Like all writers, I started out as a reader and over the years I’ve discovered authors that I love. We all have our favorites, right? My go-to-auto-buy-novelist is Christine Feehan. The first paranormal romance novel that I ever read was DARK PRINCE. I’d never read anything like it and I remember thinking….Where have you been all my life? I then proceeded to purchase every one of her novels that was published at the time. She’s my gateway paranormal romance author, so to speak. After I devoured everything she had written, I went out and found other books in the same genre and eventually, I wrote my own.
At the RT Convention in Las Vegas, I had the distinct honor of hosting a reader party with several other authors. You can imagine how hard I freaked out when I heard that Christine Feehan, the Queen herself, was going to one of the writers hosting.
I was excited and crazy nervous to meet my idol! I fangirl’d hard and I’m pretty sure that I babbled like I’d had too much sugar. Christine was gracious and funny and as wonderful as I thought she would be.
This picture was taken right before the event started and though I might look composed, I was bugging out. I remember sweating profusely. Seriously, like some kind of farm animal.
However, Christine took it all in stride and if she thought I was a weirdo, she hid it well.
Fast forward a few months and I was getting ready to turn a new book in to my publisher. It wasn’t just any book. UNDISCOVERED (Amoveo Rising #1) is the first in a bridge series between my Amoveo Legend and my forthcoming Dragons Rising series. It feels like the kind of book that could introduce me to a whole new cache of paranormal romance readers. So I got an idea. A crazy-I-might-regret-doing-it kind of idea.
I asked Christine if she would be willing to read the manuscript and, if she liked it, provide a cover quote.
There was risk involved. What if she said no? What if she said yes but didn’t like it? What if she thought it sucked swamp water? What if she read it and thought that I couldn’t string together a remotely coherent sentence let alone a whole damn book?
I was terrified that one or all of those things might happen. I asked in spite of my fear. Truth be told, my entire career has been built on asking risky questions and taking chances. Hey, if you don’t ask the question then the answer is always ‘no’.
So I asked.
And I waited.
I waited some more.
Then one day when I wasn’t expecting it or thinking about it, an email arrived from my editor with a cover quote from Ms. Feehan.
I won’t lie to you. I cried. My idol loved my work and was willing to put her name behind it? You bet your ass I shed some happy tears.
But wait. It gets better.
I emailed Christine to thank her for not only taking the time to read my work but for providing such a lovely blurb for the cover. I told her that I’d been going through a weird time with my writing, questioning myself and my abilities. I wanted her to know how much her words buoyed me. I figured that she’d email me back with a quick “You’re welcome.” She did far more. I received beautiful email, which I’ve saved and printed out. It now sits by my computer. She affirmed what I’d suspected, that all authors no matter how successful, question their abilities at times. Her kind words went on from there and if you think I cried when I got the blurb….pfft…total waterworks when I read her letter.
I’ll cherish her kindness and generosity for the rest of this crazy publishing journey.
I hope you’ll all enjoy this book and I thank you for coming along on this wild ride with me. Though we may never meet, via social media or otherwise, I want to you know that I appreciate every single one of you. Thank you for being my readers and for allowing me into your world for a spell.