I am happy to announce the THE ORCHARD is still holding its place at #2 in LDS Romance over at deseretbook.com! I am so thrilled and surprised. Thanks to everyone reading LDS romance. And OF GRACE AND CHOCOLATE is holding her own at #17 on the same chart. I'm so pleased with this. You never know how long a book is going to "live", and still being fairly new to all this I'm just enjoying this crazy ride.
I'll be posting about LDStorymakers 2013 soon. Again, it was fabulous. My favorite. Lots of stuff.
Many of you know OF GRACE AND CHOCOLATE was a finalist for the 2012 Whitney Awards. The gala was held on May 11 and it was so much fun to sit at the VIP tables and be part of the shaky-hands, loss-of-appetite group of would-be winners. I sat with Annette Lyon and Janette Rallison, and my daughter, Chelsea, and her husband Matt. LDStorymakers founder Rachel Ann Nunes was also at our table. I'd never met Rachel or Janette before and loved getting to know them better. As the presenting for the Romance category began, Chelsea reached over and held my hands, which was good because I didn't quite know what to do with them. Of Grace and Chocolate didn't win, but EDENBROOKE by Juliane Donaldson did and it truly is a lovely romance. And Juliane is adorable. So I got to be in the Loser's Dessert Picture! Which has always been another dream of mine. So, sad . . . but YAY, CHOCOLATE MOUSSE CAKE.
|A few of my favorite losers: Julie Wright, Janette Rallison, Melanie Jacobson, and Me.|
And here is where you can nominate your favorite LDS books of 2013. A title needs five nominations by readers to qualify for the initial judging. So it couldn't happen without you!
I would like to say I'm currently and steadily working on another project, and I have several in the hopper, but I explain below why any writing right now is very sporadic. But the sequel to THE ORCHARD is in the line-up for next year, and I'll be revising the third book soon. I'm revising SILK whenever I get a chance, and I'm working on a short romance for an anthology. It's very difficult having these stories inside, and struggling to get them out.
So here's why.
We are moving. We are leaving our dear little Cody, Wyoming and heading back home to Washington state. We are very excited about this new adventure but I'm very sad to be leaving my friends here in Cody. When you live in a tiny secluded town, people tend to make one another family very quickly, and we've appreciated that. But now it's time to be closer to my family. So, selling the house, purging seven years of "stuff", repairs, new paint, finding a new house, and the back and forth of my husband's new job leaves little time, seclusion, or focus for writing. I eke it out here and there and I MISS IT. But school is also out, kids are home, and for all their work in helping with the house and the showings, they also remind me that they are in need of "fun". So we try to fit that in, too. The cool thing is that we will soon be surrounded by orchards. Apple, cherry, pear, peach, blueberry . . . quite serendipitous, don't you think?
I am still recovering from the ruptured disc in my lower back. The first epidural steroid shot lasted 11 months, which is very good, but when it wore off, it wore off fast and hard. I received the 2nd shot in May, and the effect is not quite as good as the first time, but I think part of that is because I keep over-doing it with the moving thing. Trying to be better.
Our oldest son, Braeden, graduated from high school and is currently working on his application to serve as a missionary for the LDS Church. As some of you know, the Church recently changed the qualifying age to serve a mission from 19 to 18. So, Braeden has decided to take advantage of this and go serve as soon as he turns 18 in July. We are very proud and weepy. Can't imagine him gone for a few months let alone 2 years, but I know he will grow and serve and have an experience of a lifetime. Thank goodness for email.
And on top of this, we have also learned that we are going to be GRANDPARENTS. O_O Should have seen that one coming. We just found out it's going to be a little girl and I may have cried very happy tears. So although we are moving a couple hours farther away from the Utah writing scene I am so thankful to be a part of (and my daughter and her husband who is attending BYU), my visits will be no less frequent, because MY GRANDDAUGHTER will need me. And she will be there. I imagine Chelsea will appreciate that, too. I hope. :/ Due date: November 7.
And although all that is very exciting and busy news, we have this: the secret thing that I've been working on for months, before we knew we were moving, the decision that was hard-fought for many many years and now has been made and moved forward with my husband on board and the kids pushing from behind, all of us with anticipation, joy, impatience and a little bit of humble fright and bewilderment but with all the conviction in my bones . . .
We are adopting a little girl from China.
I'll be blogging about this new experience over at Kickyloo&Co. if you're interested.
I just feel like I'm being pushed from behind, taking each step in a forward direction, doing what I can with it, counting my blessings along the way and staring down the roadblocks as I push past. And after what has to be two of the most difficult years of my life, good things are coming. Big, huge, challenging wonderful things.
Full speed ahead.
Note: I now have the first post up at http://kickylooandco.blogspot.com/2013/06/the-letter-at-start.html if you're interested in following along. It's our old family blog so it needs some updating, ha. More to come!