This title is the best way to describe 2012 for me. In fact, I fear it borders on understatement. I cannot express the level of gratitude I have for all that has happened in the last twelve months. But more than the contest final and the contract is the people.
On March 26th, I received the call that started it all. Jeanne Adams informed me I was a finalist in the 2012 RWA Golden Heart contest (and dealt brilliantly with my crazy reaction.) That one call brought 63 of the most amazing women into my life. Almost instantly we were a family. I have 63 new blessings. 63 examples of strength, intelligence, wit, power, and perseverance. They teach me every day about life and the kind of person and writer I want to be. Thank you, Firebirds.
In June I found the person who would forever change my life further. Nalini Akolekar read my work, believed in it and me, and joined me as a partner and friend on this crazy journey. In August she called me with the news I’d sold and as a reward got was had to be the worst author reaction ever. I practically shut down. No happy dancing. No screaming. I still feel bad and intend to make this up to her by either flipping out when we get the next contract or buying her copious amounts of liquor at Nationals in Atlanta. (It’s likely I will do both.)
Next was virtually meeting the editor who fell in love with my work enough to offer a contract. Lindsey Guzzardo at Montlake Romance will always be the publisher angel who gave me my first contract. And though she’s moved on to other endeavors, I will forever be grateful. I’m now working with the ever enthusiastic Kelli Martin, who already makes me want to hug her with every email, and look forward to a long and fruitful relationship.
Then there are my friends and supporters who have been with me all along. My daughter who says, with great authority and no shock whatsoever, that she always knew I’d do this. Hellie who told me for years I was indeed a writer, only to have me argue that she was insane. Thank goodness she and kiddo made me keep going. Then there’s Marn, Mo, Hal, Sabrina, Sin, Donna, Dee, Leslie, Janga, Manda, Santa, Julianne, Lindsey, and PJ who all offered an endless supply of pom pom waving. And I can’t forget my mom and sister who both read the book and said, “I can hear your voice in my head as I read” and “It reads just like the other books I buy at the store.”
What more could a girl want? Well, lovely sales in 2013 and many more books to come would be nice. But right now, I just want to survive the next five months. I promise to blog more often. I promise not to constantly ask people to buy my book. And I promise not to ever get tired of hearing Hellie say she told me so. Since, you know, she did tell me so.