Monday, December 31, 2012

Happy 2013 New Year!

Dear Mom,

Amazing how fast time flies… just finished a book The Time Keeper by Mitch Albom on that very subject. Interesting. In the weeks leading up to Christmas until now, I also read Margo Dill’s, Finding My Place, as well as The Lifeboat by Charlotte Rogan, Talk Before Sleep by Elizabeth Berg and The Book Thief by Markus Zusak. And don't forget Fifty Shades of Santa edited by Patrica Smith. I really loved all the books, page turners until the end. I couldn’t wait until I was at the end, and yet, I didn’t want them to end. Hhmmm. All different writers with their unique voices, which helped clear up some self-badgering I do… thinking I wish I could write like that. But how boring if all writing were the same. We all have different tastes… you know the saying, different strokes for different folks.

I love to write, always will and whether or not it measures up to others doesn’t need to be a concern. It’s about putting my heart and soul into it and to just be. Just be… a writer. My own kind.

And with that, I’d like to invite you all to check out The Writers' Lens as there’s a little ole interview with me. Thanks Teresa for inviting me.

May you all have a safe, healthy, prosperous and creative New Year… whether you write, paint, sculpt, play music, do photography, crafts, film, sew, cook, whatever you create… get a move on and do your thing!

Writers, here’s something you can submit to: Cupid’s Quiver. Don’t waste any time as the deadline is January 15th. Click on the poster for submission details.


And if you’re looking for a challenge to get you in the habit of writing every day, maybe try this—I’m going to... try. I heard about it from my friend Estrella from Life's a Stage. Check out: Mindful Writing Challenge

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Yes, Yes, Yes! I'm Pretty Sure... Success!

Dear Mom,

Yes, socializing is exhausting. Do you feel that way? As an introvert, it wipes me out. I had three days in a row of it… Saturday and Sunday, I helped my daughter Rita with her two craft fairs. Yesterday (Monday) was the event Rita created for me to do a reading of my story, Mistletoe, published in Fifty Shades of Santa, by Welkin Press. Fifty Shades of Santa is 12 (Nice, Not Naughty) Humorous Holiday Romances.

I worked through my nerves all day long… researched mistletoe, bagged the prizes for the drawing, tried on what I was going to wear. Had I filled my mouth with any more of Sioux’s fudge, my pants may have split… I practiced reading. I made numbers for the drawing, and a sign-in sheet. I piddled around all day getting prepared for the event.

Then the time arrived for me to leave. I couldn’t find my phone before I went down to hubby’s work to get the sign he made for me. He had been waiting… what can I say? However, I did give up looking or he might still be waiting. I stopped for gas and when I got back in my car, I could hear my phone vibrating. It was in my purse. Nerves will do that, right? Hubby was calling to see if he could hear it in the house some where.

Rita and Terry (her beau) met me a The Gelateria to set up for the event.

All set and ready to go

Ho Ho Ho!

We’re a pair, aren’t we?

Rita and Lynn

Then people started trickling in… Kristine and her mom, Karen. My sister, Sue. My WWWP gals, Sioux and Tammy. Sioux drove some other writing friends, who are also published in Fifty Shades of SantaDonna Volkennannt and Marcia Gaye. Marcia’s husband, Jim came along too! Other friends of Rita’s, John and Krista joined us. The gelato maker, Carrie stepped on in. My other sister, Ruth and her hubby, Bud and son, Josh arrived. It was past the starting time, and I wasn’t sure if anyone else was going to make it. My BFF, Susan said she was coming, but you never know about these things, so I got the show on the road… err… the stool and began to read.

To the left where that door opening is, 
there's a little cubby hole, Bud and Josh were in there!
That's my favorite spot to sit and write at The Gelateria.

Nearly half way, three more of Rita’s friends popped in, Bryan, Kristin, and another young lady, but I didn’t get her name. If you read this, tell me who you are!

I finished reading without my tongue getting too twisted. Yes, a success. And I’m so grateful to all who ventured out as I know it’s a pretty good trek for some. Let me say, I really appreciated it from the bottom of my heart. You made me feel comfortable and I hope you all had a jolly good time… that was my intent… fun and silliness... and let's not forget the love... or the chocolate. Rita made the container holding the chocolate that looks like Santa’s sack.

Terry and the Santa Sack

I had to get some pics with the other authors from Fifty Shades of Santa.
Donna Volkenannt (left), me, Marcia Gaye (right)

Here we are, just the three of us (pretend you're singing that one song),
but here we are with the sign.

If it weren't for my WWWP peeps, chances are my story might not have made it... those gals are wonderful. 
 Tammy (left), me, Sioux (right)
Missing in action are Linda and Beth.

After it was over, I hung out with Rita, Terry, John and Krista to settle myself down. Gelato will do that, don’t you know? 
 John, Krista, Terry chilling

Rita chilling

When I was in my car on my way home, I checked my phone and had a voice mail from my BFF. "Hey Lynn, it's Susan. Give me a call." It was late and I didn’t want to wake her. By the sound of her voice, I didn't think anything was wrong, so I chalked it up that she’s like me and just plum forgot.

I called her this morning and found out that she was on her way to the reading with her mom Elsie, her aunt Audi and her other BFF Cindy when they were rear-ended. Smacked hard! Eye glasses, soda, hair barrettes flew through the air. Elsie felt the worst of the impact. Paramedics were called and they checked her over. Having a pace-maker raised concern. She refused to go to the hospital. Susan took her home and called her sister, Katie who’s a nurse and she came over and took care of everything.

Nothing serious, thank God. The paramedics made Elsie promise she’d see a doctor today and she plans on going. I sure hope everything is fine.

And Yes again, I’m incredibly grateful the accident wasn’t any more serious. They were all sad they missed it, so I promised them a private reading of their own!

P.S. A special thank you to Chris, the owner of The Gelateria! And those who worked that evening… a big thank you.

And now for some more pictures…

 Santa's little helper, Rita

They look like they're having fun. 
In the hand of Kristin is a little hand-made by me ornament,
something all attendees received. Purchase a copy of Fifty Shades of Santa
and I'll send you one... while they last.

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

UhOh, Mistletoe! UPDATE!

Dear Mom,

You know that my story, Mistletoe, was one of 12 stories that was accepted and published in the anthology, Fifty Shades of Santa, by Welkin Press. Fifty Shades of Santa is 12 (Nice, Not Naughty) Humorous Holiday Romances.

Don’t you just love the cover?

Your granddaughter, Rita thought it would be a good idea for me to read my story at the Italian dessert cafĂ©/coffeehouse where she works as the baker… all homemade pastries, breads, etc. In addition to coffee, they make their own gelato, hence, The Gelateria. Never had gelato? Well you may want to make the trip just for that experience. Did I mention the owner and all the people who work there are super-dooper nice? And it’s such a cool place. They’ve recently renovated the upstairs—where I’ll be located…

On Monday, December 17th at 7:00 p.m.
3197 S. Grand Blvd., St. Louis, 63110

… and where I hope to entertain you with my story… and if you’re coming straight from work, The Gelateria has food-food too... you know, not just desserts and sugary items. Check out the menu.

I suggested that Rita, the brains behind this shing-dig, bring some of her hand-made egabrag crafts to sell for anyone who has some last minute holiday shopping to do.

The fun doesn’t stop there… I’ll be doing a drawing for some silly prizes.  And there will be free chocolate…

Not only that, but I have a special item for the first 25 people who stop by.

AND, we might have another special guest (or two) also doing a reading from Fifty Shades of Santa!

Now if that doesn’t entice you to come with bells on, maybe you’ll want to purchase Fifty Shades of Santa when it’s available. UPDATE: Now available on Amazon - Kindle only - for just $3.99!

If I don’t see you, have a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

Monday, December 10, 2012

Ho Ho Ho on the Go Go Go and Mistletoe!

Dear Mom,

Last Friday I told you about the packed day I was going to have on Saturday. Thought you might like to see a few shots from that non-stop, action-filled whirlwind.

The craft fair -

My daughter, Rita and my sister, Ruth

Book signing one at All on the Same Page Book Store in Creve Coeur -

Left to Right: Nina Miller, Patt Pickett, Tammy Goodsell, Theresa Sanders

Book signing two at Main Street Books in St. Charles -

Linda O'Connell, Lynn Cahoon, Cathi LaMarche, Pat Wahler

Book signing three at The Book House on Manchester -

Donna Volkenannt, Sioux Roslawski, Beth Wood

I must add that I had a blast at each one. I'm so proud and grateful for all my friends. After the last book signing, I went home, showered and then hubby and I went to a Christmas party. No pictures for that.

Oh and what about Mistletoe? I'll get back with you tomorrow for all those details.

Friday, December 7, 2012

Don't Forget...

Dear Mom,

Tomorrow I have a packed day. I'll start off helping my daughter, Rita and little sister, Ruth set up for a craft fair at the Hazelwood Community Center.

Check out Rita's blog for details, if interested.

After setting up, I'll shop around and see if I can snag a few more presents. Then I'll hop in my car and head to the first of three Chicken Soup for the Soul book signings and canned food drive. YAY for all my fabulous friends!

Check out Tammy's blog for the first book signing in Creve Coeur. I've never been to this book store before, so I'm looking forward to this new adventure. What writer doesn't love a book store? Then I'll zoom over to old St. Charles.

Check out Linda's blog or Pat's blog for the second book signing. I'll be in that area tonight celebrating my best friend's birthday. It's her birthday today... HAPPY BIRTHDAY SUSAN! I've been to this book store and it's charming. The owner is as sweet as she can be.

Next I'll travel closer to home to one of my other favorite book stores to see more friends.

Check out Beth's blog, or Sioux's blog, or Donna's blog. They'll all be there. This book store is an old house and I just learned it's haunted. I can't wait!

When I get home with my pile of signed books, I hope to get a nap in before hubby and I venture out to a Christmas party. I'll be recouping Sunday, don't ya know?

Stay tuned, there's more fun to come... ho, ho, ho.

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

The Next Big Thing

Tag! I'm it! Sioux from Sioux’s Page, tagged me. She answered these same questions on her blog. Because Sioux was so kind as to say that I inspired her to write her book in progress that she wrote during this year’s NaNoWriMo, well… I wanted to oblige her.

And like Sioux said, after you read my answers, hopefully Pat Wahler will accept being "it" and will post next Tuesday. I know Pat has also participated in NaNoWriMo more than once. Also as Sioux says, “Inquiring minds want to know...”

You’re tagged Pat:

And here are my answers:

What is your working title of your book? The Locked Heart. I haven’t changed the title since I wrote it last year as a NaNoWriMo project.

Where did the idea come from for the book? Originally it was to be the thread in a previous book that I had written which was an accumulation of one-sided letters written to an aunt in a nursing home (who was unable to write back)… but I needed something to tie all the letters together and thought this idea would do it. However, it turned out to be a story in itself.

What genre does your book fall under? I wanted it to fall under epistolary, guess that would be fictional epistolary, as that’s the structure of all five drafts of my books – in some form of letter writing/journal writing/diary type form. But about half way through the book, the story just took over – so the first half is in journal form while the second half is in regular (?) form. Now I have to decide which way I’m going to go…

Which actors would you choose to play your characters in a movie rendition? Ellen DeGeneres comes to mind to play one particular character. I’d love for Viggo Mortensen (that one is for you, Sioux) to play a role, and gee, I have no idea about the main character. Any thoughts WWWPs?

What is the one-sentence synopsis of your book? A niece and aunt resolve their estranged relationship over preconceived issues and the magic of a locket opens the door to truth neither wanted to accept.

Will your book be self-published or represented by an agency? I’ll consider either when that time comes… who knows what the publishing world will be like then. But if there’s an agent out there interested, bring it on.

How long did it take you to write the first draft of your manuscript? Less than 30 days. Like I said before, it was a NaNoWriMo project that I wrote in 2011. I’m still working on it – that’s the hard part: rewriting, revision, rewriting, editing, rewriting. Did I mention rewriting?

What other books would you compare this story to within your genre? I have no idea. I’m pretty sure I’ve read every epistolary type book that is out there and I haven’t read anything like this.

Who or what inspired you to write this book? I’ve been inspired by so many people. One leads to the other that leads to the other… over the years I’ve been blessed by so many writer and non-writer friends/family that have been supportive. You all know who you are… and a huge thank you to all of you.

What else about your book might pique the reader’s interest? I think there are a lot of different layers of universal themes running throughout… or that’s my hope anyway. Love, intimacy/non-intimacy, prejudices, misunderstandings, misconceptions. People are most important regardless of their beliefs concerning anything. It’s all about the love, no matter what kind of love.