Thursday, October 3, 2013

Welcome guest Danica Favorite

What I learned since I left the island...
So many people think that getting published means that so much in your life will change. Honestly, what I've learned is how little things change. Here are a few things people think will change (and doesn't).

·         Recognition as a published author: Even when you get the “unpublished” sticker off your forehead, there's always going to be someone who doesn't think you're a real writer- either because you write X genre or because you haven't published X number of books or you aren't making X amount of money. 

·         The money: Okay, I will admit that I got an advance, and it wasn't shabby. It also isn't going to buy me a vacation home in the mountains. But, easy come, easy go, as they say. I no sooner put the money from my advance in the bank than my dog got diabetes (not fun vet bills), my kid got nominated to go on a very expensive school trip, and a whole lot of other little things popped up to suck the money right out. Don't get me wrong, I am so grateful for the money and grateful that we were able to take care of the situations that sprung up. But we still live in the same house, have the same lifestyle, and that's okay.

·         The writing: I've had so many people tell me that it gets easier when you're published. I don't know what kool-aid they were drinking, but I've found it not to be true. For me, it is exactly the same. I'm plugging along on my next book, hoping my editor will like it, and hoping that if she gets back to me with the word that she doesn't like it, it's in time to fix it.

·         The wait: Many people also think that the wait changes once you become published. It's funny, because I know a number of published authors who have been waiting to hear back on their submissions for their option books as the unpublished authors.

So what does this all mean for the people still on the island?  I think you have to take a step back from your expectations of what's going to change in your life and realize that the nature of the publishing business is exactly what you've been witnessing all along. Here are a few pieces of advice to combat the temptation to think everything is going to change:

·         Accept that no matter where you are in the publishing journey, whether on the island or off, YOU ARE A REAL WRITER. Other people's definitions don't matter.

·         Be grateful for whatever money comes your way, but be realistic in thinking that it's not going to change your life overnight. (Unless you get a million dollar book deal, and in that case, I'd love to know how it's done!) Don't plan your financial future based on a book deal that may or may not come your way.

·         Remember that a contract isn't a ticket to continued publishing success. Always strive to grow as a writer, and no matter what, keep writing. Especially if you're waiting.

·         The worst thing you can do is stop writing or slow your pace while waiting. So many of my friends sent partials and then stopped writing because they wanted to know what the editor thought of the partial before writing more, and then couldn't deliver when asked for a full. We've all heard the adage that you can't edit a blank page. Spend the waiting time finishing the current project or working on the next one so that you have something to offer when the editor wants more.

Now it's your turn: If you're still on the island, what do you think or hope will change by leaving the island? And for those who've left the island, what did you think would change that didn't?

Danica's debut book for Love Inspired Historicals, set to release late 2014 or early 2015:

Joseph Stone comes to the mining town of Leadville, Colorado to find his missing father and bring him home to support their impoverished family. Instead, he finds an illegitimate sister he didn't know existed and clues that his father may have been murdered over a hidden silver mine. The sole hope for keeping his siblings out of an orphanage is to find the mine- before his father's killer does.

An area in Leadville representative of where the mining camp would have been. Of course, in the book, there would have been far fewer trees because the wood was needed for support beams for the mines as well as for construction, heating, etc.
Annabelle Lassiter is worn out from working in her father's ministry to aid struggling miners. She doesn't believe their work is doing any good in a lawless town full of people interested only in getting rich quick. All she wants is to leave Leadville to create a new life for herself, away from the pain of working amidst so much tragedy. At her father's urging, she reluctantly sets out to help what she believes is just one more miner in a sea of thousands.

My family and I took the Leadville train, very similar to what my heroine would have been taking out of Leadville at the end of the book.
As Annabelle and Joseph work together to care for his younger sister while trying to find the mine, they learn to look past the preconceived notions they had of each other to see something deeper. But even as they consider the risks to their hearts by becoming involved, the greater risk may be to their lives.

Because my book takes place in Leadville during the silver mining boom, and a lost silver mine plays such an important role in my book, I'm giving away a vial of Colorado silver.

Leave a comment to be included in the drawing!!

~~ ~~ ~~

For more birthday details check here.
Hi Everyone, Audra here!

Can you believe it's time for ANOTHER Seekerville birthday party? There's a great month ahead -- we're just getting started! In addition to Danica's generous giveaway of real-live, honest-to-goodness silver (!!), leave a comment for more giveaway drawings --  TWO $10 Amazon gift cards.

Join us each day for fun in the sun and valuable conversation!!


  1. Amen, Danica.

    I thought it would get easier, but it's the same. The waiting, the same. The need for patience, the same. :)

    One thing I am surprised at is my editor doesnt want me working beyond my partial until she accepts/rejects but my agent would like me to finish it. I am trying to learn what works best for me.

  2. Amen, Danica.

    I'm hopping between AFS's and edits for books one and two--and hoping to work ahead on a couple of things for book three. But I'm not famous, and I'm not rich--except in blessings.

    Coffee's brewing.

    1. Helen, I am there with you. AFS, blog posts, writing proposals for something new.... I love writing. It's so much fun and I am constantly learning.

    2. Helen, I am there with you. AFS, blog posts, writing proposals for something new.... I love writing. It's so much fun and I am constantly learning.

  3. Hi Danica:

    Have you taken the train out of Chama? It uses the real cars from the 1880’s and it is run by volunteers. I assume your story takes place between 1880 and 1890. I’m very interested in that period of US history and look forward to your book. I would also love to take the Leadville train. How far did it travel? Did the engine smoke get in your eyes? That kind of ride through history will give you a lot to write about.


  4. Hmmmm what hasn't changed? My confidence level. Still the same but maybe more precarious since now I can disappoint someone other than myself.

  5. Hi Danica,

    Two words make a difference between pub bed and prepubbed: my editor.

    How beautiful they sound.....

    I would love to be in the drawing. Enjoy your day in Seekerville!

    1. How true! My sister asked me the other day if I'd heard anything else from my editor. Then admitted to me she just liked saying the words. By the way, I have a great sis!

  6. So much truth here!!

    What I thought would change: I didn't tell many people I was writing, so when I sold my first book, I thought I could reveal it with a big TA-DAH and everyone would be astounded.

    Mostly they were confused. "What? Who? WHY?"

    I probably should have been a little more open with friends and family, but I didn't want to deal with anyone's expectations.

    In the end, it's just me writing, like I was before. The same people who were excited while I was writing my first book are the same ones who are excited when I start a new one. The people I thought wouldn't really care until it was published, still don't really care.

    It's not bad. It's just that if publication wasn't on their radar before, it won't be after I get a contract.

    Loved this post!!

  7. Good morning Danica. Very good advice that can translate in a lot of areas of life.

    I loved what HELEN wrote, "But I'm not famous, and I'm not rich--except in blessings. I am rich in blessings as well.

    Smiles & Blessings,
    Cindy W.

    countrybear52 AT yahoo DOT com

  8. Danica, this is so spot-on that everyone should print it and frame it and realize there's no magic elixir on the Mainland, there's really just a foot in the door... and then the steady work (which I love beyond chocolate, for real!) to keep the door open.

    I think if you love writing, if you're a person who CAN'T STOP, it's all good! You deal with the ups and downs of any job. But unreal expectations fell many an author, so your info here is invaluable.

    That said, I LOVE THIS JOB!!!! And I've learned to keep irons in multiple fires no matter what I'm doing because didn't we watch two lines fold this year? B&H and Summerside? That's a tough hit for authors and editors and staff, but as authors the best way we can protect our careers is to be prepared for anything. Life has a way of turning and twisting, but God gives us opportunities galore and like Danica said, don't sit around waiting.

    Helen, lovin' the coffee and your work load! Kinda laughing up here, but it's all good!

    Christina! I manage the waiting (none of us like that part) by working on a second project. Or a third. That way my time is well-spent and then when an approval comes through, I jump back to that work. It helps me a lot.

    Mary-of-many-names Truer words were never spoken. I find very few family members who read or buy my books and that surprised me because I was so over-the-top excited!!!!! And I've gotten the 'ugh, they're too sickly sweet for me, give me some death and destruction, now there's a book I can sink my teeth into!"

    But as long as our work makes our readers happy... excited for the next book... and smiling to chat with us on facebook or see us here or in the cafe... well, then that's okay.

  9. Good morning, Danica! I have no expectations right now. Just hope. Early on I realized that I needed to keep writing so I'd have 'product on the shelves' ready to follow if I received a rejection. But that doesn't sound hopeful, does it? Changing my language on that to 'when it sells I will have another ready for submission.'

    Up early with this fever and coughing. Been more than a week now and a bit of a challenge writing while this sick.
    However, it has gotten me out of bed.

    So I'm taking 'RUTHY HOURS' this morning. It's 3:43 in the morning, but no roosters here. Does a rumbling freight train count as a morning wake-up call, RUTHY?

  10. Cool, silver!!!

    Danica, I am just so excited that you have a book coming out! I've seen you on HQ for years and years. You're amazing and I hope you have many more sales to come. :-)

    Thanks for the realism here. I'm off the island but you're right, many things are still the same. It's exciting though, to be published. I don't know if I had too many surprises, but that's because of places like Seekerville which prepared me for what to expect. :-)

  11. Thanks for the post and laying out the things that change and what doesn't change. I would think if you finally get published, one of the things that would change would be you would finally feel like a writer, regardless of what other people think or say. You did it! But then you'd have to start over with the next book. I would love to be entered in the drawing. Thanks!
    tscmshupe [at] pemtel [dot] net

  12. Great post, Danica, and all so true! High expectations are what drive us, but if we're not careful, they'll drive us CRAZY. Congrats on your first book, and best of luck with the many more to come :)

  13. Great, interesting post, Danica! :)

  14. great post! not only because of the sage advice, but because you have me a little homesick for Colorado. Growing up, I remember so many weekend trips visiting Leadville and other mining towns (like Central City - until they ruined it with casinos *sigh*). Thanks for the trip down my memory lane. I would love to be in the drawing for a little bit of "home", seeing how I'm a transplant to Va Beach, VA.

    Jury's still out on whether trading the Rocky Mtns for Beach was a good thing. *heh*

  15. Wonderful post, Danica!
    I'm sure it's like anything else, you have to 'be there, done that' to really understand what it's like after publication.

    The generous 'experienced' writers on Seekerville are a great source of information and encouragement to those of us still working toward the goal.

    I love the comments from the 'experienced ones' too!

  16. Good morning, Danica and Seekerville! I've set up the buffet with lots of fall favorites--apple muffins, zucchini bread, berry tarts, and my personal favorite, butternut squash with apples and raisins, and maple breakfast sausage. Doesn't that just sound like a great way to start the day??

    I love Danica's post. So often we think when we publish our first books that life will no longer be as we know it. Well, in some ways that's true, but mostly, the sun still rises and sets, bills get paid, the house needs cleaning.

    BUT, inside us, there's a change that makes us positively GLOW. That first book out for the world to read.

    Ahhh, enjoy the moment.
    Bask in it.
    Take pictures.

    Then start working on the next one.

  17. Helen said: But I'm not famous, and I'm not rich--except in blessings.

    Words to live by. You hit that so right on!!

  18. Virginia, that's a tough call to make. Do you tell the world you're writing a book or just save it as a surprise?

    There are highs and lows to both. I worked toward publication for 16 years, and along the way I loved the support and curious questions I received.

    I did not enjoy the snarky comments over the years of "oh are you still writing?", "when's your book coming out", "isn't there something else you'd like to do now?"

    Sometimes I wish I hadn't told a soul, but then, if I hadn't, I think I would have cheated all my friends out of the opportunity to say "yes, I knew her when..."


  19. Welcome Danica and congratulations!

    I'm still on the island waiting to jump on the boat.

    Thank you so much for your encouraging words.


  20. Morning DANICA and welcome to Seekerville. What an important observation. You are so right. Not much really does change except maybe more deadlines. smile

    But on the other hand a lot does change as we learn more and more about our chosen industry, the process of promoting our books, the professionalism we aspire to and learn. The people we meet on this journey. Those are all positive changes and really show our growth.

    Meeting you was one of those blessings for me. Have fun today. And congrats on your novel. Sounds wonderful.

  21. DebH: You are so right about "ruining" the mining towns with casinos. I used to love poking around Central City when I was a kid. Talk about a step back in time! Since they opened up the casinos, I haven't been back.

    Too bad.

    I love Leadville, too. We used to vacation at Twin Lakes at the base of Independence Pass. I loved it.

    I'm eager to read Danica's book and recognize the sights.

  22. Danica, I loved running into you over and over at ACFW, and I so appreciate your post. Those expectations have to be tamed or we end up frustrated, don't we?

    I especially appreciated the reminder that we are writers, regardless of how others may perceive us. I need to be reminded of that from time to time.

    I'm looking forward to reading your book. It sounds good! I haven't been to Leadville in years. I think it's time for another visit. :)

  23. Danica, so glad to have you here! Thanks for sharing your island-to-mainland experience. Great insight! Yes, it's constantly a learning experience. Sometimes different from what we expected. But always a blessing!

  24. Yes, Piper. I love those words "my editor"!!

  25. LOL, Melissa, that's so true! I always worry about disappointing. I just finished my first draft this week and am thrilled. But already getting anxious about making it perfect.

  26. Danica, sweetie, c'mon, you know all is perfect bliss once you kick your way past that stubborn door to publication.

    Why must you toy with these nice folks????


  27. The money point is funny, because I sold my second book, Calico Canyon three days after my daughters wedding, for almost exactly the cost of her wedding and trust me it's wasn't a LAVISH wedding in small town Nebraska, and her husband's family was generous about chipping in. Yes, it was a wonderful blessing to have that money come in to help pay for that. But it was almost comical how it was there and then VANISHED.

  28. Congratulations Danica. Selling your first book is still cause for intense celebration whether things change or not and I'm so happy for you. Can't wait to read it.

    I am not published and may never be and that's OK. If I ever do leave the island the one thing I hope will change is getting that huge 'reject' sticker removed from my forehead. I'm the only one who can see it but its there nonetheless. Maybe I need a psychologist instead of an editor:)

    So glad for you and for LIH who has gained a fabulous author and for all of us who get to read it!


  30. "Don't let other people define you." Oh, I love that. I needed this today. I got a rejection yesterday, after a mountaintop experience of having three requests for proposals, and I was devastated - and I don't devastate easily. I know from reading this blog that published authors still get rejected, still have to wait, and, if their project doesn't fit guidelines, they go "indie" (although Seekers even make that sound like fun). I think the difference between pubbed and unpubbed, maybe the only difference besides a little money, is that when you're pubbed you know you can do it, someone thought enough of your work to back it. But it definitely doesn't mean your life gets eaiser.
    MARY, love the sarcasm.
    AUDRA and DANICA, I love Colorado! Lived out there for four years while husband in Bible college. Colorado Springs and Fountain. Loved taking trips up to Cripple Creek and Victor!
    VIRGINIA, I love it -- "I didn't want to deal with anyone else's expectations." Yeah that's me. They either get it or they don't. I tell a few really close people but have steered clear of the rest. For now.
    SALLY, I agree -- "You'll finally feel like a writer." It's validation, more than anything.
    GOOD MORNING RUTHY, I can't stop either. It is part of the fabric of who I am. God knit it into my being, or some weird metaphor -- pubbed or unpubbed, this is who I am.
    I APPLAUD THE SEEKERS for showing me, and us, that being published isn't heaven on earth (except, apparently, for MARY. LOL). You who are pubbed have different deadlines, joys, and frustrations. This is a theme that runs through the blog and makes me keep coming back.
    OK, I feel better now.
    K. Bailey

  31. I'm still on unpubbed island. My hopes for publication: that I'll finally have some proof that I can write and write well, lol. And my grand dream would be that I could one day support myself with the writing, wear pajamas all day, drink coffee and be blissfully happy.

    But I already drink coffee all day, and I'm pretty happy, soooo...
    I guess not much would change. :)

    I loved the post today. Thank you so much for sharing.

  32. Hey, DANICA, welcome to Seekerville and SUPER CONGRATS ON THE UPCOMING RELEASE!!

    YOU SAID: "I've had so many people tell me that it gets easier when you're published. I don't know what kool-aid they were drinking, but I've found it not to be true. For me, it is exactly the same."

    LOL ... kool-aid or extra-strength cold medicine!! And I must be odd girl out because for ME, it didn't get better or the same, it got worse! What I mean by that is I had NO IDEA the emotional toll that getting published would take on me. Some authors seem to skate by, but if you are an emotional CDQ like me, chances are it will be a steep roller-coaster of emotions. The good news is, it brings you SO much closer to God, which is the best trade-off in the world, in my opinion.


  33. Welcome Danica! Thanks for your "dose of reality" post!! We work hard to see our books in print. Naturally it hurts when not everyone loves our stories. I'm grateful for supportive family and friends!


  34. Wonderful, wonderful article, Danica!

    I always write ahead and hope for the best. The waiting can run right up to the deadline!

  35. Just came back from reading the latest entries in your “top secret” journal. Laughed aloud at the part about how, if you could make your life work that way, you’d be one of those crazy ladies living on top of a mountain and never leave. Never. Although your experience that brought on that statement was far from a laughing matter. That was scary.

    The reason I laughed is because I’d found a kindred spirit. My family says I could live away from civilization and be quite happy with only having to come into town once a year for supplies. Which brings me to the historical bent of your writing and a question I’ve never before thought to ask of an author. Do you think being an introvert influenced your choice of time period? I can see myself longing for the romance of the past with more open spaces and fewer people. That is, when I can conveniently forget all the realities of the inconveniences. Wouldn’t want to give up the computer.

    Also, does being an introvert carry over into your creating characters who are introverts? Mine always seem to end up that way. I have yet to write a bubbly, gregarious character. Not sure I can.

    Congratulations on your book. I really look forward to reading it, both for the story about the silver mines and for checking out your characters’ personalities.

    And I keep thinking, that “when” (no “if” word, Seekers, and, thanks, Lyndee H for this reminder) I’m published, I’d still like to stay on the island. Mainlands are too crowded.

    Did you design your website? The colors are striking.

  36. Hey Danica!! So glad to see you off the island [and I haven't even known you all that long ;)]. But I did get to hang out with Danica and Erica Vetsch [and a few others] at the gala!

    One of these days, I hope to find out what life is like off the island. To that end, I FINALLY sent my 2012 SpeedBo off to critters. Until then, I'm taking October off to READ then back to the salt [or silver ;)] mines with something new for NaNo.

    Hubs and I drove up into the Rockies to a mining town [I think] when we were there a couple of years ago. But it was in March and everything closed at like 4. We didn't know that and he didn't get out of his conference until like 5. By the time we got there, we couldn't even get dinner. We were SO HUNGRY by the time we got back to Denver...

    Mary Connealy - I thought of you this morning when these crossed the road in front of me this morning. I had just turned so was going slowly and they didn't fly into my windshield so it was a better encounter than yours. I did end up sitting there for several minutes while waiting for them to get out of the way.

    The truck did not wait nearly so long. Guess he looked scarier so they moved faster.

  37. Amen, again and again.

    Can't wait for your book. Putting those train rides on our bucket list.

    Put me in the drawing.

    And blessings abundant to you, Danica, as you continue the journey. It was so good to meet you face to face in Atlanta.

    Peace, Julie

  38. Great advice, Danica! During the long months of waiting before I got THE CALL, I told myself that even if I did get the contract, I'd still be doing laundry and cleaning toilets! Lol No lounging around eating bon bons for me. But I do have more responsibility. Deadlines to meet. Edits. Revisions. Don't get me wrong, I'm blessed to be doing what I love. But with the fulfillment of a dream comes hard work.
    You're book sounds so interesting. Congrats again! Can't wait to read it.

  39. Not to get off topic here CAROL but my brother in law who works for Game and Parks once told me that an adult wild turkey has NO natural predator in the wild smaller than a MOUNTAIN LION. Even a wolf won't take one on. Young turkeys, yes, but once they're adults, they're just to big, too beaky and clawy, they're at the top of the food chain, which is why they are so THICK.
    We have scads of them.

    pardon my tangent, I haven't hit and turkey with my car and smashed my windshief for nearly six months.

    I will now return you to this conversation about WRITING.

  40. Silver! Oh, put me in for the drawing.

    Danica, I've already promised my kids if I get published, my first check will go for an above-ground pool. Not a big one. Of course, the kids may be grown and out of the house before that happens, but then there's grandkids...

    Congratulations on the sale and you're book sounds wonderful.

  41. Wow! 45 Comments before 9:30am. This is like a modern day silver rush!

    One reason I think there is so little change after you get ‘the call’ is because the analogy of being on an island is so misleading (as pleasant as the imagery is). Writers are not on an isolated island. They are in the middle of a traffic jam trying to get out. Madness is all around them (especially if they have children). The chaos is still all around them even after they get published. In fact, the traffic jams get even bigger!

    Good news! I’ve talked to several experienced authors and things do get much better after your 50th book is published. At that point you do so many things right by sheer force of habit (things that you once had to be reminded to do) that you can write several books a year with more ease than one book used to take. So, just keep writing.

  42. I suppose I hoped people would recognize I was a writer. And a nice advance would be acceptable too.

    I just keep plugging away.

    I also have a book set in Leadville during the silver mining boom. It's been sitting in the shelf unpubbed for several yeaes. In honesty, I really haven't tried to get it published. Don't know why.

    Msybe I've been working on others and waiting to see how they do. I did write a short prequel that releases in November called Black Rain.

    Thanks for the post, Danica. .Your book sounds interesting. Congrats

  43. Hi Danica,

    Your book sounds great. What nice prizes. Silver and books. Put my name in the drawing, please.

    I'm probably too comfortable on the island. I set my own time, get up when I want to, set my own writing speed. But I'm writing so people can read, so I'll have to get it out there and get off the island someday.

    The thing that scares me is the self promotion, social media included, but I'm trying to learn and all you super smart authors make it seem easy, but I know it's not.

  44. Your post is so true, Danica! I heartily agree with all. :-) Since I've gotten published, one thing that changed was that I wasn't quite as driven to write that next book. But I'm starting to get that excitement back, to feel the old drive coming back. There are just too many things that can happen to drain the magic out of the process. But that's a whole story in itself. :-)

  45. Oh and put me in for the drawing. I could use a touch of a silver lining.


  46. Oh my goodness, is this post ever on target! Thank you for sharing your insights with us, Danica!

    The money thing? Most years it's pretty much eaten up by writing EXPENSES. Like conferences, travel, promo materials, etc. The nice thing is I'm no longer eating into the household budget to pay for these things.

    And sometimes I actually do finish the year in the black, which thrills my CPA to no end!

  47. Mary:

    When my wife and I took the Chama train a special event was coming up and they were rehearsing a train robbery. The robbers were re-enactors with genuine old worn clothes from the period and guns made in the 1880’s. These guys stayed in character when you talked to them and they were downright scary. These guys made you think they really might rob the train. Taking that train is a great experience for a writer. The day after our trip a hot ember from the smoke stack landed on the wooden trestle bridge and burned it down. We were lucky we got to take the entire trip. This was not a theme park ride. It was the actual engine and cars that were used in the past.

    We take every train we can when we find one while on vacation. I highly recommend it for all writers.

    BTW: Do you have a train robbery in any of your stories?

  48. You know I love ya, Danica! Interesting post and I know some of the excitement you had when you got "The Call"! Still so happy for you and can't wait to read your book. Anxious for it to come out. Thanks for the post this morning!

  49. Christina, absolutely! I think you do have to learn what works best for you. We all have different processes.

    Helen, I think the blessings are what makes us rich!

    Vince, I have not taken the train out of Chama.I may have to check it out. And yes, you assume correctly. My book is set in 1881, shortly after the rail service was established in Leadville. :) The train is not far, just out of town until just before Climax and back, but it is a lovely trip. No engine smoke for us, and it was a beautiful day.

    Melissa, great point about the confidence level. Now that I know all these people who've said, "I believe in you," all these years are finally going to read it, I'm a little afraid it won't live up to their expectations.

  50. Okay, small snafu here, so I am working on responding. :) Google suspended my account because apparently, they don't believe "Danica Favorite" is a real name. I do have a birth certificate to prove it, but um, really??? :)

    So... I am responding to your comments, and if I lose someone, I am sorry. Google doesn't like me. I don't know why they just decided it today. :(

  51. Piper, I admit that those two words do make a difference. :)

    LOL Virginia!! That is SO true!! It really is amazing how you think it's such a special accomplishment and the rest of the world often is like, "so what?" And then you meet the people who think it's the coolest thing ever, and then all is well with the world again. :)

  52. Cindy, I agree with what Helen said- it really is true about our blessings!

    Ruthy, absolutely about keeping those projects going and just write, write, write!

    Lyndee, feel better soon! And you're absolutely right about having another project going. A lot of people write one book, submit, and then stop until they know if the editor likes that book. NO! Keep writing! If that book is rejected, you can submit again right away, and if it is accepted, you can submit again right away. I'm slightly ahead of the game because as soon as I sold, I was able to get a full on my editor's desk. (Let's all send lots of prayers she likes it!)

    Thanks for stopping by Abbi!

    Jessica, thanks! I think I knew a lot of this before leaving the island, but so much of it is things that others expect from me. ie: "you're a published author now, you must be rich." HA! I wish!

    Sally, I think that the finally feeling like a real writer idea is something that MUST come first. Like I said above, once you are published, then you're up against published author expectations of what makes a real writer. You'd be surprised at how many published writer snobs are out there with their own interpretations of that standard. You have to be confident in being a real writer no matter what, or you'll find that confidence easily shaken.

  53. Ruth Wrote:

    “…the best way we can protect our careers is to be prepared for anything. Life has a way of turning and twisting, but God gives us opportunities galore and like Danica said, don't sit around waiting.”

    I just love this. I can’t believe that you didn’t come up with “Chicken Soup for the Soul” first. That’s an iron you missed.

    I think one of your many irons in the fire should be a book of ”Ruthy Wisdom”. It would make a great book. I think a good title would be:

    ”Ruthy Kitchen of Common Wisdom --
    Recipies for Living a Rewarding Christian Life.”

    I think this book could give Julie’s
    ”ROMANCE-ology 101: Writing Romantic Tension for the Inspirational and Sweet Markets”, (Released for sale yesterday!!!) a run for its money!

    I'm not kidding, either. There's gold in all your old posts!


  54. Thanks so much Mia!

    Thanks for stopping by AmyC!

    Deb H, I think it would be a hard swap, but I'd really miss my mountains!

    Mary, I think that's probably true about needing to be there to understand. But in some ways, I think you really can prepare. I knew a lot of what to expect, thanks to my published author friends, and so far, I've found all of their advice to be true.

    Audra, YUM! And thanks for inviting me here today. It definitely is nice to be able to have that book after all those years. For those who don't know, I took 12. It was also nice selling right before my high school reunion, so many of my old friends (including my English teacher) were really doing the "I knew her when" thing. Others really could care less. :)

    Jackie, you're welcome! Glad to be here and glad I could encourage you!

    Sandra, you are so sweet! You've always been such a blessing to me too!

  55. Great post Danica! How nice to see you over here... it's kind of like going to your favorite restaurant and running into a celebrity.

    Congratulations on your book! It's on my tbr list for sure :)

  56. Audra, I hope to do the sights justice! We also spend a lot of time in Leadville. Hubby's family has a house there we can use whenever we want and I love going there. I'd definitely move there if I could only live there in the summer. :) The biggest thing for me was keeping sights historically accurate. Turquoise Lake, for example, did not show up on the scene until the 60's. Found that gem out from a cousin who was there when they built it!

    Jeanne, it was so nice having you be my conference buddy. I think my favorite part of conferences is figuring out who that one person you'll run into over and over is! I'm so glad it was you!

    And do go back sometime! Leadville is such a great place!

    Missy, glad to be here!

    Mary, don't you know that I have a very evil side?? ;)

  57. Danica,

    You are correct about thinking ourselves a 'writer' whether published or not but I know I need to feel validated at the same time. May not be popular to say but leaving the island and being published is the validation for me.

    The second expectation of leaving the island is the process. I commented to a Steve Laube blog a few months back how much of a conundrum it is to wear ALL hats as a prepublished writer for the shared hats with the publisher's editor(s). He agreed but it being or making the difference between a writer with a completed MS, knowing how long it took to write and if one will be ready to work with the publisher's editors.

    I think the least prep pre-pub is how the editor-writer relationship works. To transition I hired a critique-editor and WOW was that ever both a smart move and a wake up call to the process. Corresponding with Colleen Coble I learned she works with a pre-publisher editor (3-4 edits) before it goes to the editor and then another 3-4 edits with the publishes editor). That was helpful to learn.

    Why? Because I was getting depressed self-editing between drafts 1&2 noting it was nothing like Coble (or the other published writers I read). She noted the reason its so good is because its been edited 7-8 times. Read something similar by Arlington neighbor Sandra Brown (and she gets those Million dollar advances). For a decade now. But her first book (like yours) came after a long time on the island. And that first advance ($1k I believe) was how the process started.

    I find encouragement from Coble, Brown and Favorite! Thanks for the peek behind the curtain at the publishing destination of Oz. I hope you'll continue to blog on the transitions and your experiences with them.

  58. Cindy I think the attitude of not caring about publication is sometimes what you need to get over. I actually was pretty sure this book was dead and rejected before I sold. So I really was over it, and then BAM! Total change of course. :)

    That said, I want to encourage you and say that there is no "reject" on your forehead, or anyone else's. In my opinion, the only "rejects" out there are the ones who don't even try. You're at least out there, writing the book. To me, anyone who is writing a book because they always have wanted to write a book is a winner. The rejects are the ones who say, "I've always wanted to write a book," but have never put pen to paper.

    My daughter has always been one of the smart kids in school. She started at a new school this year, and they placed her according to her test scores. She's freaking out because Algebra is SO hard, and right now, she has a C. She's never had a C before. But I am so stinking proud of that C because I have never seen that kid work so hard in her life! And as I told her, I don't really care about the A's, because she's not lifting a finger to get them.

    So like my daughter and her C's, I am proud of you for just trying. For working as hard as you can to do your best and to bring your stories to life. If you never get published, that does not diminish how proud I am of each and ever one of you for daring to step out and chase your dreams. So many people say they want to, and never do, but you guys have the guts to try!

  59. The big changes I really thought would happen if I got a book published was I thought I would be younger.... and thinner.... and more beautiful.... and smarter.... I'm still waiting............

  60. I've never done a train robbery. I've really almost never done a train. I had characters get off am Orphan Train in Gingham Mountain. But never really went along on the train ride.

    You know what else would be cool? A train wreck, I could have fun with that!!!!! :)

  61. Thanks Danica! I love knowing what to expect. Give me a good ole dose of reality any day! I just hope I'll need it one day. : )

    Your LI debut sounds great! Please enter me.

  62. In A Bride for All Seasons, right after they married my characters ride the train west, they spend a chapter on a really nice private train car. THERE. TRAIN.

    Maybe I'm forgetting others.

  63. " I've had so many people tell me that it gets easier when you're published. I don't know what kool-aid they were drinking, but I've found it not to be true. For me, it is exactly the same. I'm plugging along on my next book, hoping my editor will like it, and hoping that if she gets back to me with the word that she doesn't like it, it's in time to fix it."


  64. Mary - All of your Petticoat folks are on a train headed to Montana in Sharpshooter, right?

  65. [And of course the train to Wyoming in Doctor in Petticoats. But that was pretty minor iirc.]

    Train wreck sounds right up your alley, Mary. We had one in our town. There's a pic of the entire town standing around the two engines.

  66. Hi Danica,
    I thought that leaving the island would open more and bigger doors, but the doors are still the same size, still the same number, and still swing open the same hard way.
    muschfarm at yahoo dot com

  67. Kaybee Hugs on your rejection. It's hard to get them at any stage, but it sounds like with three requests, you have a ton of opportunity! Congrats! I can't wait to see where this takes you!

    Annie, don't wait for publication to believe that you can write, and that you can write well! Believe it now!!
    As for your dream, I am so with you!! Although I'd be doing it in a cabin in the mountains.

    Julie, Thanks! And yes, the emotions can be a roller coaster. I think sometimes it is worse. Like I said above, I'm now afraid that everyone who's believed in me all these years are going to be like, "that's IT?" and be totally disgusted with my book. (Note to self: DO NOT READ REVIEWS!)

    Janet, so glad I could be here!

    Sherri YES!!! That's why, regardless of what I'm waiting on, I just keep writing. Book two is on my editor's desk, and I'm 1/3 through book three. I'll keep plugging away until I'm told otherwise. :)

    CaraG Thanks for stopping by my website! I did have someone design it because I think we all have to realize our limitations. I could have done it, but not as pretty, and it would have taken loads of time.

    As far as being an introvert, I think that who we are as people does influence what we write, but I don't know if I would say that I write what I write because I'm an introvert. For me, the story starts with something I am curious about. As far as the time period, I chose it, um, on a dare from my agent. He knows that historical is my favorite time period, but I've always refused to write it. I didn't want to take my candy and turn into work. So I finally did, but then I chose my least favorite (not that I hate it- some people interpret it as my saying I hate it- not true at all! I enjoy this time period a lot, it's just not my go-to) and decided to write that. :) Actually, my favorite time period is Regency, and I can't see an introvert surviving well at the balls and parties. But maybe that's why I love it- I'm fascinated by something I'd be terrified to do.

    Carol it was so nice hanging out with you too! I'm glad we got the time together. Mountain towns do close early, but if you're a local, you always know the spots that are open a little later. Usually you can get dinner until at least 8.

    Speaking of dinner, if you are ever in Leadville, and you like steak, you have to go to Quincy's for the prime rib. I am not a steak person, but WOW! their prime rib is to die for! That said, their menu is pretty take it or leave it. You get the steak, a house salad with house dressing, and a potato, your choice of butter or sour cream. Other than that, don't ask for anything different!

  68. Thanks Karen! It's funny how many people mention the toilets to still clean! Who started that myth that once we were published, we'd get the magical self-cleaning toilet? And if there is one, how many books EXACTLY do we need to get it? Because I'm totally for setting that as my next goal.

    Thanks so much Julie. It was also really nice meeting you in Atlanta. I think that's why people don't realize I'm an introvert. I'm comfortable with people at conferences, because I feel like I know so many of them from being online. :) You're already a friend!

    Connie, what a great thing to do for your kids! I know a lot of authors who've done the same thing.

    Terri You do have a great sis! Hang on to her!

    LOL Vince! Here's hoping we get to 50!

    Tina, There's always time to try to get your books published, so I hope that you do submit it. You never know until you try. Plus, I love Leadville, so I'm always eager to read about it! Don't wait for the recognition. You ARE a writer!

    Elaine, it's okay to do it in your timing. The great thing about being a writer is that you don't have to follow any specific plan. Well, until you're published, and you have these things called deadlines... And hey, I hear you on the self promotion. I'm great at promoting others, not so much at myself. But I'll figure it out.

    Melanie, thanks for stopping by! And here's some drive for you- I have a daughter who just discovered your books and she loves you. She wants more!! So hurry up and write more!! The kid reads faster than I can find books for her.

    Myra, that's a great point about the writing expenses not eating into the household budget. So I guess that is where the money really is a great thing!!

    Vince, No train robberies in my books so far... but... I do want to keep writing about Leadville, so maybe we can dig up a robbery or two. I really like blowing stuff up, so maybe I'll have to think about how I can make that work.

    Valri, thanks so much for your support! You're such a sweetheart!

  69. Danica,
    Great post and so true.

    For me, the writing seemed to get harder after book #1 was published. I'd learned so much more and was trying to incorporate it, and same with book #3. Harder.

    But wonderful. You have to love this craft first and foremost.


  70. Danica, wonderful words of wisdom! It doesn't change, does it? The writing life is the writing life...pre-pubbed or post!

    After that first contract, I thought hubby would do the housework while I created award-winning stories holed up in my office!!! I'm still laughing.

    Your book sounds WONDERFUL!!! Love the pics and info about Leadville. Also loved the two cuties riding the train!

  71. Jamie Aw, thanks! I don't feel like a celebrity, but now you've made me feel like the Miss America of writing.

    Steve, I'm glad you're finding so many good resources! And I'm glad that I encourage you.

    Mary, if you find the way to become younger, thinner, and more beautiful, would you share??

    Oh, and hey, I am SO with you on a train wreck!!! I wonder if there could be something that blows up to cause it? tee hee

    Donna, thanks for coming by!

    Tina, there's a church of REALITY? WHAT???

    Naomi SO TRUE!!! I will say that there have been a few more doors opened to me now that I'm published. But it's not a lot, and it's not like Oprah stops by and asks me if we can have tea, you know? I think you have to look for the open doors and be grateful. And, not to sound all Oprah-ish about it, but the truth is, I think regardless of your level, you have to acknowledge every open door and be grateful. Angela Hunt said something really meaningful once about her writing journey. She said that it's always been about finding the open door and walking through. I'm trying to emulate that!

    LA Um, YES!!! I turned in my edits for my book, then went to the ACFW conference and learned from the AMAZING Lisa Rector-Maass. I really wanted to take my baby back and fix it. But hey, I have more books to fix it on in the future, right?

  72. Aw, thanks Debby! Do people's husbands take over cleaning like that? Could they come train mine? After yours, of course! :)

  73. CAROL That's right. There's a train scene in sharpshooter! And one in Doctor in Petticoats with Mandy and Sidney, too, pulling into Denvery.

  74. DANICA if I find it, I will NOT be giving it away. I will be SELLING IT!!!!!!!!!!!

  75. Danica! Great to see you in Seekerville and sailing off the island! Congratulations!

    Your advice is appreciated. I need the "I AM A REAL WRITER" sign. :)

    My husband works in the mining business, I've lived in Colorado and we've even ridden the Colorado & Southern train, so I know I'll like your upcoming book. Late 2014 or early 2015!? As debut author, that will be a long wait, but enjoy all the excitement ahead. Best wishes!

  76. Danica, this is a great post, both in itself and in the conversation it has generated. While I've tiptoed across the bridge with occasional published NF, my novels are still residing with me on the island. I think I've learned enough about the publishing industry not to have any unrealistic expectations, but Melissa's comment about confidence hit home.

    I lack confidence in my fiction-writing ability, so the mss pile up, mostly unsubmitted. I'd love to be working with an editor and agent.

    For me, publication will mean the time I spend writing will finally be justified... that spending hours in my imaginary worlds will no longer be a frivolous use of my time. And there's the old validation thing, too... that people in the know believe in my work.

    That said, I'll refill my mug with some of Helen's wonderful coffee and get back to my writing. :)

  77. Actually, the fact that very little changes after you're published is kind of comforting ... especially if the same people who aren't interested in my writing now won't be interested in it later. Back in my newspaper/magazine life, the moment some people found out about my work they were full of suggestions for what I should write about. Which was okay ... if they'd read what I wrote about ... but most of them hadn't. So if the people who aren't interested in what I'm writing now also won't be interested when my writing is published ... man oh man is that good news.

    Your book sounds like just my kind of read, Danica. Sorry you have to wait so long for it to be released, but it does give me a chance to get my 'to read' stack under control.

    Nancy C

  78. I shouldn't have hit 'publish comment' quite so quickly. I also wanted to say congratulations to Danica on the upcoming release of her debut novel. It sounds great... well worth waiting for.

  79. Danica,

    Wonderful post - again a keeper.

    Maybe the only difference being published versus unpubbed is the validation that someone (other than your family) believed you have talent! That would make it worth it.

    Your book sounds intriguing! Congrats!

    sbmason at sympatico dot ca

  80. Great post! Thanks for the fantastic giveaway! :)

    frequentreader19 (at) gmail (dot) com

  81. Hello Danica, one of my LIH buddies good to see you in Seekerville.
    Looking forward to your book coming. Liked the comments today,always enjoy seeing the seekers...Birthdays need to be treated royally and this group knows how to do parties. congrats ladies on all your hard work.
    Paula O

  82. Sherida YOU ARE A REAL WRITER! Even though I am now nervous about you reading my book. :) Getting the details right is so scary! I did have someone familiar with the mining stuff I used read it and he said it worked, but I'm still nervous!

    Psst... I've heard the nerves don't go away!

    Carol You can do it! I think you bring up a great point about the validation. It's definitely been good to have my hard work (and the money I've put into it!) validated with something more tangible than the good feeling I get writing. But I do have to balance that with remembering that it can't be my sole source of validation. It's definitely a juggling game.

    Nancy C, I'm glad my book sounds interesting to you! And absolutely! on knowing your audience. There are millions of people who won't like my book because it's romance, and millions more who won't like it because it's historical. And that's okay!

    Carol Thanks for the congrats!

    Sue Obviously the validation is a good thing to come of it, as so many people have said. I hope you, and the others hoping for validation get it! AND, all of us realize that we don't need a contract to know that what we do as writers is VALUABLE!

    Melanie and Paula O Thanks for stopping by!

  83. Good gracious at the comments! Skimming...

    We've ridden a couple of those trains before. Loved it. I don't remember where we were, but it was fun. Once there was a gunfight. The kids were BUG-eyed!!! I should be better about documenting vacations and pictures. Sigh.

    Living on top of a mountain isn't all it's cracked up to be, apparently. My husband's aunt once lived in a gorgeous house on TOP of a mountain in NC. Literally, it was the highest peak for miles around.

    The bottom floor was carports, porches, and her husband's man cave. 2nd floor was bedrooms, 3rd floor was living space so you could look out over the mountains and enjoy the majestic view.

    I loved it the one time I got to visit.

    She hated it....

    Who wants to be stuck on a mountain alone except for 3-4 dogs with no way down except possibly a snowmobile or a 4-wheeler in winter?

    Yes, I can see how that could drive you crazy.

    But still... lol

    Yeah, it's the validation I'm after at this point. It's hard to feel validated when not that many people are reading you. I went through a dark (well, dim) place yesterday and tried to think what I'd be doing if I gave this up. As they say, "I got nothin'."
    Kathy Bailey
    Plugging ahead in New Hampshire

  85. Hi Danica:

    I just have to ask: “Is Favorite your real name?”

    I checked your website and I didn’t see where you used a tag line. With a name like Favorite, you’re a marketing natural. Do you have a tag line? How about:

    “Making Every Romance a Favorite”

  86. “Calling All Dieters”

    I think that getting published may be like losing 100 pounds on a diet. (I’ve done this too many times.) It does not solve all your problems, you don’t instantly become popular, you don’t necessarily even look good in your new clothes, in fact, some of your old friends resent you! That does sound a little like getting the ‘call’. : )

    How many times in life do we think, “If only I’d ______(fill in the blank), then everything would be better.” Even a lot of people who win the lottery find misery follows thereafter.

    I sure hope heaven isn’t that way.

    1. Wonderful analogy, Vince. And I'm positive heaven isn't that way!

  87. Train Wreck

    ”Can Anyone Come Up With this Title?”

    A couple of years ago I read a romance, it may have been a Love Inspired, in which the story opened with a very bad train wreck. Many people were killed including the heroine’s husband. She had to wait in the nearby small town for the railroad to give her a $300 settlement for her husband’s death. I think that they were not really married and she was engaging in fraud but she needed the money. I think it had brothers in it. It was a lot like Mary would write. It’s one of those stories that’s very memorable but I can’t remember the title or author.

    Surely someone here can remember this title. It’s a great read.


  88. Being offered a contract gave me a sense of validation. Maybe everyone doesn't do this, but I was really starting to question myself about writing.

  89. Great post, Danica!
    But I'm still excited you came over to the other side of HQ and joined the LIH authors! You're book sounds very interesting and I can't wait to read it!
    Although, Vince's comment made me pause - 50 books! I've only sold one. Better get back to work :)

  90. hi Danica,
    Im still excited for you. I can understand the feelings you mentioned to a degree. I am glad you got the advance and it came at a time you needed it.
    I will be able to people I know Danica I met her in America and she's my friend. (even if you did tell me to go home in the nicest possible way and yes I did deserve it).

  91. Pam, I would LOVE that house!

    Kaybee, Keep PUSHING!! YOU CAN DO IT!

    Vince Yes, it's my real name. I've got the birth certificate to prove it. :)

    I don't have a tagline, but I'm thinking, "America's Favorite Author," has a nice ring to it.

    That book does not sound familiar, sorry!

    Terri, I think questioning it comes to every author at some stage. I think that's where you dig deep and figure out why you write. I'm glad you were able to move on and get that contract!

    Eva Maria, thanks so much! And um, only one book? We've got to fix that! I loved your first!

    Jenny, Thanks! And you're never going to let me live that down, are you? :)

  92. AUDRA--

    I have a friend who heard the entire plot of Season of Joy while we were being fed fake Italian food from the miniature kitchen at our local Children's Museum.

    Our kids were 'cooking' us all sorts of bizarre plates of goodies and we'd pretend to eat them. Meanwhile I was waving my hands and saying, "And THEN she founds out that his DAD is the..."

    We still laugh about that! For her, my debut book is forever linked to sitting on tiny stools and pretending to eat delicious plastic slices of pizza.

  93. Hey its not often I get told to leave. And I did deserve it! Hey its a good memory and I did love meeting you. Oh and Im chook sitting or is that chicken sitting for a month. they have 6 hens that are so tame and cute. Its scary that as I get to there coup I am saying hello girls and talking to them. I take them gifts and they love me and give me way to many eggs.

  94. Danica, congrats on your removing the unpublished tag from your name.

    I'm still on the island. I think the thing that will change most is that I will finally be off the island. I'm looking forward to that day. I'm reminded of the movie Bull Durham. Kevin Costner's character had been in "the show" for only 21 days, but he called it the 21 greatest days of his life.

  95. Virginia, I love that story about the children's museum! Isn't it fun to tell stories in unusual places?

    Jenny, I LOVE it!! Chickens are so fun!

  96. YAY! Danica's daughter likes my books!!! :-)

  97. As a reader, I've thought that it would be neat to write a book ... See your name in print, write something that isn't really seen a lot on Christian fiction (such as Asian characters), but I haven't really taken the time to plot, brainstorm or plan. I keep telling myself, after I finish with school I'll start working on it ...

    Thanks for the chance to win!

  98. We love Lady DragonKeeper!! Good to see you!!

    This young lady has been hanging around here for a long time.

    :) Fan favorite!! I personally would love to read a book of yours!

  99. Lady DragonKeeper, if your books are like your name, I have a daughter who would want to read them, so I say, go for it!!

  100. Aaaaugh....blogger just ate my nice, long comment....So I won't re-type everything, but I'll just say THANK YOU DANICA for this truthful post--I'm still on the island, and used to have the idea it was smooth sailing for all pubbed folks. But as you pointed out, that's certainly NOT the case!

    So while I'm living on the island, I'll keep writing, learning, submitting, and baking my Georgia peach cobblers *wink*. Help yourself--I just took one from the oven!
    Blessings, Patti Jo :)

  101. Thanks Patti Jo! I'm glad this encouraged you. And give me a double helping of that peach yummyness!

  102. OMG! What a party happening here!

    And I missed it. Day jobs have their good points and bad...obviously today wore a bad point or two because I couldn't pull up Seekerville on my computer at work!!

    I'm reading through the comments and love all the train and book talk. Had to laugh at Vince's comment about loving a the story of a book, but not remembering the title or author. There's something wrong with that picture, LOL!

  103. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

  104. As a reader, so pleased to see so many getting off the island.

  105. Love Leadville! Isn't research FUN?!

    Thank you Danica, for an excellent post. Our minds can sure play nasty tricks on us... You've given us some excellent reminders.

    I'm independently published. One of the hardest things to get through to people who know me is that my deadlines are just as important as "real" deadlines. It's the most amazing thing.

    And you're right. Must keep writing while waiting. I'm still struggling to juggle everything that needs to be done, because I'm the one doing it all (mostly).

    Looking forward to reading through the comments. Thanks again for being here! yes please - may at maythek9spy dot com

  106. Thanks for stopping by Mary and May!

  107. Excellent advice! Thank you. And congratulations on your upcoming release!

  108. I would love to change is that the writing would come easy!! It doesn't. I have to be in the mood and the imagination has to be free flowing!

  109. I'd love to win an Amazon gift card. Glad your dog will be okay and that you could pay for the vet bills, which I'm sure were expensive. I have cats. Never took an expensive school trip but I took German in high school and some kids went to Germany. The trip was probably $1,000 (back in the late 80's) and one kid said I should ask for the trip as a Christmas present! I said I didn't get presents that expensive. Still never been to Europe but I've been to Canada twice.

  110. My husband and I were in Colorado this summer. We went to the Air Force Academy in Colorado Springs.
    I didn't even know there was a place called Leadville, but I am looking forward to reading your book.
    Janet E.

  111. Congrats on your debut novel! I'm not a writer, only a reader, but an avid reader that is so grateful for the stories authors create for my reading pleasure. I know a lot goes into writing a book and I appreciate the work you guys do. I wish you much success in your new career!

    Wanda Barefoot

  112. Thanks for sharing, Danica! I'm still on the island, but learning every day. :)

    Please drop my name in the giveaway hat!

  113. Thanks for sharing!! My sister is wanting to be an author, so she should definitely read what you said about what seems to change and stay the same.

  114. Great pointers. It puts writing life into perspective.
    Please include me in the giveaway.

  115. Hi Danica, a reader here I found your view very interesting. I guess as a reader I didn't realize some of the struggles you all go through as writers it makes me appreciate your writing all the more. Your book characters sound very interesting, I will add it to my reading list Thank You.

  116. Danica, I'm so stinkin' proud of you for never giving up. You know I'm still squealing with joy over here in Illinois. Great advice, lovie!

    Mary C., you are cracking me up with your train wreck comments. Just blow one up! Come know you want to. Or, hey...have your heroine be a robber and blow the train up. LOL!

    How I miss you.

    Sally Shupe, if your writing is anything like your editing, you'll end up on the bestseller lists in no time. Repeat after me: "I AM a writer."

    Hugs and love all!