Monday, September 26, 2011

Writing Workshops Times Two

I was honored to be asked to conduct two workshops recently. The first was a month-long online workshop for the Celtic Heart chapter of Romance Writers of America. The subject was Point-of-View, one that's near and dear to my heart.

The second was a chapter meeting workshop for the Dallas Area Romance Authors and the subject was Building Brand You: Creating a 5-Star Online Presence.

As different as these two experiences were, they were similar in a few ways, too. And I loved them both.

Both required advanced preparation of materials: a series of written lessons to be posted on a loop every few days for the online and a powerpoint presentation for the in-person.

I had to work to make the information relevant for the particular audience, knowing that in both I would find expereince, published authors and very new writers at the beginning of their careers.

And I had to work both into my very busy schedule at our store.

But the rewards were great! Not only did I learn more about both topics, which I do every time I conduct at workshop, but I also got PAID! And in both cases, the audience was receptive, participatory, grateful and interested! I didn't bore them!

My goal is always to give them information they can actually use!

Friday, January 14, 2011

Okay, So I Lied

I said I would do a better job of keeping up and then I didn't.  So mea culpa. In my defense, the new store has been crazy busy and every spare minute has been spent doing marketing for it, instead of my book bizz.

But there is actual writing news to share:  I am deep into an agent search for someone to represent Sensible Shoes, my nearly finished women's fiction manuscript.  I identified a list of New York agents who are accepting women's fiction and have sent a number of email queries (which are the new enviro-friendly way to submit, thank heavens) to them. So far I have received 3 rejections (sad, but I'm used to it after all these years.)

The good news is that one of the agents I sent to used to handle Erma Bombeck. As you may or may not know, there is a strong Erma Bombeck presence in the book and it would be oh, so, serendipitous to have them represent me, too. And I haven't heard back from them, and no news is good news. We used to say that where there is outstanding mail (or email in this instance) there is hope.

Hopefully, that hope is not too far-fetched as I would love to get a "real" New York agent for my "real" serious book (which isn't too serious if you know Erma Bombeck, or me, for that matter.

Anyway, I'll try to do a better job of keeping up. Yeah, right.

Saturday, September 18, 2010

It's Been So Long, But I'm Still Here

Since I last posted in June, I have been busy opening a storefront for our family business LH Media Center. It's off theground and running now and I'm taking a little breather to get caught up with writing news.   One of the perks of owning your own store is being able to put books out on the counter to sell!  

But the big news is that my trailer for A Hot Time in Texas got a great review from Kris Tualla of 1st Turning Point Reviews in August.  Here's what she had to say about the trailer:

Kris’s Comments:
Good things: This video has nice music, engaging narration and appropriate photos. At 67 seconds long, it’s succinct and to the point. The minimal use of text is just enough to keep the viewer engaged, but not so much that it interferes with the narration. It’s classy and easy to watch.

I only have one question—while the lighthearted tone matches the “summer sizzler” description, I did want a little indication of exactly HOW Twink was ruining Ethan’s plans; was it only attraction? Or is there something deeper in their conflict? The “pull” was missing.

Teaching moment: This video is a perfect example of how less is more. With the addition of the one sentence I wished was there, we are still looking at 75 seconds, max. I watched the whole thing several times and never once wished it would get to the point! Well done!   Link to 1st Turning Point Review

Nice to know the book still has legs after a year!
And anyway, I love the trailer, too!  Wanna see it?  Here's the YouTube link and while you're there you can see the one for A Different Drum.    Link to the trailer

I'll try to do a better job of keeping up.  Promise!

Friday, June 18, 2010

New Covey Book Trailer Awards

Can you help me out? The book trailer for A Different Drum is up for an award at Please go to the website and vote for number 6!  No prizes, just bragging rights, but hey, who doesn't want to win something?  The site is fun and you can get addicted to watching all the trailers.  They mix all the genres so I'm up against children's books, mysteries, paranormal, you name it.  Some of the trailers are really good, some are awful, but most are way too long for my taste.
I'd love for you to vote for mine, but also I'd like your comments here or on my Facebook page about what you thought about the videos--what was good and what didn't work.  I create these for other people, too, and I'd like your feedback.  Voting goes through the end of the month.  You can also see the videos for both books to the right on the BRAND NEW VIDEO BAR!  How cool is that?  Let's go to the movies!

Monday, March 15, 2010

Writing for

Trying to keep my hand in the game, or a number of games, I have signed up to submit articles to, an online repository of articles about everything from How to Change a Tire to Ten Tips to Keep Your Marriage Hot to What's Wrong with Our Education System? My articles are about writing: craft, publishing, career, etc. This is the latest:
Formatting a Manuscript for Submission: Dos and Don'ts of Type and Setup for Publication

Pretty dry stuff unless you're into getting published. The other one is even more specific, but funnier.
That/Which vs. Who/Whom
Anyway, check them out if you're a glutton for grammar.

Thursday, March 4, 2010

I'm A Literary Luminary!

Just when I think this whole thing is over, something amazing happens.

Last night I received a phone call asking me to represent Lake Highlands High School, my alma mater, at a banquet in April, honoring teachers, etc. in the Richardson ISD.  The theme is Literary Luminaries, and there will be a published author from each of the four high schools.

They will have books for sale and signing, which is cool, plus fund raising, auction, etc. to raise funds for the schools. The sponsoring group is Excellence in Education.

I am so honored and just a little intimidated. What if the author from Berkner High School turns out to be Nora Roberts or Stephen King or someone incredible.  Or, I could be lucky and the guy sitting next to me wrote the definitive tome on the lives of bees or something. 

No matter, the truth is, IT'S AN HONOR JUST TO BE INVITED.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010


Here's the ugly part.  I almost sold out and abandoned the reason I started this blog in the first place:  to chronicle the book writing and publishing business.  But I've realized that I need to stay true to my purpose, even if this is just a journal to myself.   So it's back to business.

AND HERE'S THE BAD PART:  The Fastest Rejection on Record!

I sent an email query to The Nelson Agency and got an email response THE SAME DAY!  Nothing good comes that quickly, so of course it was bad news.  "Just not right for their list."   I would give a lot to know something a tad more specific.   At least I didn't have a lot of time to build my hopes up.

Yeah, I can always find a silver lining.


Seriously Reviewed, a website that "seriously reviews" romance novels has put my book trailer for A Different Drum on their front page as a Best of Romance Trailers.  Here's the link:

This business is a lot of work.  My publisher sent the link for this and I responded by sending in the info to the Serious Reviewed site.  So,  they didn't just pick my video off YouTube.   No, I had to be proactive, which is what has happened all along.   I guess I'll just keep on keeping on.