I’ve been running from it, kicking it away, fighting to hide it, and just plain old denying it; and now I’m coming out into the open to admit it. I write romance novels. To be honest, I hate genres. I hate being labeled as any kind of author because I write what I write, whatever strikes my fancy, whatever my characters want the manuscript to become. I have never intended to write a romance. I once asked romance novelist Robyn Carr where she thinks I belong. She didn’t hesitate, “You’re a romance writer.” I could barely fake the smile that I returned to her as she beamed proudly at her proclamation. “No, I’m not,” I wanted to scream to the room full of writers and fans. I write children’s books, mysteries, suspense novels, and a blog. I DO NOT write romance. At least, that’s what I’ve always told myself. Alas, here’s the truth: I DO write romance. And here’s why… Read more
Category: Behind My Books
A Shore Thing
Is it just me, or is there something special about this time of year? The days are still warm, but the nights are crisp and cool. Routines are being established (or re-established), bedtimes are earlier, my favorite shows are coming back on TV, the holidays are just around the corner; here on the Shore, the crabs are fatter and tastier, and I could go on and on. Spring might be the time that the world renews itself, but fall is my time to renew and reflect. It’s when I start thinking about and writing my newest novel. Truthfully, it’s when I do my best writing. It’s when my head seems to be clearer, and my mind is ready to focus. I think a lot of it has to do with the girls returning to school. We are all ready to get back to business. But there’s no question that a good part of it has to do with living on the Eastern Shore of Maryland at this most beautiful time of year. Read more
Where Everybody Knows Your Name
What a great night we had last night! Yesterday evening, the Carpenter Street Saloon in St, Michaels, Maryland held a book launch party for my latest mystery, Picture Me. What a success it was! We had non-stop action for the entire two hours, and I sold an entire case of my new book plus several copies of my previously published works. How blessed I am to live in such a great community! And that has me thinking about how wonderful it is here on the Eastern Shore of Maryland.
Remember the old Cheers theme song?
Sometimes you want to go
Where everybody knows your name,
And they’re always glad you came;
You want to be where you can see,
Our troubles are all the same;
You want to be where everybody knows your name. Read more
Larger Than Life
This Sunday is Father’s Day here in the States; and all over the nation, families will gather around the grill to celebrate their dear old dads. For some, this will be a joyous first time celebration, and for others, it will be a bittersweet day of remembrance. Mother’s Day has become such a commercial event with flowers, chocolates, and cards, but for many girls and women, there’s nobody in the world like our daddies. Read more
This morning I attended the Baccalaureate Mass for our school’s Class of 2015. Our Pastor asked each student to think ahead 60 years and imagine looking back on their lives. “What will your legacy be?” he asked them. He implored them to do more with their lives than just make money. He told them that their legacy is important and that they should make it matter. Each one of us will leave behind a legacy, something that we pass down to future generations, whether we are the President of the United States, a businessman, a teacher, a doctor, or a parent. Each one of us will do or say something that will not be forgotten, good or bad. Read more
What’s Your Dream?
“Welcome to Hollywood! Everyone’s got a dream. What’s your dream?” Those are both the opening and the closing lines in the movie Pretty Woman, a story in which every young woman’s childhood dream is realized when Vivian is swept off her feet by Mr. Right, a very rich and very handsome Mr. Right (okay, I would argue that she actually swept him off of his feet, but you get the point). Though many would argue, understandably so, that the road Vivian took to find her dream – running away from home, living on the streets, becoming a prostitute, and being hired by Edward for the week – is not the best way to achieve one’e dream, it’s those words that open and close the movie that come back to me over and over again. I hear them echoing in my mind at least once a week, but I can’t really explain to you why. After all these years, I’ve decided to chalk it up to my inner voice constantly reminding me that as a little girl I had a dream that until recently was nothing more than a wispy cloud elusively hovering just out of reach as I stretched my hand out the window on a mountain road. Read more
Sex in Literature
Over the last couple of weeks, I have heard and been a part of many conversations about sex in literature. These conversations have taken place at conferences, in public, and within chats among friends. I find it interesting to hear how others view this topic, what they find appropriate or inappropriate, or whether or not they enjoy reading this type of work or are simply made uncomfortable by it. I still stick to the belief I have held for all of my adult life, and as this is my blog, I’m going to share that with you now. Read more
Advice From the Desk of A Writer
This February marks fifteen months since my first novel was accepted by a publisher. Oh my, how much I have learned between then and now! Since A Place to Call Home was released last August, I have been asked countless times what advice could I give to aspiring writers. I love how so many of the bestselling authors say things like “write every day,” or “just keep typing away and submitting,” or “you can do it if you work hard.” Sure, all of those things are great, but here’s the reality: I could write a whole new book just on my experiences over the past fifteen months and what I have learned. And believe me, I’m still learning. Every day I read or hear something new that I think, I should do that, or remember that, or look into that. So here are some things that I have learned that I hope will help others. Feel free to comment below to open a dialogue on what YOU have learned. Read more
Another revelation at the gym! While in class this morning, I heard our teacher say the same thing over and over again. “Your right foot should be grounded…” “Make sure your left leg is grounded.” “While in the half-moon, your right arm and right leg must both be grounded.” I felt pretty good about myself after class today. I had worked up a sweat, maintained my balance, and literally felt grounded! Yes, my feet, legs, hands, etc. were firmly pressed to the mat during working poses, but more importantly, I realized that I am grounded in my life. Read more
Taking The Bull By The Horns
Since most of my readers do not know me personally, I feel there is something you should know about me from the start: I do not go quietly into the night. My family knows that, as do my friends, as well as everyone at the schools where my children attend, the parents of my Girl Scout Troop, my summer camp staff, my editor, and my cover artist. I will fight to the end for what I believe is right, especially if it involves someone I love (and that includes my books and also you, my dear readers). Read more
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