Tag Archives: Windy City

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/

_______________________________________________________________________

 

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

 

__________________________________________________________________________

Prewriting for Pantsers

Prewriting for Pantsers

For those of us who can’t plot a story to save our lives, we can end up spending an inordinate amount of time revising. After selling my first novel, I realized that I needed a more efficient way to write other than to write, rip apart, and rewrite. However, I still couldn’t plot. The story just wouldn’t come. Instead, I learned to focus on my characters. Time spent truly knowing my hero and heroine has allowed me to craft stories that fit who they are and has saved hours of revision time. I will discuss personality types, creating a soundtrack, making collages, and how all of that plays into writing a solid story.

About Shannyn:

Shannyn Schroeder is the author of the O’Leary series, contemporary romances centered around a large Irish-American family in Chicago and the Hot & Nerdy series about 3 nerdy friends finding love. Her new series For Your Love is a spinoff of the O’Learys. When she’s not wrangling her three kids or writing, she watches a ton of TV and loves to bake cookies.

Twitter: @SSchroeder_

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

 

__________________________________________________________________________

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/

 

__________________________________________________________________________

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.

 

__________________________________________________________________________

Deep Point of View with Sarah M. Anderson

Deep Point of View

Does your dialog read as a list of “he said, she said?” Do your critique partners ask, “Whose head are we in here?” Have you gotten contest feedback saying, “go deeper into the POV” or “Show, don’t tell”? And are you wondering how on earth to fix your manuscript? Good news! POV is a skill that can be learned! Join award-winning author (and Point-Of-View obsessive) Sarah M. Anderson as she identifies common POV errors, when the rules are flexible and how to layer deeper meaning into your story with deeper POV. Questions welcome!

About Sarah:

Sarah M. Anderson is an award-winning author who writes contemporary snarky and sensual romances featuring cowboys and bull riders as well as billionaires with and without babies. She won RT Reviewer’s Choice 2012 Desire of the Year for A Man of Privilege. The Nanny Plan was a 2016 RITA® winner for Contemporary Romance: Short.

Sarah spends her days having conversations with imaginary cowboys and billionaires. Find out more atwww.sarahmanderson.com and sign up for the new-release newsletter at http://bit.ly/sarahalerts.

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.
 

__________________________________________________________________________

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!

____________________________________________________________________________________

Cathie Linz Romance Appreciation Dinner

It’s Windy City’s Annual Romance Appreciation Dinner!

Join your fellow WC members, local librarians and booksellers as we gather to honor those who celebrate the romance genre.  Every year we honor one special librarian who goes above and beyond to support romance with the NI Librarian Of The Year Award.

***This is a catered event and we’d love to have an accurate count of our attendees. Please RSVP by 3/24/17***

Windy City members please sign up on the yahoo loop to bring a dish or beverage to share.

(If you have any questions please feel free to contact Susan Gibberman at: sgibberman@stdl.org)

NI Librarian Of The Year Award

  • Any librarian in Northern Illinois is eligible for nomination
  • Criteria for nomination should include going “above and beyond” in service to romance readers, writers, and the genre.
  • Any member in good standing of Windy City RWA can nominate a librarian.
Our RAD dinner is intended to foster good will, education, and communication between Chapter members, local area booksellers and librarians.