Monday, September 9, 2013

Book Review - The Tempestuous Debutante

The Tempestuous Debutante by Becky Lower

In Becky's fourth book of the Cotillion Ball Series, she will have you believing in the power of a first kiss. Jasmine has her sights set on an engagement to an English Aristocrat to advance her social standing before the next season of debutante balls. If she fails, she will become known as a 'poor unfortunate', a debutante who did not find love during ...her first season of balls. Your heart will race right along with Jasmine's as she discovers what is truly important in life along with true love.

With fresh writing and endearing, believable characters, this lighthearted historical romance may be Becky's best yet.

You can find this book and others of Becky's on Happy reading, my friends!

Sunday, May 19, 2013

Super Nova Crashes

Have you ever seen a child who is pumped up on sugar running around and around and around? I know you have! And you probably thought to yourself that it will be funny when they crash? Well, friends, kids aren't the only ones to get that hoped up. Remember how I went SUPER NOVA? Well this is me, shortly thereafter...


My second pitch was late in the afternoon with Entangled Editor, Shannon Godwin. Now Shannon smiles a lot. And I really liked that because that is the way I am. She wanted to hear about my completed ms first. Although we only had seven minutes, we spent a lot of time on RAE. She really liked my high concept for this paranormal/fantasy. Having seen nor heard of any ms like this, she requested... the first three chapters and synopsis. My time with her was up, but she said if you can tell me your second ms in two or three sentences then go for it. So, I said, "It isn't until rich girl, Candance, mets Tucker after she has been arrested and sentenced to community service for bungee jumping off a building in Houston that she realizes she is broken. Tucker knows why she is there because it was all over the news, but why is he there?"

Shannon immediately asked for the first chapter of Candace along with a synopsis.

The Knight Agency

I had the time of my life at the conference yesterday. My first pitch ever was with Elaine Spencer from The Knight Agency. I was soooo nervous! One because it was my first time, and two, Elaine is a very sophicated young lady. It's not ...everyday in my world that I meet someone like her. Anyway, I stumbled my way through the pitch and in the end she told me that both Rae & Candace are sellable! She requested the first 100 pages of which either WIP I thought showcased my work the best even if it takes me six months to send it to her (because Candace is only in her second draft). Yeah me!

Sunday, March 17, 2013

GILDED AGE ~ A Novel by Claire McMillan

I recently met author, Claire McMillan at my chapter's monthly meeting.  She spoke about her new novel Gilded Age, which is a contemporary.  This really threw me and at first I wasn't interested in the book at all.  Besides, the novel is set in Cleveland of all places.  When I look at Cleveland, whether I'm driving up 71 or 77, all is see is dirt, crime and an unexciting skyline.

Now that I have began reading, I have to say her writer's voice hooked me right away so I read another page and then another.  The story doesn't start in a dirty, crime-ridden, unexciting location.  Instead, the story unfolds in the beautiful Severance Hall.  The fretwork is rumored to have been modeled after benefactor John Severance's wife's wedding veil.  How romantic!

To enjoy this promising novel yourself, visit:

Sunday, March 3, 2013

Surround Yourself with Positive People

Yesterday morning as I laid in bed, I thought about staying there all day instead of attending my monthly NEORWA meeting and lunch afterwards with Claire McMillian. I am so glad I went! Although I have only known these ladies for less than a year and see that at best once a month, they are family to me. The first thing we did at at the meeting was Congratulate good news members presented from r...eceiving a contract on a manuscript they wrote to a Movie Star's agent requesting a novel be flipped into a screen play. We ask, "How did you do it?" We were all genuinely happy for our other group members.
Any of that sound strange to you? It probably does. Working out in the real coworkers seem angry when I succeed. No one congratulates me on a job well done, or asks me how I did it. No wonder so many Americans hate their jobs and are truly unhappy.
If only the world could be filled with Romance Writers!

Saturday, February 23, 2013

NEORWA Cleveland Rocks Contest 2013

I entered both RAE AND THE RUBY SCEPTER and CANDACE'S CHOICE in the Cleveland Rocks Contest for the YA category.  Submissions closed at midnight February 21st.  At last count, that I know of, there were sixteen submissions for YA.  Group member, Sheila Larkin, is the coordinator this year for the YA category.

Although I have only been a member of the group since May 2012, I am the coordinator for the Mainstream category.  I have received 34 entries.  Distributed those to 68 judges, along with the judges letter, judging guidelines and scoresheets.  It may sound simple, but it's not.  Sometimes, judges decide they don't want to judge a particular category so you end up reshuffling the enteries amoung the judges, verifying receipt and then fielding questions as they arise.  Another issue I ran into was juggling one contestants submissions as they had three related entries.  I didn't want any of my judges to review more than one of because I wanted the contestant to receive the best critique she or he could.

I have received a few judged entries back already as we began sending them out a week ago.  I have to say, so far I would be pleased with the feedback given if I were the contestant.  Mind you, some entries are not as good as others, but the judges have taken the time to explain why the score might not be as high as the contestant was hoping for.  The judges have pointed out POV shifts and different ways to avoid those along with reference guides to help, run-on sentences, and the story starting in the wrong place and specifically why they felt that way.

I am blessed to belong to such an amazing group.

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Amazon Breakthrough Novel Award

TOTALLY BUMMED...I just discovered that I didn't pass the first cut in the Amazon Breakthrough Novel Award competition with a pitch for RAE. The competition was steep...10000 contestants weeded down to 400 in my category. I suppose making it to the next round would have been like winning the lottery.

Sunday, February 10, 2013

Writers and Research

When writers make mistakes,you know research was neglected. Did you know Ohio teens learning to drive can't practice with just anyone?

Imagine my disappointment when I read just that thing in a recently published book. On top of that, once you have your DL, you can only have one passenger with you that is not a family member.

Now, I suppose these teens had more important things to worry about o...ther than breaking state laws because they are zombie slayers, but still....

AS A WRITER the error got under my skin. Needless to say, there were other mistakes throughout the book. Many, teens may not even notice. In my opinion it was a reckless disrespect to the art.

I forced myself to finish the book. the author can be sure, I won't be reading book 2.

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Contest - ABNA

I stumbled upon a new contest to enter the other day. This one is for all genres with only 5 categories; YA being one of them. The contest...Amazon Breakthrough Novel Award. Yes, that is the Amazon that we all know and love. I must be crazy to compete against 10k other contestants, but I did it. I entered the contest. First round is all about pitches (which I can't really share because an ed...itor pitch gives away the ending). However, I can share the summary I prepared for customers and Publisher's Weekly to read before they read my first two chapters and review...if I make it past the Pitch Round.

Let me know what you think...


Life unravels for fifteen-year-old Rae when she finds herself in the magical dimension of Ferane in the Eden Realm. The realms survival depends on her aid to the dying Princess Claire in her quest to find the Ruby Scepter before the dark wizard does and the Blue Moon Eclipse. Without her own magic, Rae cannot return to Earth or to Dirk, the boy she loves.

 Before the unwilling Rae can remember her past, she meets Prince Mogens who causes her to doubt her feelings for Dirk. However, he seems to despise her and may very well be the dark wizard.

 Mentally and physically challenged, Rae will have to trust a princess, defeat the dark wizard, and find the Ruby Scepter before time runs out.

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

POV Character Emotions

While the weather is bitter cold in North East Ohio today, I step onto my new treedmill, turn on my music and drift off to Ferane. If only every place was magical and took away the everyday burdens that tense our muscles and make us wish we could go back to bed. When a novel can change our mood to match that of the POV character, the author has done something right. For that, I am grateful today.