Saturday, July 23, 2011

Publishing Coincidence...or...Serendipity

by Donna MacMeans

I imagine everyone by now knows that I have a new release coming out August 2nd. I've certainly posted the cover enough (and will do so again, because I love it! - haha).

But did you know that my REDEEMING THE ROGUE is not the only book of that title being released August 2nd? Yes, Harlequin is releasing a Love Inspired Historical by debut novelist CJ Chase with the exact same title on the exact same day! How cool is that? I've invited CJ to join us to talk about the similarities and differences in our two stories. That's CJ in blue.

First, I'd like to explain the big difference between our stories. Mine is single title which means a larger word count and is written to be "funny, sexy and exciting" (Per Romantic Times review). The sensuality between the hero and heroine is a huge part of the story, and the level is Hot!

My Redeeming the Rogue is dark and probably one of the grittiest books ever published in the

Love Inspired Historicals line. In addition to my hard-drinking hero, there's that little matter of what my heroine does on pages 173-174. (Nope. I'm not going to say what. You'll just have to read the book.) She causes a lot of people pain by her actions. The sensuality level is sweet, but the situations are not.

One of the first similarities I noted between us was not between the books as much as between the authors. CJ has a number of Golden Heart finalist entries to her credit. At the RWA convention in Orlando (2010), she won the Golden Heart for Inspirational Romance. I'm a two time past GH finalist and a one-time winner as well, though in a different category, so we have that in common. (FWIW, I finaled in Romantic Suspense and Long Historical.)

I won the 2010 GH for Inspirational. That was my 6th final. I finaled previously in Short Historical, Long Historical, Romantic Suspense and Historical (twice). The last couple historicals I wrote had a faith thread in them, so I switched to Inspirational. Historical inspirational, of course.

How did our stories manage to have the same titles? Originally, I called my book "Redemption of a Rogue" as its the third in the Chambers trilogy. The previous two books had Education, and Seduction in the titles so Redemption sort of fit right in. However as the time between this book and Seduction lengthened, my editor and I decided to make the title more active by changing the "Redemption" to "Redeeming."

This was the manuscript that won the GH with the title of Unforgiven. My editor suggested the Redeeming the Rogue title. I was uncertain at first, but then I realized that the very first scene is quite different from what one expects from an inspirational. The book starts with the hero drinking himself into oblivion. Inspirational readers should know right from the title and that opening scene that this is going to be an edgier inspirational than many others.

Can I just say here that I read CJ's opening on her website and it's beautiful. This lady can really write! I encourage everyone to hop other there and check out her excerpt!

Donna, your book's sensuality level might not be sweet, but you sure are! Thank you for the kind words.

Based on CJ's cover (and isn't it a beauty?), I'm guessing her book involves an overseas journey, as does mine. The methods of transportation are different. CJ's book is set in 1815 which meant masted frigates were de rigour. My book is set during 1881 so I had a few more options, steamship being one of them. Now to be honest, I originally had my characters traveling in a masted sailing vessel, but my editor early on nixed one scene and that changed everything - including the method of transportation. Currently, my couple travels on a tramp steamer more accustomed to hauling freight than passengers. Of the two, CJ's boat is far more romantic than my little steamer---however both promise close proximity and doesn't

THAT bode well for romance (grin).

Thanks! It is a great cover. I love the colors in the sunset. The ship on my cover is an American clipper ship, but I also have several scenes set on a British frigate, HMS Impatience. The Impatience brought the treaty of Ghent (the treaty that ended American's second war with Britain) to America. At least, in my book that's the name of the ship that transported the treaty. Originally, my Redeeming the Rogue opened with a scene on the Impatience, but that
scene ended up on the cutting room floor when I had to trim the manuscript by 7K words to fit Love Inspired Historicals' length requirements.

Both of our heroines travel great distances to reach their objective. CJ's Mattie Fraser leaves Washington D.C. on a mission that takes her to London, England. My story begins in London and travels to Washington D.C. Arianne Chambers is a sister of a duke, and well accustomed to luxury. Had she her druthers, she'd have chosen a different way to cross the Atlantic than a tramp steamer.

My heroine was born and raised in Washington, D.C. Choosing DC for her background was a no-brainer for me because I lived in the area for a couple of decades. Mattie was in Washington on August 24, 1814, the night the British army burned the city. She met a British officer who offered to help locate her brother, but then he never contacted her afterward. She traveled to London to see if she could find anyone with information about either the officer or her brother. In London, she meets Kit DeChambelle.

Mattie's had a difficult life. After her mother's death when Mattie was 8 (and her brother 6), her father, a Washington shopkeeper, consoled himself with alcohol. Her brother ran away from home. Mattie has always believed if she'd just been a better sister and daughter, she might have been able to save her family.

Both our heroes are in need of a little loving intervention. Both had violence in their pasts that haunt them in the present. I don't think CJ's hero required the sort of makeover my hero endures, he's pretty heroic looking to begin with.

My hero, Michael Rafferty, was born in Ireland but works for the British government. Fenian rebels had detonated a bomb years earlier that killed his parents and younger brother. Now he's on a mission to track down the one responsible. That trail leads him to America where he must play the role of a diplomat to lure the killer into the open. However, an Irish rogue needs a woman's touch to help him play the role convincingly. Who better than a sister of a duke?

Kit (Christopher James Michael -- yes, Michael) DeChambelle is the 3rd son of the Earl of Chambelston. he had a pretty normal childhood for a boy of his social class. Then when he was an 18-year-old Oxford student, the director of clandestine services discovered his facility with languages (he's fluent in 6 languages and can even mimic different French accents) and recruited him for the war effort against Napoleon. It sounded exciting at first, but looking back, he realizes that each compromise he made along the way cost a little piece of him. And now he's not sure what's left. All he wants to do is forget the past.

Romantic Times Bookreviews says this about CJ's REDEEMING THE ROGUE: "A suspenseful mystery highlights this budding wartime romance." Fresh Fiction (just got the review today) says "The story (my REDEEMING THE ROGUE) is witty and mysterious until the last page. Mystery! We have that in common as well. I know CJ's story deals with the Treaty of Ghent. My story concerns the assassination of President James Garfield. So I guess I can add that both of our mysteries have political implications.

Oh, yes. The Treaty of Ghent had an unusual provision that the British government was going to exploit. And Mattie's brother had discovered what it was.

Finally, and maybe most important, CJ has chickens and we have a rooster! Is that coincidence or what? Actually, she has a rooster as well, but I don't think he has the charm of our GR. (grin)

As for prizes:

I'm afraid my publisher didn't send me any arcs for my REDEEMING THE ROGUE, so I can only offer a copy of the published book which won't be available till August 2nd - or you can always request a copy of The Seduction of a Duke - which I can send now. I have my author's copies, and I've even gotten my first fan mail! Harlequin sends out books to their book clubs a few months before the official release date, so I'll offer a copy of the inspirational Redeeming the Rogue as well. It may even arrive before it's available in stores. Very cool! So let's choose two winners. The first can pick the book they want and the second gets the other.

Before I mention today's question for discussion though, I did want to mention that I'm running a new contest through August 15th that has a Kindle for a prize. Details are on my website (which is also new) at

And be sure to visit my website to read an excerpt.

So my question today is: Do you believe in serendipity? Have you experienced something fueled by a series of coincidences. While I'm not surprised that CJ and I have the same title - that happens - it is sort of unusual that we have both the same title AND the same release date. Anyone know of that happening before? I've seen releases that have had the same stockphoto cover. Anyone have examples? Let's chat about coincidence both personal and in publishing.


Landra said...

Woot! Donna. Did I snag him??

Helen said...

Only just LOL

Have fun with him Landra


Donna MacMeans said...

Landra - You sure did! Quick on the draw, you are! You beat out Helen by 2 minutes. Not easy to do!

Helen said...

Whoo Hoo Ladies what a great coincidence and I gotta say Donna I am soo looking forward to your book I have it on my wish list and will be ordering asap. CJ your book sounds fantastic as well I will be adding this one to my wish list as well and I will have to read them one after the other to keep the serindipity going LOL.

I do believe in serindipity although I cam't think when it has happened to me although I often get the feeling of dejevu and can never work that out either LOL.

Huge congrats Ladies on the releases I am looking forward to reading both of them.

Landra he may be a bit put out because he didn't get to go and meet CJ's chooks I would watch him if I were you

Have Fun

Anna Campbell said...

Hey, Landra, way to go on the chook. Although I think redeeming that particular rogue might be beyond the powers of even the feistiest heroine!

C.J. and Donna, what a fascinating interview. The contrasts between your stories really highlighted the qualities of each.

Isn't it funny about coinciding titles. When UNTOUCHED, my second book, came out, Samantha Hunter also had a Blaze called UNTOUCHED that month. And we were both up for RITAs that year! I think they even put my photo up for Samantha on the RWA website! We cleared that up pretty quickly but I could see how they got confused! I'm pretty sure Samantha's didn't include a virgin hero!

Anna Campbell said...

Oh, and my birthday is 24th August. It's actually a day riddled with disaster. Didn't know about the 1812 war thing, but it's also the day Vesuvius buried Pompeii and the French Catholics slaughtered the French Protestants back int he 16th century in the St. Bartholomew's Eve Massacre. I'm sure my birthday can't possibly count as a similar disaster! Quiet, chook!

Mary Preston said...

I do believe in serendipity. (I just have trouble spelling it, apparently.) It's like when you are thinking about a person you haven't seen for ages & then there they are & soon you are tripping over them everywhere.

Debra E. Marvin said...

Loved the interview, Donna. Thanks for hosting CJ. In my opinion, two rogues is just right!

I've just started CJ's book and I loved the pacing, well, loved the setting, characters and plot too. She writes beautiful prose as evidenced by all her awards.

I definitely believe in serendipity. I just call it a 'God-coincidence'. He's the master Plotter after all.
There are many styles of Christian fiction, especially in the romance department, and I'd suggest, if anyone is curious, CJ's book is a great one to try out.

Best wishes for great success with your ROGUES, ladies! Happy Reading!

Donna MacMeans said...

Hi Helen!
You know, I used to get that sense of deja vu much more frequently when I was in my teens and younger. I don't get it so much now and you'd like when you're older - you'd have it more frequently as you've been more places, done more things.

However, I must admit I'm more aware of serendipity, coincidents that seemed to occur for a reason, a little too much for just chance.

LOL on the rooster going to visit CJ. And she thinks she's blessed with a lot of eggs now...

Donna MacMeans said...

Hi Anna -

I'd forgotten that there were two UNTOUCHED entries that year - and they came out the same month? Wow.

Hey CJ - maybe that Anna's experience will work for us. I wouldn't mind being a RITA LOL

History's been so long in the making, I imagine each of us has bad events assigned to their special day. But your birth, Anna, certainly isn't one of them. We were all blessed by your arrival.

Donna MacMeans said...

Marybelle - That happens all the time! It's sort of freaky, isn't it?

It's sort of like doppelgangers (another "fun" word to spell) when two unrelated people look so much alike as to be mistaken for the other. (I'm talking naturally, Kate, not with the assistance of photoshop LOL)
I see more of them now - but then that might be because my eyesight is so much worse (grin).

C.J. Chase said...

Helen, thank you for your kind words, and I hope you enjoy the book.

As for the serendipity, has anyone else here ever had the experience of picking up the phone to call someone, and they were already on the other end? I've had that happen a couple of times. They called me at almost the same minute I tried to call, so my phone never even had time to ring. Really weird.

Donna MacMeans said...

Hi Debra -
Thanks for visiting the lair. It's been a pleasure meeting CJ. The first time my husband read one of my books, he looked over at me in awe and said "You can tell you're a writer." I would say the same about CJ. Her excerpt is so lush with finely drawn detail that one reads it and says "this girl has talent." It's really not surprising that Harlequin snapped up her book.

So I'm thankful that we both have the same title and same release date as I'm not sure we would have had the chance to chat otherwise. I'm definiately a fan, now.

C.J. Chase said...

Anna, I'm going to agree with Donna. I'd like to see a repeat of two books with the same name in the RITAs. Particularly, the 2012 RITAs.

My birthday is one of those that just never had anything exciting happen on it in history and no famous people born on it (well, Clark Gable -- that's about it). Guess it's all up to me to make it famous :)

C.J. Chase said...

Oh, I like the world doppelgangers. My "twin" must live in Tazewell, Virginia. We were there one time (we were taking a scenic route between TN and DC). There was a small street fair of some sort going on that day, and 3 people came up to me and said "Hello." I decided either Tazewell is the friendlies town in the world, or I have a double there. Poor thing was probably chastised afterward for being so rude in not acknowledging people at the fair.

My favorite hard-to-spell word is schadenfreude -- which would seem to indicate I'm not a very nice person.

C.J. Chase said...

Deb, thanks for stopping by.

And I just want everyone to know, I didn't pay her to make the nice comments about my book. Deb and I both write rather un-sweet heroines, which can sometimes be a hard sell in the inspirational market. We just think they have further to go in their character journeys.

C.J. Chase said...

And I want to add, in response to Donna's comment, that having a book with the same name turned out to be an unexpected blessing in that it allowed me to meet someone whose path might not otherwise have crossed mine.

This was Donna's idea, and I'm glad I said, "Yes." What a charming and gracious fellow writer!

Rose Maybud said...

Wow, it's really surprising that your stories have so much in common--and yet they're so completely different, too!

Still, whether gritty or humorous, inspirational or sexy, both sound like terrific reads.

Best of luck, and I can't wait to read both of your books!


Lisa Cooke said...

Hi to Donna and CJ- I think the stars have simply lined up for both of you! I've never had a coincidence like this one, but I often have something happen at just the time I needed it, like an awesome fan mail when I'm wondering if anyone is actually reading my books! LOL
Good luck to both of you!

Donna MacMeans said...

Rose - Isn't it funny how that worked? I suppose the title REDEEMING THE ROGUE does have that historical sound - so that shouldn't be surprising. However, that we bought traversed the Atlantic in our stories - that my heroine headed for Washington DC, while her heroine left was really something.

Thanks for stopping by.

Donna MacMeans said...

Hi Lisa -

I so hear you on fan mail! I've had the exact experience many times. Seems like everytime I write a book, I reach that point in the middle when I sincerely question my ability to write and wonder if I'm going to have to return the advance - and then a fan will write and say "Don't stop!!!" Love that. It's so inspiring at a much needed time.

Thanks for coming by!

Donna MacMeans said...

Thanks CJ - The blog would have been really boring without your input (grin). So everyone thanks you as well.

Caroline said...

Hey, Donna and CJ,
Really fun post! I loved how you two compared the stories back and forth. And both have exceptional covers. You both must be thrilled.

CJ, I don’t know if you remember, but I was in your 1999 Short Historical GH group. My book, then titled Chasing Jessie, was my 2009 release, Where the Wind Blows. Small world, huh.... :)

Congrats on both books and I look forward to reading them in August.


jo robertson said...

Wow, Donna! That is a big hunk of serendipity. Good luck to both you and C.J. I KNOW your book is wonderful; now I'll have to check out C.J.'s.

Of course I believe in serendipity. The whole concept, however, reminds me of that movie with John Cusak of the same title. Sweet romantic film.

In my own life I can think of one. I've never met a person with my birthday, Feb 29, which is unusual b/c it's a leap year. I worked with the librarian's assistant for many years and found out that not only was she born on Feb 29, but she was born in the same year!! So we shared identical birthdays and ages and the leap year aspect only made it more unusual.

Kat Sheridan said...

CJ and Donna, I LOVED this interview! What fabulous fun to have so many coincedences! (and a little freaky as well!) And I totally believe in serendipity. It's happened far too often not to be real. Good luck to BOTH of you!

Janie Mason said...

The only series of coincidences that I can recall is when we bought our current home. Too many to list here, but let's just say that God meant for us to buy this house, and we're here for the duration.
Can't wait until August 2nd, because both books sound wonderful!

C.J. Chase said...

Rose, when my editor first suggested the title, I searched the entire RT database and couldn't find where the name had been used before. And then when I first saw Donna's book up on Amazon (a few weeks before mine went up), I thought Amazon had my name wrong!

But I'm going to predict no one uses the title again for a while because Donna and I are going to make it too famous. It will be like "Gone with the Wind" -- too famous to be used over.

C.J. Chase said...

Lisa, I got my first fan mail (the real fan mail kind, from a total stranger who doesn't know me and will probably never meet me) about 2 weeks ago. And it was such an encouragement that someone took time out of her day to let me know she enjoyed my work. One of those "firsts" to cherish.

C.J. Chase said...

Hi, Caroline. That GH final was a long time ago, so we should probably tell everyone that we were very, very young back then. Didn't we final again together too? I think my finaling ms from that year will never, ever see daylight. In fact, I may destroy it myself so my heirs don't get ideas about capitalizing on my soon-to-be-famous name and publishing it after I'm gone.

C.J. Chase said...

Jo, back in high school, and friend and I (both February birthdays) were in class one day and I said, "Wouldn't it be cool to have a February 29 birthday?" And it turns out, the girl right behind us did!

I once worked with a woman who shared the same birthday and the same first name with me. She is tall and black and I'm short and white, so we would joke about being switched in the hospital at birth.

C.J. Chase said...

Thanks, Kat. The credit goes to Donna for the idea. Obviously, the books have some similarities (like a roguish hero who gets redeemed), but others are indeed kind of freaky. The DC - London setting really makes me shake my head.

C.J. Chase said...

Janie, can I just say I'm jealous you have a house "for the duration"? The house I loved more than any other (and where I lived longer than any other) is 200 miles from where I live now (sigh). It's an old Victorian-with-potential we bought in a moment of insanity. So cool. We worked to restore that house the entire time we lived there. Yes, I love all things historic, even my houses.

Donna MacMeans said...

Jo - I hated that movie. Can't remember why now. I believe in serendipity, but not that movie (grin). Of course, you and I have been in opposite camps over movies before LOL.

Donna MacMeans said...

Caroline - Yes we were both kissed by the cover fairies. CJ has an example of two books that have the same cover - they just flipped the negative and changed the color on the dress. Good thing our two publishers didn't do something similiar. LOL

Donna MacMeans said...

CJ -

You searched the whole RT database? Wow!

Remember when I mentioned that I analyze things to death - here's a case in point. A couple of years ago RT made a list of 1000 romance that should be read. That's another long story...but I took the list that was broken down by genre and year - and looked at the key words used in the historical titles. When I hit Redemption -I knew I had my third book in the series. When I saw Rogue - it was an instant connection. Titles can be such tricky things.

Donna MacMeans said...

Kat - It is a little freaky, but I'm guessing it happened for a reason. Seems like most of these freaky coincidences do.

Donna MacMeans said...

Hey Janie -

Okay - I've been to your house. What sort of coincidences are we talking about? ( No dead body sort of coincidences, right? I still remember those nooses hanging in the back yard - LOL)

(Before anyone suspects Janie of being a serial killer - the "nooses" were ropes for a swing, only the swing had disappeared. The remaining rope with a loop was high off the ground and looked like - well a noose.)

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

Hi CJ! Hey Donna! What an amazing coincidence! It is such a great title though, I guess I shouldn't be surprised. :>

And Landra, you got the GR!!!

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

Hahah! Helen, she beat you out by a mere whisper of a tail feather! :>

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

Of the GR, Anna C said: Although I think redeeming that particular rogue might be beyond the powers of even the feistiest heroine!

So true!!

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

Oh, and in answer to your question, Ladies, I do believe in serendipity. :> (altho, like MaryBelle, I sometimes have trouble sphelling it!)

I seem to attract serendipity and I love it. :>

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

Oh, and as to birthday events, Anna, mine is singularly boring. Some big fires, a couple of jet crashes, but mostly plays opening, Heisman trophies being awarded (college football), and a couple of people being crowned throughout history.

I'm the "day after the Day that Will Live in Infamy" after all. Dec. 7 is awash with famous stuff - Cicero's assasinated, Delaware is the first US state to ratify the US Constitution, inventions, patents, Pearl Harbor...

Dec. 8? not so much.


Trish Milburn said...

Fascinating to see all the similarities between the books, and they both sound fabulous! It's been a while since I read any historical, so I'm in the mood to do so.

I do believe in serendipity. One thing I found serendipitous was finaling in the GH in 2003 and meeting MJ Fredrick. We are the best of friends now and we have SO many things in common. I'm sure there are other things that I just can't think of at the moment.

Good luck with both of your releases.

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

Donna, you and CJ WERE both kissed by the cover fairies. Great covers, both of you.

I remember you doing the RT 1000. (I think I offered to help too and fell down on the job!)

You said: A couple of years ago RT made a list of 1000 romance that should be read. That's another long story...but I took the list that was broken down by genre and year - and looked at the key words used in the historical titles. When I hit Redemption -I knew I had my third book in the series. When I saw Rogue - it was an instant connection.

I just love that you do this kind of analysis too, btw. :>

Deb said...

Donna and CJ, how cool is this coincidence?!! I say way cool. Both books are now on my TBB list because they sound like great romantic reads.

I think things that happen in life that are coincidences are neat. Sometimes, unreal, but who would have ever thought some of the events that happen, you know?

I may have had this happen to me. Tell me what you think. My husband and I would never had met if I hadn't had his son in my third grade class and his son was having some problems. DH moved to Iowa from TX to be near his uncles and some aunts and he happened to live in the town where I taught....Kind of coincidence? Not sure, but glad that he moved here and not elsewhere in TX. ;)

Thanks for the post today, Ladies. I enjoyed it.

Donna MacMeans said...

LOL Jeanne - Somedays you just can't keep the CPA out of the romance writer.

Donna MacMeans said...

Awww Deb - That sounds just like a romance novel! Coincidence or not - I'm glad someone was pulling those strings for you up there! How's his/your son doing now? Sounds like more than one may have benefited by this coincidence!

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

Donna said: LOL Jeanne - Somedays you just can't keep the CPA out of the romance writer.

Hahahah! Well, I guess not, but I still love it. It's such USEFUL information in a sea of concept and opinion. :>

C.J. Chase said...

Donna, searching the RT database for a title is easy. Just go to the Book Search page and put in the title you want with quotations around it. For instance, if you type "Redeeming the Rogue" you'll find 2 books: one by the great Donna MacMeans and one by some unknown chick CJ Chase. Of course, last fall, you'd have gotten a blank page back.

Useful to know if you want to see if a book's been published with that title recently. Of course, it doesn't tell you if another publisher has one with that name in the pipeline!

Cassondra said...

Hi Donna, Hi CJ!

What a wonderful blog today! I have not heard of the same title release on the same day. How cool, though. If y 'all had known way early, you might could have done some interesting dual marketing or something. That's kind of an attention getter I think.

Lessee, the question..

I have said before that I actually don't believe in coincidence. I believe that much in things working together on purpose to bring about certain events. Now I do recognize that coincidence does happen, but I believe it's really rare. I believe that most of the time, it is planned and we just call it coincidence.

I have too many stories to even begin to tell, about serendipity, or "planned coincidence" has worked for the positive in my life. I've begun to sort of watch for it actually.

Cassondra said...

Landra, congrats on the GR!

Cassondra said...

Debra E. Marvin said:

In my opinion, two rogues is just right!

OH! That's a great strapline.

Two rogues is just right.

You'll have to send Donna and CJ a bill. *grin*

C.J. Chase said...

Jeanne, you know those birthday cards that have the "if your birthday is" with all the interesting things that happened in history? I guess you and I get the boring ones. Your post did remind me that the Superbowl is sometimes on my birthday. Of course, as luck would have it, my birthday coincided with the Superbowl in 2009 but my favorite team didn't get in again (and win again -- Go, Packers!) until 2011.

C.J. Chase said...

Trish, I love it when little events bring a special person into you life. My best friend and I met on an AOL writers board back in 1999 (right after I'd first finaled in the GH, when Caroline and I were very, very young). The thing was, neither of us participated in that message board a lot. But she had a question and put it out there on a day I checked the board. Our first phone call lasted four hours.

Donna MacMeans said...

Trish - I've met the best people finaling in the GH - like twenty banditas (grin).

CJ - my first final in the GH was in 1998 with my very first manuscript - so I'm right there with you young chicks.

(Cough, cough on the great reference)

C.J. Chase said...

Deb, I would say meeting your husband was meant to be. You could write that story down and submit it to Harlequin. And detractors accuse us of just writing/reading "escapist fantasies" women. Ha! We write real life.

Deb said...

Donna, our son is doing well now. He was just married in April and lives and works about 30 minutes away.

Deb said...

CJ, I agree. It seems like an untrue story, but we really did meet that way.

God has a purpose for everything and I'm glad He had our paths cross. Hehehe, even if it was for us to straighten out son Jeremy's behavior and work on his multiplication facts. ;)

Donna MacMeans said...

Cassondra -

Interesting thought about a combined promotion, but I'm guessing that such a promotion wouldn't sit well with the Christian booksellers. We do represent two very different genres.

C.J. Chase said...

Hi, Cassondra. I did find out some months back (when the books went up for pre-order on Amazon), but of course, my first thought was "Oh, no!" Which just goes to show you about first impressions. I've had a blast meeting Donna and being here, and none of it would have happened but for the duplicate title.

Donna MacMeans said...

Okay - so you've got me curious about events occurring on my birthday (and it's all Anna's fault). So I checked wikipekia for October 24th. OMG! Battles out the wazoo! 1929 - "Black Thursday" Stock Market crash.
2008 - "Bloody Friday" the next big stock market crash.

October 24th is United Nations Day so there is that...but for an accountant - that's a lot of doom and gloom in that birthdate.

Deb said...

Oh, yeah, about birthdays. Before I tell you the date of mine, just let me say that I had it first for 37 years. September 11. For the first 3 or 4 years after that day in 2001, people would look at me funny.

C.J. Chase said...

Donna, I'm not sure I'd want to hire an accountant born on the day the Stock Market crashed -- twice! You might want to keep that tidbit from employers. Too funny.

(Of course, you could just tell everyone that a day with that much bad news needs something to celebrate, so you expect a party every year.)

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

Donna another cool one to look up events on your day is then click on Days

It's enlightening!

Donna MacMeans said...

Oh Deb - hugs on that birthdate! That would have been so difficult. While the memory associated with 9/11 is still there, the nation seems to be healing. I hope you're not getting the same stares if you celebrate your special day.

Donna MacMeans said...

CJ - I've been trying to convince my clients to find someone else to do their taxes for the past couple of years - but they won't leave! LOL! I think it has a lot to do with trust. Finding a new accountant is awkward, and as most of these people have become friends as well as clients, I can't say no when they ask every year if I'll do their returns.

And hey - the money fuels my writing vice. Let's face it - those conventions aren't cheap!

C.J. Chase said...

Deb, that would be a tough day for a birthday because the tragedy was so big and so recent. I can understand people feeling awkward about a celebration on that day.

Valerie Bowman said...

This is so fun! Same title. Same release date. And it's so great that you've joined forces to talk about the books. I love that!

Donna MacMeans said...

Hi Valerie!

Yeah, how crazy is that? It's been fun meeting Cj though.

Jeanne M said...

Donna, I have read all your books and love them all!

CJ - I'm definately checking your website and finding out more about your books. My grand-daughters name is CJ (Carolyn Jeanne) and she cute as a button and fiesty which she has to be to keep her two brothers in line. It's a hard job when your 3 1/2 but she rules the house.

My coincidence is personal and it's meeting my husband. He was a in the Navy during Vietnam and he and his friends rented a car to take a drive to the beach. My girlfriends from work had talked me into going to a party out at the beach after work. We ended up a a red light at the same time next to each other and they asked my friend where we were going and she told them. When we got to our destination they followed behind us and asked if they could join us. We all laughed and told them it was a Tupperware Party!

A few weeks later we ended going out for coffee on Saturday morning and guess who was there when we went in - the same 3 guys!

That's how I met my husband. Forward a few years when after he finish his tour and had married and had two sons.

When they went school I needed to get a job to help ends meet but wanted to be home during the day so I didn't have to worry about days off or their activies. My husband said "Why don't you become a Tupperware lady - you buy enough of it."

That's what I ended up doing for the next 16 years and what helped us get our sons thru college with no student loans!

Thank you Tupperware for my husband and being able to give my children the chance to get an education!

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

Jeanne M, that is so cool! I love it! Tupperware RULES!

heehee. I love the stuff. All the new "disposable" stuff just doesn't compare. grins.

And how cool that it brought you together w/your DH. And totally cool that it helped pay college. With two boys of my own, i can so understand that need!

C.J. Chase said...

Hi, Valerie. Isn't it fun? This is one promo I would have never predicted when I first sold!

C.J. Chase said...

Jeanne, how cool that you met by chance -- twice.

Which side of the country were you on? My husband works on Norfolk NOB these days, so we're in Southeastern Virginia. (We live south of Norfolk, not far from the NC/VA line.)

C.J. Chase said...

Jeanne (Duchess -- I guess there are two Jeannes now), my oldest son is 16, and we're starting to look at colleges. Yikes. I don't know if there's enough Tupperware in the world for that.

Na said...

I think I would like to believe in serendipity but I don't. It's one of those things I'll have to see/experience to believe. I do like reading about it in stories though. At least it's "real" there. As it so happens, the only things that seems to happen and is fueled by coincidences is bad luck! When something goes wrong, everything goes wrong!

Suzie Johnson said...

I love the compare/contrast between the two books. Great coincidence, and both books sound awesome!

Nancy said...

Landra, congrats on the rooster!

CJ, welcome, and congratulations on your debut! I'm sorry ti be so late to the party. We've been out all day.

Yes, I believe in serendipity. Of course no examples are coming to mind when I need them, though. I think all romances are, to some degree, about redemption, and rogues arr always populaar, but it's really weird that not only your titles but your release months coincide!

Both books sound terrific. :-)

Nancy said...

Oh, I see we're counting birthdays--so I have an example. The dh and his sister were born on the same day, 2 years apart.

Nancy said...

And my niece was born on my dad's birthday.

Okay, I'm done now. :-)

LilMissMolly said...

Hi Donna! I've seen at least one of Linda Howard's books have the same cover art - I'm pretty sure it was Drop Dead Gorgeous a few years ago and I'm thinking the other book came out the same week or month too.

Congratulations to you both on your new releases!!

C.J. Chase said...

Na, I think there are things that happen for a purpose we can't always see from our perspective, things beyond coincidence. Of course, I write inspirational novels, so I doubt anyone is surprised by that admission (grin).

C.J. Chase said...

Hey, Suzie. Glad you could make it. The comparisons were fun to do. And a little eerie sometimes.

C.J. Chase said...

Nancy, your family isn't the first I've heard where (non-twin) siblings have the same birthday. I can't imagine the odds of that.

C.J. Chase said...

LilMissMolly, Donna made reference to a re-used cover I mentioned to her yesterday. If you look at this month's (July) Harlequin Historicals, one of them might look familiar if you are a Carla Kelly fan. The cover is "flipped" (characters are facing the other direction) and the heroine's dress color was changed, but otherwise, it's the same picture as on a Carla Kelly book from a couple years ago. Being a CK fan, I recognized it almost at once.

C.J. Chase said...

Oh, the cover issue I noticed was at least the same company re-using a successful picture. Not quite the same as when you have two eerily similar covers from different publishing houses. I think sometimes when publishers are following trends, they end up mimicking each other and you end up with covers that look very similar to each other.

Donna MacMeans said...

Jeanne M - How cool is that! You could say that tupperware put the kids through school...or burping did (grin). Do the bowls and stuff still do that? I love how the excuse used back at your "first meet" came back around years later. Love that coincidence.

Donna MacMeans said...

Na - You know, I didn't used to belive in serendipity either. Let's face it - I'm an accountant. We believe in planning and execution, two plus two equals four, strange things happen but something precipatated it. My beliefs have changed as I've gotten older. i've seen too many things that seem to be pure serendipity - good things. Sometimes I don't recognize them as such at the time, but looking back i'm grateful for that initial action. So now I believe in coincidence and serendipity. To be honest, it's more fun that way (grin).

Donna MacMeans said...

Hi LilMissMolly - I'm waving! LOL - If anyone would know of a similar cover - you would. Thanks for stopping by!

Donna MacMeans said...

Nancy - You're never late to the party. Thanks for taking the time to stop by. Hugs!

Jo's Daughter said...

I planned to visit a friend later that week but went 3 days early bringing a box of traveling sweets as a gift. Not sure why I setteld on those at the time but it would become clearer. She was packing the car and told me her daughter just gave birth earlier then expected and they where leaving in 1 hour.

The daughter lives far away so the sweets where welcome as they didn't have time to go to a store. I think had I not acted on my impluse I would not have seen her for a while as she had intended to stay on after the birth to help. My friend would have canceled our plans a little later & this way things worked out as she knew I traveled with them in thought.

Libby said...

Donna and CJ--One of the best blog posts I've read about releases. I love me a great romance replete with mystery and a bit of politics, so I can't wait to read Redeeming the Rogue and, uh, Redeeming the Rogue. Yanno, you might get a photo of a reader holding both books open where the covers and titles are visible. Or two readers, a book apiece. Could be fun promo, too.

Jeanne M said...

CJ -

My husband was on the Forestal (yes when they had the fire) and was in Norfolk but I met him in Jacksonville, Florida when he was stationed at NAS Cecil Field.

He joined the Navy Reserves and was on helicopeters at Quonset Point in Rhode Island where we live. When they closed Quonset he went up to South Weymouth, MA and was on P-3's (of Hunt For Red October by Tom Clancy Fame). Helicopters and P-3's were a lot safer than when he was loading ordinance on the fligt deck of an aircraft carrier during Vietnam!

He worked as a Master stone mason and really enjoyed his "fun job" of traveling all over the world in the Navy Reserves until he retired.

My older son was in the Navy and stationed in Norfolk but only did one tour. My younger son went to The Citadel and wanted to be a Navy NFO but they wanted him in submarines and he hates enclosed spaces so he said no. I guess it's because only 6 in his class got their electircal engineering degree in 4 years that the wanted him in subs. Fortunately he went on an academic schlorship so he could "politely decline" the offer!