Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Five Years

Hanging out at Houston Community college
Been doing some events-- Had a lovely time speaking to the reading club at Houston Community College.
And then last Friday, I spent the day at the John Cooper School Signature Series as a local guest author. Keynote was given my the delightful Tyler Florence of Food Network fame, who was quite gracious about photo ops, as you can see here!
At the John Cooper School Signature Series
And it's Tyler Florence!
I'd participated in this event back in '09, when DREAMING ANASTASIA was first out, so it was fun to be back now as book 6 is ready to arrive. And humbling and also fun to have various people come up to me, saying how that's where they first met me and started following my career and reading my books. So much has happened--both professionally and personally-- since then it's kind of crazy, really. Just five years, but holy cow! Books (two more in the DREAMING trilogy, then two SWEET DEAD LIFE books, and now FINDING PARIS in April 2015 and then IT WASN'T ALWAYS LIKE THIS in 2016) and travel and teaching and then deciding to quit teaching full time and building this career… And as many of you know, a scary battle with thyroid cancer that began just as things were taking off. (MD Anderson declared me cancer free in 2013. I hope to stay that way.)

It hasn't always been smooth. In fact, quite often it has not. It's been a wild ride of revolving editors and promises both kept and unkept and amazing mentors who lift me up every single day, and the total thrill of what is truly an entire new world of people and ideas. I know I've found my tribe and I know that makes me lucky beyond words.

Still, I think I'm just one who is destined to work a bit longer and harder. Some days I angst over not sitting at the cool kids' table. Maybe I never will. Most days I get over my bad self and just do the work and enjoy the ride. No good comes in this profession from playing the comparison game.

I've realized along the way that somehow I was writing about all that in the white space between the words in all my stories: about what it means to be human--the good, the bad, and the ugly of it.

And for this I am profoundly grateful--particularly to all of you who buy my books and read my words and love my characters as I do. Even on the days when the words aren't coming easily.

And so!

You guys, FINDING PARIS is up on Edelweiss now, which means that people are requesting it (and YOU can request it!) and if Harper Collins says yes, then you get an early read before it arrives from Balzer and Bray in April! This is of course, both thrilling and nerve wracking -- as it always is.

 People are reading Leo and Max and Paris's story. It is out in the world and no longer mine and I am writing away on other things. This book that I love with all my heart, this story of how far you'd go to protect someone you love, about terrible secrets and what they do to us, about love and loss and very broken families. And road trips and Vegas and LA--both places where people flock to have their dreams come true. It's out there for you now, dear readers, at least in its galley form. It's dark and twisty, and it's my first contemporary without a paranormal element. *shivers with excitement.*

And I've got some really really awesomely cool swag in the works for those who pre-order. Stay tuned for that soon!

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