Saturday, October 3, 2015

October Contest Update

We've got a SWEET October Happy Birthday Contest Update today!

We're sending Fairytale Brownies to one commenter. 
So tell us, what's your favorite treat to eat while writing or reading?

And Seekerville is putting their money where their mouth is.

We're going to reimburse entry fees to TWO writers 
who enter a contest listed below and 
send us proof of entry by Saturday, October 10th.

 (Send to

Winner of brownies announced in tomorrow's Weekend Edition. Winners of contest reimbursement will be in the Sunday, October 11th Weekend Edition.

Game on, writers!

Published Author Contests

 The 2016 RITA Award opens on October 22. Plan your time accordingly! September 22, 2015, Online sign-up to judge the contest opens at 9:00 a.m. CT.  October 22, 2015, RITA Contest opens for entries at 9:00 a.m. CT.  You must judge to be eligible for entry in the RITA.

Unpublished Author Contests

Emily Contest. Deadline October 4. Entry: First 5600 words, no synopsis.
Contemporary – Long.
Agent – Stephany Evans, FinePrint Literary Management
Editor – Tara Gavin, Executive Editor, Kensington Books

Contemporary – Short.
 Agent – Jess Dallow, New Leaf Literary & Media, Inc.
 Editor – Elle Keck, Editorial Assistant, HarperCollins / Avon

 Fantasy, Futuristic, and Paranormal
Agent – Nalini Akolekar, Spencerhill Associates
Editor – Allison Carroll, Associate Editor, HQN, Harlequin Enterprises

 Historical Romance
Agent – Marisa Corvisiero, Corvisiero Literary Agency
 Editor – Tara Gelsomino, Executive Editor, Crimson Romance

Romantic Suspense
Agent – Shira Hoffman, McIntosh & Otis, Inc.
 Editor – Kristin Sevick, Senior Editor, Tor / Forge (Macmillan)

Young Adult
 Agent – Laura Bradford, Bradford Literary Agency
 Editor – Alex Sehulster, Editorial Assistant, St. Martin’s Press

Best of the Best is a competition between the first place winners of each category. The winner will receive $100.

Best of the Best Judge:
Former RWA Bookseller of the Year – Kay Meriam, Barnes & Noble

 Four Seasons. Deadline October 10. First twenty-five pages. Open to both unpublished and published authors. Unpublished authors may enter any category. Published authors may enter any category in which they’ve not been contracted or published for three years in any novel-length work of fiction (40,000 + words) in any format (e-book, mass market, etc) to include self-published works. The contest is open to RWA and non-RWA members.
 2015 Final Judges:

Editor: Nicole Fischer, Avon
Agent: TBA

Single Title Contemporary
Editor: Michelle Meade, MIRA
Agent: Saba Sulaiman, Talcott Notch Literary Services

Editor: Deborah Nemeth, Carina Press
Agent: Michelle Grajkowski, Three Seas Literary Agency

Young Adult
Editor: Amy Stapp, Tor/Forge
Agent: Marisa A. Corvisiero, Corvisiero Agency

Editor: Elizabeth Mazer, Harlequin Love Inspired
Agent: Lane Heymont, Seymour Agency

Romantic Suspense
Editor: Mercedes Fernandez, Kensington
Agent: Vicoria Lowes, The Bent Agency

New Adult
Editor: Kristine Swartz, Berkley Publishing
Agent: Veronica Park, Corvisiero Agency

ACFW First Impressions. Deadline for entry is October 15. Entry consists of a back-cover copy type blurb of 200 words or less AND the first five pages of the manuscript. Open to ACFW members and non members. The first round of the contest will be judged by 3 published authors or by experienced non-published authors. The final round will be judged by agents. 

Historical -
Historical Romance 
Novella -
Romantic Suspense 
Short Novel 

Young Adult 

Hook Line & Sinker. Deadline November 1.  Entry consists of the first three pages. All genres. Three judges at least two of them published will critique your first three pages. The top five entries will be ranked by Allison Lyons from Harlequin.  This is your chance to dip your toe in the contest waters all you diva-wanna-bees!

Golden Claddagh.  Deadline is November 1.  Entry consists of the first thirty pages. No synopsis.  Open to both unpublished and published authors. Manuscripts must be unpublished and un-contracted in any form, including self-publishing. Unpublished may enter any category. Published may enter any category in which they’ve not been contracted or published for three years. Open to Celtic Hearts Romance writers, RWA Members, and non- RWA Members. Cash prizes.

Contemporary (New Adult themes allowed)
Young Adult

Finalist judges (editors/agents) not listed yet. 

Sourcebooks Pitch. Deadline November 2. Free! Published and non-published authors. Pitches must be for books not under contract as of November 2, 2015. Judges: Editors Deb Werksman, Mary Altman, & Cat Clyne of Sourcebooks. The editors will select winners to submit partial and/or full manuscripts.

Great Expectations. Deadline: January 3, 2016 (midnight CST). 5,000 word entry limit instead of page count and NO synopsis or blurb. Early Bird rates apply from October 1 to December 1, 2015 (midnight CST). This contest is open to all authors who have never been published in book-length romantic fiction as well as authors who have nott been contracted or published in the entered category during the last three years (during 2013, 2014 or 2015). Cash prizes.

Categories and Final Round Judges:

Contemporary Series: TBA

Historical: Gabrielle Keck, Editorial Assistant, Harper Collins

Inspirational Contemporary: Raela Schoenherr, Fiction Aquisitions, Bethany House Publishers

Mainstream with Romantic Elements: Isabel Farhi, NAL

Romantic Suspense: TBA

Single Title: TBA

Specialized (Futuristic/Fantasy/Time Travel/Paranormal): Kristine Swartz, Editorial Assistant, Berkley Publishing Group

Young Adult: Alice Jerman, Assistant Editor, Harper Collins

New Adult: Julie A Mianecki, Editorial Assistant, Berkley Publishing Group

Other  Opportunities for Writers

Coming to Denver, Colorado, November 6-8, 2015, Nourishing the Writer's Spirit Retreat. 

Check out the Upcoming Marie Force Virtual Workshops here.

Don't wait until the last minute! Start saving your pennies for these great conferences coming in 2016:

RWA 2016 Conference: San Diego, California, July 13-16

Writer's Police Academy 2016: Appleton, Wisconsin  August 11-14 

ACFW 2016 Conference: Nashville, Tennessee.  August 25-28

Introducing our October Contest Diva...


2013 Harlequin’s Love Inspired Happily Editor After
2014 Harlequin’s Love Inspired Suspense Search for a Killer Voice
2015 Harlequin’s Love Inspired From Blurb to Book

When Tina first approached me about being the Contest Diva this month, I told her I hadn’t been in enough contest. Her response was “Rhonda! We have divas who have entered one and divas who have entered 100 contests. You are still a diva. I am slating you in!” Obviously, there is no arguing with Tina. LOL! So, here’s my story.

From the time I was twelve years old, I told anyone who would listen that I was going to be a published author one day. But for the longest time (about thirty-five years), it was just talk. I never did anything to try and achieve my dream. 

Then in February 2013, I saw an announcement for Harlequin’s Love Inspired Happily Editor After pitch contest. I told Mountain Man (my sweet, supportive husband) about the contest, and he told me I should enter. Keep in mind I had never written a complete manuscript. I spent the next couple of days trying to decide if I was really ready to attempt writing. What if I failed? I work a full-time job and come home exhausted at the end of the day, when would I have time to write? Could I really do it? Could I become an author? After listening to me talk for days about the contest and all the reasons I couldn’t enter, Mountain Man said I either entered and pursued my dreams or stopped talking about being an author one day. He said one day is now, and I could either grab hold of my dreams or continue to be too chicken to live them.

How could I not enter after that? Imagine my surprise when my 100-word blurb resulted in a request for a proposal. I quickly put together my synopsis and first three chapters and sent them off to the editor. Six months later, I received a rejection. It was a lovely rejection with lots of encouraging words, but a rejection nonetheless. That was when I was hit full force with the realization that I have a lot to learn about being a writer. It was also around this same time that I found my first critique partners and made my way to Seekerville. I read blogs, studied craft books, and continued to write. 

Then in February 2014, when the announcement came out for Harlequin’s Love Inspired Suspense Search for a Killer Voice contest, I decided to give it another go. I wrote page one and hit send. And before I knew what happened, I had advanced to the final round and had written a full manuscript in three and a half months. Two months later, that manuscript received a revision request. It took me five months to make the revisions and resend the manuscript. 

In March 2015, while I waited to hear back on my revised Killer Voices manuscript, Harlequin’s Love Inspired division announced the From Blurb to Book contest. Although I just knew I’d be getting “The Call” from the editor who had my revised manuscript and would have to dropout of the contest, I typed page one and hit send. My phone stayed silent as I advanced through the rounds and submitted my second completed manuscript. 

Two weeks after hitting send on the Blurb to Book entry, I received a second revision request on my Killer Voices manuscript. Then four weeks after that, I received a revision request on my Blurb to Book entry.

Sometimes, I feel like I’m trying to pass a major test, but I keep failing by a couple of points. Then I remind myself that I now have not one but two manuscripts with revision requests from Love Inspired Suspense. And that’s not a bad place to be for someone who spent way too much of her life dreaming the dream instead of living the dream. 

Our first $50 gift card winner of the month will be announced Sunday!

That's it! Now go forth and contest!


  1. My favorite snack while writing?
    Well, hmmmm. I didn't get into my generally oval shape by being all that picky.

    I like chips. Popcorn. I like mini-cheese Ritz crackers.
    I like so many things I've learned to keep NOTHING in the house because I will gobble it down and then later realize I never even ENJOYED MYSELF.

    If I'm going to indulge I should at least savor the food!

    Now I mostly just drink room-temperature water. :( :(

  2. My list is not complete because I also like sweet things.

    Again, not picky.

  3. I love to munch on popcorn while I read. Triple chocolate chunk brownies and pickles are also a favorite!

  4. Dove dark chocolate ~ letting it melt on the roof of your mouth; Y~U~M. Kathleen ~ Lane Hill House

  5. I'm going with Mary, anything remotely not a real food....I think I'm going to have to go cold turkey and not buy anything that's not meat and vegetables for our house here, because NO ONE IS UP AT 2AM TO STOP ME FROM EATING THINGS AND NO ONE SEES WHAT I EAT...And after the last pregnancy where I couldn't feed the monster inside enough, (and the newly 2 year old eats more than the 4 and 9 year old combined, no wonder I had difficulty keeping up with the hippo in my belly) well, anyway, feeding him became a habit.....

    I am not entering the RITA, my books are too preachy for me to believe I have any chance and therefore, not being a member of RWA, EXPENSIVE for like the longest shot in the world!

  6. I love to eat Pretzel M & M's while reading! Salty and sweet! Love this giveaway as it is my birthday month!!

  7. I love to munch on chocolate. As long as their are no pecans I prett much love all chocolate. :-)

    Rhonda - love seeing your name as diva. I bet you'll end up selling both books

  8. Great diva story!
    Good luck, Rhonda!
    And good luck to everyone entering contests!

  9. Best wishes to all those entering contests. I hope it is a positive experience for you.

  10. Melissa just beautifully reflected my feelings on RITA....

    So I'll say no more!

    And my fave writing indulgence is coffee. When I take a writing break I am a confirmed cake/cookie eater.

    I love them. I love them SO MUCH. It's ridiculous!!!

  11. RHONDA!!!!! You are a diva!!!!!

    I'm laughing at the line about saying "no" to Tina, oh my stars, child, DID YOU THINK WE'VE BEEN KIDDING ALL THIS TIME?????????????????????????????????????????

    No one says no to Tina.




    Which means we're so happy you learned your lesson, darling, and that you're here! Congratulations, and hey, I'm revising an LI book THIS WEEK.... I mean I'm doing just what you're doing. We all get revision letters, we all have to re-write, and I think this is really good/great/wonderful reality practice for you because then you're not S-T-U-N-N-E-D when it happens once contracted!

  12. I have a brand new baby granddaughter "Magdalena Ruth".... which means her big brothers are all here.

    And two of her cousins.

    4 are sleeping.

    1 is not.

    He's snuggled on the couch across from me. He's wriggling. Lights are out. I'm hopeful he'll nod back off.

    Pray with me, okay? :)

  13. When I am reading I love something salty followed by something sweet. Maybe chips followed by a small Hershey's Kiss (one or two...). When I am writing, a cup of coffee...I can't eat and write too.

    Congratulations Rhonda on your two full manuscript requests and revisions. You go girl!

    Happy Birthday Seekerville! I love a good party!

    Smiles & Blessings,
    Cindy W.

  14. He is still awake and now he's next to me.

    And cute.

  15. I'm so excited to see the list of contests! Thanks for working so hard to dig these up for us!

    Rhonda, congratulations! Way to go!

    Have a great day celebrating Seekerville's birthday. I brought mums and hot apple cider for the morning crew!

  16. HAPPY SATURDAY SEEKERVILLE! I enjoy sipping a cuppa tea while reading. Those brownies look scrumptious. Please toss my name in the snack dish.

    psalm103and138 at gmail dot com

  17. My favorite snack while writing would have to be anything sweet and salty. I've recently developed a habit for the Ghirardelli Chocolate Intense Dark Sea Salt Soiree bar. Oh my stars, they are so good! Luckily for me none of my local stores carry them, so it's not a habit I feed regularly.

    Actually, I try not to buy a lot of snacks and junk food because I know I can't resist them if they are in the house, but when I do crave snacks, I'll send Mountain Man to pick up eggs or milk at the grocery store and he'll come back with chips and m&ms and all kinds of junk food. Then I get to blame him for blowing my diet! ;) I don't know how that man puts up with me, but I'm sure glad he does.

  18. Mary, you said "If I'm going to indulge I should at least savor the food!" I am so guilty of mindless eating and never even stopping to enjoy the flavor of the food. I'm also guilty of eating too fast. I blame that on being a school teacher. We only have about twenty minutes from the time we enter the lunchroom until it's time to return to the classroom. That means by the time everyone gets their tray and is seated, we may have fifteen minutes to eat. Sometimes when Mountain Man and I go out to eat, I still eat like I'm in the school cafeteria. I've told him once I'm able to retire, my goal is to learn to eat slowly.

    Thank you, Terri. You're so sweet.

    Thanks, Eva.

    Ruthy, I knew we were kindred spirits. I love my coffee! If I had to choose coffee or chocolate, I'd pick coffee.

    Thanks, Cindy. Having two revision request at once is a bit overwhelming. I had grand intentions of working on both at the same time, but I'm not very good at balancing two manuscripts at once. So, I'm focused on the one that seems to be the easy fix.

    Thanks, Jackie. Yummy, hot apple cider is exactly what this cool north Alabama morning calls for.

  19. Yes, Ruthy, I'm a little slow, and I had to learn the hard way about telling Tina "No." LOL!

    Tina and I were roomies at the Writer's Police Academy. I learned that the first thing she does in the morning is search out coffee, then she goes non-stop, full speed ahead the rest of the day. I loved her instantly!

    I also learned, from watching Tina, to go up to strangers and introduce myself. I'm a loud, fast talking person (which is really unusual in the South), and I come across as being super outgoing. But that's all a cover, because inside I'm shaking with fear. I like to tell people, I'm an extroverted introvert. :)

  20. I don't eat while writing...but I love to have hot tea or iced tea by my side.

    Love that you are the diva Rhonda! You're a star in my book:)

  21. Rhonda, congrats on your writing journey to DIVA status! An inspirational story for anyone who doubts they can do it.

    TINA, those brownies look yummy. Chocolate is the best snack for everything, reading or writing, cooking or cleaning, you get the picture.

    Happy 8 years Seekerville!

  22. Rhonda,
    You're a contest princess!
    We wouldn't know each other if it wasn't for the Love Inspired contests. So glad you entered.

    What would do w/out the Mountain men in our lives? (Actually, I call mine my Handsome Dog...)

  23. Tina, thanks for the contest update! Hope Villagers and Seekers alike are entering.

    Diva Rhonda, I love your story!! We both had the same dream at twelve. Took me longer than you to get in gear. Just so proud of you for entering two huge contests!! They prove you have what it takes. Keep writing and entering and revising. Can't wait to celebrate your sale!!


  24. Congrats, Grammy Ruthy, on the precious new baby girl who carries your name! You're blessed.


  25. RHONDA - Congrats on your Diva-ship! You are SO close!! I won't remind you of how many YEARS I entered, finaled and won contests before I ever got anything on an editors desk. So feel REALLY good about where you are! You're doing great and we're so proud of you!

    Snacks. Hmm. I'm trying to cut back on sugar & salt (I LOVE Lays original Kettle Chips and Lindt 90% cacao chocolate squares -- those dark chocolate "oranges" that come out around Christmas time). So these days it's walnuts, toasted almonds, celery, granny smith apples and little "cutie" oranges. :)

  26. Congratulations on that brand new grandbaby, RUTHY!!!

  27. Rhonda's Mountain Man deserves hero status for encouraging her to reach for her dream.


  28. I'm not a big snacker at the computer. Sorry!

    Janet nibbling on a brownie

  29. RHONDA!!! I am soooooo excited for you, darlin' -- not one, but TWO requests on the first two times out the gate -- WOWZERS ... that is AMAZING!!

    And "Mountain Man"??? LOL ... he sounds like a keeper, my friend, and a true support for which you are going to be more grateful than you ever dreamed possible!

    You said, "Imagine my surprise when my 100-word blurb resulted in a request for a proposal. I quickly put together my synopsis and first three chapters and sent them off to the editor. Six months later, I received a rejection. It was a lovely rejection with lots of encouraging words, but a rejection nonetheless. That was when I was hit full force with the realization that I have a lot to learn about being a writer."

    Ah, yes, the concrete wall every author slams into -- the shocking realization that one has only just scratched the surface of both writing and their dreams. We've all been there -- some more and longer than others, but it's a rite of passage for sure.


  30. RUTHY!!! SUPER CONGRATS AND WELCOME TO SWEET, LITTLE LENA RUTH!! Sooooo happy she's here bringing joy to the family (both immediate and extended Seeker family!).

    MARY SAID: "I like so many things I've learned to keep NOTHING in the house because I will gobble it down and then later realize I never even ENJOYED MYSELF."

    Isn't that the truth??? And I totally agree -- if I'm going to eat it, I want to enjoy and remember it. :)

    RUTH SAID: "I'm laughing at the line about saying "no" to Tina, oh my stars, child, DID YOU THINK WE'VE BEEN KIDDING ALL THIS TIME????????????????????????????????????????? No one says no to Tina. Ever.
    Ever. Ever ... "

    LOL ... just ANOTHER one of the lessons we writers have to learn ... ;)


  31. Congratulations, Rhonda!

    Thanks for the list of contests.

    I love Brownies!

    Have a great Saturday, everyone!

  32. Congratulations, Ruthy on your new granddaughter!


  33. Nice job, RHONDA. I'm sure we'll hear more from you.
    TINA didn't have to twist my arm. I had been hoping and praying she'd ask.
    I don't have a particular snack for writing, but I do drink a lot of tea. Earl Grey in a china cup is the brand of choice.
    I will be on here Oct. 31 and I think it's kind of funny that TINA offered me Halloween, but whatever. I'll try to live up to it.
    RHONDA, I agree with you about being a secret introvert. I've been a news reporter most of my life and that requires talking to people, but sometimes I just have to sit in the car and pray my way into an interview. It's not a problem for me at conferences, which is kind of interesting, because I know writers are going to "get" me.
    RUTHY, congratulations on the grandchild.

  34. First of all, Rhonda, a huge congratulations on being a diva! I LOVED your story. And having TWO manuscripts that are receiving revisions letters? That's huge. Way to go!!

    I don't often snack at the computer. But in a perfect world where I could eat whatever I wanted and 1) not get sick and 2) not gain weight, I would eat either my own home made popcorn, anything dark chocolate or Costco's chocolate covered blueberries, cranberries and cherries mix. YUM!

    Loved the contest update. So, I'm putting this out here, and hoping for prayers. I have yet to submit anything I've written to an agent. I've set a goal to submit something to an agent by the end of this month. So, I'm not entering any contests, and I'm not planning on being real active in the blog world until this baby is delivered. :)

  35. This comment has been removed by the author.

  36. There nothing better than sitting on the front porch swing with a good book and a glass of ice tea or a cup of coffee!

  37. There nothing better than sitting on the front porch swing with a good book and a glass of ice tea or a cup of coffee!

  38. Rhonda Congratulations and way to go. How exciting to be a contest diva. We at Seekerville love contests as you know. smile

    Loved your story and just know you will soon be sailing off the island.

    Yippee!!! Another party coming up.

  39. Snacks while writing. Good grief I would be rolling around if I snacked while writing. I'm like you Mary. I will eat anything that is in front of me. Can't even buy a bag of chips because they are gone before I even get home. sigh.

    However, I do reward myself with a lovely snack when I'm finished writing or have met my goal. Gives me incentive. smile

    Favorites: chips, chips and more chips.

    Oh chocolate is nice too.

  40. Heading off to an IU-Ohio State football game. It's going to be cloudy, cold, may rain. Nothing stops fans. Now the Hoosier team?? Against OS? Shaking in my boots.


  41. Congrats, Rhonda!

    Thank you for the contest updates.

    The brownies look delicious. When writing, I like to snack on oyster crackers.

  42. Please think about entering the RITA.

    I feel so strongly about this. Renee Ryan was just elected to the board of RWA so we have a Christian in office. Every inspie entry we send takes Christ into someone's home. Who are we to judge and say we shouldn't send HIm there?

    If we don't support RWA then WE are the ones taking Christ out of there. We fought so long and hard to get inspirational romance represented there and it breaks my heart that people bail out just because there are elements there they don't like. Really??? Life if full of evil things.

    And yes, we can be the light shining there.

  43. So TINA, I'm on for the 31st. Am I supposed to wear a costume?

  44. Coffee with French Vanilla creamer is my favorite snack.

  45. Coffee with French Vanilla creamer is my favorite snack.

  46. Awww thanks, Dana! You've been such a good, supportive friend through this journey.

    Tracey, thank you. I love to inspire and encourage others to reach for their dreams.

    Connie, I never could have made it this far without your friendship. You're the one who encouraged me after my rejection, and you introduced me to Seekerville!

    Thanks, Janet. I can't wait until the day I can come to Seekerville and announce my first sale.

    Glynna, one of the first things I learned when I started my writing journey was to not compare my journey with anyone else's. We all have our own path to take to our goal.

  47. Janet, Mountain Man will always be my hero! Actually, when my Blurb 2 Book manuscript gets published (and I do believe it will), everyone will get to read the words Mountain Man used to propose to me.

  48. I don't necessarily eat while I'm reading or editing. However, for snacks in general, I love dark chocolate, chips, and honeycrisp apples (though not at the same time!).

  49. RHONDA! Congratulations on TWO REVISION REQUESTS!!!!! That is fantastic!!!!!

    Extroverted introvert? That sounds like an interesting combination. But if it works for you . . . what can I say? I think I'm actually an introverted introvert.

    RUTHY! Congratulations on your new baby granddaughter!!!! Oh, my goodness, I love me some granddaughters!!!

  50. Jeanne T.... Nothing?

    All this time and nothing???????????????

    Okay, you're smarter than I am/was. I submitted stuff long before I was ready because I was egocentric enough to think I was ready.


    This is a great goal, Jeanne. I think I was vying for most rejection notices ever, and I thank heavens for Natasha daily, because she isn't afraid to deal with my Ruthy-persona.

    As we know, it can be difficult to manage. :)

    Go you! Praying for your complete success!!!

  51. I'm more of a coffee/tea drinker while I write, but I do eat Dove's dark chocolate covered cranberries sometimes while I'm writing. Yum!

    I love the contest update posts. Congratulations, Rhonda, on being this month's Diva!

  52. Thanks, Julie! You're so sweet! And yes, Mountain Man is definitely a keeper!

    We've been married 30 years, and I pray the good Lord blesses us with 50 more! I don't know if I've ever mentioned this here before but Mountain Man and I share the same birthday. He's exactly three years older than me. I like to tell him I was his third birthday gift from God, but he had to wait twenty years to get me. (He was 23 and I was 20 when we married.) To me the perfect ending to our love story would be him age 103 and me age 100 passing in our sleep the day after we celebrated 80 years together. But that's all in the Lord's hands, and His plan is much better than any I could dream up.

    I also have to add, I love that you used the word darlin'! Any time I hear that word, I think of the night my husband took me to a Conway Twitty concert when we first started dating. The entire room was pitch black, and out of the darkness came Conway's voice saying Hello Darlin', then a spotlight lit the stage. That's the night I fell in love with my sweet Mountain Man.

  53. Favorite treat to eat while writing or reading?

    Dark Chocolate Peanut M&Ms!

  54. Carol Ann, I agree. Nothing beats sitting on the front porch with iced tea (in the spring/summer) or coffee (in the fall/winter).

    Thanks, Wilani!

    Kaybee! We're co-Divas this month!! I can't imagine anything better. I love that you understand the secret introvert part of me.

    Thank you, Jeanne T.

    Thank you, Sandra. I look forward to the day I sail off the island aboard a shiny sailboat with a sail made out of an LIS contract!

    Thanks, J. Baugh.

  55. Favorite snack? Anything chocolate!

    Actually, when I'm on a deadline crunch and HAVE to get the words down, I use Ghiradelli 60% chocolate chips. I line them up on my desk in rows of ten. I get to eat one chip for every hundred words I write (incentive is everything!). A thousand words = ten chips. A win for everyone :)

    And congratulations, Rhonda! You're a perfect contest diva!

  56. Ruthy! Congratulations on the new grandbaby! What a beautiful name :)

    Congrats to Rhonda, too! I look forward to reading your books... :)

    And I'd say my reading/writing snack usually involves caffeine or water, maybe something crunchy or baked-goodsy :)

    Loving this birthday month. Happy birthday Seekerville!

  57. JAN, I love that rewards system!!!!

  58. Favorite snack...peanut butter M&Ms when I sllow myself t indulge. Otherwise I'll settle for a very hot latte!

  59. Sandra, you make an excellent point about the RITA and RWA. It's definitely worth thinking about. After all, the only way we can chase out the darkness is by bringing The Light to the darkness.

  60. I really need to come up with a name for my current WIP. All the contests want a title and I only have a dorky "working title"! I mostly like to drink coffee while I'm writing. I don't like to eat things that make my hands dirty/messy as then I need to keep wiping my hands off and that takes away from writing :)

  61. Congratulations Rhonda! Do I call you Diva?
    A day is no complete without an Aero chocolate bar, but since I can't get them in Arizona, Hershey's has to do. I also like unsalted cashews. Other than that, I'm a rare breed who doesn't like candy.
    Thanks Tina.

  62. Rebecca, coffee is always my favorite drink. I'm not wild about French Vanilla creamer, but I love the Sweet Irish Cream creamer.

    Leslie, I was wondering if you ate them together. LOL. I love honey crisp apples with peanut butter. Yummy.

    Thanks, Myra. Extroverted Introverts are a rare breed, but I'm finding more and more of them, especially among my writer friends.

    Jeanne T, I didn't query an agent until I'd already entered my third contest. After I made it past the first round of the Love Inspired Blurb to Book contest, I sent queries to three agents. I'm very happy to say I signed with an agent who is encouraging and supportive.

    Thanks, Rose. I, too, love Dove's dark chocolate covered cranberries. You know dark chocolate and cranberries are both good for you, so it's a healthy snack. Unless you eat the entire bag in on sitting like I tend to do. ;)

    Myra, I've never heard of Dark Chocolate Peanut M&Ms. I will have to try them. They sound delicious!

    Thanks, Jan! I love your reward system. I must try it immediately! I need some motivation to get my revisions finished. I really wanted to have them done by now, but I still have a way to go.

    Thank you, Sarah.

  63. I love eating peanut M&M's or CheezIts with tea while reading. :)

  64. Becky, when I have problems coming up with a title, I usually share a brief synopsis with close family and friends and let them help me. I try to come up with a catchy title, but I try not to stress it too much because I've heard editors tend to change the title before publication.

    Marianne, Rhonda is just fine. I'm really very un-diva like. I'm a Southern Girl with a bubbly personality. Actually, the bubbly part gets exaggerated when I'm feeling introverted but trying to be extroverted.

    Amy, Cheezeits are one of my favorite salty snacks.

    Today, I'm snacking on caramels and drinking coffee. I love fall!!

  65. Loved your story, Rhonda.

    Favorite snack? Cauliflower and ranch dip.

    Most neglected duty? Seekerville coffee pot.

    It's brewing!!!

  66. Another GREAT W.E., TINA! 29 degrees in the Northland this morning -- highs to be in the upper 50's and lower 60's a few days next week, so YOUR weather should be SWEET!

  67. Rhonda, I was thinking about asking my family for help with a title. I think now I will :)

  68. Contest Diva Rhonda, what an excellent place to be with TWO manuscripts with Harlequin! Congratulations! Loved your diva post! You are SO close to sailing off the island! Yay!

    Writing snacks.....M & Ms, jellybeans, potato chips......anything chocolate. Yes, those Fairytale brownies would do quite nicely! :)

    Thank you for the contest update.....and HAPPY BIRTHDAY Seekerville!

  69. Yay! Helen is here, and she brought coffee! It smells so good!!!

    Becky, if you still need help, you can find me on Facebook as Rhonda Herren Starnes. Send me a friend request and a message. I'd be glad to help any way I can.

    Thank you for your kind words, Sherida. I have found (not counting Mountain Man) nothing else can lift me up and encourage me like my writing friends/family.

    Okay guys, I'm logging off for an hour or two to work on revisions. They won't write/fix themselves. :D I'll check back in later. I hope everyone has a wonderful day!

  70. "What's Happening?"

    There are over 70 comments and it is only 10:27 am on Saturday! That many comments makes for a busy Saturday and Sunday full weekend. There must be some subtext I'm not getting.

  71. .
    What do I eat while writing?

    See's Candy.

    It costs too much to eat without thinking.

    It tastes too good to forget you've eaten a piece.

    And while dieting hurts, paying for See's candy hurts even more.

    See's is Seekerville's greatest prize!

  72. Sandra and Melissa, I just read your comments about RWA membership. This is interesting timing because I was thinking about asking a question of Seekerville about this topic today.

    I'm regretfully not renewing my RWA membership because of both the expense and the now enforced rule of proving I'm seriously pursuing a writing career (which I do understand about the tax implications and know I could continue as an associate member...for the full price). I'll especially miss the FHL chapter of RWA.

    So my question to Seekerville, if one could only afford one writing group association, which would you choose...RWA OR ACFW? If you don't want to give your opinion here, please email me at sheridastewart (at) gmail (dot) com. And does ACFW require "serious pursuit" as a membership qualification? Will entering contests be severely limited if I'm not a member of either organization? Thank you in advance for your thoughts!

  73. Wonderful Diva Photo!

    Hi Rhonda:

    Your picture is another great shot I wish I'd taken. It has the freshness of a snapshot and the careful framing of a professional portrait. Will you tell us about how it was taken?

    Thanks and Congrats!


  74. I snack on salted caramel almonds when at computer or when reading!

    Congrats to Ruthy on the new baby!!!

    Happy weekend to all!

  75. Yes. I slept in!! Are there any donuts left?????? (Jackie Smith--salted caramel almonds???? That will work for breakfast! Yum!)

  76. Tina, you'll see my comments twice, as I posted them on the wrong page the first time, lol, sorry!!

    Congrats, Rhonda!! I think we'll be reading, very soon, that you have signed a contract.

    Congrats, Ruthy, on another beautiful grandchild!! Is she named after you or your mother??

    My fave treats, while reading, are: tea, popcorn, chocolate. Please enter me for the giveaway - thank you!!

  77. Sandra, I totally agree. And people like Terri Reed fought hard to get an inspirational category in both the RITA and the GH. Don't walk away from people's hard work.

    Remember Piper Huguley's recent post in Seekerville. Preaching to the choir doesn't take much courage. Shine With a Steady Light


  78. So many new faces! Welcome Carol Ann and Marsha B.

  79. Congratulations, DIVA RHONDA!!!!! WOOOT@!!!!!

  80. Rhonda, I love this post. Great encouragement. Congratulations! Can't wait to read how Mountain Man proposed to you!
    No brownies for me. Chocolate triggers migraines lol. And I've been fighting headaches all week due to the excessive rain. If it was snow, I would not be getting headaches lol. I love to snack though. Chips with chocolate chip cookies, or tater skins with lots of sour cream, or peanut M&Ms, jelly beans, and the best-snickers with doritos. But then also celery, carrots, broccoli, and ranch dressing. Yeah, I don't have that very much lol.
    I am very much an introvert introvert. The greatest invention ever was email.
    It's fun reading all these comments!

  81. Rhonda, what fun diva story! Love it! And HUGE congrats on having not one go into the final rounds with LIS. You are definitely pursuing that dream with gusto. ;)

  82. HI Rhonda!!! I just KNOW we'll be hearing about your call story soon! :) As for me, I like coffee or Coke to drink, and chocolate. So, since I'm trying to whip a ms into shape this weekend, I have all 3 on the table beside me. :) Back to work for me, but I had to stop by and say Hi!!

  83. Rhonda, you diva you, CONGRATS ON THE REQUESTS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    When you say you can't resist them when they are in the house, sometimes I forget they are in the house but I swear I heard them WHISPERING.
    In the back of my mind this whisper, find the snack, there's a snack, where did you put the snack.

    And by golly it doesn't take long for me to turn into a snack food detector. And I'll REMEMBER!

  84. Congrats, Diva have scepter and get to order everyone around for a day? Is it hard to do daily chores with a tiara on? I think you deserve the brownies. Speaking of which, don't enter me in the draw because I'm in Canada and imagine that a) they don't ship here or b) if they do it would be ridiculously expensive. I'll toast all the contest enterers with a vegan brownie courtesy of my local farmer's market. Yum.

  85. I'll be happy dancing when Rhonda gets that "CALL", too!


  86. Sally Shupe said, "The greatest invention ever was e-mail."

    Ruthy is laughing, because she understands even though no one in their right or wrong mind would call her an introvert!

    Isn't it weird what gives us headaches? Or gut aches????

    Not to get health-techno, or anything.

    I brought some of that warm, spiced cider and Apple Fry Pies which are to die for!!!!

    Ahh.... Cinnamon!!!!!

  87. Sherida, which organization you belong to is going to be different for every writer according to their location on your writing journey.

    No, there are still many, many contests out there for writers not belonging to RWA.

    I really encourage you to attend an RWA and ACFW conference, because membership alone really doesn't mean anything until you participate in a conference and get the big picture.

    Save your pennies. Both conferences costs are about the same. Here is a rough estimate

    500 conference
    400 airfare
    600 three nights in hotel with one roomie
    100 miscellaneous meals
    100 other miscellany (tips, books, cabs)

    If you save 141 bucks a month for a year. Or 70 dollars a month for two years you can attend.

    You can also cut some of those cost by going 3 to a room. (I've done up to 4) Or finding a conference you can drive to.

    But this is your career. So doesn't your career deserve this? It's also tax deductible.

    If you start now

  88. Thanks, Vince.

    I absolutely hate having my picture taken. Tina and Debby can both attest to this fact as they pulled me kicking and screaming into many pictures at the Writers' Police Academy. ;) Tina fussed on me because my profile picture at that time was one of me holding a book covering half my face, so I knew better than to use that photo for today's post.

    This picture was taken in my front yard last spring. Mountain Man snapped it, and I cropped it so I could use it for my profile.

  89. Well I cut myself off..

    If you start saving now I can give you a hug at RWA Denver 2018.

  90. Tina, you work way too hard. I'm glad you got to sleep in! And of course we saved you a donut.

    Thanks, Bonton!

    Thank you, Sally! It was definitely a one of a kind proposal. Although in my book the proposal takes place on a romantic picnic, in real life, we were sitting on the swing in my parents' front yard.

    Thanks, Pam. I have to pursue my dream with gusto. I wasted too much time before I started my journey, and I'm afraid if I slow down I'll stop completely and never reach the goal.

    Thanks for stopping by Lynn! You're always so encouraging! I'm so thankful we became friends during the Killer Voices contest.

    Thanks, Mary!!

    Kav, I like the way you think! Tina, where's my tiara? Maybe, I can wear one when I have my "Call" celebration!!

    Ruthy, I want a video of that happy dance!! Oh, and can Finn please be in it with you!?! I guess I better work faster, so I can get that call, sooner!

  91. LOL!!!

    Ruthy posted:

    Sally Shupe said, "The greatest invention ever was e-mail."

    Ruthy is laughing, because she understands even though no one in their right or wrong mind would call her an introvert!

    I knew it! Ruthy is also an extroverted introvert!! Or maybe she's an introverted extrovert! Either way, it is a real thing and I'm not alone!

  92. Hmmm snacks while writing... anything small! M&Ms skittles, goldfish etc

  93. Rhonda, thanks for sharing your story. I look forward to hearing how it progresses! :)

    Now, Tina you've tortured me with those brownies.

  94. Well, if I was a member of RWA, I'd probably put my book in there, but otherwise, just to enter a contest, I have to pay $170? I don't need to join another writing organization or have to have an award that badly so that's not a deal for me, unfortunately. It's not that I'm walking away from something since I've never been a member, it's just I haven't the money to walk toward something that I'm not exactly certain is going to help me at this point. But mainly, I am poor and must make the most of the money I have.

    Sherinda, I can't give an educated opinion on which one to choose if only one since I've never been an RWA member. Though that decision was exactly what I faced and I chose ACFW. When unpublished, I did enter a lot of RWA chapter contests, they're normally only $5 or $10 more than a member fee and I certainly didn't enter enough to make joining for $120 and $95 renewal the cheaper route. So not being an RWA member has never hampered my contest entering except for the RITA and GH. ACFW is cheaper at $65 startup $45 renewal and that along with the fact that the members I met within it were the very very most helpful to a beginner when I was beginning despite not yet being a member made me choose that one. I've never had the time for all the perks ACFW provides so I've never felt compelled to join another organization. Basically economics, time management, and the welcome/help that was extended from members made me choose ACFW and not to add on RWA though I've been encouraged from different people to join.

    If you weren't a member of ACFW (which doesn't have a "need to be seriously pursuing writing" as a requirement that I know of), I think you'd have to do the same thing as I did with RWA contests, pay $5 to $10 more for the chapter contests and be shut out from the Genesis, First Impressions or Carol unless you pay for membership.

    So there's also that to take in consideration when choosing just one, is the RITA or GH more of the award you think you'd do well in or do you think you have more of a chance with Genesis/Carol? Or the one you'd like to have the most if you think you've got a good chance at either.

  95. BTW I'm having fun at M&M with Debby, Walt, Tanya...and others!

  96. Mountain Man sounds like a keeper, Rhonda! I've entered two of the same contest as you with much the same results. The doors that open when taking part in a LI anything contest is worth the effort.

    I don't usually snack while writing but I'd be willing to give Fairy tail Brownies a chance :)

  97. Hi Sherida Good question about choosing whether to go to RWA versus ACFW

    Tina gave a great answer. Try each one because we all do have different preferences.

    For me, it depends upon what wip I'm trying to pitch. Which conference has the editors I want to see and the publisher I'm targeting. If I'm targeting Tyndale or Bethany or Harvest House, I'd go to ACFW. If I'm targeting Love inspired or other Harlequin publishers, I'd pick RWA. I pick local smaller conferences that way also. If they are featuring an editor or agent I want to meet, I go to that conference. Most conferences are open to anyone but some offer discounts to members of ACFW or RWA.

    I also pick by what is closest to me and what will be more economical. Next year RWA is in San Diego. I live in the Southwest and have family there so I will definitely go to RWA next year.

    I belong to both RWA and ACFW. I write both memberships off in my taxes. I consider conferences training just as a doctor would go to medical school to become a doctor. I go to conferences because they are great places to learn the trade. I consider the cost as part of the expense of learning a trade. And Tina pointed out, if you start saving now, you will have what it takes. It is a matter of priorities and how serious you take your writing as a career as to what choices you decide on. You also have to be realistic as far as expense, etc.

    Picking a conference is like picking a contest. Who is judging the contest? Are they an editor or agent you are targeting?

    Hope this helps.

  98. Thanks, Missy! Please give Debby a hug for me! Wish I could have driven over for the M&M conference. I know y'all are having a blast and learning a lot.

    Thanks, Jamie. I completely agree that LI contests (actually all contests) are worth the effort. We'll never grow as writers or become published if we aren't willing to put ourselves and our work in front of agents and editors.

  99. Congratulations Rhonda. I agree with Tina. You are a contest diva! I will be entering First Impressions as soon as I can get my pages polished. Hopefully this afternoon if I can tear myself away from what's happening on the football field.

  100. Hi Missy I bet you are having a blat at the Moonlight and Magnolias Conference in Georgia. That is a great conference that our Southern Seekers go to btw.

    I so want to go to that conference and one of these years I will. yay

  101. Happy birthday Seekerville! I've been so focused on pre- and post- conference that I haven't thought about entering more contests until Tina just harassed me on Facebook, LOL. I might look at the ACFW First Impressions contest. It's affordable.
    Great job on going for the dream, Rhonda!
    I love some Baked Ruffles or low fat frozen yogurt with chocolate syrup which sounds healthyish until you eat like 5 servings at once.

  102. DIVA RHONDA! Congratulations on jumping in there and getting your work out. You've done more in three years than most. Take a bow and wear your Diva crown with pride. You earned it. And thank heaven for those around us to give us the boost we need. Yay for Mountain Man. He's a keeper! Write on. The call is coming!

    THANKS TINA, for another outstanding contest line-up.

    My favorite writing snack food is Starbursts. The red package. Although that one still doesn't have enough strawberry! I wish they just made a strawberry pack.

  103. Sherida, as Tina said, you can go four to a room. I did this once and man was it CHEAP to attend that conference.
    I never got to shower though, so....downside!

  104. Melissa, you made some great points. For years I was a member of both, and I learned so much that it was totally worth my membership fees. I was targeting inspirational so I went to multiple ACFW conferences, which were well worth it for an aspiring author. I got to meet agents, editors, authors, readers and it gave me enough of an "education" to make decisions as my career grew. I worked extra shifts and set money aside to pay for things because I was already working two jobs and I knew what I wanted and where I wanted to be.

    But now it's different. This doesn't mean I'm negative about membership or conferences, it's because I'm looking at it from a newer perspective. I don't see ACFW as having as much for published authors, so I'm looking at the NINC conference (going on now in FL) and it's packed with published author info. But I might come to Nashville to hang with people and see people, even though I'm not part of the conference.

    RWA is so big into very sensual things and I'm not comfortable with that, and I don't have the "past" with them that Tina and Sandra have. I like romance being romance, so spending my money there lends assent, an assent I don't feel. And I'm not big on awards, I honestly am not, so that's not a draw to either.

    My writing is a business I love. I mean I truly love it. But I treat it like a business because (like Melissa) money has never been easy around here, and I have to look carefully at where I spend it. With a big family, my concerns are understandably divided, so a return on investment generally rules the day. But for a new author, for someone trying to become established and noticed, I'd say you should belong to both because the wealth of information from both is huge.

    Or just come to Seekerville and chat with editors/agents here! :) While eating doughnuts!

  105. Thanks, Cindy. I'm wishing you all the best on the First Impressions contest.

    Thank you, Janet. LOL! You can not run and hide from Tina!

    Lyndee, you're so sweet. Thank you for your kind words.

    Ruthy, I really hope you go to Nashville! Lord willing, I'm planning to attend that conference, and I'd love to meet you!

  106. Diva Rhonda, Wear your crown proudly. Congrats on the two requests. Wow!
    Ruthy, Congratulations on your new granddaughter. So precious.
    Missy, Thanks for the mention in the comments. I'm having fun, too.

    I try not to snack too much between meals so I try not to snack while I'm working (meals are another story). Still I am never averse to chocolate in nearly any form. I'm very excited to have won a package of Ghirardelli Mini Assorted Chocolates yesterday and will enjoy them with a book in hand.

  107. Rhonda, me too you!!! It's at a better time, being in August, so we'll see if I can work it out!

  108. Hi and welcome to Lynn Huggins Blackburn!!!

  109. Hmm. . . I love to eat brownies. . I just do not like to make them. That is what I eat while reading.
    So fun to see all the contests. I a reader, but love learning about all that goes into writing. I wish everyone the best as they enter contests. I look forward to reading new authors. :-)
    Becky B

  110. I'm just cracking up at some of the snack comments. Leslie-dark chocolate. I am with you. Janet Ferguson..hahah you got me. Five servings of 100 calorie low fat snacks still equals 500 calories.

    Goldfish..Sierra! A favorite snack. And vegan brownies. What is a vegan brownie? There is no meat in brownies.

  111. LOL -- a vegan brownie has absolutely no animal product that includes dairy, eggs, butter. And yes they are decadently divine. Seriously.

  112. Ruthy, thanks for mentioning NINC, I'll have to look that up....after I like sell a house and have my family all together again and pay off all the loans this move is causing....yeah, it'll be a few years. :(

  113. Okay Ruthy and Melissa, What is NINC? I hate sound ing dumb, but it I don't know maybe someone else doesn't either and wants to know also.

    Besides, anything you two gals are interested in ought to be good.

  114. TINA slept in! Whoowhoo! It snowed here this morning, and it was a scheduled "no power" day as the power company had to replace a pole and repair some lines. I huddled under the blankets! It's about 43 outside. Power is back on, so it's warming up inside. Oh, for triple digit weather when you need it! (Actually, it got cool inside but not cold) and now I'm having coffee!

  115. Okay, I googled it. And I'm so proud of myself because I'm usually so helpless around the Internet. chuckle

    Here is the link to NINC which stands for Novelists, Inc.

    Thanks Ruthy and Melissa for the heads up.

  116. Thanks for the thoughts on writer organizations, Tina, Melissa, Sandra, Mary and Ruthy. All helpful and appreciated! Many hugs in the future!

    Rhonda, good to see you in #1K1HR today writing to get those revisions sent! Cheering for you!

    So many snack ideas! So little time!

    Happy weekend of writing and/or reading to all in on!

  117. Thank you, Tanya! I'm jealous that you are at M&M and I'm stuck at home trying to write while Mountain Man yells at the television. Oh the joys of Football Saturdays. ;)

    Becky B, I agree brownies are much more fun to eat than they are to make.

  118. Sandra, thank you for the NINC link! I didn't know what that was....and forgot to ask Ruthy. Going to check that now.

    Thank you, Seekerville, for EVERYTHING you all do for us!!!!!! Exclamation points necessary!!!

  119. WOW, 30 years??? You sure age well, my friend, and you know what? You look like you could be related to our Tina Radcliffe, seriously. Lookers, the both of you!

    LOVE that you like to tell your MM that you were "his third birthday gift from God, but he had to wait twenty years to get" you! :) ADORABLE!!

    My hubby is 3 years 3 months YOUNGER than me, so maybe I'll tell HIM that God gave him a birthday present 3 years early ... ;)

    Oh, don't you just LOVE the endearment, "darlin'"? One of my favorite characters from my O'Connor Irish family saga, Patrick O'Connor always called his wife and kids that, so it just kind of stuck with me. But your story is SOOO much better -- that would have given me goosebumps hearing Conway's deep voice in the dark. :)


  120. Julie, you're too kind! Thank you for your sweet words. And I'd happily claim Tina as family.

    A faithful, loving spouse should always be considered a gift from God. So, I think it should count even if you are older. :)

    Conway's deep voice in the dark was definitely a goosebumps moment!

  121. Diva Rhonda! Congratulations on those revision requests! And thanks for sharing such an upbeat Diva Story :-)

    Nancy C

  122. Diva Rhonda! Congratulations on those revision requests! And thanks for sharing such an upbeat Diva Story :-)

    Nancy C

  123. The keyboard is my friend in overcoming snack-itis. My favorite snack was Cheetos. Impossible to eat without developing orange, sticky fingers -- even after I licked them. It was write or eat Cheetos. And for a while the competition was fierce and often not pretty. But finally the love of writing (and non-sticky keyboard) triumphed.

    But in my dreams it is possible to eat Cheetos and type ...

    Nancy C

  124. Congratulations, Rhonda! Way to go! :)

    I'm sliding in here at the last minute to comment tonight, haha. We've been traveling all day.

    I'd love to test my new plot idea in the the First Impressions or Hook, Line & Sinker this year. I'll have to brainstorm and write the entry first, though, lol. Might be a good idea to get all my conference followups done first, too. We'll see!

  125. My favorite snack is anything chocolate. M 8 M's are a favorite. Please enter me in the drawing.

  126. Sending love to all from the GRW Moonlight & Magnolias Conference!

    Congrats to Diva Rhonda!

  127. I am a tea drinker and I like to munch on fruit and nut trail mix when I am writing . At times there have been pecan sandie cookies, I will confess. The more I sit in that chair, the more I must exercise to keep the pounds off. Both are a continual battle, if you know what I mean.

    Rhonda: I am sending you best wishes for lots of luck and success with the rewrites. You are a Diva for sure.

    Happy Birthday Seekersville!

  128. I am a tea drinker and I like to munch on fruit and nut trail mix when I am writing . At times there have been pecan sandie cookies, I will confess. The more I sit in that chair, the more I must exercise to keep the pounds off. Both are a continual battle, if you know what I mean.

    Rhonda: I am sending you best wishes for lots of luck and success with the rewrites. You are a Diva for sure.

    Happy Birthday Seekersville!

  129. I love to snack on dried cranberries while reading. Of course, I need to have my coffee to wash them down. Ü

    ~Cindi Altman

  130. Thank you for your well wishes and congratulations, Nancy C, Natalie, Debby, and Suzanne.

    Cindi, I like dried cranberries, of course if they're covered in chocolate I love them more. ;)

    I sure hope I didn't miss replying to anyone. After Mountain Man and I returned home from our Saturday morning breakfast at the local diner and I discovered 20+ comments, I tried not to drift too far away from the computer so I wouldn't get behind. :) I had a productive day of chatting and revising. Couldn't ask for a better Saturday.

    Tina, thanks for pushing me out of my comfort zone! I had a blast being yesterday's Contest Divas. I have learned my lesson, and while I may not immediately jump for joy at every suggestion (who am I kidding, it will be an order) that you give me, I'll definitely tamp down my initial "no" response.

    Happy Birthday, Seekerville! Thank you for all that you do to help unpublished writers like myself have the skills and confidence necessary to work hard to build the vessel that will carry us off the island of the unpublished.

  131. I seem to be always last to get to comment. My email says this came at 2:30 a.m. this morning, the 4th. Most of you commented on October 3rd at 12:17 a.m. Does this blog come from California?? I am in Florida??

  132. Congratulations, Diva Rhonda! You're an inspiration to many, myself included. Like you, I work full-time, outside the home so squeezing in writing time is a challenge.
    For whatever reason, as Suzanne mentioned, I always receive the Seekerville posts a day after, so I apologize for my tardiness.
    Thank you for all of the great contests announcements! My favorite snack food...Pumpkin Seeds!

  133. Rhonda, I believe you have to be a published author with two books to go to that NINC Conference? Here are the requirements to join that group. I checked it out because it is two towns over from me.

    1.Per the Novelists, Inc., Bylaws, an applicant must have published two novels to be considered eligible for membership. For the purposes of this document, a “novel” is defined as a single work of fiction consisting of at least 50,000 words. A collection of novellas, short stories, or other short works, even if they are connected with regard to content, presented in a single volume does not constitute a novel under this definition.

  134. My favorite snack is a cookie & Cappuchino while I read :)
    I also always get my Seekersville post a day late..
    Thanks for all the great Birthday gifts you are celebrating with!
    Happy Birthday to YOU!

  135. I hope this giveaway isn't just for writers! I don't snack often when reading, as I get so involved in my book, I don't focus on anything else! :-) If I do snack,I prefer healthy choices. Raw unsalted or lightly salted nuts are my favorite. But sometimes on a cold winter night, I'll make a cup of vanilla chai tea or French vanilla cappuccino and about 4 peanut butter sandwich cookies (you know, similar to Oreo but in peanut butter, like Nutter Butters).
    I'm with Deanna, my post always comes a day late! Wonder why that is?
    Happy birthday,'s to many more!!

  136. My husband took me on a road trip yesterday (love that man!) so I had to wait until today to read on, but againg worth it! Loved reading from the contest diva!!!! I am always inspired by these writers. Rhonda! Thank you for sharing your story! I wish you the best and I appreciate your encouragement!