Some people will waste a lifetime waiting for the Gatekeepers. I was almost one of them. By nature, I’m a rule follower. Even un-written rules. If there’s a way something is “supposed to be done,” that’s how I’ll do it. When I finished writing my first novel, I queried agents. This was the way it was “supposed to be done.” And, since I had aspirations of being traditionally published, I didn’t give it a second thought.
That second thought didn’t muscle its way in for years. That’s because I typically espouse a “never give up” philosophy. I also clung to “If you don’t believe in yourself, no one will,” through 81 rejections. But my believing in myself wasn’t exactly convincing the Gatekeepers. The options were clear: move on, or self-publish. I had no interest in self-publishing. I had no interest in giving up either, but I’d be lying if I said after those rejections I still believed in myself. read more
I was so honored to meet the inspiring Connie Dwyer at the Connie Dwyer Breast Center Annual Spring Luncheon where I was invited to speak about the writing and publishing of The Memory Box and the topics of the day: Perseverance, Gratitude and Women Empowering Women.
The Connie Dwyer Breast Center is a comprehensive, state-of-the-art facility providing expert diagnosis and treatment of breast disease and the finest breast cancer prevention, early detection, and educational outreach programs to women in Newark and the surrounding areas regardless of their ability to pay. Just last year, over 20,000 women sought out the services of the center. Thanks to the vision and generosity of Connie Dwyer, all of this is possible.
The other night at dinner, I sat at the kitchen table with my teenage daughter. Some nights, “family dinner” means just us two. I’ve been getting used to making dinners that are easy to scoop out and reheat in a flash. Teenagers are here one minute, gone the next. And I’m just referring to the dinner hour.
My daughter has always loved to ask the hypothetical questions. The “what-ifs” and the “what would you dos.” And as philosophical as they may be, she likes her hypotheticals quantifiable. She likes answers that are in percentages, or on her famous “scale of 1 to 10.”
Between forkfuls of asparagus risotto, she asked, “What if someone asked you to rate yourself as a mother? What would you say, on a scale of 1 to 10?” read more
What a week it’s been for THE MEMORY BOX. To my astonishment and squealing delight, it achieved the ranking of #1 on Amazon Kindle for American Literature! That lasted a few days which provided enough time for me to bask in the sunshine of this incredible honor. Also, at different times this week, it ranked #1 in Psychological Thrillers and Contemporary Women’s Fiction. This, of course, means that THE MEMORY BOX found lots of new readers this week and many have already left their thoughts on Amazon. If you are one of those people, thank you so very much for taking the time to do so. All of them are very important to me. A few from the last couple of days:
“This book made me paranoid to ever Google myself again.”
“My heart was pounding through the entire book.”
“An ending that will shock you.”
And my personal favorite:
“This book makes you wonder if the author is as crazy as the character in the story.”
I think I will tackle that in a future blog post!
What more could an author ask for? I was pretty much hyperventilating the entire week. But it was yesterday’s browsing on Amazon which yielded one of the best thrills of the last seven days. On Amazon, there seems to be a ranking for just about everything, so maybe it shouldn’t be surprising that there’s a list titled: Most Popular Authors in Literary Fiction. It was, however, not only surprising that I should find myself on that list, but extraordinary that I ranked #15 right under Harper Lee and Gillian Flynn! Thank goodness I had the presence of mind to screen shot it!
Hopefully this hangover will last a while. I know how fortunate it is to have had a week like this. It’s a wonderful affirmation of the rewards that a combination of hard work, diligence, and determination, bring. (And maybe, just a little bit of crazy . . . )