Tag Archives: Goal Setting

October Spotlight: Amy Alessio

Set * Overcome * Achieve * Receive

October – November

You may encounter defeats, but you must not be defeated. In fact, it may be necessary to encounter the defeats, so you can know who you are, what you can rise from, how you can still come out of it.

Maya Angelou

 

Our October Dare to SOAR participants!

J.C. DePaul
Sherry Weddle
Katrina Bauer
R.Q. Bell 
Michele
j. leigh bailey

Author Spotlight

Amy Alessio

Amy Alessio is an award-winning librarian (a former WC librarian of the year!) with a black belt in karate. Her latest reference book is the co-authored of A Year of Fandom Fun (American Library Association, 2017). Her fiction includes the Amazon bestselling Alana O’Neill mysteries with vintage recipes, including the 2017 Struck by Shillelagh. She teaches graduate-level young adult literature and webinars on book trends and social media. She enjoys helping authors find readers through her work at AuthorRx and she is a romance reviewer for Booklist. Her husband and two sons keep life moving fast. You can see them on their live cooking videos.
As Lia Violet, she’s been having fun writing romantic erotica with Ginger Leone since February. They have two series and a review blog. Their latest searing collection, Autumn Fever, the third in their Seasons of Three series, was published on Halloween, 2017.
Connect with Amy: www.amyalessio.com
Lia Violet & Ginger Leone review blog: https://www.facebook.com/QuickieRomanceReviews/

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September Spotlight: Livia Grant

Set * Overcome * Achieve * Receive

September – October
You have to trust in something – your gut,destiny,life, karma,whatever.
This approach has never let me down, and has made all the difference in my life. – Steve Jobs

 

Our September Dare to SOAR participants!

Susan Gibberman
J.C. DePaul
Cindy Maday
Sherry Weddle
Katrina Bauer
j. leigh bailey
Stephanie Scott
Kelly Garcia
Michelle Blackstone
Carmella A. Martino

 Author Spotlight

Livia Grant

USA Today bestselling author Livia Grant lives in Chicago with her husband and two sons… one a teenager, the other a furry rescue dog named Max. She is blessed to have traveled extensively and as much as she loves to visit places around the globe, the Midwest and its changing seasons will always be home. Livia started writing when she felt like she finally had the life experience to write a riveting story that she hopes her readers won’t be able to put down. Livia’s fans appreciate her deep character driven plots, often rooted in an ensemble cast where the friendships are as important as the romance… well, almost.

Livia will be releasing her 16th book in October. It’s the next installment of her Black Light series.

 

Connect with Livia:

Facebook: https://facebook.com/lb.grant.9

Twitter: https://twitter.com/LBGrantAuthor

Email: lb.grant@yahoo.com or livia@liviagrant.com

Instagram: @liviagrantauthor

 

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August Spotlight: D.L. Larson

Set * Overcome * Achieve * Receive

August – September

 

However bad life may seem, there is always something you can do, and succeed at. While there’s life, there is hope
— Stephen Hawkins

 

Author Spotlight

D.L. Larson

What do you do when you believe you are headed for the big city only to fall in love with a farm boy? You say, “Good bye, city life, and bloom where you are planted.”

I thought writing was something other people did, not me. I wrote news articles for a lady’s group, I chartered another organization in my hometown and wrote the constitution for it. I became a state officer in that women’s group and used my writing often. I wrote Christmas scripts for church, never believing I was being a writer. I stumbled upon my first paying job. A woman called and asked me to write a poem for her organization. I wrote the poem and got paid. I still have the wooden chest I purchased with the money I received.

By the time my third child was born I had a yearning to write, really write. I went back to school thinking I was pretty rusty with the English language. Seemed I remembered a great deal and won my first awards in writing fiction.

I completed my first manuscript in 1992 – I know, I’m really old! My daughter had just graduated from high school.  It wasn’t until my youngest graduated from college did I sell my first book. I waited and waited for the reviews to come out. Nothing happened. My publisher promised me she had sent my book on months ago. I finally grew brave enough to call Midwest Book Review and asked about the delay. They had misplaced my book. They apologized and within a week I received a personal note and a great review. Nine months had gone by and I never entered that book into any contests. I would like a do-over, if I could …

My other two books, historical fiction, received a few awards. Promises To Keep won a Reader’s Choice Award in 2008, and Promises My Love was in the top fifteen finalists in 2014 in the ILA Soon To Be Famous Illinois Writer Contest.

My goal is to continue writing even as life gets in the way. Currently I’m working on a sci-fi romance. When I get that first chapter to behave and say what I want it to say … I’ll move on to publishing.

My office is littered with my historical romance series along with my sci-fi series. Long ago I prayed for something meaningful to write about and the good Lord delivered. I have seven books in my historical series complete ~ waiting for me to do something with them. Plus my sci-fi series has four and one still a WIP… if only my grandkids weren’t so darn cute … I’d be sooo much more productive.

Writing is a journey. So don’t be discouraged if your writing takes a backseat now and then. I’m still working my way up the mountain.

DL Larson

 

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July Spotlight: Blythe Gifford

Set * Overcome * Achieve * Receive

July – August

Writing has freed me from the despair of living. ~ Anita Brookner

 

Our July Dare to SOAR participants!

 

Any one who wrote a paragraph or a page or a word on a page.

Anyone who sat their butt in the chair and put their fingers to the keys

and attempted to create something original.

Anyone who deleted words and rewrote them. Added a comma and took it out again.

Changed giggled to laughed and then laughed back to giggled.

Anyone who made any effort at all toward their dream of dreams.

Even if it was the tiniest of a tiny baby step. However big or small.

That step matters.

Dare to Dream.

Dare to Soar.

 

Author Spotlight

Blythe Gifford

After many years in public relations, advertising and marketing, Blythe Gifford started writing seriously after a corporate layoff. Ten years and one layoff later, she became an overnight success when she sold her first book to the Harlequin Historical line.

The Chicago Tribune has called her work “the perfect balance between history and romance.”

Set primarily in in England and on the Scottish Borders, most of her books incorporate real historical events and characters.  RUMORS AT COURT, her May release from Harlequin Historical, is her third Royal Wedding Story.  Like SECRETS AT COURT and WHISPERS AT COURT, it takes place against the backdrop of the weddings and marriages of the children of the medieval English King Edward III.

A long time RWA member, Blythe will be attending her 24th RWA National Conference this year.She is lobbying for a special pin in honor of her 25th!

For more information, visit www.blythegifford.com, www.facebook.com/BlytheGifford, www.twitter.com/BlytheGifford, www.pinterest.com/BlytheGifford, or www.instagram.com/blythegifford/

 

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June Spotlight: Mary Jo Burke

Set * Overcome * Achieve * Receive

 

June – July
 
The Dearest ones of time, the strongest friends of the soul – Books.
Emily Dickinson

 

Our June Dare to SOAR participants!
Melonie Johnson
Patricia Ruocco
Kelly Garcia
Amy Alessio
Cindy Maday
j. leigh bailey
Stephanie Scott
Chris Foutris
Katrina Bauer
R.Q. Bell
Savannah Reynard

 

Author Spotlight

Mary Jo Burke

Mary Jo is a USA Today bestselling author and 2014 WRWDC Marlene Award winner. She writes whatever pops into her head including paranormal, fantasy, romance, and mystery stories. Long ago, she decided to put the voices bouncing around in her imagination to work. She has volunteered from Girl Scout cookie mom to softball concession stand coordinator and everything in between. Being an eternal pessimist and multi-tasker helps Mary Jo put her characters in desperate situations. She reads, likes her kids, and is currently working on her next project. For more, please visit www.maryjoburke.com.

 

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May Spotlight: Shelley Tracy

Set * Overcome * Achieve * Receive

 

May – June

 

I cannot live without books- Thomas Jefferson

 

Our May Dare to SOAR participants!

 

Susan Gibberman
J.C. DePaul
Cindy Maday
Sherry Weddle
Katrina Bauer
R.Q. Bell
Stephanie Scott

 

Author Spotlight

 

 

Shelley Tracy

 

Shelley Tracy is a writer, mother, grandmother, and a retired teacher. She is happiest when she is spoiling her grandchildren or writing. Currently, she is working on another paranormal story.
 

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April Spotlight: Barbara Valentin

Set * Overcome * Achieve * Receive

April – May

One of the most beautiful qualities of true friendship is to understand and to be understood.

 

Our April Dare to SOAR participants!

Alma-Marie Graf
Denise Swanson
J.C. DePaul
Patricia Ruocco
Carmela Martino
Sherry Weddle
Katrina Bauer
R.Q. Bell
Robin Kuss

 

Author Spotlight

Barbara Valentin

 

Barbara is a corporate minion and over-scheduled parent. A second-generation journalist, her work has appeared in the Chicago Tribune and its affiliates as well as Mom.Me. Her true love, though, is writing romantic comedies. If you’re looking for fun, light stories filled with relatable characters and happy endings, be sure to check out her Assignment: Romance series!

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January Spotlight: Tracey Devlyn

Set * Overcome * Achieve * Receive

 

January – February

 

A writer–and, I believe, generally all persons–must think that whatever happens to him or her is a resource… All that happens to us, including our humiliations, our misfortunes, our embarrassments, all is given to us as raw material, as clay, so that we may shape our art.
                                                              -Jorge Luis Borges

 

Our January Dare to SOAR participants!

Carmela
Vanessa M. Knight
Denise DiLeo
A. Lynne Wall
j. leigh bailey
Stephanie Scott
Cheryl Lynn Neumann
Sherry Weddle
Katrina Bauer
R.Q. Bell
Nicole Leiren
Regena Bryant

 

Author Spotlight

Tracey Devlyn

 

USA Today bestselling author Tracey Devlyn wanted to be the next Dian Fossey and explore the wilds of Africa, but that was before she met chemistry and calculus and realized a business major, rather than a scientific degree, might be more up her alley. With a creative mind capable of bringing the nineteenth century to life and an enthusiasm for research that borders on disturbing, it was no surprise when she started penning romantic historical thrillers that have been met with high critical acclaim.  On top of all that, Tracey is a closet entrepreneur who co-founded the popular Lady Jane’s Salon-Naperville, Chicagoland’s exciting new reading salon devoted to romantic fiction. Tracey spends her evenings with her sexy practical-joke-playing husband who she has yet to pay back for the sneaky underwear trick and her weekends torturing her Regency-era characters. For more information on Tracey, please visit www.TraceyDevlyn.com.

Tracey’s latest release:

LOVING DEEP

Steele Ridge, Book 4

When passions of the heart and soul collide, these lovers are forced to make dangerous choices.

 WOULD YOU LIKE TO BE A DANGEROUS DARLING?

DANGEROUS DARLINGS is an exclusive reader group of authors Tracey Devlyn, Adrienne Giordano & Kelsey Browning.

If you enjoy ROMANCE, then come join us! Our DARLINGS are passionate and enthusiastic readers who love to spread the word about our books. As a DARLING, you’ll be the first to see our covers, read our excerpts, and vie for our giveaways! Oh, and we have a lot of fun.

Interested in becoming part of our exclusive Dangerous Darlings reader club? Are you on Facebook? Love Tracey, Kelsey and/or Adrienne’s books? Sign up HERE!

Questions? Contact Lisa at DangerousDarlingsStreetTeam@gmail.com

Dangerous Darlings Rules:

If you have any questions email DangerousDarlingsStreetTeam@gmail.com. You must be 18 years old to join. Dangerous Darlings is sponsored by authors Tracey Devlyn, Adrienne Giordano and Kelsey Browning. No purchase necessary. The authors and virtual assistant are not responsible for transmission failures, computer glitches or lost, late, damaged or returned mail.

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October Spotlight: Stephanie Scott

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October – November

A book must be the ax for the frozen sea within us. – Franz Kalka

 

Our October Dare to SOAR participants!

Robin Skylar
Cindy Maday
Lynne Wall
j. leigh bailey
Stephanie Scott
Chris Foutris
Sherry Weddle
Katrina Bauer
R.Q. Bell
Savannah Reynard
P.E. Calhoun

Author Spotlight

View More: http://simonekphoto.pass.us/stephanie

Stephanie Scott

Almost six years ago, I started my first National Novel Writing Month. I’d always wanted to write a book but never quite knew how to start. I discovered this world-wide writing event with just enough time to dive in. I had no plan. It wasn’t pretty. (But I finished! Barely.)

 

Five years ago, I joined a local writing group that met at a public library. This was my first experience with critiquing and submitting my own work. Nervewracking! I was gravitating toward writing young adult stories and knew it would never be enough to simply trade pages in the library. I wanted to pursue publication!

 

Four and a half years ago, I attended Chicago North Romance Writers’ Spring Fling conference. I didn’t write romance, mind you, but RWA came highly recommended according to blogs and industry pros. A young adult author was on the list of published authors, so I read her book prior to the conference to prepare. I ended up meeting her in the elevator and she promptly took me around to all of her local RWA friends, insisting I visit the meeting closest to me, Windy City. (Thanks, Erica O’Rourke!)

 

It didn’t take long to realize I did in fact write romance, and this discovery helped me finish the manuscript I was working on. Once I knew the relationship was a core component of the story, I used advice I learned from attending Windy City meetings and reading about romance to stitch my story together.

 

This year I’m going into my sixth NaNoWriMo (I missed one year) and it’s planned as a romance. My first young adult book is set to be published in December. My critique group of three years, formed from Windy City, is cheering me on, along with my other chapter friends and writers across the US and beyond who I’ve met from conferences. I’m proud to be a member of such a giving group who has helped me in so many ways.

 

About Stephanie:

Stephanie Scott writes Young Adult stories about teens who put their passions first. She enjoys dance fitness and cat memes, and Pinterest is driving her broke. Born and raised in Kalamazoo where there are no zoos, she’s a Midwest girl at heart. She now lives outside of Chicago with her tech-of-all-trades husband. You can find her chatting about all things books on twitter and Instagram at @StephScottYA. ALTERATIONS is her first book.

 

If anyone saw the prom boards Amelia Blanco makes on her favorite fashion app, they’d think Ethan Laurenti was her boyfriend. They wouldn’t know that all the plans she’s made for them are just dreams, and that she’s the girl who watches him from the kitchen while her parents cook for his famous alterations_fc_fnlfamily. 

When Amelia’s abuelita enrolls her in a month-long fashion internship in NYC, Amelia can’t imagine leaving Miami–and Ethan–for that long. As soon as she gets to New York, however, she finds a bigger world and new possibilities. She meets people her own age who can actually carry on a conversation about stitching and design. Her pin boards become less about prom with Ethan and more about creating her own style. By the time she returns to Miami, Amelia feels like she can accomplish anything, and surprises herself by agreeing to help Ethan’s awkward, Steve-Jobs-wannabe brother, Liam, create his own fashion app. 

As Liam and Amelia get closer, Ethan realizes that this newly confident, stylish girl may be the one for him after all . . . even though he has a reality TV star girlfriend he conveniently keeps forgetting about. The “new and improved” Amelia soon finds herself in between two brothers, a whole lot of drama, and choice she never dreamed she’d have to make.

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September Dare to SOAR – Spotlight: R.Q. Bell

Set*Overcome*Achieve*Receive

 

September – October

 

Whether you succeed or not is irrelevant, there is no such thing. Making your unknown known is the important thing.

Georgia O’Keeffe

 

Our SEPTEMBER Dare to SOAR participants!

 

Cheryl Huth
Cindy Maday
Katrina Bauer
J.C. DePaul
j. leigh bailey
Stephanie Scott
Robin Skylar

Author Spotlight

author

R.Q. Bell

Every writer is a reader, and I have been one since I was a kid. I remember taking frequent trips to the public library and returning home with stacks of books in tow. Check-out limits even prompted me to hide books so they’d be there at my next visit!

I dabbled with writing, but competitive sports (softball and basketball) were my primary focus pretty much until I got married. Then business ownership and a growing family pushed writing off the table until early in the new millennium I began ruminating over an idea about my favorite novel, Jane Eyre.

It soon became an obsession, and I wrote disconnected scenes and dialog until one day I found myself tapping out the words, “Chapter 1.” 

That project, which eventually became my first novel Edward Rochester: The Master of Thornfield Hall, prompted me to find WindyCityRWA, a supportive place where I’ve learned so much more about craft and the real world of writing and publishing. Through WC’s help and encouragement, I’m about to set sail into the exciting world of indie publishing, hoping to have my book available late Fall /early Winter this year.

To find out when her first book, Edward Rochester: Master of Thornfield Hall is available for pre-order, add your name to her email list on her website, R.Q.Bell

 

Edward Rochester searches the world for love, but just when he believes he will never find it, an unexpected encounter with destiny in the shape of a young woman, Jane Eyre, upends his world.edward-rochester-web-medium-188x300

She is like no one he has ever met. Their acquaintance grows into friendship, and he finds her full of whimsical contrasts. Yet she listens without judgment, and in her eyes he fancies empathy, perhaps even a longing of her own? But he must resist, for the secret he harbors means nothing can ever come of his forbidden desire.

Then one night, Jane saves Edward’s life, snatching him from a horrible death. In the intimacy of the aftermath, his feelings will be denied no longer: he is desperately in love with her.

For a man whose youthful surrender to duty long ago was nearly his undoing, he is faced with a choice: will he again yield to the will of others, to the man-made laws which shackle him to one woman, while his body and spirit yearn for another? Will he defy society, the Law — and even God — to get what he wants?

 

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