Friday, August 23, 2013

Release Day!

Release Day!

So, it’s release day. You’ve worked tirelessly FOREVER on your book. You’ve submitted it, waited YEARS for a response, and signed a contract. Then you’ve worked on edits. Lots of them, and even some that were WAY beyond your pay grade. And then you’ve waited. And waited. And waited. And then it’s Release Day.

So, what do you do? Well, after the gauntlet you’ve been through, you’d think it would be all champagne and partying. But, no, sister. That’s not so. Now it’s time to REALLY get to work. To pimp your wares.

I thought the hard part was over—all the writing and editing and re-writing. But no. When all the work in the trenches was over, I had to come OUT of the trenches and actually interact with more than my computer (and editor).

This is my story. I woke up on Release Day and ran downstairs (like a little girl on Christmas morning), and I checked to see that the book was actually live. And you know what? It was! Then I checked the stats and rankings to see where it was. And you know what? I actually HAD stats and rankings. OMG! I was a REAL author.

Then it was time to hit the “social” scene. I opened up on facebook and Twitter and my blog—and with email—and I let everyone know how excited I was. But the big secret here was—that I was still in my pajamas—with no make-up—or shoes—or friends to help me celebrate. I was alone in all my “glory” and so happy to have been blessed with this experience I’d dreamed of for years.

And you know what? It didn’t matter that it wasn’t glamorous. It was my Release Day!

I was also secretly buoyed, knowing that at the end of the day, I would have this “hunk” I know come pick me up for dinner and take me to some super nice restaurant in downtown Charleston, South Carolina, to celebrate my big occasion. And that was priceless. The lovely staff at Oak knew about my special day and made me feel like I was a princess. The food was amazing. The wine (a ’10 Klinker Brick  red Zinfandel) suggested by the sommelier was to die for. And when I ordered the layered chocolate cake with spicy candied peanuts and salted butterscotch, caramel-banana ice cream to end the meal (I NEVER order dessert), it was brought out with “Congratulations” written in chocolate on the plate. And on the house.

You see, the best thing about Release Day was not all the personal satisfaction and gratification I received alone. It was the interaction with people—people I knew and people I didn’t. I had accomplished what I had set out to do as a writer—to connect with people. What a lovely Release Day it was!

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Sharing Mushrooms Charleston

There are two kinds of cooks in the South--those who share their favorite family recipes. And those who don't. I am of the former variety. I always feel honored when someone asks me for a recipe. And even more honored when I hear it has become a family favorite of theirs, as well. Below is my recipe for Mushrooms Charleston...and my homage to my dear friend Margarite Carpenter. You may also find the recipe on my website at .

Mushrooms Charleston
(an appetizer)
1 lb container of medium mushrooms (washed and dried)
4-5 TBS butter (divided)
¼ cup chopped bell pepper (very small dice)
¼ cup chopped yellow onion (very small dice)
1 ½ cups soft bread crumbs
½ tsp salt
½ tsp thyme
¼ rounded tsp turmeric
¼ tsp pepper

Remove stems from all mushrooms and finely chop enough stems to measure 1/3 cup. Melt 3 TBS butter in skillet and sauté chopped stems, bell pepper and onion approximately 5 minutes until tender and turn off heat. Stir in remaining ingredients (except the 1 TBS butter). If mixture is too dry, add 1 more TBS butter. Melt an additional 1 TBS butter in shallow baking pan. Fill mushroom caps with stuffing mixture and place filled side up in baking dish. Bake 15 minutes. I always serve these on the pictured pheasant platter that my dear friend Margarite Carpenter gave me years ago. And it had been in her family for many years before that. Though she is gone, I remember her fondly and everything she taught me as a cook each time I use the lovely tray. She and the platter remain very special to me

Bon appetite, y’all!





Friday, August 16, 2013

Interviews, Chats, Blog Appearances, Giveaways, Promotions, Book Signings
At the end of the Blog Tour, Sizzling PR will have a drawing for a pearl necklace!

  • August 6, 2013 New Authors' Chat at Writers Space 6 pm PST
  • August 7, 2013 The Bliss Anniversary Celebration, Twitter Party, #BlissBall, 9 pm EST (lots of giveaways)
  • August 15, 2013 Meagan-Inside The World of Books-Review
  • August 16, 2013 Kelly Mueller, Books-n-Kisses Interview
  • August 16, 2013 "Why We Read" GIVEAWAY of Pearl Earrings! at The Reading Addict BlogSpot*
  • August 19, 2013 Romancing Rakes for the Love of Romance, Excerpt
  • August 23, 2013 Reading Until I Fall Asleep, Guest Post, Topic: "Why do women fall for hot, dangerous guys?"
  • August 26, 2013, Carlene-Spotlight 
  • August 28, 2013 Must Read Faster, Guest Post and Review
  • August 29, 2013 "Moved by Reviews" on Reviews by Crystal Blog * GIVEAWAY of Pearl Earrings! *
  • August 30, 2013 Kayla's Place Interview
  • September 2, 2013 Laurie-Reader Girls-Guest Post and Review
  • September 3, 2013 Daryl-My Erotic Notions-Spotlight
  • September 4, 2013You Gotta Read This-Spotlight
  • September 6, 2013 Laurie's Thoughts and Reviews Interview
  • September 10, 2013 Kari-From the TBR Pile-Spotlight
  • September13, 2013 Kendra-Reader’s Edyn-Spotlight
  • September 15, 2013 For the Love of Reading-Review
  • September 16, 2013 Ramblings from This Chick Guest Post
  • September 17, 2013 Harlie’s Books-Interview
  • September 18, 2013 Kami-Indie Authors Books and More-Spotlight
  • September 19, 2013 As The Pages Turn Guest Post & Spotlight
  • September 20, 2013 Books and Needlepoint Interview
  • September 23, 2013 Layna-Lunar Haven-Review
  • September 24, 2013 Lori-Lusty Penguin-Spotlight and Review
  • September 25, 2013 Krisit Ames-Spotlight and Review
  • September 26, 2013 Book Reviews and More by Kathy-Spotlight
  • September 27, 2013 Harlie’s Books-Review
  • September 28, 2013 April-Literal Hotties Naughty Book reviews-Spotlight
  • October 1, 2013 In Shadows-Review

Debbie Suzuki, Publicity Director, Entangled Publishing, LLC
Melissa Caldwell, Sizzling PR, Publicity Tour

* Tour stops marked with an asterisk are not a part of the Sizzling PR tour and are not a part of the pearl necklace giveaway. They may, however, have their own giveaways as noted.