Friday, January 14, 2011

Spring, where are you???

(Daughter boating in the backyard. Spring, where are you???)

Maybe it's the winter doldrums of beige Oklahoma consuming me with wanderlust, or maybe just the post-holidays blahs. Either way, I've fallen in love all over again not with a hunky Navy Seal, but a TV show called International House Hunters. My favorite episode features a couple and their small child relocating to Dubai. Something about the concept of living in a chrome and glass high-rise with a resort-style pool at my disposal sounds irresistibly decadent. Even better, the husband's company funded it all!!

Don't get me wrong, we have a great house, but the recent addition to our family of a squirrel having taken up residence in the kitchen, combined with a plumbing leak, combined with carpets needing to be cleaned has made me long for that old promise Calgon bath beads used to make about "taking me away"!! LOL!!

On the flip side, the couple who moved from Canada to Hungary didn't seem nearly as content. (At least I think it was Hungary.) They ended up with a half-constructed shell they're unable to get a construction loan on in order to complete. Now stuck indefinitely in a cramped apartment, I'm thinking their adventure didn't turn out so grand.

This is what keeps me running to good books or movies as opposed to actual real estate agents when I'm looking to get away. Knowing our luck, Hubby and I would end up with a house wackier than the one we already have!! Can't you just imagine . . . We take off for somewhere crazy-exotic like say, Cairo, only to find our oasis infested with cobras and reeking of camel poo??!!

Ugh. Guess I'll keep trying to catch our squirrel, call a plumber and pray for Spring!!

How about you? Craving a winter escape?

Sunday, January 09, 2011

Keep Those Cards and Letters Rolling In!

A lovely email from a fan arrived recently and got me thinking about how much a kind word or compliment can make a difference to your day.

During the long 20 years it took to achieve publication, I imagined all sorts of things happening, but not once did I think about fan mail. These cheerful missives have the knack of arriving just when I need a boost, whether because I’ve had a lousy day, or worse still, I’ve been staring at my computer screen, reading my latest manuscript and wondering why on Earth I imagined I could write.

I’m consumed by the certain knowledge that I’ve wasted 20 years of my life working towards a career that crashes and burns before I’ve even completed my first series for Harlequin American about the magnificent O’Malley Men.

And then into my inbox pops an email from someone saying they’re delighted to have discovered me, or professing to love my stories, my quirky characters, thanking me for tackling a topic that’s dear to their hearts, or having them sitting on their seats at the climax and wanting to know when my next story is coming out.

Wow! Heady stuff and so welcome and appreciated that I reply immediately to thank them. These letters are lifesavers that I treasure. I’ve decided to frame the best ones (which come to think of it, is all of them!) and mount them on my study wall to gaze at when I’m feeling down or doubting myself.

I’m sure other authors get a similar buzz from receiving fan mail. I’ll bet the senders have no idea what a difference they make in our daily lives.

So thank you every last wonderful person who has taken the time to write or email an author and tell us you love our stories. You may love what we write, but we love what you write just as much!

I’m giving away a copy of my latest in the O’Malley Men series, “Colorado Cowboy” to a commenter who tells me what makes their day.

Till next time!