters with each book, building on their personalities, using their individual backgrounds to advance the plot and the series characters themselves. It was  like taking a master class on how to develop character and plot arcs effectively. I gleamed so much valuable information and writing development wisdom from re-reading the series that has helped me enormously with my own writing.

To me, re-reading a favored book is more pleasurable than seeing a favored movie over and over again. Don’t get me wrong – I’ve seen The Birdcagat least two dozen times – and every time I laugh while I quote the dialogue! But to spend time to re-read a book, one that gave you such treasured hours of pleasure, one that, every time you read it, you learn something new, or find something new from, something you didn’t see before, is to me one of life’s most wonderful ways to spend a few hours.

Re-reading my writing craft books and texts brings me the same pleasure, because every time – EVERY TIME – I find something, some tidbit, some phrase of wisdom, I didn’t see when I read it the last time. And to me, that is time so valuably spent.

What’s your favorite book? When was the last time you read it? Why not get reacquainted and read it again? Believe me, you’ll be happy when you do.

here’s my current favorite book, and LOOK! – it’s mine! It was just recently voted THE BOOK OF THE WEEK over at AuthorShout

THE VOICES OF ANGELS

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Love is the last thing Carly Lennox is looking for when she sets out on her new book tour. The independent, widowed author is content with a life spent writing and in raising her daughter. When newscaster Mike Woodard suggests they work on a television magazine profile based on her book, Carly’s thrilled, but guarded. His obvious desire to turn their relationship into something other than just a working one is more than she bargained for.

Mike Woodard is ambitious, and not only in his chosen profession. He wants Carly, maybe more than he’s ever wanted anything or anyone else. As he tells her, he’s a patient man. But the more they’re together, Mike realizes it isn’t simply desire beating within him. Carly Lennox is the missing piece in his life. Getting her to accept it-and him-may just be the toughest assignment he’s ever taken on.

Buy Links: Amazon /// TWRP /// Kobo /// Nook

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Filed under Author, Characters, Contemporary Romance, Life challenges, Literary characters, love, MacQuire Women, Romance, Romance Books, Strong Women, The Voices of Angels, The Wild Rose Press, WIld Rose Press AUthor