Damn Right!

Kodachrome


I got a new camera for Christmas.  My husband can’t stand to see me struggle over anything, and although I never complain, there must be a look.  A frustrated glaring at whatever device I’m mangling into some modicum of acceptable performance.

For instance, he gave me a new Dell All In One about a 18 months ago.

“I got tired of watching you squint over that ten year old laptop.”

He gave me a camera a couple Christmases ago too. He said, “it’s not an expensive one, but I thought it would be better than what you were using.”

Only, I would try to take pictures of my favorite subjects – the moon.   Dang it.  Blurry.

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A sunrise or sunset.  Dang it.  Blurry.

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Miss Priss.  Payton.  The camera was slow, and I remember trying so hard to get the perfect shot of Miss Priss eating her cake when she turned 1.  In this case there was likely frustrated declarations, “Argh!  I missed it!  Argh!  It’s blurry!  Come on Payton, just one more.  I got to get a good picture of you and Abigail.  Argh, it’s orangey!  Oh well.”

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Sure, there were some good shots too.  Like this.

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And this.  (I only took about 50 to get this one)

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Still, it could have been better.

As usual, my husband heard, and he acted.  This year, he gave me a whizz bang camera that, at the moment, is smarter than Stephen Hawking – or at least I think it is when I stare at all the buttons, and the two different lenses, and the VIDEO TAPE that came with it to tell me how to manage it.

It’s a Nikon.  As he put it, “A nice camera.”

I’m going to love it – once I know what to do with it.

 

 

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New Year, New Look


Fyi, y’all.

My website is undergoing an overhaul – this time not by me, but by professionals.

Amen to that!

As much as I like plunking around and figuring out themes for a new look on occasion, the end result never quite meets my expectations when I’m done.  And then there’s the HTML code, of which I know just enough to be dangerous, but is needed to make some of the “buttons” work, or to add in giveaway information, etc.  I usually figure it out, but it can consume a lot of time.

I don’t know the exact timeframe for when the web design team will be done, I’m thinking sometime towards the third week or so of this month.

I can’t wait for you to see the new design!

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Yep, that’s me running a power tool with my Rosie the Riveter do rag on my head.  *Taken in Bucha Ukraine, Mission Trip 2006

 

Merry Christmas From The Family


Right about now?  I sure do need me a good healthy dose of Robert Earl Keen.

BIG NEWS!!!


Amazon (!!!) has selected The Education of Dixie Dupree as their “Debut Spotlight” book along with being on their list of TOP 10 Picks for November!

 

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She’s Here!!!


Can you believe it?

It’s THE EDUCATION OF DIXIE DUPREE Release Day!

I sincerely appreciate your support, thoughtful comments and shared excitement throughout the last 19 months.  Thank you from me, and from Dixie.

This is a collage of moments, pictures to capture my journey to publication:

It all began here…(notice who’s website is up…I’d forgot about her other background)

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A lot of time was spent here, working at Nortel, going back to school to get my degree, writing THE EDUCATION OF DIXIE DUPREE until…in March of 2012…

AGENT!

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But, the writing continued…below are the completed manuscripts of THE EDUCATION OF DIXIE DUPREE, THE REDEMPTION OF TRUITT AMES, and A BLACK WATER SEASON  <– the manuscript that would eventually affect my path to publication.  (–>BLACK WATER was the ms actually on submission when it was passed on, but the lovely editor who would become my editor asked to see something else.  Note to writers – always have a back up.)

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Meanwhile, life changing events happened…I lost “my girls” in late 2012, and my father in early 2015…

Just when I really needed things to look up, in April 2015, THE EDUCATION OF DIXIE DUPREE sold to

Kensington-logo!!!!

 

And the process begins.  I received this package from my lovely editor.

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My first ever real red pencil edits !  Yep, I was excited even though this is considered “work.”

And, after the editing was done, including not only revisions, but copy editing, the book cover was designed by the awesome Art Department at Kensington, a cover we ALL loved.  Then, along came the ARC’s, like Christmas in the Spring!

 

 

I began to do the First Sentence Friday’s in the early summer 2016, when publication was still months away.  Feedback from the Sales Department indicated booksellers wanted the title of the book highlighted, so the Art Department came up with this design, which we loved even more.

 

Meanwhile, publicity was working hard to get the word out, and boy did they.  I found out I’d been invited to the Southern Independent Booksellers Alliance (SIBA) a huge trade show for booksellers, sales, and authors.  It was G.R.E.A.T.!

And in the meantime, the work between everyone from Marketing, to Sales to Publicity was paying off, when THE EDUCATION OF DIXIE DUPREE started receiving recognition.

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And now?

She’s in your hands, dear readers.

I hope you’ll fall in love with my brave little heroine, Dixie Dupree.

Drop me a line …let me know your thoughts!

 

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A Flash Fiction Contest for THE EDUCATION OF DIXIE DUPREE!


Folks, I’ve made it. I have arrived.  🙂

Well, that’s more or less what one of my writer friends (Micki, I’m looking at you) tweeted out; “You know you’ve made it when offers a contest in your honor!”

And yes, indeed Ms. Janet, NYC literary agent extraordinaire and Director of Literary Services at New Leaf Literary and Media, Inc., is doing just that.  There is a Flash Fiction contest this weekend in honor of THE EDUCATION OF DIXIE DUPREE’s Next Indie Pick selection and the fact that the book is soon to be released!  (only a month away!)

For about five years, I’ve participated in these contests.  I’ve won some, had numerous finalist mentions, long list mentions, and several special recognition mentions.  The competition is fierce because the writers who hang out there are some of the best I know.  They have 100 words  (the word limit for these FF contests) to spin a story that incorporates a beginning, middle and end.  Some of the entries from past contests have taken my breath away, made me laugh, or made me sit in awe, while wondering how did they do that?

The prize?  Well, a copy of THE EDUCATION OF DIXIE DUPREE – of course!

Good luck, y’all!  I can’t wait to read your entries!

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First Interview From The Daily Record


I’m providing my first newspaper interview since many of you who follow the blog aren’t connected with me on Facebook, or on Twitter where it was shared.  I thought you’d like to read it.

Enjoy!

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Announcing First Sentence Fridays


As I get closer to the publication date of my debut novel, I’ve been thinking of different ways to entice readers, to build a little suspense, and most importantly, share a tiny bit of the story within that beautiful, most awesome cover created by the @Kensington Publishing Corporation Art Department.

A couple of times I’ve randomly selected a sentence I particularly love, and put it out on Facebook, both on my personal page and on my author page.  Then I thought, why not just do a post each Friday that will go out to my Author page, Twitter, and LinkedIn, so all of my social media gets a taste?

I decided I’d call it “First Sentence Fridays” which means I’ll share the first sentence from each chapter within the book – barring any spoilers.  If the first sentence gives away too much, then I’ll pick another – and let you know it’s not the first one.

With the official launch on November 1st, I’ve got a little catching up to do.  That’s 24 weeks away, and I’ve got 28 chapters.  Either way, it ought to be fun and this will also give you a little peek into the mind of Dixie LuAnn Dupree.

I can’t wait for you to meet her!

#FirstSentenceFriday

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Goodreads Giveaway!


Susan Wiggs’ blurb about THE EDUCATION OF DIXIE DUPREE begins with this, “Open your heart to Dixie Dupree.”

I love the quote in it’s entirety, but this little snippet truly captures how I personally feel when I think of my book in a future reader’s hands.  In addition to her words, I would also add “Open your mind, consider what happens.”

Having said that…the chance for you to be the next person to “open your heart to Dixie Dupree” is here!  Today launches the Goodreads Giveaway to win an ARC.  The contest starts TODAY and goes until May 30th.

Goodreads will select ONE lucky winner (US and CANADA only) when the giveaway ends.

*NOTE:  You have to be a member of Goodreads in order to participate.  If you aren’t a member, and would like to join, go here to sign up:  Goodreads

For existing members, enter HERE http://bit.ly/1VHl25c and while you’re it, add the book to your shelf HERE http://bit.ly/1pY5Vq9 to get notified when additional giveaways are running!

Good luck!

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Goodreads Contest Next Week!


For the next few months, there will be opportunities to win an Advance Reader Copy (ARC) of THE EDUCATION OF DIXIE DUPREE!

The next is my first Goodreads giveaway set up by Digital Sales and Marketing at Kensington.  This contest will run from May 11th through May 30th, and the winner will be selected by Goodreads. 

For those of you now reading the blog who may not be familiar with the Goodreads site, here is a simple description of what it is:

“Goodreads is a free website for book lovers. Imagine it as a large library that you can wander through and see everyone’s bookshelves, their reviews, and their ratings. You can also post your own reviews and catalog what you have read, are currently reading, and plan to read in the future. Don’t stop there – join a discussion group, start a book club, contact an author, and even post your own writing.”

*You must be a member of Goodreads to participate in this giveaway.*  If you are already on the site, and have shelved the book, (thank you!) you will receive a notice and instructions on how to enter the giveaway when it starts.

If you aren’t on the site, and you’d like to join to participate in the giveaway, go here:  Goodreads

I’m looking forward to this giveaway and hope you will join in on the fun!

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