Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Seekerville Welcomes Publishers Weekly's Barbara Vey!

Seekerville welcomes Barbara Vey,
contributing Editor of the Publishers Weekly 
Beyond Her Book blog and recipient of the 
2012 RWA Vivian Stephens Industry Award.
Debby Giusti here!  I'm thrilled to welcome Barbara Vey, contributing editor of Publishers Weekly Beyond Her Book blog, to Seekerville today. Many of you had the pleasure of meeting Barbara at this year's American Christian Fiction Writers Conference and, no doubt, agree with me that to know Barbara is to love her.  A friend to both readers and writers alike, Barbara features reviews and industry news on her Beyond Her Book blog. Visit her site to see what she's reading or which conference she's attending or where she's headed to next. In addition, Barbara shares information on publishing, marketing, social communities and a host of other topics that involve spreading the news about the books we love to read and write.
Now, please help me welcome Barbara Vey....

Barbara Vey chats with Love Inspired Senior Editors
Tina James (L) and Melissa Endlich (R) at ACFW 2012.

Barbara, your Beyond Her Book blog celebrated its FIFTH birthday in March. Congratulations! Can you tell us how you first got involved with Publishers Weekly and how your blog came to be?

Actually, I started with PW completely by accident. I was on an
Authors At Sea cruise and met Karen Holt, who was the deputy
editor at Publishers Weekly. I didn’t know that was a magazine. I
thought it was a publisher, so I proceeded to tell her everything I
thought was wrong with publishing from a reader’s point of view.
She wrote the article and then called me a few months later to offer
me a position of contributing editor and write a blog on women’s
fiction. That’s how Beyond Her Book was born.

Such an amazing story! I’m sure there were hurdles you had to jump in the beginning. What was the most difficult aspect of drawing people to your blog?
What was the easiest part about getting started?

When I first started, I didn’t think anyone would read my blog. No
one had ever heard of me and why should they care what I think?
So I begged my family, friends and people at the library to read it
so it looked like someone was visiting the site. After I started
going to conferences and meeting authors, editors, publishers,
readers and agents, they all got to know me and started reading
what I had to say.
Barbara joins the Love Inspired authors for
dinner in Grapevine during ACFW 2012.

It was great seeing you at the American Fiction Writers Conference
in Dallas last month where so many inspirational authors got to
know you—of course, they think you’re wonderful. Everyone in
Seekerville agrees, and we all hope you’ll join us at ACFW again
next year. What was your overall impression of the conference?
Anything you could suggest to make ACFW even better? Did
anything surprise you concerning the conference?

I really enjoyed myself at the ACFW Conference. I wasn’t sure
what to expect and I didn’t know a lot of the authors, so I wanted
to keep an open mind. Everyone was extremely friendly and
helpful. It was a full program and I could tell that the writers who
attended were passionate about their work.

Overall, it was a very well run conference. I wish they would have
spaced out the publisher’s spotlights, so I could have visited
several instead of just one. The other big missed opportunity was
not having a book signing. There were over 700 attendees with
many successful authors that I’m sure readers would have been
over the moon to meet and buy their books.

No big surprises. I’ve found that most writer conferences have one
thing in common and that’s to get the author’s book published.
Everything else is just whatever is unique to that genre.
The Awards Banquet, ACFW 2012
(L to R) Barbara Vey, Janet Dean, Pepper Basham,
Myra Johnson and Laurie Kingery

Your schedule is always so busy. How do you find time to attend
all the writer and reader events, review books and keep up with
your wonderful blog? Any time management tips you’d like to
pass on to the rest of us?

If I didn’t travel and meet so many interesting people, I wouldn’t
have much to write about. I found that interacting with different
groups gives me a variety of experiences to draw from. It’s always
great to learn new things and I get excited when someone turns me
on to a new author or even one who’s been around a while that I
haven’t had a chance to read yet.

As for time management, I have to admit that I’m not very good at
it. I’m easily distracted and it kills me to put down a good book to
have to get other things done. I actually get up about 4 a.m. to
write my blog because I think best early in the morning. Things
just seem clearer to me. Everyone has to find the times that work
best in their busy life.

Other than not having enough hours in the day, what's the biggest challenge facing writers today? You talk to readers around the country. What are they telling you that writers need to hear?

I think the biggest challenge for writers is something they’ve heard
for years...write a good book. One of the biggest complaints I’m
hearing is that there is so much garbage out in e-books because
authors are self publishing without having their books
professionally edited.

Slapping a book together and putting it out there for 99¢ can hurt a
writer’s career in the long run. Readers will tell everyone they
meet about the best and worst books they’ve read and you don’t
want yours to be the worst.

Self publishing can be a good thing, but do your homework. Have
people read it, get it professionally edited and treat yourself to a
professional cover. But first, write a good story. The readers will
advertise it for you.

Last year, you hosted a fantastic Readers’ Appreciation Luncheon,
which I had the pleasure of attending. You made sure everyone
had a dream-come-true type of day with lots of book giveaways, a
yummy lunch and great raffle baskets and other prizes. This year’s
event sounds even bigger and better. Would you tell us the when,
where and how and share some of what you have planned?

The Second Annual Barbara Vey Reader Appreciation Luncheon
will be held in Milwaukee, Wisconsin on April 27, 2013 at the
Crowne Plaza Hotel. We sold out last year with 250 readers and
moved to a bigger venue. James Rollins will be the keynote
speaker and 40 other authors will be attending.
There will be a meet and greet, door prizes, raffles (with all
proceeds to the local library), lunch and a book signing.
As a special treat, on Friday night we will be having a Q&A
session with authors and readers in the hotel auditorium. This is a
free event. Afterwards, we will be having a social hour to chat
with the authors.

The luncheon sounds wonderful! Thanks for sharing the details.  To learn more  click HERE.

A lot of folks visiting Seekerville today would like information about your blog, Barbara. How can authors submit books to you for review? Do you accept
e-books as well as print? Are you looking for avid readers who
would like to review books?

Authors can send books to: PO Box 438, South Milwaukee, WI
53172. There is no guarantee your book will be picked to be in the blog.
Readers choose the books they want to read and write about.
While we have done e-books, at this time I don’t have many
readers who own e-readers. Feel free to email me at and I will pass on your e-book request to
the readers.

I can always use readers and they don’t have to write full reviews.
We mostly spotlight books and the readers just write a paragraph to
explain what the book is about and then a couple of sentences on
why they liked it.
Debby and Janet with Barbara, RWA 2011

Great information. Thanks. Now two more questions. What are the best marketing tools writers should be using? What's an easy way for readers to connect with writers?

I see readers connecting with writers online at Goodreads,
Facebook and Twitter. In real life, Readers Luncheons are
becoming more accessible and booksignings. Readers should go to
their favorite author’s web sites to see where they will be in
(L to R) Tina Radcliffe, Debby Giusti, Morgan Doremus from
Romantic Times Book Reviews, Barbara Vey and
Janet Dean. Thanks, Barbara and Morgan, for holding
a great mini-workshop at ACFW 2012.  

If you could look five years into the future, where do you see
yourself? Any changes to your blog or new opportunities for
writers and readers that you hope to have in place by then?

I will soon be launching my own website that will be a meeting
place for readers and authors. My goal has always been to bring
the two together. I plan to do blogs, videos, podcasts, have guests
visit and give lots of stuff away. Mostly we’ll be talking about
books. What we love and why.

Let us know when your website goes live, Barbara. What about your travel plans? You’ll be at the Southern Magic Readers Luncheon in
Birmingham, Alabama, on November 3. What other events are on
your schedule for the upcoming months?

I will be in New Orleans December 12-14th attending Heather
Graham’s Writers for New Orleans Conference.

I'm sure you'll be blogging about Heather's conference and the fun you'll have in the Big Easy.  Thanks, Barbara, for answering my questions. Seekervillagers will have more to talk about so grab a cup of coffee and let's chat.

Everyone who leaves a comment will be entered in today's drawings.  Lots of great prizes... 

In honor of Barbara's visit, Tina Radcliffe is giving away four $5 Starbucks giftcards so the winners can buy Barbara's favorite beverage, a Hazelnut Latte, or the beverage of their choice. Thanks, Tina.

Mary Connealy is giving away her soon-to-be-released e-book, Candlelight Christmas, featuring Mary's novella, The Christmas Candle and The Outlaw's Gift by Linda Goodnight. Can't wait to read both stories! Thanks, Mary.

Janet Dean is giving two of her books, winner's choice. Nice, Janet. Thanks!

Missy Tippens is donating A House Full of Hope. Thanks, Missy!

Glynna Kaye’s giving a copy of Second Chance Courtship and At Home In His Heart.  Great. Thanks, Glynna.

Ruth Logan Herne will give away a copy of Yuletide Hearts and His Mistletoe Family. Waving to Ruthy in Upstate. Thanks and hugs.

Pam Hillman is giving away two e-books of Stealing Jake. Love that story. Thanks, Pam!

Myra Johnson's donation is a Kindle version of One Imperfect Christmas. Love it! Thanks, Myra.

Julie Lessman is donating an e-copy of A Light in the Window! Thank you, Julie!

Audra Harders is adding five bags of chocolate candy to the mix! Yummy! I bet everyone wants to win the chocolate. Thanks, Audra!

More Starbucks! Debby Giusti is giving away five $5 Starbucks' giftcards. Each winner will also receive the choice of one of her books.

All those who comment will be entered in this week's big giveaway for a Kindle Paperwhite.  In addition, you'll be entered in the BIG MONTH-LONG DRAWING for a LAPTOP.

The breakfast bar is open: sausage and egg casserole, bacon, biscuits, fresh fruit and grits. Enjoy!


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Renee (SteelerGirl83) said...

Hi Barbara! If there's one person who knows how to party like you Seekerville ladies it's her! I SO wish I could go to the Reader luncheon and meet you and all the other fun people but sadly I cannot. :-(

Helen Gray said...

And the coffee pot is all set on that breakfast bar. Come hither and drink.

Thanks for being with us, Barbara.
I enjoyed meeting you at conference.

Come again any time. :)


Carla Olson Gade said...

Wow, this was a fantastic post. I enjoyed getting to know Barbara through this interesting interview. What insights she has!

Sandra Leesmith said...

Hi Barbara, Great to have you with us again on Seekerville.

I enjoyed meeting you again in Anaheim at the RWA conference. I love that you dedicate yourself to bringing readers together with authors. That is so cool.

A question. You gave an address to send books for review. With so many reviewers do you want more than one copy of a book?

Thanks again for blogging with us today.

Christina said...

Welcome, Barbara. I've written reviews for a few e-zines. The first one wanted nothing but positive reviews. Sometimes I found it hard to say anything nice when their were huge issues with the book. The other wanted pure honesty, which was hard too, because I never wanted to crush an author but encourage, yet some books were hard to give a 4/10 rating.

Do you find some reviews difficult to write?

What is the most memorable book you've ever reviewed and what was it about that book that stuck out?

Natalie Monk said...

Hi Barbara! I enjoyed reading about how you started your blog and learned about Publisher's Weekly. And all of this because you decided to go on the Authors At Sea cruise! I always knew vacations were important. ;)

Have you always wanted to work with publishing? Did your love of books start as a child or come later?

Mary Connealy said...


Barbara, watch for my resume in the mail so I can get a job with you and go on the bus.

Melissa Jagears said...

I'm with Christina, what is your philosophy on writing difficult reviews? If you avoid them, why, and if you don't, why do you review them as you do.

I actually haven't been to your blog to know what kind of reviews you do, but I have to go to bed! I'll try later.

Anonymous said...

Mary, all the talk about the bus has me thinking of a song. The wheels on the bus go round and round. Everybody sing.

Barbara, thanks so much for sharing. I will certainly check out your sight. I'm I need to hit for conferences. Especially the cruises. You din't need action news reporters?

You mist have a massive slush pile

If a book is chosen, How long is the turn around for your reviews.

Blessings Tina P.

Anonymous said...

Egads, I know I typed better than that mess on my earlier comment.

I'm interested in your take reviews as well.
Tina P.

Mary Cline said...

Hi everybody. I've been busy and just lurking lately but thanks for being here and for all the excellent posts for the great birthday party!
Bringing readers and writers together. What a perfect job! Thanks Barbara.

Debra E. Marvin said...

The food bar sounds just perfect today because Barbara's visit is feeling like a conference workshop!

Thank you for visiting, Barbara! We have heard so many nice things about you, so it's great for those of us who did not make it to Dallas this year.

Your enthusiasm to help readers and writers come together is wonderful!

Seekers, your month-long party is not suffering from a flabby middle. Wow! what a great week and so many prizes! THanks Debby! (I'm loving the biscuits and grits!)

Annie Rains said...

Thanks so much for sharing with us! I know you spend alot of time going to conferences, working your blog and reading books to review, but have you ever wanted to be an author?

Happy Wednesday everyone!

Debby Giusti said...

Good morning, everyone!

Hi Renee! You always enjoy Barbara's Birthday Bash. So do I. Seekerville will be hosting a day again in 2013 so be sure to stop by and join in the fun this coming March!

Debby Giusti said...

Thanks for the coffee, Helen. I'm enjoying my first cup. Tastes great and just what I need this morning.

Debby Giusti said...

So glad you could stop by today. Be sure to check out Barbara's blog, Beyond Her Book,

Debby Giusti said...

Hi Sandra,
Thanks for leaving a question for Barbara. I'm sure she'll stop by soon to chat with everyone.

Debby Giusti said...

Hi Christina,

More great questions for Barbara. I've heard Barbara mention that she posts positive reviews on her site. So if a reviewer doesn't like a book, they don't submit a least, I believe that's how it works.

Bad reviews often crush authors, as you can imagine. We all know that we like certain genres or types of books more than others so there's no need to write something negative, IMHO. A book we don't enjoy might be a 4-star in someone else's opinion.

The same holds true for editors. They each have likes and dislikes so rejection doesn't mean the story will never sell. It may mean the story needs more work, but it also could mean the writer needs to find another editor who will find merit in that particular submission.

Debby Giusti said...

Natalie wrote:
"I always knew vacations were important."

You've got me smiling this morning.

Perhaps we need to organize a Seekerville Cruise. Now wouldn't that be fun!

Debby Giusti said...

Laughing, Mary! As I recall, you had plans that evening! You must have noticed Janet and Missy in the picture with Barbara. We all had fun!

And the bridge didn't blow up with us on it, which was a very good thing! :)

Debby Giusti said...

When you get up this morning, hit Barbara's blog. Then come back to Seekerville!

Debby Giusti said...

Tina P,

Barbara showed me a picture of her office. It's stacked with books. A reader's dream come true. And writers are readers, so all of us would love taking a trip to Barbara's house.

A Seekerville road trip, perhaps?

authorkathyeberly said...

I really enjoyed this post and the interview with Barbara! Now I know what I really missed this year at conference!

Debby Giusti said...

Hi Mary Cline,
Glad you came out of lurker mode!

You're so right! Barbara's job sound perfect, doesn't it? But she works hard and travels almost every weekend to conferences and reader and writer events, which can be a demanding schedule, I'm sure.

We were all thrilled that she was at ACFW this year.

Julie Steele said...

Barbara, I discovered your through Seekerville about a year ago. Has anything changed in the writing world in the past year or in what you are doing? You are one busy woman for sure.

Debby, thanks for alerting us to all the wonderful prizes today. Again, Seekerville knows how to party!

Peace, Julie

Debby Giusti said...

Hi Deb, so good to see you this morning! More coffee? I'm headed to the breakfast bar for a second cup.

"No sagging middles in Seekerville!"

Love it, Deb!

Debby Giusti said...

Hi Annie,

Barbara published a story in one of the Chicken Soup books and had her first signing at her Readers Appreciation Luncheon in March!

Congrats, Barbara!

Jackie said...

Hi Barbara,

What a great vision you have. Thanks for sharing, and now I'm hopping over to check out your blog.

Jackie L.

Debby Giusti said...

Kathy, you missed a great conference. Fingers crossed for next year! We're hoping Barbara will join us once again.


Debby Giusti said...

Hi Julie,

Didn't I just see you on Facebook? :)

You're right. Lots of great prizes today...and I need to add another one to the list.

Good luck, everyone! Be sure to check Sunday's Seekerville Weekend Edition to see if you won last week.

Debby Giusti said...

Check out Barbara's blog and then come back for more Seekerville fun! Pretty please?

C.E. Hart said...

I LOVE this post! What an interesting interview. Bringing writers and readers together is a win win situation.

I, like Barbara, have a little trouble with time management - and feel I might work better if I get up super early and dedicate that time to my writing (like she does.) During other times of the day there are so many distractions. *sigh*

Wow--what a breakfast bar! I'm starving. ;)

And Tina P, thanks for putting that song in my head. No, really. Thanks. So. Much.
*Puts fingers in ears and recites "La la la la la" obnoxiously loud*

Debby Giusti said...

Hi C.E.!

Time management is my problem, as well. Early morning, as Barbara mentioned, is the perfect time to write. Life seems to hit by 8 AM and can keep demanding my attention until late in the day. :)

Rose said...

Hi Barbara,

It was great to meet and visit with you at the ACFW conference.

I remember when your blog started! And I think it's great the way it's taken off. Your mission to get writer's and reader's together is awesome.

Barbara Vey said...

Hi Renee, I'm sorry you won't make the luncheon too. It's very dear to my heart, but hopefully you can attend some day.

Barbara Vey said...

Hi Helen, thanks for the coffee and I always enjoy hanging with Seekerville!

Barbara Vey said...

Hi Carla, thanks for stopping by and I hope we get to meet in person someday.

Barbara Vey said...

Hi Sandra, no, just one book is fine. Anaheim was a great time!

Barbara Vey said...

Christina, I don't really review the book, but instead talk about what I enjoyed about it. If I don't like a book, I don't write about it because it's just my view and someone else may love it.

My favorite book is Bet Me by Jennifer Crusie. I love that the main character is a size 16 and the hero is dyslexic. They aren't perfect, but you can't help but fall in love with the whole crazy cast of characters.

Barbara Vey said...

Natalie, I never wanted to work in publishing. I didn't even know what jobs were in publishing. I worked for an insurance company as an underwriter for 25 years.

Before the cruise, I had never written anything. I kept telling PW no when they asked me to write a blog. But my son talked me into trying it for 3 months and I'm still there1

Bridgett Henson said...

Hi Barbara,

You have wonder insight into the publishing industry. I've recently started an indie company to publish my unique genre, Pentecostal Fiction. My first book will release in November. Ebook and print. I have awesome editors and have chosen a professional book cover.
With only 24 hours in a day. Do you think it is more beneficial to interact (blog post,facebook, etc.)with readers or writers?

I love my writer friends, but the ultimate goal is to reach the reader. Right?

Or will knowing more writers indirectly lead my work to more readers?

I think I've confused myself this morning. I'm grabbing a cup of Helen's coffee. (yum!) and I'm off to visit your blog.

Barbara Vey said...

Mary, I'll share my bus seat with you next time. :)

Debby Giusti said...

Hi Rose,

So good spending time with you at ACFW!

Barbara Vey said...

Melissa, I don't do reviews on my blog. You'll see that once you visit it. My readers are everyday people, not reviewers. They write a paragraph telling what the book was about and then they write a couple of sentences on why they enjoyed it.

If they don't like a book, it gets passed to another reader who may enjoy it. Not everyone likes the same book, so why should it get panned because one reader doesn't like it? I personally hated The Lovely Bones, but it was on the best seller list forever.

Barbara Vey said...

Tina P., I don't give my readers a date that they have to finish the book because they don't get paid for it and they have their own lives.

Like I've mentioned, I'm not primarily a review site. My blog is about books and authors and publishing and whatever else I may think is interesting to my readers.

Barbara Vey said...

Mary, thanks for stopping by and Seekerville always throws great parties.

Debby Giusti said...

Hi Barbara!

Jennifer Crusie is a hoot! Plus, she teaches at Ohio State, my Alma Mater. At least, she used to teach there. Not sure what she's doing now, other than writing.

Barbara Vey said...

Debra, I hope you make that conference someday, it is quite amazing.

Debby Giusti said...

You're a busy woman. Good luck with your indie company.

Barbara Vey said...

Annie, I have never wanted to be an author. I leave the fiction writing to the experts for me to enjoy.

But with that said, I did have a story published in Chicken Soup for the Soul: Family Caregivers about my mom and Sheila English and I wrote a book for authors called Book Marketing, Book Trailers and Author Etiquette in a Nutshell.

It was a learning experience, but I'm much rather read books.

Debby Giusti said...

Barbara, I didn't know about your Marketing book. Where can we get it?

Barbara Vey said...

Authorkathyeberly, You did miss a great conference. Hope you can make the next one.

Bridgett Henson said...

Debby, Thank you. And yes, I need about twenty more hours in a day. :)

Barbara, I visited your blog. Do you accept Christian fiction?

Barbara Vey said...

Julie, the biggest change I've seen is in self publishing. There's so much out there, good and bad.

If anyone decides to self publish, my suggestion is to hire a copy editor to go through your story. You want to put out the best product with your name on it that you can.

Jackie Rod said...

Thanks for the Q & A session, ladies. This was such an informative post. We always want to know more about Barbara and her pursuits. BTW, I will see you in Shreveport in March and in Atlanta at RWA, Barbara. :)

Barbara Vey said...

Jackie, thanks for stopping by and for taking the time to check out my blog. I hope you enjoy it!

Barbara Vey said...

C.E. Hart, we need to start a support group for people like us who are easily distracted. :)

Janet Dean said...

Hi Barbara! I was blessed to get to know you better at the ACFW conference. I admire your energy and your zeal for romance. We authors appreciate your blog and all you do to bring readers and writers together.

I brought loaves of zuchini, blueberry and pumpkin bread warm from the oven and yummy with a cup of coffee.


Anonymous said...

What a great article! And I'm a big fan of Jennifer Crusie as well. Thanks for a look at things from the reader's pov. I love what you mentioned--that above all, *good story* is key. It can be easy to lose sight of that sometimes, but it really does come down to giving the reader an engaging story.

Grabbing a slice of sausage & egg casserole on my way out...Yum!


Barbara Vey said...

Hi Rose, nice meeting you at the conference. I'm glad you've stuck with me over the years. Thanks.

Barbara Vey said...

Hi Bridgett, I think it's always better to try to connect with readers. They are your consumers and the ones who will go out and talk about your book to others.

Writers are great to share ideas with and get inspired, but writing a good book and getting readers to read it should be every authors goal.

Marianne said...

Hi, Barbara...thanks for being on Seekerville today...i'm heading to your blog as soon as i finish this! Thanks to all the great authors that are so graciously giving gifts. Its so fun to have birthdays and anniversaries. Have a great week, everyone


Barbara Vey said...

Hi Debby, thanks for inviting me to your party today.

My book is an e-book available everywhere e-books are sold for $1.99.

It was fun to write with Sheila and I hope it helps authors with those questions they always wanted answered.

Barbara Vey said...

Jackie Rod, I look forward to seeing you next year. It will be here before we know it.

Barbara Vey said...

Hi Janet, it was great talking to you at the conference and I hope we get a chance to do it again. :)

Barbara Vey said...

Hi Emily Reynolds, nice to meet another Jennifer Crusie fan. I love talking about her books. I often reread them.

KC Frantzen and May the K9 Spy said...

Welcome Barbara, and thanks Debby for inviting her.

Congratulations on YOUR 5th year and maaaaannnyyyy moooorrreee!!!!

Great info here. Loved the photos too. Hopefully I'll get to one of the ACFW conferences. Would love to "hang out" though I'm a MG author.

Barbara Vey said...

Hi Marianne, thanks for stopping by and good luck on winning one of the terrific prizes offered.

Barbara Vey said...

KC, thanks for stopping by and I hope you do get to a conference one day soon. I know you'll love it.

Jessica Nelson said...

Wow, I LOVE this interview. It's so nice to "meet" you, Barbara! I've heard your name spoken with a ton of respect but wasn't completely sure what you do, etc, so this was eye opening. What a great job you have too!!
Thanks for a fabulous post, ladies. ;-)

Piper Huguley said...

Great party with lots of prizes, Seekerville! A great way to start a Wednesday morning!

Barbara, thank you for this view from the inside. Readers and writers are getting closer than ever, and you are playing a part in that. Thank you!

Wasn't someone supposed to give the recipe for the sausage and egg casserole over at the Yankee-Belle? Is it like a quiche? I will just take a slice on my way out to figure out the ingredients!


Julie Lessman said...


I just LOVE the story about how you got started!! It reminds me of the old Hollywood stories of starlets being discovered at Schwab's soda fountain!!

Well, I for one, am THRILLED that you met Karen Holt on that cruise because you have certainly enriched the reviewer landscape considerably, beautifully promoting one of the things we all love most -- great BOOKS!!

A tip of the hat to Debby for bringing you here today -- GREAT interview, Deb!!


Debby Giusti said...

Janet, thanks for the goodies! Perfect for this fall day.

Debby Giusti said...

Hi Emily! Thanks for being with us today.

Debby Giusti said...

Marianne, good luck with the drawings. Lots of giveaways today in honor of Barbara's visit!

Debby Giusti said...

KC, I'm sure May would have fun at ACFW too! :)

Melanie Dickerson said...

Hi, Barbara! I met you at the Heart of Dixie Readers Luncheon, I think it was a year and a half ago! And then I saw you at ACFW and said hi again. I'm so glad you enjoyed the ACFW conference, and you gave great suggestions, I think, about spreading out the publisher spotlights and doing a book signing. I definitely agree. :-)

Great to have you here in Seekerville! Please keep up the good work! I so appreciate what you're doing for authors and readers! God bless you!

Debby Giusti said...

Hi Jessica! So glad you could "meet" Barbara today. She's great! So are you.


Debby Giusti said...

Hi Piper,
I'll see about that recipe. Maybe Ruthy or Missy can help!

Jeanne T said...

Barbara, I'm so sorry I missed meeting you at ACFW! It's fun to read you here though, and to see the pictures. I loved hearing your story of how you started with PW. You are an interesting lady!

I'm hoping to stop by later and read everyone's comments. What a fun day is in store here today!

Barbara Vey said...

Hi Jessica, thanks for stopping by and yes, I love my job!

Barbara Vey said...

Hi Piper, glad you could join the party. Readers and writers make a great team. :)

Barbara Vey said...

Julie, Debby made it easy for me to sound good. :)

Love visiting Seekerville!

Deborah Dunson said...

I really love this article and I will be visiting her blog.

Susan Anne Mason said...

Hi Barbara,

Great interview! Thanks for doing so much to promote authors in such a positive way! Great job!

Home sick today - but I got Julie's book in the mail yesterday!!! And Tina's! Decisions, decisions!

sbmason at sympatico dot ca

Barbara Vey said...

Melanie, I really enjoyed the Heart of Dixie Luncheon and next month I'm off to Southern Magic Luncheon. Great examples of reader/author get togethers.

Barbara Vey said...

Hi Jeanne T., I'm sorry I missed you too, but be sure to introduce yourself at the next conference.

Barbara Vey said...

Deborah Dunson, thanks for stopping by today and I hope you enjoy my blog.

Barbara Vey said...

Susan Anne Mason, glad you're enjoying the party. This is a wonderful place to make friends.

Barbara Vey said...

To All Seekerville:

I just posted my PW Happy Birthday blog to you. Stop by and pat yourselves on the back if you want.

I'm also putting it on Facebook and Twitter, so feel free to share.

Jan Drexler said...

Hi Barbara,

I enjoyed meeting you at ACFW, and seeing how much fun you all were having on the LI bus makes me sorry I had to decline the invitation! (but what else can you do when you have conflicts?)

I love the story of how you got started with PW and your blog, but I can't imagine anyone else in that roll. You're the ultimate gracious hostess to your readers and writers.

Have a wonderful day in Seekerville! I'm off to Beyond Her Book...

Debby Giusti said...

Julie, your mention of the discovery of a starlet makes me realize Barbara's story could be a book.

The Barbara Vey Story. I like it!

Barbara Vey said...

Jan, I'm sorry you missed the LI dinner. It was so much fun. Maybe next time. :)

Debby Giusti said...

Hi Melanie,

Wish I could have been at that Heart of Dixie Readers Luncheon with you and Barbara. Fingers crossed for next year.

Readers Luncheons are great ways to mix and mingle with readers and talk about books! I always come away energized and ready to write the next story.

Lindi Peterson and I will be at the Southern Magic Readers Luncheon in Birmingham on Nov 3rd. Barbara will be there as well. Anyone else planning to attend?

Tina Radcliffe said...

Those are the bestest photos!!!

Welcome back BARBARA!!!!!!!!

Debby Giusti said...

Hi Jeanne T!
Be sure to check the winners' list for last week. :)

Debby Giusti said...

Hi Deborah!

You spell your first name the same way I do. At least you have an easy last name. :)

Giusti always throws folks. (Remember JUICE and TEA when you think of me.) :)

So good to see you in Seekerville. Get some breakfast while you're here.

Debby Giusti said...

You're homesick, Sue? What's going on?

Debby Giusti said...

Barbara, thanks for posting about us. I'm heading to your blog...

Barbara Vey said...

Hi Tina, loved our chat at conference.

Anonymous said...

I need to try that Hazelnut Latte. Lovely post, Barbara. Thank you.
Amy Campbell

Sandra Leesmith said...

Hi Barbara, Isn't it funny how life throws us those curves. You weren't even interested in the publishing world. I"m so glad your son talked you into it. You're great at it. smile

Debby Giusti said...

I'm back from visiting Barbara's Beyond Her Book blog.

Thanks for the birthday wishes, Barbara, and for tweeting and leaving a comment on Facebook about today! I hope lots of your blog friends become Seekerville friends, as well.

(Click on the last line in Barbara's post to leave a comment.)

Debby Giusti said...

Jan Drexler wrote this about Barbara:

"You're the ultimate gracious hostess to your readers and writers."

So true, Jan!

Barbara Vey said...

You're welcome Amy. Thanks for stopping by.

Debby Giusti said...

Hi Tina! Don't the pictures bring back such great memories? Thanks for being my roomie! :)

Anonymous said...

Good morning everyone.

Barbara, I love how you don't comment if you don't like the book. I don't normally read reviews, but I can see how much power an opinion carries for those who do.

My 2 critique partners and I rarely agree on what we think is an awesome. When my cp read my most favorite book of all time, she said "It was alright. But I never would've finished it you would've recommened it." How could she not get the humor in this book like I did?

Glad to have you on Seekerville today.

Connie Queen

Barbara Vey said...

Thanks Sandra, I'm having a ball!

Debby Giusti said...

Amy, maybe you'll win one of the Starbucks' gift cards. Now wouldn't that be fun! :)

Barbara Vey said...

Hi Connie, I don't read reviews either. I get a lot of recommendations from people who like the same things I do.

Debby Giusti said...

I'm with Sandra. So glad Andrew talked you into blogging with Publishers Weekly, Barbara. Our gain for sure! :)

Debby Giusti said...

So true about personal preferences, Connie!

Erica Vetsch said...

Barbara, it was so nice to meet you at the ACFW Conference and to sit in on your discussion about your blog and your insights into the publishing industry. I hope I get a chance to meet up with you again sometime, perhaps at ACFW next year.

Debby Giusti said...

Twenty-six giveaways today! Everyone who comments is entered.

A number of the giveaways are e-books. Mention whether you have an e-reader...or if you would prefer a hard copy. Thanks!

Susan Codone said...

Hi Barbara,
I would like to be a reader/reviewer for you. I'll send you an email as a follow-up. Thank you for this post!

And as always, I'd like to be entered in every contest possible.


Dianna Shuford said...

Hi Barbara! As always it's great to hear from you. Although I missed you at ACFW because I wasn't able to attend, you were fun to get to know at the last M&M conference you attended.

Seekerville is a definitely fun and happening place to be. You put on a great party ladies!!

Debby Giusti said...

Erica, wasn't the mini-workshop great? So much information we all needed to hear.

Thanks, Barbara, for sharing your marketing tips and tips on social communities. You and RT's Mogan Doremus are a fantastic team!

Barbara Vey said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Debby Giusti said...

Susan, great! Hope to see your comments on Barbara's blog one of these days!

Barbara Vey said...

Erica, the AFCW conference is one I hope to get to attend again. Amazing writers there.

Barbara Vey said...

Susan, I look forward to your email. Authors can contact me at

Barbara Vey said...

Dianna, M&M is another conference I enjoy immensely. Friendly and fun group of writers.

Debby Giusti said...

Hi Dianna, so good seeing you today. Grab some breakfast!

I first met Barbara at Moonlight and Magnolias. Dianna Love introduced us. Barbara was so friendly and engaging. I knew I loved her right from the start!

Christina said...

Barbara, I've heard so many people say they love Bet Me. I'll have to pick it up.

One time I was reading a book for review, I just couldn't finish it, it was that bad.I told the reviewer I couldn't do it, her response-write a dnf. What's that? Did not finish and why. *groan, loudly*

I love your approach to talking about what you did like. Writing reviews on my own blog gives me much more freedom to do that.

Anonymous said...


I don't have an e-reader, so I would prefer hard-copy if I win anything.

Connie Queen

Debby Giusti said...

Thanks, Connie! Got it!

Barbara Vey said...

Christina, I don't agree with the Did Not Finish review. How can anyone say how the book was without finishing it. There could have been many gems further on.

If they insist on writing a bad review, they should at least do the author the courtesy of finishing the book.

Myra Johnson said...

Wow, Seekerville is a busy place this morning! So excited to have you join us, Barbara!

And so fun to meet you in person at ACFW! Your impromptu "workshop" with Morgan from RT was very informative, and I only wish you'd had a more expansive venue so more people could have participated. (Also wish I'd had the presence of mind to take notes!!!)

Thanks for all you do to promote romance fiction, and especially for your support of inspirational romance!

Tina Radcliffe said...

Barbara, that wasn't a chat. It was a one one one career counseling session.

If you charged, I'd be in the poor house right now. LOL.


Jan Christiansen said...

You have the best of both worlds, Barbara - getting to know both readers and authors. Love the new ideas for your blog and bringing the two groups together!

Mary Connealy said...

TINA, did we sign up to go to Barbara's Reader's Luncheon? Didn't you say ... Barbara, that you're already filled up with authors for 2013?
Didn't you put our name in for 2014?

We could turn this into an annual SEEKER RETREAT.

Tina Radcliffe said...

I did not yet Mary. I still haven't caught up from conference.

You go sign us up.

Tina Radcliffe said...

Wait, I'll do it tonight. She can only have so many authors from each genre. I might go as a reader.

Cause I read too!!!!!

Barbara Vey said...

Myra, that impromptu session was so fun and Morgan is a great sidekick. Glad you enjoyed it.

Barbara Vey said...

Tina, I do offer one on one counseling sessions, but the coffee was worth it!

Barbara Vey said...

Mary and Tina, just send me an email to put in the folder for 2014 luncheon, but everyone is invited to be a reader at the luncheon.

the link is

Barbara Vey said...

Hi Jan, glad you could stop by.

Pam Hillman said...

So good to have Barbara with us again. Barbara, I imagine your "job" is the envy of readers worldwide! lol

And all these prizes? Chocolate????


Now I'm hungry. Thanks Deb :-\ ha

joysann said...

Happy Birthday, Seekerville! Congratulations for your many successes, and I wish you many, many more.

Debby Giusti said...


I loved Barbara and Morgan's mini-workshop too. Great stuff! If only it had lasted longer.

Debby Giusti said...

Hi Jan,
Like you, I'm looking forward to Barbara's new blog!

Terri said...

Barbara and Debby - thanks for the wonderful interview. I love how Barbara got her start! Please enter me in the drawing.

This may be Seekerville's birthday bash, but with all your great interviews we are the ones receiving the gifts.

Richard Mabry said...

Barbara, I enjoyed meeting you at the breakfast with the ACFW Board on Sunday. Hope you'll be back with us next year.
And thanks, Seekerville, for this excellent interview.

Donna said...

Happy Birthday to you Barbara! Five years for your Blog!

I'm going to follow you on Twitter so I can keep up with all you do!

Barbara Vey said...

Pam, I have people ask me all the time if they can be my assistant. lol

Barbara Vey said...

Joysann, thanks so much for stopping by.

Everyone, Joysann is my number 1 reader and she does an amazing job.

Barbara Vey said...

Hi Terri, thanks for stopping by.

Debby Giusti said...

Thanks for the birthday wishes, Joysann!

Barbara Vey said...

Richard, I enjoyed our breakfast and hope to see you again.

Barbara Vey said...

Thanks Donna, I'll look for you on Twitter.

Debby Giusti said...

Terri said:
"This may be Seekerville's birthday bash, but with all your great interviews we are the ones receiving the gifts."

Thanks for your kind words, Terri! You're in the drawings!

Debby Giusti said...

Hi Richard, such a pleasure to have you with us today!

We're all hoping Barbara will be at ACFW in 2013!

Debby Giusti said...

Donna, glad you're following Barbara on Twitter. She's a busy lady!

Joanne Sher said...

Super post - LOVED it. And, of course, would love to win.

Thanks for all you do, Barbara!

Debby Giusti said...

You're in the drawing, Joanne! Thanks for joining us today.

Barbara Vey said...

Joanne, good luck with the drawing today.

CatMom said...

Great interview, Debby and Barbara! But I'm SUPER disappointed I did not get to meet Barbara at ACFW last month...that's the only "downside" of that Conference--not enough time to meet/visit all the folks I'd like *sigh*. ~ I'm also amazed at all that Barbara does (just from reading this interview--WOW)--you must have tons of energy, Barbara. ~ Seekerville has outdone themselves with this Birthday Celebration--all the terrific prizes sound wonderful. ~ Thanks again for today's post, Debby and Barbara. If anyone needs an afternoon snack, I've baked yet another Georgia Peach Cobbler--just lifted it out of the oven--Enjoy! ~ Blessings, Patti Jo

Debby Giusti said...

Patti Jo!
Thanks for the cobbler. :)

Sorry you didn't get to meet Barbara. Next time, we'll get you together for sure.


AmyB said...

Found your blog via Barbara's blog! Congratulations & Happy Birthday! I'm an avid reader (print & eBooks) and I look forward to exploring titles found on this site!

AmyB said...

Found your blog via Barbara's blog! Congratulations & Happy Birthday! I'm an avid reader (print & eBooks) and I look forward to exploring titles found on this site!

Virginia Carmichael Munoz said...

Wow, what on earth happened here???

I sleep in and suddenly...

It's Barbara VEY!!!!

I just love your blog. I love how passionate everyone is about the books. Finally, we can feel at home as we weep and cheer over our novels!

Janet Dean said...

Hi Barbara, I'm sure we'll get another chance to chat in 2013. Looking forward to it!

Wow, look at all these comments! You're rocking in Seekerville!!


Barbara Vey said...

Hi Catmom, sorry I didn't get to meet you either, but maybe next time. :)

Keli Gwyn said...

I enjoyed meeting you at the ACFW conference, Barbara, and sharing a meal with you and some of the wonderful Seekerville ladies.

Barbara Vey said...

Hi Amy B., thanks for stopping by. I think you'll enjoy this blog.

Barbara Vey said...

Hi Virginia, this party will be going on for a while, so I'm glad you came.

Barbara Vey said...

Hi Keli, nice to see you here. The conference was great.

Ruth Kaufman said...

Thank you, Barbara, for sharing your thoughts.

Missy Tippens said...

Barbara, welcome back! We're always so glad to have you with us. Thanks for a great post!

Missy Tippens said...

I also meant to say thank you for all you do to bring authors and readers together!!

Virginia Carmichael Munoz said...

Hye, Jessica Nelson just posted a pic on facebook of my book. At walmart!

Now I have to leave my cave and see if it's true...

Thanks, Jessica!

Debby Giusti said...

Hi AmyB,
So glad you found us! Come back often!

You're in the drawings. We post the winners on Sunday's Weekend Edition. Good luck!

Debby Giusti said...

Hi Virginia, we've had a fun morning in Seekerville. Glad you're here now!

What...I read ahead...your debut is in Walmart? Oh my gosh! I was there yesterday and should have checked.

How exciting!!! Can't wait to get it.


Barbara Vey said...

You're welcome Ruth, thanks for stopping by.

Debby Giusti said...

Hi Keli,
It was great seeing you at ACFW. Will you be at RWA next year in Atlanta? I'm sure Barbara will be there!

Virginia Carmichael Munoz said...

Thanks, Debby!

Funny, I don't think I'm as excited as when other people's books finally come out... because I've already read THIS ONE. :P

It's still fun. :D But I think I'm a reader at heart.

Debby Giusti said...

Hi Ruth! So glad you could be with us today.

Barbara Vey said...

Missy, I'm just lucky that I get to do what I love.

Debby Giusti said...

Is the pic on Facebook, Virginia?

Barbara Vey said...

Hi Virginia, welcome!

DebH said...

i learn so much here. i am a virtual newbie since i've never visited Barbara's blog. *sigh* at least i know Seekerville will continue to introduce me to places and people i would've never met or gone. *yay*

i've a cheapo eReader (hoping to someday upgrade - must justify the cost because it is sort of a luxury item right now - in my world). but i'd love accept an e-prize. i've too many books stacked around the house already.

thanks for the great post today. i love learning about new things to me. i also love meeting new people (although i must admit i'd heard of Barbara before, now i get to know her better!)

this birthday month rocks!

Virginia Carmichael Munoz said...

Thanks, Barbara!

Debby, it is, and I reposted it... Isn't she the sweetest thing? How nice is that??

I don't think I have a picture of anyone holding my book except my kids and they're all making weird faces. Jessica is a huge improvement over my 7 year old's crossed eyes. :P

Debby Giusti said...

So funny, Virginia!!! You have read the book. :) Cute!

I'll try to find the pic on Facebook and your book in the bookstore!

Debby Giusti said...

Hi DebH!

So glad you could chat with Barbara today. She's wonderful for being online seemingly all day.

Thanks, Barbara.

You're in the drawing, Deb!

Renee (SteelerGirl83) said...

@Debby- I definitely plan to attend! I love chatting with everyone, especially during the Seekerville day when I see some of your familiar faces. I wonder if Captain Jack will show this year? :-P

Barbara Vey said...

Hi DebH, good luck with winning an e-prize.

Debby Giusti said...

I'm sure Captain Jack will show up! :)
He always makes the party more fun.

Renee (SteelerGirl83) said...

I see that some of your are talking about writing negative reviews, as a blogger I HATE to write those, I know how much work it takes to write and get a book published. If I sign up for a book tour, say with a publisher, I'm obligated to provide a honest review even if I didn't like a book. I never say I hated a book, I just say it wasn't my cup of tea, give the reasons why, but put that other readers may like it or a link to a positive review. Nothing bugs me more than a review written by someone else that says I didn't like this book, don't read it, that's no help to me at all as a reader. If you don't like it at least tell us why, maybe some of that feedback will help the author as well when writing their next book!

Jamie Adams said...

Hi Barbara! Thanks for visiting - We follow each other on twitter but now I feel like I know you so much better :)

p.s. love The Amazing Race

Barbara Vey said...

Hi Jamie, yay, another Amazing Race buddy! Never miss that show.

Missy Tippens said...

Renee, you're right! Just telling you don't like a book but not saying why isn't helpful at all.

Missy Tippens said...

I"m another Amazing Race fan! Although we missed the last season. It's one that my daughter and I watch together. :)

Linda Bonney Olin said...

Holy moley! Almost 200 comments and it's only 2 PM!

I take a different approach to posting reviews on a book-selling site like Amazon vs. posting recommendations on one's own blog.

When I leave a review on Amazon, I try to help potential buyers by specifying what I did and didn't like about it. If a book I disliked isn't my usual genre, I say so - that's not the author's fault. If a book is so poor that I can't scrape up at least 3 stars worth of good things to say, I usually don't leave a review at all.

My website gives encouragement, not critiques. So I only mention books, articles, websites, etc., that I personally recommend.

And guess what? Seekerville was the first website I added to my blogroll! :D

Lyndee said...

Hi Barbara! I hope I can get to your next get together in April. You're not that far away. I heard a lot of good things about the event earlier this year. Congrats on the event, the upcoming new website, and thanks for sharing your wisdom with us!

Barbara Vey said...

Hi Linda, you have a good handle on reviews. Thanks for stopping by.

Barbara Vey said...

Hi Lyndee, I know you'd love the reader's luncheon if you have a chance to attend.

Jeanne T said...

DEBBY--I saw it. I'm sure the lucky one. :) I sent in my info. :)

Katy Lee said...

Hey there, Barbara! So cool to see you here!

Great blog with loads of info as always! :)Your open willingness to share your insights of the industry helps so many of us...especially us newbies. I thank you, thank you, thank you!

Barbara Vey said...

Katy, you knew me way back when. I'm so happy for all your success.

runner10 said...

I love Barbara's blog. She sure draws a crowd!! Lots of fun.

Csdsksds at gmail . Com

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