positive highlights of 2016

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Happy New Year!!

2016 was a sucky year in multiple ways, from the political mayhem to the premature deaths of too many icons like David Bowie, Prince, Florence Henderson, Alan Thicke, and now George Michael, Carrie Fisher, and Debby Reynolds since Christmas. But as we look forward to a new year, I’m choosing to focus on some of the positive things that happened to me in 2016:

When my old publisher closed its doors, the uncertain fate of my writing career terrified me. But it turned into a blessing when I signed a seven-book publishing deal with Henery Press. I am so excited for the re-release of my new-and-improved five novels and the publication of the other two books in my contract.

My oldest and dearest friend gave birth to healthy and beautiful twin girls. This was a dream come true for her, and my heart is full with happiness.

After vowing never to revisit my high school days, I went to my twenty-fifth reunion and had a blast. It was a bit of closure for me, and I’m so glad I went. I’m super grateful to one of my friends and fellow alumni for encouraging me.

I had five years of braces as a child and my straight teeth lasted through my twenties. Over the last decade, they began to shift to the point where I hadn’t been as happy with my smile. I invested in Invisalign, and less than a year later, I have really straight teeth again and am much more confident in my grin.

I spent an amazing week in California with my favorite writer friends where we laughed, bonded, gave and received advice, and generally “got” each other. I left super motivated to get back to my work in progress which is now slated to be delivered to my editor on February 1st. (I’m gearing up for the 2017 retreat right now.)

I helped raise almost $20,000 for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society. These funds won’t bring Alan back, but I like to think they might save someone else the grief I still feel for his loss on a daily basis.

All my annual medical exams, as well as those of my family, were normal.

My oldest nephew, who I hadn’t seen since he was about ten, moved from Colorado to New York City for work after graduating college, and I am so happy to have connected with him again.

I spent a week in Arizona with friends. Besides the eating, drinking, sun-bathing, and regular vacation-like activities, we took a trip to the Grand Canyon and some of us (myself included) went on a hot-air balloon ride. This was mere months before hearing about a deadly hot-air balloon crash. I’m grateful for the timing since, as much as I enjoyed it, I’m unlikely to ever do it again now.

I went to several music concerts including Billy Joel for the first time (Jimmy Fallon was a surprise guest), Dolly Parton, and Stevie Nicks/The Pretenders.

After publicly expressing my issues with the word “Ma’am” a few weeks ago, I am officially over being insulted by it or taking it as a personal comment about my age. I’ve paid more attention to the way people use this word and to whom they direct it, and what I’ve noticed is that it has nothing to do with the age of the woman. I’ve witnessed people (men and women) use it on women in their twenties through nineties as a greeting to simply indicate they are speaking to a full-fledged female adult as opposed to a child/teenager. The term is also used on the young twenty and thirty-something heroines on Hallmark movies frequently. How bad can it be if it’s on The Hallmark Channel?? This discovery might seem like a small “great” event in the grand scheme of things, but it will save me much distress moving forward.

These are just some of the positive highlights of my 2016. What are some of yours?

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Q & A and giveaway with author Sophie Meyer

GIVEAWAY IS CLOSED! WINNERS HAVE BEEN CHOSEN AND WILL BE NOTIFIED SHORTLY BY AUTHOR.  THANKS FOR PLAYING 🙂

I am very excited to welcome Sophie Meyer to my blog today. Sophie is the author of the enchanting new chick lit novel called Where’s the Groom.  Sophie was kind enough to answer some questions about herself and her writing so read below for the answers and leave a comment for a chance to win one of five ecopies of Where’s the Groom!!  

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Me: When did you know you wanted to be a writer?

Sophie: I’ve been writing since I was about ten, and knew it right away. It’s who I am, natural to me.  Once I started I never wanted to stop.

Me:  What inspired you to write Where’s The Groom?

Sophie: I’ve been around so many women searching for love for so long – and am also very familiar with self-improvement workshops. It often occurred to me that it would great fun to do a novel about both of them…to see how these techniques really worked, take it to the limit. Can we really attract the man of our dreams by changing our consciousness? That was the question that spurred this book.

Me:  Are you working on another novel?  If so, can you give us a sneak peak of what it’s about?

Sophie: I am actually in the process of planning another novel, about star crossed lovers, who are always in the wrong place at the wrong time, until something dramatic happens that changes both of their destinies. It’s about soul mates and what is needed for them to be together at last.

Me: What are some of your favorite books and authors?

Sophie: I love Gone with the Wind and the novels of Jane Austen

Me: What are your biggest fears as a writer?

Sophie: My biggest fear as a writer is that people won’t enjoy what I write, that it won’t connect with others.

Me:  Who would you cast as Ashley in the movie version of Where’s the Groom?

Sophie:  I think Jennifer Anniston or Kate Hudson would be perfect as Ashley.

Me: What would the story of your life be entitled?

Sophie: The story of my life would be entitled The Incredible Circle of Life

Me:  What aspect of writing is easiest/most difficult for you?

Sophie: The easiest part of writing for me is the enjoyment I receive from watching the characters develop as the book goes along. The most difficult part is marketing it – making sure it gets out there and is read.

Me: Any advice for new writers?

Sophie: I’d tell new writers to just sit down and write. Don’t edit, don’t hesitate. Let it all pour out. There’s a wonderful saying I heard about this, “You don’t know what you think until you see what you say”. Say it. Discover surprises. Then you can edit and shape it into what you like.

Me: Biggest celebrity crush?

Sophie: Hugh Grant

Me: Favorite television show?

Sophie: Love The Bachelor

Me: Me too! I love to hate it too 🙂 Favorite romantic comedy movies?

Sophie: Sleepless in Seattle, Moonstruck and Pretty Woman

Me: Guilty pleasure?

Sophie: chocolate, chocolate and more chocolate please?

Me: So… can I take it you like chocolate?  If you couldn’t be a writer, what would you want to be?

Sophie: If I couldn’t be a writer, I’d be a singer (if I had a good voice.)

Me: Do you believe in the power of positive thinking as encouraged by Vince, Ray and eventually Ashley in Where’s the Groom?

Sophie: I do believe in the power of positive thinking. I see how what we believe, hold in mind, and wish for ourselves goes out into the world and attracts all kinds of events and situations.

Thank you, Sophie! 

Check out the blurb for Where’s the Groom here:

Ashley, just turning thirty, is struck with a string of bad dates that keep getting worse. The last of her group of friends to be single, she’s quickly becoming hopeless about finding The One. When a friend convinces her to attend a new-age workshop on making your dreams come true, she gets onto a roller coaster she can’t get off of. The poignant and hilarious comedy of errors begins. The workshop sweeps through her life like a tornado and turns her reality upside down. She is told: visualize it, and he will come. Ashley takes it seriously, and before she knows it, she’s planning a wedding she can’t get out of. There’s only one problem: there’s no groom. Things quickly spiral out of control as one misunderstanding after another occurs, and Ashley’s friends and family become more and more involved and want to know who the groom is? Backed into a corner, Ashley finds herself having to make up one story after another as her wedding plans become more and more of a reality. Everything intensifies as Ashley chooses her bridesmaids and is caught in a whirlwind of looking for dresses, choosing a venue, finding a band, and a thousand other arrangements. Soon a date is set, invitations are sent out, and there is no backing out! As all this goes on, Ashley is desperately dating, hoping for The One to show up in time! The book explores love, dating, fantasies and a thousand crazy detours on the way. In a shocking ending with a twist, Ashley draws true love into her life in the most unexpected way.

 

And my review here:  http://www.amazon.com/Wheres-Groom-romantic-comedy-ebook/dp/B00BAO5KZA/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1363401870&sr=8-1&keywords=where%27s+the+groom

 

And purchase the book here:

http://www.amazon.com/Wheres-Groom-romantic-comedy-ebook/dp/B00BAO5KZA/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1363371027&sr=8-1&keywords=Where%27s+The+Groom%3F

http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/wheres-the-groom-sophie-meyer/1114296283?ean=2940016392486

 

Sophie’s bio here:

Sophie Meyer has been writing for years, and has always been in love with love. With a background in psychology, philosophy and theater, she’s helped many find love, avoid detours and climb out of  inevitable pitfalls. The essence of her life and work are exploring the wonderful, spontaneous and unpredictable surprises life loves to provide. She also offers talks and workshops on finding and living a life of love.

FOR A CHANCE TO WIN ONE OF FIVE ECOPIES OF WHERE’S THE GROOM UP FOR GRABS, SIMPLY LEAVE YOUR EMAIL ADDRESS BELOW!