Willpower vs. Social Media

Thursday, November 19, 2015

I’m supposed to give y’all advice on how to write through distraction, but that’d be like an active alcoholic talking you out of a bender. I’m grateful to my Debutante Ball friends for picking this topic because it forced me to assess the gravity of my current situation: A year ago I had no book deal and was last man standing on avoiding social media. I wrote 4-6 hours a…


The Dream-Come-True Part

Thursday, November 12, 2015

The sales cycle for I LIKED MY LIFE went like this: edit, send to a handful of publishers, collect rejections, err, I mean feedback, repeat. We were on round three of this daunting process when I sent my agent—the amazing Elizabeth Winick Rubinstein—my latest revision. I no longer obsessed about when I’d hear back, exactly who’d be pitched, etc. I’d come to peace with my always-the-bridesmaid-never-the-bride lot as a writer….


It takes as long as it takes…

Thursday, November 5, 2015

I once participated in an awkward conversation that went like this: “I want to write a novel and need to know how long it’ll take.” “Errr, yeah, it’d be nice to know going in, wouldn’t it?” He stared at me. “Sooo… how long does it take?” I laughed. “How long does it take you to write a novel? I’m sure I don’t know.” I mean, really, let’s consider the variables: How…


No, really, it’s fiction…

Thursday, October 29, 2015

I once attended a book club where a subplot of the novel explored the stress erectile dysfunction put on a marriage. The author had done a fantastic job, so fantastic in fact, everyone was convinced he’d written from experience. As the only fiction writer in the room, I jumped to his defense. “It was a plot tactic,” I argued. They shook their heads, certain. “A man wouldn’t know how it’d make…


Amy Sue Nathan on THE GOOD NEIGHBOR + a giveaway!

Saturday, October 24, 2015

At The Debutante Ball, we just love it when authors who blogged with us during their debut year circle back with a new release. Welcome home Amy Sue Nathan, Class of 2013, and congratulations on your tremendous launch of THE GOOD NEIGHBOR! What’s it about? Meet Izzy Lane, a divorced mom who invents a boyfriend and blogs about him. What could possibly go wrong? THE GOOD NEIGHBOR poses today’s most relevant social media…


Where do you fall on the passive/aggressive spectrum?

Thursday, October 22, 2015

My dear friend Camille Davenport recently reminded me that in between passive and aggressive is assertive. It is possible to be both gracious and unwavering. She claims I’ve mastered that, but she lives three-thousand miles away and sees me only on vacation, chardonnay in hand, when it’s easy to be gracious because there’s nothing to waver over. In real life, I suspect I fall somewhere between assertive and aggressive depending…


Diane Chamberlain on PRETENDING TO DANCE + a giveaway!

Pretending to Dance by Diane Chamberlain
Saturday, October 17, 2015

I’m going all bookworm fangirl as I write this. It’s always a thrill to have a preorder you’re excited about appear on your Kindle, and that’s what happened October 6th when Diane Chamberlain’s novel, PRETENDING TO DANCE, came out. I’m HONORED she took a moment from her tour to be a guest! About PRETENDING TO DANCE Molly Arnette is very good at keeping secrets. She and her husband live in San Diego, where they hope to…


Going All In

Thursday, October 15, 2015

Work on I LIKED MY LIFE began as something to tinker with when I couldn’t give the corporate world any more; nights I couldn’t sleep, long flights, weekends. It was slow-going. Then the kids came along, eleven months apart, and writing was replaced with ear infections, diapers, and feedings. It was as if I had two identities—one in a business suit creating and presenting global sales programs, and the other…



Thursday, October 8, 2015

I was ten when Dances with Wolves came out. Such a beautiful film, yet all my family took from it was nicknaming someone after their traits. Mine stuck; my father called me Talks-a-lot until I asked him to stop as a twelfth birthday present. When I was thirteen I was obsessed with quotations. One day I happened across: The words spoke to me. I, too, couldn’t help but share my latest…


They read the slush pile!

Thursday, October 1, 2015

It was 2007 when I first set out to understand the query process with a manuscript much lighter than what I write now. I looked online for advice, and found mostly angry blogs and chat groups convinced no one read the slush pile. It was all very what’s the point in trying if your mom isn’t Judy Blume? Then I discovered a blog called Miss Snark. Miss Snark was a respected agent blogging…