Archive | September 2014

And the Winner is …

The envelope, please.

And, the winner is …

Oh, my goodness, how I always wished I could be in the crowd waiting for my name to be called. Seeing the women in their glamorous dresses, and the men in fine tuxes made the event even more exciting. Whether it was an Oscar, an Emmy, a Tony, a Grammy,  or one of the many different kinds of music awards, I wanted one of each. Too much to wish for? Why not reach for the stars?

I believe that if we stop dreaming and reaching, a part of us dies.

Most people strive for excellence. Seriously, who wants to come in second? But not many people will reach the top. So those of us sitting in our living rooms watching the cream of the crop on their special night can enjoy being allowed to witness their success. And it’s a lot of fun. That being said, I’d still like to have one of those pretty awards!

Now that I’m a writer, a new kind of award has become that thing that I’m striving for. I witnessed my first awards ceremony at the Romance Writers of America’s national convention this past summer in San Antonio, TX. All I can say is, WOW! Right before my eyes I watched as some of my favorite authors–like Nora Roberts–presented awards to authors in an assortment of categories in romance fiction. My heart pounded–excited for the winners. They accepted their award, known as the RITA, decked out in floor-length gowns and looking just as sharp as any Academy Award winner. I cheered them on, proud of their success and happy that I could be a part of it. Yes–happy! Not jealous or envious, but genuinely happy. I’ve been given a new goal. One day I want to stand on that stage and accept a RITA of my own. Maybe one day I’ll even be asked to present an award. Why not? I consider myself a good writer and every book I write gets even better. I believe in my heart that it’s something reachable.

And if I never attain that precious emblem of writing recognition, that’s okay, too. Striving to reach a goal is half of the fun. It gives me something to shoot for. More important than anything, striving to be the best makes me a better writer.

But, I’ll tell you a secret. The greatest reward I get is when I have a new reader tell me that he/she enjoyed my book. Nothing feels better, or makes my day, like pleasing a reader. No statue can do that for me. And better still, compliments don’t have to be dusted. I like that!

WRITE ON!!!

 

 

 

 

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A Part of History

Our world is imperfect. No one can argue that point. We all have different opinions on many topics, and I’m incredibly thankful that we live in a country where we have the freedom to speak our minds. Many people around the world are not given that freedom.

I also have the freedom to write what I choose. This is an amazing blessing. When I started my career as an author I was compelled to write about southern history. Mainly Civil War era. To date I’ve completed seven books that take place during that time. Some are before the war, some after, and one takes place during the war.

I understand that the industry shies away from this time period and that they currently don’t wish to promote it. I also understand how difficult it is to discuss racial tensions and some of the terrible things that transpired in our country’s past. But something deep inside of me pushed me to write these stories. I feel that I handle the issues with respect, but I also do my best to be historically accurate–even though I’m writing fiction. Many of the events that my books are centered around are true. I love to blend fact with fiction. I think it’s important to keep major events true to history.

I may be frowned upon for treading on tender subject matter, but I believe it’s important that we don’t forget how things used to be. Hopefully by remembering, we can prevent those horrific things from happening again. It’s also important to remember that no matter how horrible things might be, people always find a way to love each other. My stories have happy endings, just as I hope that everyone reading them will find in their own lives.

I will always grasp onto hope and believe in the power of love. And I thank God every day for my freedom.

 

Civil War