Category Archives: Appearances

Love Romance? Love Trivia?

Event Locations


What Jane Austen novel is Bridget Jones’s Diary based on? Who made it popular for brides to wear white? How did Ellen and Portia meet?

For Valentine’s Day, Harlequin — the world’s biggest publisher of romance novels — is sponsoring several Romance Trivia Author & Reader parties across North America. Check the list above and see if there’s one near you. It’s a great chance to meet local romance authors and win some prizes.

They are kindly opening it up to non-Harlequin authors, and I am participating in the Omaha, NE event at The Bookworm, one of the city’s best-known independent bookstores. (Location details under ‘Upcoming Events’, to the right.)

There will be a slew of romance writers there, and we love to meet readers! There is no admission charge. People can form a team with friends, or join a team when you get there. Did I mention there would be prizes?

Here is information about the Omaha event and its hosts, from The Bookworm’s Events page on Facebook:

Hosted by bestselling authors Victoria Alexander, Sherri Shackelford, and Cheryl St.John and sponsored by Harlequin, the biggest name in romance publishing, the evening offers friendly competition tailor-made for Valentine’s Day. Romance Trivia by Harlequin tests contestants’ knowledge on subjects like film, television, music, history, literature, sports, science, food, and nature.


Doesn’t this sound like a great way to spend an afternoon?

Till next time,



Blues, Shoes & Barbeque



 I’m going to Kansas City/Kansas City here I come…

…along with a slew of other romance writers and thousands of romance readers for the Romantic Times Booklovers Convention 2013! Although the workshops on craft and business are a huge draw, as is having a major convention not far from my midwest home, what really makes me happy dance is the chance to get out of the house after the long winter and see hunky cover models meet old friends and make new ones. I used to visit KC often as a young child, when my grandfather lived there, and I recall what a treat it was to visit the Plaza and see some of the city’s fountains. Kansas City is known for it’s signature style of barbeque sauce, but this week, readers and writers are indulging in their favorite flavors of sweet, spicy and tangy romance!

The RT 30th Anniversary Ball should be a wonderful time — I don’t have a tiara to wear, but I do have sp?????????????arkly shoes! Stop by and see me at Club RT on Thursday & Friday morning. And I’m signing at the Giant Book Fair on Saturday, May 4th! (Alas, I probably won’t be wearing my silver slippers at either of those events.)

And although my reaction to large crowds is to hang back and check for escape routes before diving in, I look forward to the chance to connect with people, both industry professionals and readers. Writing is a great occupation for loners, but I can’t wait to get out and meet other writers, agents, editors and most important, romance fans! Nobody’s singing the blues this week!

I might take a train/I might take a plane/but if I have to walk/I’m goin’ just the same/Goin’ to Kansas City/Kansas City here I come


Lyrics to ‘Kansas City’ by Jerry Lieber & Mike Stoller, 1951er,


The Joy of Risk

I avoid danger. The rush of adrenaline that spurs on race car drivers, test pilots and emergency room nurses leaves me wanting to lay down until the shaking stops. You will not find me parachuting out of a plane or driving at excessive speed unless it is literally a matter of life or death.

Yet I have learned to value risk. We all have fears that should be faced. Not because facing a fear eliminates it. I’ve dealt with bugs, tornadoes, high places, and public criticism more than once in my life, and they still make me flinch. But I have learned that my fears of those things should not rule my life. Phobias owe nothing to reason, but we can still control our reactions to them. Facing a fear teaches us that in nearly every case, we can manage it. The key is to recognize the fear, acknowledge it, and prepare for it as best you can. Once I realized this, I found it possible to handle more situations that intimidated me.

I actually took pleasure in the prospect of a challenge. My skin got thicker. Believe me, stress is still a huge part of my life. But like fear, it is manageable. This weekend, for example, the Nebraska Writers Guild has invited me to conduct a short workshop. This is totally new territory, and it makes me want to breathe into a paper bag at moments. What if I make a fool of myself? What if I can’t answer all the questions? What if everybody there is smarter than me?

Still, it’s a chance to grow my speaking skills. I could learn something about writing. I could meet some really cool people. It’s worth the risk.