Wednesday, December 24, 2008

The BEST Christmas Present!


This morning I received wonderful news. The Wild Sight has been nominated for a "Cupid and Psyche Award" (CAPA) from The Romance Studio in the Romantic Suspense category. (To read their great 5 heart review of TWS, just click on the title of this post.)

They won't announce the winners until Feb. 14th, but just to be nominated is a huge THRILL!

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Turkish Delight!

We had a FANTASTIC trip to Turkey! The tour far exceeded our expectations and we had an outstanding tour guide. Among some of the wonderful sights we saw were the ruins of Troy, the ruins of Ephesus, Pergamon (Yup, also ruins!), the Roman baths and necropolis at Pamukkale, the underground cities and "fairy chimneys" of Cappadocia, and Attaturk's monument in Ankara.

If you'd like to see and read about the underground cities, I posted about them on the Bandit blog last Thursday (just click on the title of this blog post to go there).

Meanwhile, Aunty is enough of a Grinchy Scrooge that I was HAPPY to be in a country where 98% of the population doesn't celebrate Christmas. I didn't have to listen to any Christmas carols repeated ad nauseam, and the only Christmas decoration I saw was one funky black tree with white lights in a mall window in Konya.

Please check back here for more of my travel adventures in Turkey... as soon as I can figure out how to crop and resize my pictures! Here's an attempt to show you the main street of Ephesus looking down from the Forum to the Celcius library.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Buy A Book -- PLEASE!

'Tis the season, and if you are anything like Aunty (POOR YOU!) your budget is stretched way beyond the limit and you need some inexpensive gifts. What could be better than a GREAT BOOK?!?! (Yes, that's a rhetorical question.)

It just so happens that my Casablanca sisters and I have a few recommendations, in case you need any help. There's something for everyone on this list -- contemporary, historical, paranormal... I'll start off with a new romantic suspense tale that you MAY have already heard about...

The Wild Sight
By: Loucinda McGary
Cursed with the Irish clairvoyance known as "The Sight," Donovan O'Shea fled to America to escape his "gift." Fifteen years later, his father's illness has forced him to return to the family homestead where years earlier, Donovan's mother disappeared into the fens and was never seen again. Now the same fens are offering up secrets, both ancient and recent, and restoring a terrible legacy that just may drive him mad. And if this were not trouble enough, a beautiful woman walks into his life, claiming to be his half-sister.

Rylie Powell never knew her real father. Her mother would only say he was a charming Irishman who seduced her, married her, and then abandoned her and his baby daughter. But after her mother's death, Rylie finds tantalizing clues about her father that send her off to Northern Ireland and an archeological site on Dermot O'Shea's property, the man listed on her birth certificate as her father.

Did Dermot O'Shea father both Donovan and Rylie? What is Donovan's connection to the Celtic High King Niall of the Nine Hostages? And what secrets do the fens hold that invites murder?

"...brings elements of the supernatural into this smashing romantic suspense novel. ...McGary never shortchanges the sizzling romance... as she weaves in ancient legend and recent murders, building to a dramatic, memorable conclusion." —Publisher’s Weekly Starred review

Line of Scrimmage
By: Marie Force
The Hail Mary play of a lifetime . . . An NFL quarterback has just 10 days to convince his soon-to-be ex-wife to give him another chance, and he has to act fast—she’s already engaged to her ex-boyfriend. Readers will laugh and cry and hope—that at the end of the day, these two lovers, who clearly belong together, will somehow find their way back to one another.

“With its humor and endearing characters, Force's charming novel will appeal to a broad spectrum of readers, reaching far beyond sports fans.” —Booklist

Dating da Vinci
By: Malena Lott
A gorgeous young Italian, with nowhere to go . . .His name just happens to be Leonardo da Vinci. When he walks into Ramona Elise's English class, he's a twenty-five-year-old immigrant, struggling to forge a new life in America - but he's lonely, has nowhere to live, and barely speaks English . . .She knows she shouldn't take him home . . .Picking up the pieces of her life after the death of her beloved husband, linguist and teacher Ramona Elise can't help but be charmed by her gorgeous new student. And when he calls her "Mona Lisa" she just about loses her heart . . .

"Delightfully affirming romance!" —Booklist

Romeo Romeo
By: Robin Kaye
Rosalie Ronaldi is a woman focused on her career. She has no intention of ever getting married nor is she a domestic goddess—both major points of contention with her traditional Italian Catholic family. However, when she gets a flat tire and is stranded on the side of the road, a mechanic with a tow truck pulls over, and gives her a hand.
Turns out that “mechanic” is actually Nick Romeo, “Brooklyn’s Donald Trump,” a self-made millionaire and serial dater. He’s instantly attracted to Rosalie, even though she’s far from his usual type of girlfriends who are fortune-hunting sticks with breasts. He quickly realizes, though, that he would have no chance with her if she knew who he was—the multi-millionaire playboy who, back in his misspent youth, got her older brother arrested. So he neglects to mention that detail. Somewhat inexplicably to both of them, they click instantly (helped along by Nick’s protective instincts when Rosalie gets pneumonia), and Nick suddenly becomes her live-in caretaker, cook, housekeeper, and lover, all rolled into one. Looming over his head, though, is his hidden identity and the fact that his company is at odds with Rosalie’s.

“Wonderful Laugh Out Loud Humor, a sexy and precious love story with twists and turns until the very end. Do Not Miss This Treasure!!” —Single Title Reviews

By: Cheryl Brooks
Looking for something different? If you'd like a strong heroine, plenty of adventure, steamy romance, and hot, erotic sex with an irresistible alien lover who can purr, then this first book in The Cat Star Chronicles series is for you! Join Captain Jacinth "Jack" Rutland and Carkdakund "Cat" Tshevnoe on their rescue mission on a planet with fascinating world customs, danger, and a surprising secret!

"A hugely remarkable first foray into the written word, SLAVE will enthrall and entice. The sexual tension and compatibility of the two main characters are hot enough to start a fire. Add in a thrilling new world and my reading experience was complete." —Romance Junkies

By: Cheryl Brooks
Action, adventure, sizzling romance, and another irresistible Zetithian lover are the hallmarks of this second book in The Cat Star Chronicles series. Join the powerful witch, Tisana, and Leccarian "Leo" Banadansk, a golden-haired Zetithian warrior, in their race to find two kidnapped boys and earn Leo's freedom from a lifetime of slavery! Plenty of laughs are provided by the local animals with whom Tisana can communicate telepathically, but watch out: This witch can set you on fire!

"Ms. Brooks masterfully combined Sci-Fi fantasy, paranormal elements, hot and sensual alien attributes and hilarity with characters that wiggled their way into my heart and dreams. My advice is to rush out and grab a Warrior of your own." —Whipped Cream Erotic Romance Reviewers

50 Ways to Hex Your Lover
By: Linda Wisdom
What’s a witch to do? 700 year young Jazz Tremaine lives the good life as a curse eliminator and driver for All Creatures Car Service even if ghostly Irma haunts her precious 1956 T-Bird convertible and magick bunny slippers Fluff and Puff make life crazy for her. Now her PI ex vampire Nick Gregory is back in town and needs her help with a serial killer of vampires that’s using dark magick. Can Jazz work with the sexy vampire without reliving the past? What do you think?

“With clever writing, a high sensuality factor and an unfettered imagination, Wisdom makes a sparkling entry into lite urban paranormals.” —Publisher’s Weekly

Hex Appeal
By: Linda Wisdom
Jazz’s life is never boring. Now she’s having disturbing nightmares that involve Nick and he’s having them too. Someone doesn’t want them together and to make matters worse, Jazz’s beloved magick bunny slippers, Fluff and Puff are accused of eating a carny were-weasel! Once again Jazz is doing her hexy stuff to find out who’s messing up her usually blissful dreams and who dared to frame Fluff and Puff when everyone knows were-weasels taste nasty.

“Bless Jazz Tremaine’s witchy, Prada-loving heart – she’s captured mine! I can’t get enough of Jazz and her vamp lover Nick. Kudos to Linda Wisdom for a series that's pure magic!” —Vicki Lewis Thompson, NYT bestselling author of Wild & Hexy

The Lady Flees Her Lord
By: Michele Anne Young
She’s desperate for peace and safety… Unfashionably plump Lucinda, Lady Denbigh, is running from a husband who physically and emotionally abused her because she has failed to produce an heir. Posing as a widow, she seeks refuge in the quiet countryside…
He’s returned from the wars, wounded and tormented… Lord Hugo Wanstead, with a wound that won’t heal, finds his estate impoverished, his sleep torn by nightmares, and brandy his only solace. When he meets Lucinda, he finds her beautiful, body and soul, and thinks she just might give him something to live for… Together they can begin to heal, but not until she is free of her violent past…

"This is a wonderful book. Beautiful historical background with two characters who just are not perfect. It makes the story so much more real when you can relate to them. I look forward to reading more from this author. Armchair Interviews says: Highly recommended for those who love historical romance." —Arm Chair Interviews

SEALed With a Kiss
By: Mary Margaret Daughtridge
Even a hero needs help sometimes… Navy SEAL Lt. Jax Graham is as at home in the water as…well, a seal, but he’s completely out of his depth when his ex-wife dies and he must find a caregiver for the son he hardly knows. He intends to let
Tyler live with his grandmother—until he spends the weekend from hell with the two of them, that is. One look at bright, bossy, and sweetly sexy Pickett Sessoms and Jax knows she’ll expect more than he has to give. But right now, he needs help with his sad and silent son, and she knows a lot about kids. What about Tyler? Well, Tyler is only four years old. He doesn’t know a lot about anything. But he's sure he needs a mommy who isn’t dead, a daddy he can trust, a dog, and a bed of his very own.

"With a hero who's not only a tough Navy SEAL but also an insecure, vulnerable father and a pretty but unsure heroine with a big heart and a huge amount of love to give, how can this story miss? It doesn't; it delivers in a huge way. Throw in a lost little boy and some great dogs and you get a heart-touching story that will keep you smiling and cheering for the characters clear through to the happy ending." —Romantic Times, four and a half out of five.

Monday, December 1, 2008

Homesick and A Bond Girl for My WIP!

No, I'm not really here, I'm in Turkey. In fact, as you are reading this, I SHOULD be visiting the ruins of the ancient city of Ephesus. But I thought I'd leave a post behind to keep you all on your toes and to let you know that I'm missing home... Well, maybe not quite yet, but before the end of the trip, I will be!

Usually somewhere around day 10 of any vacation, I experience a severe bout of home-sickness. That should happen in another 4 or 5 days, right around the time we hit Ankara. I especially miss my dogs, who are being spoiled rotten in the kennel where they always stay when we go on trips. But I miss my friends and family too, and I miss my writing!

A couple of days before we left, my BFF Shirl and I went to see the new Bond film, Quantum of Solace. We are both BIG Bond fans, and we both had the same complaint about this one: too many close-ups of Bond's face and not enough of his bare torso! HA!

But one of the surprising things about the movie was one of the Bond girls, Agent Fields (billed in the credits as Strawberry Fields, ah those Bond names). What a shock when she walked on screen, because she looked exactly like I imagined the heroine of my current work-in-progress (the currently untitled New Irish Tale).

I came home and googled the lovely actress, of course, and made a copy of one of her photos for "inspiration" as I'm writing. So without further adieu, here is how *I* imagine my heroine Amber O'Neill...

Sunday, November 23, 2008

The Numbers Game

When he was a wee little lad, my son loved to watch Sesame Street. I remember at the end of every episode they would say, "This show was brought to you by the letters ___ and ___ and by the number ___."

So in the tradition of Sesame Street, this blog post is brought to you by the number 24. There are still 24 hours in every day, aren't there? The reason I'm asking is because lately it hasn't felt like that to me.

I'm writing a book with a contracted deadline for the first time ever! And while the deadline is currently months away, I know that the time will fly by. I also know that I'm not one of those writers who can spill out a bunch of words in a crunch. My way is slow and steady, which means I need to steadily turn out words. I've been working hard on that for the past few weeks, along with trying to get ready for this two week jaunt to Turkey.


By this time next week, I'll be gazing at the ruins of Troy. Now if I could just run into a guy who looked like Eric Bana's version of Hector... You might never see Yer Olde Aunty again! HA!

Meanwhile, the number 24 is taunting me. "That's all you get every day between now and the time you leave!"

"NO FAIR!" I say. I need more hours! I'm not ready! And please DO NOT mention the up-coming holidays!

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Fan Mail!

LONG LONG AGO, but in this very galaxy...
Aunty used to watch "Rocky and Bullwinkle" cartoons. There was one sequence where Rocky would say, "Look Bullwinkle! A message in a bottle." To which Bullwinkle replied, "Fan mail from some flounder?"

This always made me laugh.

Yes, I was a strange child.

Yesterday, fan mail made me laugh again. No, it wasn't from some flounder. It was honest-to-goodness FAN MAIL... to ME!

Last year not long after I received "The Call" and became a "SOLD" writer, I rented myself a post office box. Having a separate place for mail under my pseudonym made me feel more "professional." Plus, it's a deductible business expense.

Unfortunately, I haven't received much of anything but junk mail until... Yesterday I stopped by to check my PO Box and I had not one, NOT TWO, but THREE pieces of fan mail! This is another small step in my journey, but one I've dreamed of happening.

I had to run out of the post office and hop in my car so I could SQUEE and laugh with joy in relative privacy.

Friday, November 7, 2008

Gimme 5... Things About Being a Published Author

WOW! The Wild Sight has now been "officially released" for a month! So here are five random things that just crossed my mind about being a PUBLISHED AUTHOR:

  1. Getting my first "fan email!" Thank you, Helen! And knowing that people thousands of miles away, who have never met me (or maybe never even heard of me!) are reading the words I wrote and ENJOYING THEM!
  2. Going into a big chain bookstore and seeing copies of The Wild Sight sitting on the shelf under "New Romances."
  3. Realizing how much more there is to being a "published author" than just writing a good book. Oh, like promotion... My wild and crazy blog tour had me all over cyber-space! I did 15 guest blogs in 30 days. WHEW! (Aunty wipes sweat from her brow.)
  4. Figuring out that the really good reviews and the not-so-good ones are only as significant as I choose to make them. They are all only one person's subjective opinion.
  5. Knowing that this time next year, I get to do it again!

Sunday, November 2, 2008

One Hit Wonders

For several months now, I've been living in fear that I might be a dreaded "One Hit Wonder."

Here's the definition of One Hit Wonder from Wikipedia: "Most American music industry insiders consider a song in the top forty positions of the Billboard Hot 100 to be a hit. Thus, any performer who recorded only one song that reached the Top 40 is, technically, a one-hit wonder. However, the term is more generally applied to musicians best known for only one song..."

And when it comes to books, Wikipedia said this: "The term "one-hit wonder" is occasionally used to refer to an artist, other than a musical performer, who is best known for a single work. Examples in literature include Harper Lee's only novel, To Kill a Mockingbird, which sold 30 million copies; and author Joseph Heller, who wrote several novels, but is still best known for Catch-22. Margaret Mitchell never wrote another book after her first novel, Gone With the Wind, was a smash best-seller."

Even with such esteemed company as Joseph Heller, Harper Lee, and Margaret Mitchell, I did not want to occupy this category. Happily, it appears I will not! My editor wants to publish two more books from me! I am so thrilled and happy. This is ALMOST as good as my first sale.


The deal is not yet finalized but I couldn't wait any longer to share my excitement. My next book on the shelves will be my 2006 Golden Heart finalist, Jewels of the Madonna. No firm publication date yet, but most likely in the Fall 2009.

I will give more details as soon as I have them!

Until then, I'll be humming that catchy little ditty of a One Hit Wonder, My Sharona by The Knack.

Monday, October 27, 2008

A Real Life Hero

As everyone knows, Aunty is an auto racing aficianado. Open wheel, street stock, super-modified, I've been to all of them, including both the Indy 500 and the Daytona 500.

Well, as of yesterday, Aunty has a new FAVORITE Nascar driver, and his name is Carl Edwards. I happened to be watching the TV when Carl won the race at Atlanta Motor Speedway yesterday afternoon, and no, it was not his signature back-flip off the side of his race car that impressed me.

When the announcer stuck the microphone in his face and asked him about winning the race, Carl said he had spent part of the previous day visiting children in a local hospital. A little boy with cancer gave him his "courage necklace" and told Carl it would bring him good luck. Then, he pulled the necklace out and stuck it up to the camera where everyone could plainly read the beads, and said, "Thank you, Dalton."

That gesture touched my heart and made me a die-hard Carl Edwards fan!

Not many sports figures or celebrities will take their moment in the limelight to make an ill child feel special. But a class-act, real life hero like Carl Edwards did!

Sunday, October 19, 2008

The Wild Sight FINALLY Sighted!

Yesterday, after 2 1/2 endless, frustrating weeks, I FINALLY SAW THE WILD SIGHT on a bookstore shelf!

This time I got smart and called ahead instead of walking in and being disappointed. So there it was in the "New Romance" section of Barnes & Noble, TEN BEAUTIFUL COPIES, FACE OUT on the middle (thank goodness for an "M" name!) shelf!

My BFF Shirl was with me and after we squee-ed a few times and she took my piccie, I hurried over to the customer service desk and asked if I could sign "my stock." Just saying those words was a thrill and the B&N clerk was equally excited for me when she told me, "Sure!"

I rushed back and signed all ten copies while Shirl stuck "Author Autographed" stickers on every cover. What a WONDERFUL FEELING! This long journey into print that started over a year ago has finally achieved its Happily Ever After!

Sunday, October 12, 2008

The Real Becomes Surreal

Two days ago, I met my friend Terri S. for lunch. As usual, I was running five minutes behind schedule and she was already seated when I arrived at the restaurant. I hurried over to the table and saw that she had two copies of The Wild Sight lying there next to her elbow on top of her plastic Barnes & Noble bag.

That's when it hit me: That was MY book! It really is out there in bookstores. Complete strangers are reading it. I REALLY AM A PUBLISHED AUTHOR!

After all these years of trying and hoping and dreaming, it was a very surreal moment.

So as promised, here are a few piccies of the big in-person pizza and cake launch party that happened one week ago. Wish you could have all been there!

AC and long time friend and former officemate Donee Sue.

And another long time friend and officemate Linda E. who designed the flyer/invitation for the party.

Signing my very first copy of The Wild Sight for friend and chaptermate Maureen R.

Cutting a piece of the cake for my very good friend Debbie J.

This party will always have a special place in my heart, but I'm looking forward to having more launches in the future!

Monday, October 6, 2008

Gimme 5... Things About My Book Launch Party

Yesterday was my in-person launch party held at a local pizza parlor. Having thrown too many parties in the past that nobody attended, I was worried this might happen again.

It didn't! But maybe the idea of free pizza and cake was the deciding factor? Well, at least for the hubbies and male signif. others in attendance. So here are five things I really enjoyed about my launch party:

  1. The BEAUTIFUL cake with a picture of my cover frosted onto the top, and it tasted great too. BIG MWAH to my CP Cathy D. for getting it for me!
  2. Feeling the LURVE! I got to celebrate with so many friends and former co-workers, some I'd known for over twenty years. Many I had not seen in years.
  3. The fact that TWO MEN actually showed up of their own volition (not there because of a spouse of girl friend), my hairdresser, and a former co-worker and long time friend, James.
  4. Having two complete strangers (Okay, they were friends of a friend but we'd never met) ask me to autograph a copy of my book.
  5. Finally, after all those years of writing and being rejected, and after almost 13 months of waiting after The Call, feeling like a real live PUBLISHED AUTHOR!
P.S. More pictures to follow!

Friday, September 26, 2008

3,2,1... PAR-TAY!!!!!


We are down to the wire now. The Wild Sight will be released next Wednesday!

After all these long months of waiting, I can hardly believe it is true. I'm currently in the midst of a blog tour with more than a dozen stops scheduled so far, and I'll be giving away free books at every blog I visit. I hope you can pop by and join me at a few of my stops.
  • Sept. 29th I'm being interviewed at Romance Writers On The Journey
  • Sept. 30th we're having a Launch Party on Casablanca Authors Blog
  • Oct. 1st is my Launch Party on Romance Bandits
  • Oct. 6th is yet another Launch Party! This one on Yankee Romance Reviewers
  • Oct. 10th I'm doing a guest blog on Bitten by Books (who just gave The Wild Sight a terrific review!)
...and that's just in the next two weeks! The rest of the month is equally busy with appearances on Jennifer's Random Musings, Enchanted Reviews, Much Cheaper than Therary, and Long and Short of It Reviews.

WHEW! My head is spinning! Meanwhile, I still haven't seen The Wild Sight in a store yet. (Aunty does a major pout!) If you have, or if you've received your copy from an online order, please take a picture and send me a copy. PRETTY PLEASE?!?! There's a chocolate reward if you are the first!

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Don't see that every day

Guest blog by Trish Milburn

Aunty Cindy is off on another cruise, no doubt enjoying herself immensely. I should have had this blog up earlier today, but I was in the car driving part of the way home from my trip to the D.C. area to do book-related things since my debut book, A Firefighter in the Family, is out in stores this month.

Part of my day was spent driving the Skyline Drive from one end of Shenandoah National Park to the other. I'm a huge fan of national parks, and I visit as many as possible. In addition to having my first book out this month, I experienced two more firsts today -- I took a few steps on the Appalachian Trail, which I want to hike in its entirety someday, and I saw a black bear in the wild. Unfortunately, he about gave me a heart attack. I was rounding a curve when he jumped off an embankment right in front of my car. I had to slam on the brakes to avoid hitting him. Silly bear.

So, some questions for you out there in blogland:

1. What animal have you seen in the wild that made you think, "Cool!"? (That's not exactly the four-letter word that came out of my mouth when I about hit the bear today, but since we want to keep this a PG blog, I won't repeat it.)

2. What's the longest trail you've hiked?

3. Does hiking the more than 2,000 miles of the Appalachian Trail sound neat to you, or do you think I've lost my mind? :)

4. What's your favorite national park?

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Gone Again!

Yes, Aunty is about to embark on yet another high seas adventure!

After all, with the exception of a couple of wee little jaunts to San Francisco, Aunty has been at home all summer! The DH has broken out in too-much-time-at-home hives! Trust me, it is not a pretty sight!

Of course the only remedy is get outta town, so we are leaving on our 12th cruise this Saturday. Drastic you say? Perhaps, but no sacrifice is too great for yer olde Aunty! Besides, I need to celebrate my One Year Anniversary of getting THE CALL, which happens this Sunday, Sept. 14th. PAR-TAY!

Don't worry, while I will miss everyone, I've once again asked my good friend and Bandita Trish Milburn to fill in with a post or two until I return. Trish's debut novel A Firefighter In the Family was just released this week from Harlequin American! I'm sure she will have some things to say about that and much more.

Try not to miss me too much!

Sunday, September 7, 2008

Hello? Hollywood???

All right, I can't keep this to myself any longer.

Remember that starred review I got from Publishers Weekly? Well, somebody besides us insecure and slightly paranoid writers must read those. Somebody in Hollywood, maybe?

They must because a few days ago, I received an inquiry from Creative Artists Agency, who happen to be one of THE BIGGEST talent agencies in Hollywood (I know because I googled them). They asked me about the film and TV rights for The Wild Sight! Don't know where else they could have heard of me except for Publishers Weekly.

Yes, my feet have not touched the floor since then. I know this is a looong way from seeing my book on either the small or the big screen. Or even selling the options. But it IS a step! A step I could not have even imagined myself taking!

Sunday, August 31, 2008

They Like Me, They Really Like Me!

Sorry, channeling Sally Field there for a moment...

What I SHOULD have said is, "They really like The Wild Sight!"

I received two more wonderful reviews this week! The first from Kimberly Swan at Darque Reviews, who said: "With the magical lore of Ireland as a backdrop, The Wild Sight takes readers on a journey that unravels mysteries of the past and paves the way for a blossoming romance. Along with a strong touch of the paranormal, Ms. McGary shares a suspenseful tale that mounts to a surprising climax and resolves the many questions that arise along the way. This intriguing story is well-paced, the characters are likeable, and the romance is bursting with passion."

To read the full review, click on the title of this blog post. Or try:

The second great review is from Terra at Yankee Romance Reviewers, where I will do a guest interview on Sept. 25th (and give away a copy of the book). Terra had this, and a lot of other complimentary things to say about The Wild Sight: "...a story rich in history, Irish lingo, scary settings and fantastically imaginative other worldly characters that all interact with our hero and heroine with such ease that it's like putting on a pair of soft comfy slippers. A romance with punch. A cozy mystery that will make you think twice about going out in the dark. A storyline that will most certainly entertain you from the first page to the last and have you sputtering Irish words long after the book ends."

WOW! Check out the entire review under the August 29th entry here:

I'm so incredibly honored that these reviewers read and loved my book, and most importantly took the time to post such positive, thoughtful reviews! This is truly a dream come true!

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Publisher's Weekly

Monday afternoon, I received my second review and it is A BIGGIE! THE "Bible" of the publishing world, Publisher's Weekly magazine gave The Wild Sight a starred review!

It doesn't get any better than this!

PW doesn't give a set number of stars, they reserve them for books they found particularly outstanding. I can't even tell you how THRILLED I am that they bestowed this honor on The Wild Sight!

Here are some great things PW said in their review:
"...brings elements of the supernatural into this smashing romantic suspense novel."

And "...McGary never shortchanges the sizzling romance... as she weaves in ancient legend and recent murders, building to a dramatic, memorable conclusion."

To read the entire review, just click on the title of this post for the link to take you there.

Saturday, August 23, 2008

Four Questions

Haven't had a meme in awhile, mostly because nobody has sent me one. Well, my pal PiowaPuff cured that up yesterday when she sent me the following "Four" questions:

A) Four places that I go to over and over:

The bathroom... Okay, TMI!

The central California coast, namely San Luis Obispo. I went to college in that area, and my son currently lives there (just got back from a visit as a matter of fact). I would move there in a second if only I could afford it.

I go to Trader Joe's every chance I get. Yes, it's a grocery store but they have some of the coolest stuff (mostly chocolate).

The book store... ANY book store. I can't walk by one without going inside. There's just something about the sight and smell (Ever notice that new books have their own particular smell? Not quite "new car smell" but pretty darn good nonetheless.) of all those wonderful books.

The Mexican Riviera (aka the West Coast of Mexico). I love cruising from Cabo to Acapulco and all points in between. No matter how many times I cruise this particular geographic stretch, I'm always ready to go again.

B) Four of my favorite places to eat:

Just about any Italian place. I LURVE pasta! I LURVE pizza! I LURVE just about anything Italian (except tiramisu, because I do NOT love anything with a coffee flavor).

There's a local (California based) fast food place called Rubio's that has great burritos. The DH and I go there almost every weekend.

Any cruise ship dining room. Cruise food is THE BEST! If you are going to blow a diet of any kind, a cruise ship is the perfect place to do it.

Okay, I'll admit it, McDonald's because I LURVE their french fries. I'm sure McD's fries should be on an illegal controlled substance list of some kind, but thank goodness they are not!

C) Four places I would rather be right now:

Some place nice and cool. At the moment I'm not picky. If it is 70 degrees Farenheit or under, I'm THERE!

Hawaii. I know, I know, it's not particularly cool there, but it is so beautiful and relaxing, especially Maui...

New Zealand, because I've never been there and I'd LURVE to see all those spectacular landscapes from the Lord of the Rings movies up close and in person. Besides, it's winter there right now and most likely nice and cool...

In bed with this certain tall, lanky hunk... And no, I wouldn't want it to be cool there either!

D) Four TV shows I watch over and over.
This is a tough one for me since I don't watch much TV and really none that I'd watch over and over. Four shows I do like are:

Globetrekker -- great travel ideas

Rome, which I watched on DVD after it was canceled! ACK!

The Tudors. I watched this one on DVD recently also, and though it isn't terribly historically accurate, it was a ton o fun! Plus Johnny Rhys Meyers is so YUMMY!

The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson because he's such a mischievious lil devil with the cutest accent!

Now it's YOUR TURN to play! Give me four answers to one or more of these quesitons.

Thursday, August 14, 2008

My First Review

Remember waaaay back at the end of May when My Publicist told me she was ready to send out ARCs of The Wild Sight? I know, I know, it feels like another lifetime ago, even though technically it's only been 10 weeks. Well, HAPPY DAY! Yesterday, I learned that my first review has arrived! I'm so excited to take this significant step down my long road to publication.

Yes, it is a happy day because this was a positive review! What a gratifying feeling to know that a total stranger read my story and "got" it.

Yes, I was SCARED SPITLESS (just like when I received the file of my cover) when I opened the email! And once again, I held my breath while I read it. Thank goodness it was both short and sweet. The review will appear in the August issue of Booklist magazine. This is the trade publication of the American Library Association, which is very exciting! Librarians read tons of books and I've always had a mountain of respect for them.

If anyone can get a copy of the magazine (or even just the page with my review) and send it to me, there will be a chocolate reward for you!

I won't copy the entire review here, since that probably isn't legal and certainly not ethical, but I will quote the gist of it:
"Northern Ireland's violent past combined with supernatural elements add an intriguing twist to this modern love story."

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Gimme Five! Things About RWA National

Another RWA National Conference has come and gone, and as far as I'm concerned this one was THE BEST EVER! I had a wonderful time, met many many wonderful people, and had some unforgettable experiences. Off the top of my head, here are five:

  1. Meeting My Editor, My Publicist, and My Publisher face-to-face. And yes, when I met My Publisher, I had my Aunty Cindy riding crop in my hand (color me embarrassed)! Fortunately, once I'd met the fabulous Dominique Raccah and saw how friendly she is and the great sense of humor she possesses, I had NO WORRIES!
  2. Having people I did not know congratulate me when they saw my First Sale ribbon. It felt sooo great to be able to smile and say, "Thank you!"
  3. Hooting and hollering for my Banditas and friends at various award ceremonies and events, and having them return the favor for ME.
  4. Riding in a stretch limo. This was courtesy of my aforementioned publisher (told ya she was fabulous!) who took all her authors to dinner and rented three limos to get us there and back.
  5. Just being in the same space with so many great authors who totally "get it" about romance writing! Nothing sustains a writer more than getting to interact with other people who "get it."
And here's a lil piccie of moi and 15 of my closest friends!

Sunday, July 27, 2008

Thoughts on RWA Conferences

Sorry I haven't been around with a new post last week. As most of you know, the RWA National Conference starts in a few days and I've been trying to get myself prepared -- mentally and physically. Definitely a toss up as to which of those is the most difficult!

This will be my first conference as a PUBLISHED AUTHOR! Okay, so technically my book won't be released for 65 more days, but still...

I've attended two previous RWA National Conferences and each was as different as I know this one will be. In 2005 I'd recently finished my first romantic suspense manuscript and I was a finalist in the Daphne du Maurier contest! I didn't belong to any local nor online writing groups. And just days before the conference I received rejections from the first two agents I'd queried. They'd both asked for partials and I had been flying high then really hit rock bottom when both rejected me. I think I walked around that conference pretty much like a victim of shell shock. I did receive my first editor request for a partial (ultimately rejected, but oh well), made some great contacts, all other writers.

At the 2006 conference, I was a Golden Heart finalist and on top of the world! I got to meet a lot of people face-to-face that I only knew online (including many of my fellow GH finalists who eventually became Banditas). People would see my ribbon and congratulate me, which was great, and my BFF who lived in Atlanta at the time got to attend the awards ceremony with me. I didn't win the Golden Heart (but my friend and CP Jo Robertson did!), but I still felt like a winner. I even met the editor to whom I would eventually make my first sale, though I had no way of knowing that at the time. As conferences go, they don't get much better. However, the post conference let down (and not selling my GH finalist manuscript) was a real B*TCH!

This year should be an entirely new experience yet again. This year I'll get to wear my "First Sale" ribbon and bask in the glow of being published! I'll get to schmooze with My Editor, My Publicist, and even My Publisher! I have even more online friends I'm looking forward to meeting face-to-face and I can't wait to hang out with all my Banditas. Who knows what other wonderful adventures are in store for me, but I can't wait to find out!

Don't worry, you'll all get a FULL REPORT when I get back!