Because the last few weeks have been so auspicious, and the events and comments came at an ever-increasing rate, I have posted the highlights by day. My prayer is that as you read them, you will see Gods hand in my “Year of 5,000 Books!”
On Sunday, October 23, I received an email from Tracey Awwad, which read, “I read the first book and loved it! When is the second book coming out? I can't wait!” When I saw her she exclaimed, “I read the book in one sitting because I couldn’t put it down!”
That evening I attended a writers group where friends seemed eager to hear all that was going on while some wrote out checks and told me how to inscribe their novel.
On Monday, October 24, I met with the members of the Laguna Woods Writers Club to prepare for my Friday interview. Both of them had read Casa de Naomi, and visited my “Year of 5,000 Books” and “Casa de Naomi Reflections” blogs, as well as my PaulaWordsmith website. The questions they asked put me at ease for I could see that I was in the hands of expert interviewers. That belief was validated when our interview commenced. By the time our segment ended, I felt I had made two new friends. As I stood, I realized that they had done a lot to prepare and wanted to give them something as a thank you. However, I had nothing except the book they had read. When I asked if they would like me to inscribe the novel they were handing back to me, they smiled and I inscribed their books. “I really wanted to keep this but didn’t want to ask since you bought it,” they seemed to say in one voice. As I headed out I heard one of them comment, “Casa de Naomi reminded me of my Flamingo lifestyle after I graduated college and teaching Spanish after that first year.”
I spent the week unpacking from our move, discovering new things about Laguna Woods Village, and meeting new people, one of whom is an author and true to an unspoken protocol, we exchanged books. However, as we sat chatting amicably she thumbed through Casa de Naomi, and before I left bought a copy for a friend.
On Friday afternoon, the Lutheran Church of the Cross-hosted a Casa de Naomi Event. Though attendance was light, those that came enjoyed the program and one woman took my contact information as she exclaimed, “My woman’s group will definitely want you to visit and present Casa de Naomi as you did here!” she scooped up the books she had bought, smiled, and headed for home.
On Sunday, October 29, I got a call from my daughter Cheryl who shared, “I planned to read a chapter every night. However, that didn’t happen because when things started to build I had to read more. I told myself, 'Just one more chapter, then I’ll go to bed.' But I couldn’t put the book down until I finished the read! I always knew that you told good stories, but how did you do that?”
I would have loved to tell her that I had honed my craft, but who am I kidding, I’m still a journeyman (in my case woman) author who was blessed beyond my wildest imaginings when the characters began to speak. All I did was write what Naomi and the others said. Still, I must confess that a sense of having accomplished what I wanted to engulfed me.
Thursday, morning I spoke at the Biola University Library, about My Writers Journey from Manuscript to Publication, afterward I manned (womaned?) a Casa de Naomi book table that Dean Vliet set up in the library. As students walked by I spoke with them about the novel and before I knew what was happening students were hurrying away with one of my novels in their backpack or hand.
I know this sounds like a heady experience, and it is! However, it’s getting better all the time! Tonight I prepare for a weekend event at Abiding Savor Lutheran Church. Next weekend my own Laguna Woods Village will host a weekend event and I’ll be there selling Casa de Naomi!
Having sold half of the books I ordered and having presold 120 books prior to signing the contract with Tate Publishing this leads me to one conclusion, if God is involved in our life and our work, we can do anything! Even a dyslectic artist like me can write a book that has people (even daughters) asking, “How did you do that?” Think I’m wrong? Then let me share that five readers have already purchased the second novel in the Casa Saga, and two have spoken about the book their reading and sold the novel to their friends! Obviously, I have accomplished what I wanted to. I wrote a historic romantic fiction that readers would not put down until they had finished the read. Moreover, it appears that I have entertained them so well that readers are telling their friends about Casa de Naomi and to their own amazement selling the novel because of their enthusiasm! To order Casa de Naomi prior to its December 20 release date, visit http://www.PaulaWordsmith.com