Writing Dreams for my Debut Year

Monday, January 13, 2020

For years I dreamed of writing a book and getting it published. Now that I’m only months away from publication, I’ve been dreaming about my wish list for my debut year. Some items on the list are pure fantasy. Some others might actually happen. Getting The Talking Drum reviewed in the New York Times Sunday books section—No elaboration needed Winning The Boston Authors Club Julia Ward Howe Prize—The prize, named…

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Interview and Book Giveaway: Jocelyn Cullity, Author of The Envy of Paradise

Saturday, January 11, 2020

I am pleased to introduce Jocelyn Cullity to the Debutante Ball this week! Jocelyn Cullity’s English family lived in India for five generations. A sequel to the award-winning Amah & the Silk-Winged Pigeons, her second novel about the takeover of India by Britain is an exquisitely told tale of 19th-century India—a deep rendering of the moment that India as a country was colonized; a brilliant illustration of Hazrat Mahal’s fearless…

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The Book I’m Looking Forward to in 2020

Friday, January 10, 2020

In 2020 I’m looking forward to reading The Other Madisons: The Lost History of a President’s Black Family, by Bettye Kearse, MD. I met Dr. Kearse, a retired pediatrician, a couple of years ago after we both had essays featured in the anthology, Black Lives Have Always Mattered, published by 2Leaf Press. She and I gave readings together at Porter Square Books and were featured panelists on Boston Neighborhood Network….

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The Most Challenging Part of Being a Writer Can be Summed Up in One Word

Monday, January 6, 2020

Patience—The hardest part of being a writer is having patience—the continuous effort and courage in the face of success, failure, rejection, and long stretches of time waiting for positive results. Patience in the face of success: In 2012 I was thrilled to have an essay I’d written about how I met my husband published in Chicken Soup for the Soul: The Dating Game. For the first time, a story I’d…

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I Don’t Set New Year’s Resolutions. I Do This Instead

Monday, December 30, 2019

I’ve never been interested in making New Year’s resolutions, resolving at the end of the year to change an undesirable behavior or characteristic beginning on January 1st. I’d much rather review goals and accomplishments that are ongoing and tweak and fine tune them where needed. My writing goals for the upcoming months include: Spending extensive time working on my second novel. Life was so busy for me this year with…

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My favorite book of 2019

Monday, December 23, 2019

My favorite book of 2019 is the memoir, Once More to the Rodeo. Author Calvin Hennick wants to teach his son, Nile, lessons he hopes will help him navigate through life successfully: what it means to be a man and the importance of taking care of family. He decides to take Nile on a road trip from their home in the Boston area to Hennick’s tiny hometown of Maxwell, Iowa….

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The Importance of Not Writing

Monday, December 16, 2019

On a couple of Saturday night’s a month, my husband and I pop one of our favorite movies into the DVD player and sit on the living room couch in the pitch dark like patrons do in movie theaters. Recently we watched the 1944 psychological thriller “Gaslight,” starring Ingrid Bergman and Charles Boyer. In the story, an innocent woman (Bergman) marries a charming man (Boyer) who tries to drive her…

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Interview and book giveaway: Author Lisa de Nikolits

Saturday, December 14, 2019

I am so excited to welcome Lisa de Nikolits to The Debutante Ball. Lisa’s latest novel is The Occult Persuasion and the Anarchist’s Solution. It is a serio-comedic thriller about a couple who embark on an unintentionally life-changing around-the-world adventure, The Occult Persuasion and the Anarchist’s Solution is about the meaning of life, healing from old wounds, romantic love at all ages, and how love and passion can make a…

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THE LEAST SCARY STEPHEN KING BOOK I’VE EVER READ

Monday, December 9, 2019

I was in the waiting room of the dentist’s office the other day when another patient glanced over and asked me what book I was reading. It was On Writing by Stephen King. She went on to list all of King’s books that she’d read: The Shining, Misery, and a few others. With a gleam in her eye she said, “His books are scary. Spine-tingling!” I looked down at my…

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I Got the Best Writing Advice from My Mother

Monday, December 2, 2019

  When I look back at my elementary school years, some of my fondest memories were the days when the box arrived from the Weekly Reader Book Club. The teacher would open it in front of the class and distribute what we had ordered weeks before. It was like having Christmas and my birthday rolled together month after month. I’d bring my books home and binge on Nancy Drew mysteries—The…

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