Tuesday, September 29, 2015

I WON the RONE!! And a Recap of InD'Scribe 2015

I'm still walking on air after winning the RONE for THURSDAYS AT COCONUTS at the recent InD'Scribe Author & Reader Con held in Palm Springs, California. My debut novel won in the "Women's Fiction/Chick-Lit category." I couldn't be more excited or honored.

First, thank you to the readers, reviewers, and judges. This was a three-tier judging system based on reviews, popular vote, and finally, judging by industry professionals. What a thrill.

Anne Perry
To top it off, the conference featured Anne Perry as the first keynote speaker. Anne Perry!!! She had me at accent. I just love her British accent. Anne talked comfortably and openly about writing and her journey. It was riveting.

The second day our keynote speaker was Catherine Bybee who is not only a NYT and USA Today Bestselling author but also a cool chick! Her personal story had me in tears and motivated everyone. Her Weekday Brides Series is extremely popular and she gave everyone a copy.

L. to R.: Founder of InD'Tale Mag: TJ MacKay,
me, and author Catherine Bybee

We also attended a variety of workshops on everything from writing about sex to indie publishing. I learned a great deal from the author panels and made many friends from around the globe. Authors descended upon Palm Springs from many states, Canada, England, and other countries. It was thrilling to meet them and hear about their journeys.

There were also book signings, author luncheons, and dancing every night! To top it off, there were male cover models!! Female models, too, but the guys?! Come on.

I was also fortunate to meet several fellow authors from Soul Mate Publishing--Alina Field, Janna Shay, Darcy Flynn, and Sue Berger. What fun to meet them, as well as many of my author friends from Facebook in person!!

Proof there was a book signing!
There really was a book signing and workshops all day long for three days, but I thought you'd enjoy seeing the lighter side of the conference. InD'Tale Magazine  did a stupendous job with their first-ever conference. I can't wait until next year.

Cover model Michael Foster & me!
Hubby fake choking said model
Canadian author and fellow WF writer
Ev Bishop and me as Marilyn
The women who made it happen.
Tonya & TJ!!

Masquerade fun with Darcy Flynn
L. to R.: Me (as Marilyn) with fellow
Soulies Darcy Flynn & Alina Field

Saturday, September 5, 2015

First Annual InD'Scribe Con

Palm Springs or bust!

Nearly 100 authors and hopefully triple that amount of readers will descend upon beautiful Palm Springs, California, from September 17-20, 2015. I'll be one of the signing authors.

There will be parties (yes, parties and male models!) Thursday night is a "Dress Like your Favorite Movie Star" party. I'm going as Marilyn Monroe. I have the white halter dress from a sixties-themed party I held for my husband years ago. I just need to add red lipstick, bling, heels, and maybe a mole. :)

Friday during the day will be book signings and workshops. Friday night is a fun blog hop with everything from Arabian Nights to Hoedowns.

Saturday will include more book signings (did I mention loads of SWAG?!), workshops, and the coveted red-carpet RONE awards dinner and ceremony. I'm beyond humbled to be a finalist in the Women's Fiction/Chick Lit category and am honored that reviewers and fans voted for my debut novel, THURSDAYS AT COCONUTS. Thank you very much!!!

I believe there's a breakfast on Sunday and then we'll probably all collapse in one happy heap. Come and see us if you're in or near Palm Springs, California!

A Laborious Summer

Since it's Labor Day weekend, (and since I haven't posted in way too long), I thought I'd tell you about my laborious summer. Actually, it has been a lovely, albeit extremely busy summer. Let me explain the play on words for "labor."

A few months ago, I wrote a novelette (10,000-word story) entitled "Santa Baby" for possible inclusion in the Soul Mate Publishing Christmas anthology. And I was thrilled to learn my story was one of seven that was selected. Funny thing is, I wrote about a woman in labor on December 23. She's all alone. No boyfriend. No father. Until... Well, you'll find out soon enough. Look forward to many blogs, prizes, and parties from all of the authors this November!

Interestingly, the month after I wrote "Santa Baby," my daughter told me she's going to have her first baby! Pretty amazing timing, right? We're very excited and are in full tilt mode for the upcoming baby shower, planning, and the precious bundle.

I also started a new novel a few months ago, currently titled STRANDED IN PARADISE. The title will most likely change. I have a really good one in mind if my publisher will let me use it!! I really love the hero, Ty, who has a very cool profession! I can't wait to tell you about it. And the villain, Derek, is a total jerk. I love creating nasty people, it seems. The heroine is Pepper who is an unemployed, unlucky-in-love daycare worker.  I'm about 85 percent finished with the first draft, then I'll tackle edits and the dreaded synopsis. My novel is set on a beautiful, serene island in Florida that I want to visit and hope you will as well.

We went on a two-week vacation with three sets of family members in Arizona and California and saw the famed "Standin' On the Corner" in Winslow, Arizona (by the Eagles), the Lowell Observatory, the infamous Meteor Crater, and of course, Hollywood! At the observatory, we were able to view Venus during the day and learned a maintenance guy who loved astronomy took tons of photos and was the one who discovered Pluto. A young girl from England entered a contest and named Pluto. Fun facts.

In honor of my one-year novel anniversary, I held an online Reader Appreciation Event for fans of THURSDAYS AT COCONUTS. We had a fun, three-hour party and I gave away tons of swag. Readers are why authors write and I love giving back to them.

Finally, I'll be attending the InD'Scribe Reader & Author Con in Palm Springs, California Sept. 17-20. I'll be signing books with about 100 authors, meeting readers, and attending the RONE awards gala. I'd love to see you there! And for those of you who voted for THURSDAYS AT COCONUTS, I'm beyond humbled. Thank you.

It has been a frenzy of a spring and summer. I think I'll take a nap.