Tag Archive | RWA

My First Official Book Signing!

My first book signing, 04/05/2014

My first book signing at NTBF, 04/05/2014

Finally, it happened. I attended my very FIRST published author book signing. WooHoo! Here’s the scoop…

My good friend and multi-published author, Carla Rossi, and I drove up to Denton, Texas, to attend the North Texas Book Festival. We arrived the night before, so we had a chance to scope out the town.

Denton is picture-perfect, small town America, complete with the town square at the top of the hill. The old courthouse with its century-old charm dominates the shopping district. At Cartwright’s Ranch House, right on the city square, I enjoyed the best catfish dinner, ever.

Carla Rossi at NTBF, 04/08/2014

Carla Rossi at NTBF, 04/05/2014

 

We claimed our author table, and with a signing veteran at my side, the day couldn’t be lovelier. I learned so much with Carla at my side. We sold some books, traded with other authors, enjoyed pizza provided by the good folks at NTBF, and I won a door prize.

Best personal moment? Signing my paperback for a total stranger. Natch! True, I’ve signed bookmarks for people I’d never met before, and blogged about it. (See Sept. 24th, “Jaye’s Moment of Fame” for a quite unexpected and funny encounter in an airport.) But, signing the paperback novel is an experience akin to holding your newborn baby. The heart swells with joy at what you have accomplished, and pride with how well it turned out, thanks to a great publisher.

One of my clients, Angela Christina Archer, and me at the NTBF, 04/05/2014

One of my clients, Angela Christina Archer, and me at the NTBF, 04/05/2014

Best professional moment? I met fellow Soul Mate Publishing author, Angel Christina Archer and her author friend, Sabrina Fish.

Angel Christina Archer and Sabrina Fish at the NTBF, 04/05/2014

Angel Christina Archer and Sabrina Fish at the NTBF, 04/05/2014

They drove down from the Oklahoma City area.

 

 

 

 

 

I edited Angela’s debut novel, The Woman On The Painted Horse, which is an awesome story. Angela is a very talented author! (What, you didn’t know I’m also an editor? See the “News” tab on this website.)

Having learned a few new tricks—including what to bring and not to bring—I’m off to fine tune my travel kit for future book signings. Happy Dance!

Garbage Day, Mani-Pedi’s, and a guy named Kane

J Logo 75I find it quite appropriate today to be blocking out huge chunks of time for various life events all geared toward me moving forward. Suddenly, my world is full of a whole lot of uncommitted hours. Hours that are meant to be reserved for my Writing Life.

And how, you ask, is that working out for me? So far, so good. But, it’s only been two days since I’ve officially retired, so this new lifestyle is a monstrous work in progress.

Wouldn’t you know? Captain Bulldog has already blessed me with a chore he’s done the past several years. I’ll now be setting out the garbage for our weekly collections. Yeah, retirement is that glamorous. Ha!

Don’t think I haven’t been savagely protecting my newly earned ‘free time’. I do have my To Do List, starting with eliminating my house from an upcoming episode of Hoarders. Don’t judge, okay? A woman can only do so many things in any given day.

I had my priorities in order this past year, but things got away from me due to the day job, chairing my home chapter’s annual writing contest, and getting my debut novel published. Those things took the lion’s share of my time. Maintaining a semblance of family relationships sliced the remaining hours. So, keeping the house on the Better Homes and Gardens best dressed list had to go, along with regular mani-pedi and hair appointments.

What are the three top items on my new To-Do List?

  1. Write my own stuff: stories, blogs, and do a few critiques and edits along the way
  2. Get healthy: cut out junk, fix healthy meals, and exercise
  3. Reclaim the house: purge, organize, and clean

See that last item on number two? That’s where a guy named Kane comes into play. I signed up at the gym near my subdivision and he’s the trainer who will be guiding me along my Get Healthy Schedule. My goal is to get back into my size 10 blue jeans by this summer’s RWA national conference. It going to be a challenge, but I’m determined to be the very best I can be—even at this late stage of my life. Never too late, right? RIGHT.

Wish me luck. I’ll post updates every so often.

MAJOR Announcement, coming soon!

J Logo 75I’m sitting on my hands (well, I’m avoiding the Send button on emails and all the writer’s loops) because it’s a bit too soon to share, but trust me. I’m VERY excited.

What I can share, is that 2013 will be a very busy year for me. I’ve accepted the 2nd Vice President position for my local RWA chapter, Northwest Houston. My duties for the year are managing the 2013 Lone Star Writing Competition. This will be my first year as contest chair. It’s something I’ve always wanted to do, but knew I’d need several years of experience doing the basics before I took on chairmanship. I’ve taken judge’s training workshops and have been category chair for both Single Title and Romantic Suspense categories—two years each category, respectively. So far, I’ve got my calendar marked with all the pertinent deadlines and I’m really looking forward to working with the entrants and judges.

I’ve also entered two manuscripts in RWA’s annual Golden Heart contest for unpublished authors. Fingers crossed and hoping to get that longed-for email on March 26th, but I know the competition is very strong. In any event, it’s another step forward for my writing. The first manuscript has been entered in the Paranormal category. The 25th Hour is a Time Travel Romance with the bulk of the story taking place in the late 19th century in Sheridan, Wyoming. The second manuscript is a straight Historical Romance, but a few characters from the first book decided their story needed to be told. So…The Golden Bridge is Book II, but it’s a stand-alone single title and is also set in Sheridan. Can you tell? I love that location.

Signing off, for now, but watch for my upcoming announcement. It’s good!

Jaye

The Golden Heart Awards – the Junior Prom of RWA

Entering a manuscript into the RWA Golden Heart contest is like getting a date to the Junior prom. Junior, as in you’ve not yet qualified for the Senior prom which would be the annual contest for published authors, i.e.: the RWA Rita Awards.

So, I’ve entered this year’s GH. Twice. Once with my Time Travel Romance, and once with my Historical Romance. That’s two separate books, each in a different category. To use a high school analogy, does that up my chances of making the finals? (That elusive date to the prom?) I’m no mathematician, and I’m certain this isn’t an Einstein-esk issue, but to me it’s the arithmetic challenge of the year. You can’t go to the dance if you don’t buy a ticket. I just bought two, so let’s see if I get invited to the Junior Prom.

But first, we have the opportunity, this year, to spit-polish-shine our entries until January 2nd at 5 pm, Central. If our revised product is not uploaded by then, well, they’re judging what’s currently in their system. Kinda puts the pressure on, especially if you know your work could still be improved. You want your very best work in the final upload.

That will be me, editing/revising/polishing, right up to the deadline. If I’m not around here very much in the next five weeks, you know what I’m doing. I’ll check back, for sure, once the deadline for entries has officially closed. Happy polishing, y’all!