Books · Writing fiction

Still learning life lessons

I had the pleasure of spending last night in NYC at the launch of Jenny Milchman’s second book, Ruin Falls. Commenting recently about her first book, Cover of Snow, I said, Jenny’s book is a testament to what can happen when talent and hard work coalesce. Any time I speak to Jenny, I am reminded of a couple of life lessons that are critical for writers (and probably for everyone else as well).

You see, when Jenny’s first book was published by Random House in 2013, it was hardly her first attempt. It took Jenny eight books, thirteen years and countless rejections before Cover of Snow was acquired by Random House. Most of us would have grown impatient. Many of us would have taken a shortcut. Certainly in the current world of publishing, there are an endless array of publishing options that bypass the gatekeepers and eliminate the wait. And they truly are viable options. But I have said before that too many people self-publish for the wrong reason. I have suggested that it is essential for an aspiring author to understand his/her publishing goals before heading down a particular path to publication.

My fourth book, Death and White Diamonds, will be published by Intrigue Publishing and is scheduled for release in January 2015. Recently, I have found myself growing impatient with the process. I am reminded today that patience is a virtue and though I have suggested elsewhere that it must be someone else’s virtue, today I am looking forward to enjoying every bit of the process leading up to the book release.

Which brings me nicely to the second life lesson. Getting a book published is fun. It is an event to be celebrated. And Jenny was determined to celebrate it with her readers. When Cover of Snow was released, Jenny packed her husband and two children into their car and set out on the road. They spent the next seven months on the road, visiting hundreds of book stores, libraries and any place else where readers congregate.

I can’t spend seven months on the road; I can’t live or work remotely for an extended period like that. But I can damn sure celebrate my book with my readers and I am already thinking about times, places and ways of doing that. And since the book won’t be released until January, I have plenty of time to figure it out.

In the meantime, if you’re not familiar with Jenny Milchman, pick up a copy of Cover of Snow and/or Ruin Falls. Settle into a comfy chair and enjoy the read.

And if you’re in the area, this Saturday, April 26, I’ll be reading an excerpt from Death and White Diamonds at the Rosemont College Book Festival.


2 thoughts on “Still learning life lessons

  1. Consider a book promo trip to Arizona, in late January or early February. In the Phoenix area are Bards Books (central Phoenix), Changing Hands (Tempe) and The Poisoned Pen (Scottsdale). In Tucson are Antigone Books (downtown) and Mostly Books (on the East Side). Here in Prescott, we have Peregrine Books, a marvelous, fairly new shop, that reminds me of the great shops in San Francisco and Boulder. over the mountain from us, in Cottonwood, is The Book Store, far more appealing than its simple name suggests.


  2. I can’t wait for your new book 🙂

    Maybe you could do a signing at my local library in Elizabethtown, Pennsylvania? Or maybe go to the Mount Joy library or Hershey library, which aren’t far from me. I’d love to meet you and get my books signed.


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