Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Seekerville Welcomes Guestblogger Allie Pleiter & Giveaway!

Cheryl here again with another fabulous friend and amazing author, Allie Pleiter who writes for Love Inspired and Love Inspired Historical. Don't you LOVE this cover? LIH does a wonderful job on covers. Allie comes today bearing a knitted heartbasket of sage advice; an important message on professionalism.

I've looked up to Allie and admired her professional ethic and sense of humor for a long time, since before I was published. I LOVE what she has to say about professionalism and hope you will take it to heart wherever you are in your journey. Here's Allie:

Professionalism by Allie Pleiter

Last night at my local RWA group I gave a talk on professionalism. At its core, professionalism is a code of behavior, an attitude, if you will. If you do it right, it can give give you a good rep in the industry and hopefully make you someone with whom editors and agents want to work. And we all want that, right?

So here are Aunt Allie’s Five Professional Sayings (courtesy of some family members and a few overused cliches). These are little helps, little internal speeches, for when things go or feel wrong. I believe controlling our internal thought process is the key to professionalism. It’s easy to be professional when things go well--it’s when it all hits the fan that we tend to let our inner tantrum toddler out and regret it in the morning. So, tuck these away in your brain to bring out when your pulse goes into the stratosphere:

1. From my mom: “If you’re small enough to need it, I’m big enough to give it to you.” Picky details can wear you down. People will always demand things from you--often unimportant or annoying things. Be gracious, even when you have to do it through gritted teeth. Now, I’m not saying I believe I’m the bigger person (even though I am six feet tall), or that others are small and petty people. This is about attitude, not fact. This is merely an emotional trick to talk my temporarily selfish self into taking the high road even when I don’t care to know that it’s the right thing to do. So, while I’d NEVER say this out loud, I say this over and over to myself while granting favors I don’t really have time for, am asked to do one more thing at an all- ready packed conference, when someone demands to be listed first or given the title Grand Supreme Chairperson, or am listening to someone’s enthusiastic list of the typos in my last release. Don’t be a doormat, but don’t be a diva, either.

2. From my friend: “The first twenty four hours don’t count.” Bad news is bad news. A cutting remark, a nasty re-write letter, a scathing critique--it all hurts. Give yourself a day to yell “ouch.” We all take our work extremely personally. I tell people that calling someone’s writing bad is like telling them their baby is ugly--there’s no nice way to do it and even if it's true, it’s horribly painful to hear. So let yourself be hurt, but do it in private. Call your agent but not the editor who rejected your work. Call a buddy but don’t vent at a full chapter meeting of your writers’ group. DO NOT hit the “comment” button on your blog, or their blog, or anyone’s blog. You can--and should--feel nasty now, but you can be calmer, clearer, and saner in a day or so.

3. From my brother: “Don’t engage the loonies.” There are always people out there who have lost perspective...if they ever had it in the first place. When someone is over the top, way out of line, or just plain cooky, don’t engage. Thank them for their comment, or their photograph of their eleven cats dressed up like your heroes and heroines, or their way-off-the-mark comments on your contest entry, and move on. Your goal is to end the conversation (electronic or face to face) because any kind of open ended response to someone like that only fuels the fire. Remember, however, that we all can get like that and someday that “loonies” might be a really insightful person when she calms down a bit.

4. From my editor: “Publishing has a very, very long memory.” Don’t gossip in the hotel lobby, bar, elevator, or hot tub. Don’t trash that editor who just rejected you anywhere but in the privacy of your own room. Be nice, write thank you notes, volunteer at conferences. Quite frankly (and I know this probably isn’t even an issue for lots of you), watch your public alcohol consumption. One regrettable incident (or blog comment or email) can last entirely too long in an inbred industry such as ours. All of us, however, get tired. At conferences, we all hit a wall when fatigue or tension get us to the place where we’re a snark waiting to happen. Know when you’ve “used up your nice,” and send yourself to your room.

5. From my dad: “When the third person tells you you're drunk, lie down.” One comment is one person’s opinion. Two similar comments is something to notice.
When the third person tells you your hero is unlikable, or your presentation went on too long, or you get too enthusiastic with your edits at critique group, or you get way too defensive about your work, LISTEN. The ability to be teachable is golden in our industry. It’s the key to improvement. Don’t let individual comments derail you, but if you see a trend in what you’re hearing, pay attention.

There are so many things we cannot control in this business. So much of it is out of our hands. This, however, is entirely within your grasp. How you react when things feel unfair and annoying, how you handle bad or disappointing news, how you keep your cool, is entirely in your control. Wield that to your advantage, and you’ll become your own best advocate.

Cheryl here. Isn't Allie's advice great? Here are details about her book.

YUKON WEDDING is in stores now!
Publisher: Harlequin Love Inspired Historical
Released April 2011
ISBN #978-0373828630

About Yukon Weddings:
A gold-rush town is no place for a single mother. But widow Lana Bristow won’t abandon the only home her son has ever known. She’ll fight to remain inTreasure Creek, Alaska—even if it means wedding Mack Tanner, the man she blames for
her husband’s death. Mack sees marriage as his duty, the only way to protect his former business partner’s family. Yet what starts as an obligation changes as his spoiled socialite bride proves to be a woman of strength and grace. A woman who shows Mack the only treasure he needs is her heart.

About Allie:
An avid knitter, coffee junkie, and devoted chocoholic, Allie Pleiter writes both fiction and non-fiction. The enthusiastic but slightly untidy mother of two, Allie spends her days writing books, buying yarn, and finding new ways to avoid housework. Allie hails from Connecticut, moved to the midwest to attend Northwestern University, and currently lives outside Chicago, Illinois. The “dare from a friend” to begin writing has produced two parenting books, fourteen novels, and various national speaking engagements on faith, women’s issues, and writing.. Visit her website at
http://www.alliepleiter.com or her knitting blog at http://www.DestiKNITions.blogspot.com

Here's a You Tube video of a Romantic Times representative interviewing Allie with her editor, Krista Stroever, in a video which you'll also find informative and interesting.

One lucky commenter will win a copy of Allie's Yukon Weddings!

What was your favorite tip provided by Allie? Do you have any familial advice you'd like to add?

Comment away!

Cheryl & Allie


  1. Sorry about the formatting guys. No idea how to fix it. URGH!


  2. Coffee pot's ready.

    Maybe the tendency to turn inward isn't all bad. It can keep you from spouting when things go wrong.

    Head in the sand Helen.

  3. OMGOSH, I love this and I fell over laughing at Don't Engage The Loonies. This is sooo freaking true.

    Thank you, for your wise words.

  4. Welcome to Seekerville, Allie! Oh my gosh I loved your post! I'm like Tina, I can totally relate to not engaging the loonies.

  5. The first 24 hours [or possibly week] don't [doesn't] count.

    I tend to bury my head in the sand. Or cry. A lot. When I got my last contest results* back... I knew I wouldn't final, but didn't anticipate doing SO POORLY! I sent the files to a couple friends I trusted to tell me the truth about them. A couple weeks later I looked at them. One was really pretty helpful - and it was the lowest score. Even if I didn't agree with a lot of it.


    I've got Panera. Had a productive night there tonight so brought goodies for everyone.

    I read this back cover but didn't have enough room in the pocketbook for it to jump in my cart. [Or maybe I read it on the website...] Either way, I'd love to win a copy!

    carol at carolmoncado dot com

    *Not Genesis. Don't have those back yet...

  6. Hi Allie:

    I’m reading “Yukon Wedding” right now, about half done, and I think your hero is demonstrating the strongest sense of professionalism that I think I’ve ever seen in a non-military romance hero. Did you have him in mind when you wrote this blog on professionalism?

    I think professionalism is about honor and duty even when no one can see you and will ever know what you are doing.

    I think it is fascinating that your “Alaskan Brides” novel is both the ‘first’ and the ‘seventh’ in the series. The first six books are contemporary romances. Yours takes place over 100 years in the past. I really like this concept and I hope Love Inspired does more series like this one. In an older location, like Jamestown, you could even have a third series that goes back a second 100 years.


  7. All of Allie's sayings are wonderful. "Don't engage the loonies" was my favorite until I thought, "am I a loonie?"

    The "first twenty hours don't count" is a good one. My self-admonition is, "remember, you always cry on the third day." I hold it together when bad news comes, act like I can handle whatever critique, crisis, or crazy situation comes my way for two whole days. The third day...boom. THEN I move on. It would be good to just react in the first twenty-four and not waste the acting energy for two.

    Yukon Wedding has a wonderful cover and an even more wonderful story. It is a winner! No need to enter me because I have read it and loved it.

    Peace, Julie

  8. Posting with name/URL since I'm in the browser that thinks I won't allow cookeis and so refuses to let me sign in.

    LOVE this excellent post. What great ideas! I've had to put the 24-hour rule into effect many times through the last few years of contesting and submitting (even though most of the judges & editors have been really nice). It's a big help. As Thumper's mother said, "If ya can't say nothin' nice, don't say nothin' at all." Wonderful advice.

    I love Allie's books, so please do enter me. Thanks!

    hope _ chastain at yahoo dot com

  9. PS Vince, what a great idea about a series set in Jamestown! Williamsburg might do as well. I could see that being a lot of fun!

  10. 3. Don't engage the loonies. My mom had a saying, "A man convinced against his will, is of the same opinion still." Meaning he hasn't really changed his mind!

    If an argument can't be proven by an outside source, cleanly and obviously, it's best to zip it.

    Being Canadian, I would love to read Yukon Weddings.

  11. Hi Allie and Cheryl. Dont enter me I have just ordered this book as I have to read it. Loved the contemporary series in Treasure creek and this sounds great too.
    When I read what you wrote Im not a writer but it does apply to other areas of life.
    about the long memories and being nice etc. I remember trying to get an autograph from one player who wasn't signing at the time I went up to him and asked for his autograph and he said no. So instead of being annoyed I said I hope you have a great day, he then turned around and said "I will sign now" seems so many had been rude to him that he wasn't signing for anyone.
    So it can be helpful to say thankyou even when things dont go your way.

  12. I too, loved the "Don't engage the loonies" comment. Very good advice and we all need to consider the source, right? We still need to treat them with respect but engaging is not necessary :) Thanks for hte great interview
    ihhcheryl(at)comcast(dot net

  13. HAHAHA! Ok, I want to be adopted by your parents and friended by your friend!

    Ummm, I definitely get the 'loonies' comment and have seen some very gracious people on facebook not 'engaging' various loonies. But, I have to say the 'third person' saying was really good. I hadn't heard that... Being of a stubborn bent, I tend to ignore whatever anybody else says.

    Carol, I got four different contest results last week (yikes!)and while they were all productive and interesting, there was ONE judge in Chicago's F&I contest that said, 'I wouldn't read the rest of this if I didn't have to' and gave me a score of 24/100! I was crushed... And now it's kind of funny. (Um, hope this isn't being unprofessional.)

    Anyway, I was discouraged and threw the first chap in the recycling bin and then got a call on Saturday that I'm a semi-finalist in the Wisconsin Fab Five contest on the SAME pages.

    So, don't despair. It's great you can take something away from the comments. Those contest scores can be really crazy. (Like, loony crazy!)

  14. Thanks, Allie! This is great advice for any area of life. I enjoyed the video, and the book cover is beautiful. Blessings!

  15. I, myself, usually wait for the fourth person to confirm my inebriated state before lying down. LOL

    Actually, if a gazillion people comment in like manner they can't all be wrong.

    Can they?

    And unfortunately, I don't get engaged often, I guess people have picked up on the loonie rule already.

    Thanks for the rules and a smile


    Tina P

  16. Great advice! I especially like the statement, "give yourself a day to yell ouch." So often everyone tells you to take it in stride, but when you first get the news/critique/criticism that's a hard thing to do.

    I would love to read Allie's book. I've enjoyed her stories in the past.

  17. Delightful! Allie, the first book I read of yours was Bluegrass Christmas.

    Lovely! Just lovely, and it makes me smile to think about it now.

    Great post. Since I'm guilty of too many of those, where were you five years ago, honey? But glad you're here now and being quiet is way more responsible than being obnoxious and opinionated and over the top eager-to-please.

    Why didn't I learn that lesson sooner? (hush, Mary. Just hush)

    I'm also quietly evasive of loonies, even if, on occasion, the title has been self-applied. ;)

    Loving coffee, Helen!!!

  18. JULIE!!!



  19. Oh, Virginia!!

    I'm cringing and laughing in sympathy.

    I had that happen often... But you know what? If you fire up people enough to LOVE you and HATE you, you're at least eliciting emotion.

    Emotion sells books and congrats on your final in the FAB FIVE!!!!

    Ya' gotta love a good roller coaster ride, don't ya'???

  20. Hi Allie--I gotta say the don't engage the loonies comments had me laughing out loud! I'll pay attention to when people aren't engaging me! :)
    Great advice. It's all helpful. Not easy to do all the time, though.
    One aspect I know I have to work on is reacting immediately in any instance. I'm slowly learning to stop, think, then act.
    Thanks for this post.
    belindapeterson at tds dot net.
    Your book sounds great, too!

  21. My favorite tip was when the third person tells you that you're drunk, lie down.

    It's so true that every reader won't like our work but you can't take one person's word for it.

    All of these tips were good and fun!

    RRossZediker at yahoo dot com

  22. LOL -- I had a knee-jerk reaction to the "don't engage the loonies" rule. I mean really, if I LOVED an author's work and had eleven cats I'd probably think it was cool to dress them up as the heros and heroines of those books, take a picture and post it for all the world to see. I mean, really, don't you want your readers to lose themselves in your books? LOL.

    True Confession: I actually bought a mini cowboy hat and a bandana for my dog when Tina was doing her contest for the release of Rancher's Reunion. (She was looking for reader's pictures with her book). Unfortunately I didn't have a camera (still don't) so the photo op was a bust and I guess Simba has a new Halloween costume now. Oh dear, I think I've just confirmed my loonieness.

  23. Allie,

    I'm loving that you're here today, not only because I love historicals but also because my publishing credits are magazine articles on parenting. (My first non-parenting article is due out in June, unless it's been killed. I haven't been notified either way.)

    I like "Don't engage the loonies." I can be a little sarcastic at times. I recently received comments on a contest (not Genesis) that I was totally blown away by. I did write a thank you note, because I send one to every judge. However, in this recent contest, it's the only time I've ever asked a friend to review a thank you note before I sent it.


  24. Great post, Allie!

    The point about long memories is so true. My current occupation requires I attend conferences and meetings. Usually I can paste on the Barbie smile and meet and greet, but after awhile I feel my sarcastic evil twin bubbling forth and have to excuse myself for a time before she can get me in trouble.

    Like most of the commentors I like "Don't engage the loonies." I've had a caller at work asking to speak to the Secretary of Defense because the caller was a spy left out in the cold. And we used to have a man who'd call our former office manager just to sing various patriotic songs. Sometimes it's a chore to remain professional. :o)


  25. Oh my goodness I had such fun reading through these this morning! What an extraordinary community! You know, "don't engage the loonies" is really common advice, but somehow putting it in such vivid language--the kind that makes us laugh--makes it easy to remember when things to haywire right in front of us. That's the point of these; for them to show up in our thought process and stop us from our natural tendencies. Am I a loonie? Well, I suppose there are far too many people who might think so....

  26. Thank you Kav... Loonies unite! :)

    Wonderful advice and post - super! Yes on historicals, sez the history major!!! Oooh Vince, yes... Back another 100 to Jamestown, etc. We were just there in early December. Outstanding. I'd so forgotten that W'burg AND Yorktown are right there also. Family saga, coming up!

    My Dad has a great saying or three: My current fave is "If you don't ask, the answer is always no." (That's going in book 2 by the way!)

  27. My favorite is #5 - I always figure if I don't agree with one person, they're probably wrong. If two people rub me the wrong way, then a conspiracy is forming. Who are these people anyway? But when the third one steps up to the plate...well, we all know there's no such thing as coincidence...

    Personal updates:
    1) I received my Genesis scores, and although I didn't semi-final I'm very pleased with them. Starting to run through the comments with a fine-toothed comb today.
    2) We are moved, back on the internet and unpacking way too many boxes - but I'm so happy to be living with my dear husband again after six months apart!

    Please enter me in the drawing for the book! I love Alaska stories.


  28. i believe that you can only control yourself...great posting...thanks for the chance to read your latest novel, allie.

    kmkuka at yahoo dot com

  29. Hey, Allie!! I enjoyed seeing you last weekend in Kentucky! Thanks for being with us today.

    Great post! My favorite piece of advice you gave is that when your nice is used up, go back to your room. LOL!!!! I love that. :) And believe me, I've been there.

  30. Julie H.S. you are NOT one of the loonies!! LOL Believe me when I say you're one of the sane, wonderful ones! :)

  31. Virginia, sometimes it is best just to laugh it off. Especially when you finaled in the next contest. Congrats on that!!

  32. LOL, Kav! No, you're just an excited friend. No looniness there. :)

  33. Yay, Jan! So glad you're getting settled.

  34. I like the one by your Dad. If three people tell you they don't like something, I guess you had better listen. Makes sense!

    Love the cover of this book. I think Love Inspired does a great job with their covers. I love the Love Inspired books.


  35. ALLIE AND CHERYL -- What a FUN post to kick off a Tuesday!!! Welcome to Seekerville, Allie, and I immediately took a step back when I read you are six foot tall -- at 5'2", I'm a wee bit intimidated by tall people, so I am in awe of your height AND your humor!!

    Well, like Julie H.S. and Ruthy, the "loonies" comment is a litttttttle too close to home for me because gosh, I'd be sitting by myself at conference all the time, although, I suppose I could sit at the "loonie" table with Julie and Ruthy ... and maybe Mary would join us too! :)

    My fav is “The first twenty four hours don’t count.” Or maybe I should say it's my husband's!! Being an overly emotion CDQ, I tend to drop like a rock at bad news, be it a bad review or even a book or scene I don't think is any good. "Give it a day," my husband always says, but for some reason it feels SO bad, that I can't really believe it. Until the next day ... then I'm off and running once again while he's there shaking his head!

    KAV!!! LOL ... now we all HAVE to see Simba in a hat and bandana, girl, or you will labeled a "tease"!! Oh ... and YOU get to sit at our table too! :)



  36. I'm a spouter, big time. I need every one of the tips on this list. My favorite is #3 Don't engage the loonies.

    This hits at the heart of my need to be right and to be acknowledged as such. I learned this one the hard way--by engaging opinionated grandmas who want to tell me how to raise my kid. It took a couple of years (long, miserable years), but I finally learned that if I stubbornly "engage the loony," ultimately, I become the loony.

    The first 24 hours don't count is another good one. It's very true that everything looks different, often better, tomorrow.

    But I think my favorite line in the post is "Know when you've 'used up your nice' and send yourself to your room."

    So much of this is great for personal as well as professional relationships.

    Vince~ Love Inspired did one series like this in 2009-10. Their "After the Storm" series was a 6-book continuity that ran July-December 2009. Then in Jan-March '10 LIH did "After the Storm--The Founding Years" set in 1860.

    I really loved those books. All 9 are on my permanent keeper shelf. When I heard they were doing the same with the Alaskan Brides series, I was really excited.

    My usual source for LI books (local Wal-Mart) is very sporadic about carrying LIH, and I definitely want this series. I'd love to win this one.

    andeemarie95 at gmail dot com

    Allie~ I read, and very much enjoyed Queen Esther and the Second Graders of Doom (Steeple Hill) and Mission of Hope (LIH Aug 10).

  37. LOL! I Loved these! And the first one is my favorite, though they're all so good, it's hard to choose.

  38. Hi, Allie! Great post. : ) As I'm really not at a stage where any of those apply to me (no contests, publishing houses, agents, or writer's groups), it is something to keep in my pocket for the future. And, in a general way, the professional sayings apply to everyday life. I work in retail and there's a lot of gritting teeth and forced smiles there, but of course you never say anything aloud to them, or where other customers can you hear you. When there is time to vent, discretion is best.

    I think that they are all important—especially number 2 and number 5. You need number two to realize that it’s not over because of bad comments, contests scores, etc. And number five because if you can’t ever see your writing mistakes, you won’t make it far in the business.

    Thanks and please enter me for a chance to win!



  39. Julie definitely gets a spot at the loonie table! Honey, I'm savin' a chair.

    All yours.

    Can you imagine Missy running out of nice???

    Really???? Unfathomable.

    Allie, I love the idea of writing historical pre-quels to my contemps. Must think on that. Lovely After the Storm continuity, and the LIS continuity that Deb contributed to was great also.

    Nice to shake things up a bit.

    Hey, fresh cookies. Like warm. Chocolate-chip. Heath brickle bar bits inside.

    Toffee chocolate chip cookies. Help yourselves!

  40. Allie,
    This was FANTASTIC!!
    So funny!
    12 cats dressed up as heroes and heroines. LOL

    The last one was a wonderful way to state a hard truth. Jesus repeated things in the Bible for a reason - to get our attention.
    Just got back some contests critiques and I'm looking for comments that match so I can find the flaws and fix them :-)

    Simply LOVE 'the first 24 hours don't count'. Don' you just wish that was a universal rule everyone understood?

    Thanks so much for this pick-me-up today.


  41. Very interesting interview,keep it out!

    niastrong21 at gmail dot com

  42. Hey, Allie! I actually have two favorite comments: 2 & 5.

    I've learned that it really does help to let time pass and allow the emotions to become subdued so I can look at the comments more objectively. There's usually at least some truth to them.

    I just received my Genesis feedback this week. Even though I had three different opinions on a lot of things, the things that really stuck out they all agreed on. At the same time I received feedback from a friend who had never read chapter one before and she said the same things the judges said. That's when I knew it was time to not just change chapter one, but over-haul it.

    I'd love a chance to win your book. I love LI and LIH and LIS!

  43. Allie, the post was wonderful. The advice is sound not just for writers, but for anyone who deals with others regularly (guess that is all of us).
    I have all the LI books that you have written and am looking forward to reading the new one.

  44. 2 and 4 were the ones for me! I know that first 24 hour sydrome thing. I get a critique back, read it over, want to fuss and fume, go back the next day and the critter is now a GENIUS! Plus it does help a bit that I really like to work with edits.

    4 is important to me, because I want to make sure I leave a good impression and I have worked with people that remind that oh...publishing DOES have a long memory, because I am devoloping one!

    Thanks Allie, helpful stuff. :)

  45. Hi Ruth:

    My first Allie book was also “Bluegrass Christmas”. As I read the book, I kept looking for the Bluegrass music to appear. I thought it was about a Bluegrass band. It never occurred to me it was about Kentucky! To this day I’m still looking for a romance about a Bluegrass band. It was still a good Christmas story but I did feel like a kid who didn’t get the present he wanted under the Christmas tree. : (

    We've got to watch those titles for double meanings.

    BTW: I’d like to see you do a prequel that happens 100 to 200 years earlier. However, I think you need to set it up in a new contemporary romance first. In “Alaskan Brides” there is a buried treasure tied to the past. In the past they buried the treasure.

    I think a time capsule would be cool. Have a very odd assortment of items in the time capsule which has the 2012 people wondering. Perhaps you could go back to 1812 (there was also a war going on) and have all the odd items make perfect sense in the historical story. (I’ll pre-order it from Amazon right now. : ) )

    Irish/Italian Translations:

    Revenge is a dish best served cold.

    Don’t get mad, get even.

    Once is an accident.
    Twice is a coincidence.
    Three times is war.

    “Beware the Ides of March”.
    “Caesar, the soothsayer has threatened you.”
    “He is a dreamer; let us leave him: pass.”


    P.S. Was Mad Anthony Wayne from your area?

  46. Allie, thanks for being with us today!

    Helen, LOL about the head in the sand. LOLOL.

    As many have stated, this advice can be applied to other areas of our life...outside of writing. To any career, really.

    I'm enjoying these delightful, insightful comments.


  47. Kirsten, LOL on the sarcastic evil twin trying to bubble forth. LOLOLOL.


  48. Vince, that's so funny! I thought of grass...

    Kentucky bluegrass, precisely!

    You're right, to do it properly, once must plant clue portals to the past.

    Hmmm. Food for thought! And so much rich history here in NY. Amazing, really.

  49. Oh boy - do I EVER need every one of these - but the one that really hit me was the three drunk lie down thing.

    TOO often I "fix" my stuff as others suggest without thinking about the fact that maybe "I" am right (yeah - ME? RIGHT? Seriously! ;) ).

    Maybe now I can look at my Pike's Peak/Genesis results. Maybe ;)

    And enter me - ADORE that cover.

  50. I read Bluegrass Blessings by Allie and loved it. Would love to read this book, too!

  51. It's so much fun to read all these reactions. I think you're right; the advice really can be for any profession. For just plain getting through life. Anybody out there need a graduation day speaker? LOL

  52. Allie,

    Thanks for the great tips! They are 'spot on'!

    Your book looks like fun! Love the color of the cover.

    sbmason at sympatico dot ca

  53. Loves 2 Read Romance - LauraApril 19, 2011 at 1:43 PM

    I love the don't engage the loonies but I also like the second one about waiting 24 hours before answering or dealing with a negative comment or letter. I think that with today's instant access to everything and being able to post things anonymous people take that as free reign to say nasty things about whatever they just read and didn't agree with. We need to take the time to think out our responses and not act on pure emotion. I ended up doing that a few weeks ago. I didn't want to be mean on facebook so I called the person instead. Because I didn't wait I came off as being rude and hurt the other person's feelings which wasn't my intent. Thankfully we have moved past it but I definitely regretted my response the next day.


  54. Hi Allie,
    Are you knitting? Love your scarves!

    Also loved your comment about the reader who has to point out typos to the author...

    Ah, yes, reminds me of a friend of mine. Luckily, she wasn't after me but after an author whose book we read in book club. My dear friend wrote the author and was very proud of herself for letting the author know the mistakes she had found.

    Just what the author didn't want to hear!

    I never told my friend how the author probably felt, but....well, she's still my friend.

    Does that make me professional?


  55. I like all of them, but in particular the twenty four hour rule. It is one I try to live by, not just for writing but just about anything. My husband will try to get my reaction for something right away and I just growl at him...give me time to process it and react in a way that is appropriate rather then knee jerk.

  56. All excellent points. I phrase your brother's advice a bit differently=I never try to reason with unreasonable people!

  57. I really loved all of these! I could apply each one to non-writing situations, too. I especially like the one about not getting defensive. That's so easy to do! All of these point back to having an attitude of humility and teachability, which are traits that we need to exercise across the board. I would LOVE to be put in the book drawing. I haven't read this book yet and it sounds great! Thanks! Stacey


  58. I think I'm good on this one.

    “If you’re small enough to need it, I’m big enough to give it to you.”

    Except when it comes to me, I think of it as being pathalogically non-confrontational.

  59. Thanks for sharing that Allie and Cheryl!

    It reminded me so much of that book that came out years ago called "All I Really Need To Know I Learned in Kindergarten" by Robert Fulghum.

  60. I founad all the comments on target.

    One that most people haven't mentioned is that publishing has a very, very long memory.

    I suppose that's a two-edged sword and one worth remembering.

    I'd be happy to win the book.

    BTW, Allie, I love the Spring Fling conference, which I think your home RWA chapter puts on.

  61. I liked your pointer from your mom..."If you're small enough to need it, I'm big enough to give it to you."...reminds me of what my mom said about finding 'husband-to-be' material. She said "Watch the man you're dating to see how he reacts when he gets a flat tire. Is he raving mad...or does he just take it in stride and fix it?" That was sound advice for me:)
    Thanks for the tip about "The first 24 hours don't count"...it's taken me a week to digest some comments of my ms...a lot was very helpful, some, not so much:) Live and learn and 'take it in stride and fix it.'
    Thanks so much for the helpful advice:)
    I would love to entered for a chance to win your newest book...love the cover by the way!

    lornafaith at gmail dot com

  62. Missy, you are so sweet but you know I am already designing a "Romance Loonie" tee-shirt for Ruthy, Julie and the rest. We can make you an honorary loonie!

    Peace, Julie

  63. GREAT post, Allie (another keeper from Seekerville!). I liked all of your tips, but one that I wrote down after reading this was: The ability to be teachable is golden in our industry. ~ Ooohhh - - what wise words!! May I ALWAYS remain teachable, because there's always something to learn. ~ Like some of the others, I laughed at the "loonies" section--especially the part about someone dressing up her 11 cats like an author's heroes/heroines! (Note to self: DON'T dress up my 7 cats, LOL) ~ The cover of your book is gorgeous! Thank you again for sharing this wonderful advice today. Blessings from Georgia, Patti Jo :) p.s. Waving at Cheryl - - are "squirrel people" considered loonies, Cheryl? I hope not, LOL. ;)

  64. Julie, loving the t-shirt ALREADY!!!!

    Do I get a hat, too? That would rock, honey!

  65. Ruth, Fab Five sent me a banner I'm supposed to put on my website... except I don't have one and I really should have one, per a Seekerville article a couple of months ago on marketing. So, it's a great nudge to actually setting up a little 'blogspot'. :)
    Still haven't had the guts to go over the really low score without closing one eye... ha!

  66. Love the bits of wisdom! As a former drinker, my favourite has to be - lie down after the 3rd person says you're drunk. Great advice both for the drinking and the writing.

    Gorgeous cover - looks like Yukon Fireweed. Throw my name in the hat, would you, Cheryl?

    Great post!

    anitamaedraper (at) hotmail (dot) com

  67. Hey, do I get a Loonie t-shirt? Sign me up!

  68. Great post. And advice that everyone can use.
    And yes, that is a beautiful cover!
    Sounds like a great book!
    I'm not that good at giving advice but I'm good at repeating it! So I won't bore ya'll with my repeated advice.

    Please enter me.

    crazi.swans at gmail dot com

  69. I googled "loonie for love" and came up with Pepe Le Pew!

    Ah, me thinks I could easily come up with a hat for Ruthy as well.

    Allie, you get the whole combo pack since you started it all.

    Peace, Julie

  70. Great advice, Allie! It's so important to know when to call it a night and go to bed.

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  72. 24 hours, I need to wait 24 hours before responding.

    I'm getting better at it. I've even waited the required time and not had the response I wanted from the person I was engaging, but I was glad I waited, for I knew I didn't respond emotionally.

    I wish I'd learned the "don't engage the loonies" one early in life, it would have saved me a lot of grief.

  73. Vince, I started a bluegrass music romance years ago, as a film script. It was the one of the highest rated honorable mentions I ever received from the Writer's Digest writing competitions! Maybe I ought to dig it out and turn it into a book! :)

  74. Hi Hope:

    Bluegrass festivals are held all over the country. It’s huge. So, so many fans. It’s like a hidden NASCAR. It’s very family oriented. Lots of Christian music. Go for it!

    BTW: What instrument did your heroine play? I favor the mandolin. My wife even bought me one. She wants me to get into a Bluegrass band. She is amazing.


  75. Loved the post especially the comment "When the third person tells you you're drunk, lie down." I think we sometimes keep searching out positive comments & tend to continue beyond the third with hopes of getting a positive reponse. Good advice.

    Smiles & Blessings,
    Cindy W.


  76. Thanks Allie! I'm soaking up the wisdom!

  77. LOVE this: "Know when you’ve “used up your nice."

    What wonderful advice. Thank you!

  78. Loved your mom's advice. I'll be using it to remind myself not to be small.

    "Be kind" is a long-standing favorite.


  79. I absolutely loved this blog post!! Thanks to Allie for an entertaining read! I loved the "Don't engage the Loonies" I think i actually fit in there somewhere..! And I loved even more the Five professional sayings! Awesome blog. Thank you so much!


  80. I like the first tip the best. I can't tell you how many times I am asked to do things that I would rather not do. Or things I do not have to do. I have learned to usually be gracious--I will admit not always. It is something to keep in mind. After all, Jesus did say to do unto others as you would have them do to you.