by Donna MacMeans
My local RWA chapter, Central Ohio Fiction Writers, held their annual conference this past weekend. With tomorrow's release date of my debut novel, The Education of Mrs. Brimley, so imminent, well - I felt a bit of a star. It's been an amazing year, but upon reflection I realized I owe it all to Nora Roberts.
You see last year at the Atlanta awards ceremony, Nora was the Master of Ceremonies. Access to her was limited to the select group of people holding reserved seating tickets, and as a Golden Heart finalist, I was one. A friend encouraged me to have my photo taken with her. I obliged even though I looked pretty crappy (evidence shown at right). However, as I approached, the photographer was a bit alarmed that the hook and eye on her zipper wasn't fastened. He suggested all manner of embarrassing incidents might ensue and so asked if I would fix it.
Consequently, I had my fingers down the back of Ms. Roberts dress.
Yes. I touched the hallowed skin of Nora Roberts and if I think hard enough...close my eyes and mentally transport myself back a little over a year ago...yes, I think I actually felt the fairy dust make a leap of faith into my fingers. That must be it! Consider the evidence -
Moments after this memorable event, I won the prestigious Golden Heart on a manuscript that I'd pretty much decided would never sell - this based on an impressive stack of rejection letters.
Three weeks after that the book went up for auction. Within a week I had an agent, an editor, and a three book contract.
Mrs. Brimley received a four star review in Romantic Times magazine. The hero, Lord Nicholas Chambers, was honored with a K.I.S.S. designation (Knight in Shining Silver).
My first book signing which was this last weekend sold out in ten minutes. Of course the bookseller only brought nine books to the event to be sold - but hey - a sell out is a sell out.
Finally, I won tickets to the 2008 Romantic Times convention to be held in Pittsburgh.
Now some might call this a stream of good luck - and they'd be partially right. Some might call this the result of hard work - and they'd be right as well. But I sincerely believe Nora started it all. So thank you, Nora Roberts.
Have you had a succession of luck that you can attribute to a specific cause? Have you been fortunate enough to have touched the esteemed Ms. Roberts? Tell all and one commenter will receive an autographed copy of The Education of Mrs. Brimley.