“Best call for the mother…”

Which is, of course, impossible when you are the mother. We all look a bit like Marianne around here. Well perhaps that’s too dramatic. I only feel like Marianne looks here.

Jane Bennet is more accurate. Fingers crossed that this is our first and last big illness of the Fall. One can dream.

Hopefully the virus will be vanquished by our White Blood Cell Knights, and I’ll be back to writing and posting lovely things by next week.

P.S. Fearing I was drifting into a fever dream, I decided to Google ‘white blood cell knight’ to see if anyone else pictured them this way. Nothing relatable came up, except an anime called Cells at Work. Is this a real thing? Sadly, I’m afraid my readers will not know.

On Reviews

Me (not really) reading reviews…

I couldn’t resist this picture. It’s like a fancy version of me. It’s not me, but it could be a picture of me as I read reviews. It’s so nerve wracking! Whenever I check on the Amazon or Goodreads pages, I take a deep breath. “Please don’t let them hate it.”

My Mr. Tilney just looks at me funny. “Haven’t people already said they like it?”

Yes. But…what if everyone else hates it?

Then yesterday, while reading a fair review with just criticisms, I realized how helpful reviews could be. For one thing, thoughtful comments from people that have read my work are like golden pearls of information. Learning what my readers liked and disliked will only help me be a better writer. I’ve already been inspired by one reviewer to write a sequel of sorts to A Chance Encounter.

So I decided to write this post for myself. That way, when reading reviews freaks me out, I’ll just bring this up and talk myself down.

Print Version Coming Soon

I’m happy to be able to share more information about the print version of my novel. The final proofs have been submitted and the print version should be available in approximately two weeks. So by mid-September, I should be able to hold my book in my hand!

Once the print version has been produced, it will be available for purchase through Amazon. Nikki at White Oak Coffee House keeps encouraging me to have a book signing. So that will be happening this Fall too! Maybe we’ll turn it into a Jane Austen appreciation night!

Hurricane Dorian Relief

In other news, our vacation was destroyed by Hurricane Dorian. As sad as we all are, we are home, safe and sound. Many others have lost their homes and their livelihoods. The devastation in the Bahamas is heart-wrenching.

A group of authors over at Jane Austen Variations is raising money for Hurricane Dorian relief. Head on over to this post to see how you can help. It’s fun! You can buy copies of excellent books, with the authors donating 100% of the proceeds to hurricane relief. You can even make a monetary donation and have a character named after you!

Publication Time Approaches!

Colin Firth and Jennifer Ehle as Mr Darcy and Elizabeth Bennet -Copyright Alan Weller / The Times.

It’s just around the corner

I am so excited to announce that my book, A Chance Encounter in Pemberley Woods, will be published by Meryton Press at the end of this month! Stay tuned for exact dates for the cover reveal, pre-order, publication, and blog tour!

I am a strange mixture of excitement and nerves. Sharing a story is akin to revealing a part of your inner life to the wide world. However, I must say that I am so happy to be able to share my story with everyone. Cheers to the end of the month!

Dreams and Goals

Just leave me here please…

Goals are good for the mind

People have goals in life. Goals are good things–attainable things. I have a goal of doing yoga most days of the week. I plan to build a new chicken coop so we can get more chicks next spring, really clean out the brush pile in the back yard, and redo the landscaping in the front yard. In my mind, you take an idea and plan it out; this creates a goal.

In my writing life, I have goals as well. I came to a happy place when I made my goal to have fun and enjoy writing just for me. There have been plenty of goals regarding A Chance Encounter in Pemberley Woods. Most of those have been checked off my list by now! But before these were goals, they were dreams.

Dreams feed the soul

You know what I’m talking about. Dreams are like a flower you imagine in your mind. Flowers are real, sure, but you might not ever actually see that flower. A dream in your soul is like a little burst of energy–something you can use to move forward, but not necessarily something you can plan for.

One dream of mine was to have something I wrote published. To have this dream realized still makes me shake my head in wonder. Did that really happen? It’s been an amazing experience.

Another dream came almost true for me today. Well, let me say that this dream turned into a goal. I spoke to a librarian today at my local branch, and we created a plan for how to get my book into circulation. Circulation in the library.

I’ll bask in the glow of this realized dream for some time. On rainy days, when it might be hard to get moving, I’ll take it out and remember it.

Regency Knowledge

Leave me here, please.

It has recently come to my attention that what I know of Regency life is but a smattering. A mere tip of the proverbial iceberg. Bits and pieces gleaned from various period dramas and one very research paper. I’ve stumbled upon a few errors in my thinking recently (editors are a wealth of knowledge), and I am resolved to fill in my spotty knowledge of my favorite historical era.

Upon reaching this conclusion, I did what everyone does nowadays. I Googled. And I found a lovely blog full of information by one Maria Grace. She blogs at Random Bits of Fascination, a blog that I highly recommend for its truly interesting and well-researched posts. I particularly enjoyed this one about circulating libraries.

I’m trying to find information about clubs and societies that flourished during the Regency Period. I know about Gentlemen’s Clubs like White’s. But what of other groups? Did people during this period get together for book clubs? Did they form societies to further a common interest like history or art?

I can’t wait to find out.

Raising Novels

It’s a tough world, kitty.

The editing process reminds me of raising children. It’s difficult, humbling, sometimes embarrassing, and often imparts feelings of being an ineffectual dolt. On the other hand, it’s completely rewarding and helps you do things you never knew you were capable of.

That’s a bit of a long-winded metaphor. You get it. It’s hard work editing a piece of work that you love, but it is so worth it! I was incredibly nervous to begin the editing process on my novella, A Chance Encounter in Pemberley Woods. Once my editor and I began working on it though, I realized I had nothing to be afraid of. The editing process truly did bring out the best in my work.

And now it’s finished! Yes, after several months of hard work, we are finished with the editing process. I’m so excited to take the next steps!