Launch Party and Swag: What Worked and What Didn’t

Monday, August 3, 2020

Six months before my book launch, I went shopping. I purchased all that I thought I would need to exhibit and sell The Talking Drum at book fairs and other events: ethnic table cloths, miniature djembes, a bowl handwoven by West African women operating micro-businesses. Then the pandemic happened. There would be no in-person events. Everything would be virtual. I tucked away the tablecloths and bowl in my cedar chest,…

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Interview (and Giveaway!) with Elizabeth Penney, author of Hems and Homicide

Saturday, August 1, 2020

We’re so excited to introduce you to Elizabeth Penny, author of Hems and Homicide! Elizabeth Penney is the author of the APRON SHOP SERIES and the forthcoming CAMBRIDGE BOOKSHOP SERIES for St. Martin’s Press. Elements that often appear in her novels include vintage summer cottages, past/present mysteries, and the arts. She lives in the White Mountains of New Hampshire where she pens novels and tries to grow things. Follow Elizabeth…

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What is next from the author of The Goddess Twins?

Thursday, July 30, 2020

There really is not a single word that can describe the feeling of knowing readers of The Goddess Twins have been loving the book. I really wish I knew that word and I could just say it – blissful, overwhelming, gratitude, excitement, pride – but something that combines those feelings would be about in the ballpark. To know I have taken even a single mind on a ride, into my…

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The Debutante Who Didn’t Deb.

Wednesday, July 29, 2020

This week, my fellow debutantes are all talking about what they’re doing next. I’m still waiting for my release week. In fact, I might be the first woman in the history of the Ball to not actually debut during her Deb year. It’s the pandemic’s fault, really. Between printing closures and hundreds of books from earlier in the year that needed to shift their own print dates, various plot twists…

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Marching Along….to March 2021

Tuesday, July 28, 2020

I can’t believe we’re writing about what’s next for us this week! You know what that means, right?! It means we’re almost ready to hand over the reins here on The Debutante Ball to the class of 2021. It’ll happen at the end of August, and I’m so excited! Here’s why: Next year’s writers are undoubtedly going to be awesome and fascinating. The applications are incredibly strong. My debut year…

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“Late” is a Relative Term

Friday, July 24, 2020

Television news is a young person’s game. I first heard that assertion from my broadcast journalism professors and class advisors, and then later from workshop presenters at national industry conferences. The statement was an undercurrent that gradually grew into a drumbeat for us who toiled as young reporters at stations in small town America. We were encouraged by our colleagues and mentors to keep our resumes and news clips up…

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Embracing the Lightness

Tuesday, July 21, 2020

Our topic this week is the books that inspired us to be writers. I think I’ve covered this in previous posts: I’ve been a voracious reader since elementary school. I’ve always wanted to be a writer. I finally decided to give noveling a try when I read Celeste Ng’s absolutely genius Everything I Never Told You, at which point I discovered two very important things: I’m not Celeste Ng AND…

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The Books That Inspired Me to Be a Writer

Monday, July 20, 2020

When I look back at my elementary school years, some of my fondest memories were the days when the teacher received that box in the mail from the Weekly Reader Book Club. She’d 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…

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Interview (and Giveaway!) with Lainey Cameron, Author of The Exit Strategy

Saturday, July 18, 2020

Ok seriously: Lainey Cameron is among the kindest and most generous writers I’ve met in the last five years since decided to become a novelist. She is active in the Women’s Fiction Writers Association, where I first met her, and she collects friends and fans everywhere she goes (which is a lot of places, as you’ll see). The arrival of her scintillating debut, THE EXIT STRATEGY, is a tribute to…

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A manuscript in the drawer?

Thursday, July 16, 2020

I remember going to a conference and one of the presenters talking about how she wrote her novel, and then put it away for nearly a decade, until picking it back up to start editing it. She was saying that this was positive for her, that it allowed her to give the manuscript fresh eyes and new influence and impact. She even said she took herself on a long vacation…

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