Note to Readers
Feature Article: NOT QUITE NIRVANA
Best Book(s) Iíve Read (since the last newsletter)
* * * In Memorium
Rest in peace, Papa.
* * *
Next month, Iíll return to the series of articles (launched a lifetime ago, it seems!) on the (my) stages of creating a novel. But since I havenít issued a newsletter since fall, I thought a more global observation on writing would be appropriate for my first newsletter of 2007. The last few years have been tough onesóthe last few months real dooziesóso forgive a soupcon of self-pity, thrown in with my usual (and I hope not too dull) observations!
May 2007 bring you happiness, health, and magic!
The fifth book in the HOME series, featuring Florida Jones (introduced in FOLLOW ME HOME), has been retitled TAKE ME HOME. Publication is scheduled for September, 2007.
* * * NEW CONTEST!
(And youíre already entered!)
Anyone subscribed to my newsletter prior to September 1, 2007 (and you already are!) is automatically registered for an opportunity to win a set of the first four books in the HOME series. Winner will be drawn in mid-September; thereís no further action needed on your part.
One entry per person. Donít re-register; play fair. Multiple entries (and, yes, I can tell) will be disqualified.
FEATURE ARTICLE: NOT QUITE NIRVANA
Before I sold a book, I was quite certain that becoming a published author would be akin to finding my bliss. And in some ways, it is...
Being a published writer is an adventureóa rush of inspiration, hair-raising moments of insight, a clutch of the heart when you know what youíve just written is not only good, but great.
Itís camaraderie with other writers, itís going to work in your pajamas, itís a fantastic review and a pat on the back from your editor and having your friends and family treat you like youíve accomplished something miraculous. Itís having fans stammer when they meet you and whisking by long lines wearing your published author badge to take your seat at the RWA Literacy Booksigning (which is a shot to the ego, and donít let any writer try to tell you otherwise).
Itís sipping coffee, and watching snow fall outside your office window, and feeling a deep sense of contentment as you finally place your hands on the keyboard.
And it can also be filled with the tooth-pulling drudgery of trying to find the right words, any wordsóbut it comes with the fun and drama of telling other people about the tooth-pulling drudgery of trying to come up with the right words, any words.
It sounds magical and mysterious and unique. And it is.
But it is also a job. A Real Job. With deadlines and expectations and nobody (except you) giving a flying fig if youíre feeling the muse. If you donít meet deadlines and donít live up to expectations, you no longer have a career. And nobody (except you) gives a flying fig about that, either.
You have to produce whether you feel like it or not and whether itís convenient or not.
You have to produce...
...Through silly (and sometimes infuriating) editorial dictums, yucky titles, inane back cover copy, and realizing your publicist has forgotten your name.
...Between the interruptions from people (you usually love) who think because you work at home youíre not really working.
...When a copy-edited manuscript arrives requiring a two-day-turnaround the same week that you have a deadline on your next book and your child just broke his arm.
You have to produce even if youíre experiencingówithout benefit of paid vacation or sick days or funeral leave and often without much moneyóa divorce, a teenage child in turmoil, a dying parent, a loved oneís stroke, losing a job, your spouse losing a job, or moving to a different house or moving your parents to a different house. All of which happened to me within three years (and three more books) of publishing my first novel.
Believe it or not, publishing does not turn your life into a petal-strewn pathway to heaven. I wish someone had told me that, because knowing might have spared me landing with such a thud on the rock of reality. But you know what? Even if Iíd known, Iíd still be doing the same thing.
BOOK(s) IíVE READ SINCE THE LAST NEWSLETTER:
THE VIRGIN OF SMALL PLAINS, by Nancy Pickard
A literary suspense novel by award-winning mystery author Pickard. I loved this book. Dropped me right into the story within the first few pages and I raced through it.
AT FIRST SIGHT, by Nicholas Sparks
A satisfying read for fans of Nicholas Sparks.
DANCE WITH ME, by Luanne Rice
Wonderful characters with tangled lives, and straightforward, yet moving prose, kept me reading on this one.
THE MEMORY KEEPERíS DAUGHTER, by Kim Edwards
Beautiful writing. Hopeful ending.
HEALING GRIEF, by James Van Praagh (Nonfiction)
A nice take on the stages of grief viewed through a spiritual lens.
FLYING SOLO, by Carol M. Anderson and Susan Stewart (Nonfiction)
An older book, but great for any woman whose launching out on her own!
THE DISEASE TO PLEASE, by Harriet Braiker (Nonfiction)
Wow. If you have it... this is great!
Fiction for and about women rediscovering themselves