Tag Archives: Good News

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 
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



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.

2015 – 2016 Good News!

Good News From Windy City Romance Writers


Librarian of the year:  

Lynne Hall,  Aurora Public Library

Cathie Linz Award Mentors: 

Dyanne Davis, Tracey Devlyn, Fredericka Meiners

Windy City RWA published our first anthology, A Lovely Meal, with our own recipes!

Edited and coordinated by Amy Alessio, Savannah Reynard, Ann Macela, and Mary Welk.


Amy Alessio writing as Julia Curtin

Published Thankful for Pie in A Lovely Meal.

Leigh Bailey

Published three New Adult books with Carina Press: Nobody’s Hero, Reckless Hope, and Fight to Forgive.  She also sold two YA books to Dreamspinner Press: Do-Gooder and Guyliner.

Mary Jo Burke

Deadly Bubbles in the Wine will be out in November.

Wendy Byrne

Had two books out with Entangled Publishing in 2015, The Millionaire’s Deception in March and Bad to the Bone in September. The last book in the Hard Targets trilogy, Hard to Stop, came out in March.  She self-published Accused in August.

Dyanne Davis

Has a on-going seven-part series, Lunchtime QuickiesThe Bet, The Date, and The Do Over are available on Amazon and Smashwords. The fourth in the series will be available June 1st of 2016.  “Flight 22” was in A Lovely Meal.

Sonali Dev

Her second book, The Bollywood Bride came out and made Kirkus, Washington Post, Book Riot, and NPR’s best books of the year list. It received a Kirkus star and RT Reviewers Choice award nomination.  A Bollywood Affair was selected as their first Book Club read by the romance bookstore, The Ripped Bodice. Her next book, A Change of Heart, will be released on October 2016.

Tracey Devlyn

Collaborating with Adrienne Giordano and Kelsey Browning, Tracey will release her first contemporary romantic suspense in November 2016. Part of the Steele Ridge series, Loving Deep is the third book. The Beginning (a prequel), Going Hard (Kelsey), and Living Fast (Adrienne) will release October 2016.

Cici Edward

Her short story, “The Last Gift,” The Possession Series was included in A Lovely Meal.  Her first book, Possession of the Heart, will be out at the end if this year.

Kelly Garcia

Her YA contemporary romance, Acing Atherton, did well on the contest scene. It took second place in the Maggies, finaled in the Get Your Stiletto in the Door contest (RWA Contemporary Chapter), finaled in the Suzannah (NOLA Chapter RWA), finaled in the Cleveland Rocks contest, and was selected to participate in Pitch Wars.   She is now represented by Terrie Wolf of AKA Literary Management.

Susan Gibberman writing as Rachael Passan

Her short story for A Lovely Meal was “Thanksgiving Orphans.”

Blythe Gifford

Whispers at Court, the second of Blythe’s Royal Wedding stories, was released in June, 2015, by Harlequin Historical. The first book, Secrets at Court, was a finalist in the Historical Romance category of the 2014 National Readers’ Choice Awards.  The next book in the series, tentatively titled Rumors at Court, is in the works.

Bonnie Gill

Her debut book Tempting The Light: Legends and Myths Police Squad will be released April 20, 2016, by Soul Mate Publishing.

Livia Grant

Having it All, Book Three in the Passion Series in April and Psychology of Submission, Corben’s Bend Series in June with Blushing Books Publishing.

Self-published are: Blessed Betrayal, Twist Anthology in May ~ Single release in July (novella) ; Dangerous Professions, Sting of Lust Anthology in August (novella)

Six Hours, The More the Merrier Anthology in September (novella); “Finally a Family,” A LovelyMeal novella.

Lyndee Henderson

Won First Place in WisRWAsFabFive Contest for her contemporary story, “Return to Chestnut Ridge.”

Melonie Johnson

“Sometimes You Need a Sexy Scot” is a 2016 Golden Heart Finalist in the contemporary category.  It recently took first place, contemporary, in the Celtic Hearts Golden Claddagh contest, placed second in single title in MoRWA’s Gateway to the Best Contest, tied for second in the Ruby Slippered Sisterhood’s Make It Golden Contest, and was a finalist in the single title category for WisRWA’s Fab 5 Contest (under its original title, Sometimes You Need A Hot Highlander.)

Megan Kelly

Released a contemporary romance, The Wedding Rescue, Love in Little Tree, Book One.  Runaway Bride, Book Two, comes out this summer.

Vanessa Knight

Major Renovations, the first book in the Ritter University series, won first place Novella in International Digital Awards.  Rushing In in the Ritter University series was released in January. Stark Raving Mad in the Chicago’s Finest series was released August 2015 from MuseItUp.  Rushing In is self pubbed.

Nicole Leiren

Remember the Night, Book 2 in the Heroes of the Night series is being released on April 21, 2016.  More than One Night has been nominated for a RONE Award, Contemporary Steamy category.  The RONE Awards are sponsored by InD’Tale Magazine, and the next step is the public voting phase.

Cindy Maday

Published her short story, “A Thanksgiving Caper,” in A Lovely Meal.

Kate Meader

Published several books in the last year. Even the Score (July 2015) and Taking the Score (Feb 2016), both in the Tall, Dark, and Texan series from Entangled Publishing.  Melting Point (Aug 2015) and Playing with Fire (Sep 2015), both in the Hot in Chicago series from Pocket Books.

Playing with Fire received a Top Pick Gold from RT Magazine, a starred review in Publishers Weekly, and was named a Best Book of 2015 by Publishers Weekly and a Best Romance of 2015 by the Washington Post. It also won Best Contemporary, Love and Laughter for the Reviewers Choice Awards, at the RT Book Convention in April 2016.

Kate has also signed another contract with Pocket Books/Simon & Schuster for a series of hockey romances centered around a failing NHL franchise run by three estranged half-sisters.

Fredericka Meiners writing as Ann Macela

Had a short story, “No Pressure,” in A Lovely Meal.

Allie Pleiter

A Heart to Heal won the RT Reviewer’s Choice award in May for Best Love Inspired.  She celebrated the sale of her 1 millionth book world wide this June.  And she released her 25th novel with Harlequin/Love Inspired.  Books released since the last RAD:  A Ranger for the Holidays (Nov 2015),  The Texas Rancher’s Return (Jan 2016), and Coming Home to Texas (Apr 2016).  The Chunky Method Handbook is also available to purchase.

India Powers

India will release Book 1 of her Mageblood Chronicles series, Demon’s Bane, through Three Hats Publishing, LLC. This book was her Golden Heart Final contender in 2013. The historical paranormal romance is expected in the summer of 2016.

Savannah Renard

Published her first paranormal romance story, “Echoes of Time,” in A Lovely Meal.  Stolen Child, Book 1 in her fantasy romance trilogy will be released in 2016 through Storyvixen Press LTD.

Denise Swanson

Had four books and a novella published in the last year:

Murder of an Open Book, A Scumble River Mystery; Between a Book and a Hard Place, a Devereaux’s Dime Store Mystery, both from Penguin Random House.  She indie-pubbed three Change of Heart Series romances:  Lucky Girl Hits the Jackpot, Smart Girl Swept Away, and Sweet Girl Undone.

Barbara Valentin

False Start, Book 1 in the Assignment: Romance series, received a starred review from Publisher’s Weekly; in August, PW named her an “Indie Star of 2015.”Help Wanted, Book 2, was published in May and Key Change, Book 3, was published in December, both by Gemma Halliday Publishing.

Lynne Wall

Her story in A Lovely Meal  was “Measuring Excellence.”

CJ Warrant

Her debut novel, Forgetting Jane, a paranormal romantic thriller, is coming out in June of 2016 from Solstice Publishing.  “Sweet Cupids” is in A Lovely Meal.

Margaret Watson

 After writing thirty books for Harlequin, she has been working on a romantic suspense series about a family of siblings in law enforcement, The Donovan Family.  She published three more Donovan Family books in the past year – Cover Me, Protect Me and Save Me – bringing the total for the series to seven titles.  The eighth book will be released this summer.  The first Donovan Family book,  Love Me, was a finalist last year in the Colorado Romance Writers Award of Excellence contest

Sherry Weddle, writing as Sherrill Lee

Published “Christmas Comes Early,” in A Lovely Meal.


2014 – 2015 Good News!

Large Blog ImageGood News
Windy City Romance Writers

Librarian of the Year:

This year we’re dedicating this award to Cathie Linz, author and librarian, good friend, and a treasure to us all.

Rita Nominees:
Best First Book
A Bollywood Affair by Sonali Dev
Kensington Publishing

Run to You by Clara Kensie
Harlequin, TEEN

Young Adult Romance
Run to You by Clara Kensie
Harlequin, TEEN

New Books, April 2014-April 2015 (more or less)

J. Leigh Bailey
Sold her first book, a Young Adult LGBT Romance called Guyliner to Spencer Hill Press. It will release in November 2015. She also signed a three-book deal for her New Adult LGBT Romance Series, Letting Go, to Carina Press. Nobody’s Hero releases April, 2015; Reckless Hope in August, 2015, and the third book, title and release date TBD. Her Young Adult LGBT romance MS, “Do-Gooder,” finalled in the Nola Stars Suzanna Contest.

Wendy Byrne
Has four books out: Hard to Kill, August, 2014, Hard to Trust, November, 2014, and Hard to Stop, March, 2015, all from Gemma Halliday Publishing. And, The Millionaire’s Deception, Entangled Publishing, February, 2015.

Mary Jo Burke
Has two books published: Cupid’s Busted Arrow, January 2015, The Wild Rose Press, and Spicing Up Trouble, February 2015, Gemma Halliday Publishing

Paul Calhoun
Married Rachel Revilla Calhoun on May 17, 2014. At Spring Fling nine agents or editors asked for submissions of “Chocolate Covered Potato Chips,” a contemporary romantic comedy.

Dyanne Davis
Published Frog Prince, in July 2014 through WD Publishing.

Sonali Dev
A Bollywood Affair, A Rita Nominee for Best First Book, won the ALA Reading List Award for best romance, was on Library Journal’s and NPR’s lists of Best Books of 2014, and is an RT Reviewer Choice Award nominee and winner of the RT Seal of Excellence. It was also on ‘Best Of’ lists on Kirkus Reviews, Smexy Books, Heroes and Heartbreakers, All About Romance, Book Riot and several independent blogs. Her second book, The Bollywood Bride, releases in September 2015 also from Kensington.

Cici Edward
Possession of the Heart, Book 1 in The Possession Series, came out in 2015, with three more to come in the series of contemporary ghost stories.

Kelly Garcia
Her Young Adult manuscript, “A is for Atherton,” finalled in the Get Your Stiletto in the Door contest, Contemporary Romance Writers Chapter of RWA, and in the Suzannah, NOLA Chapter RWA.

Blythe Gifford
The Witch Finder, Blythe’s self-published book, was named Book of the Month for February, 2015, by The Review.
Whispers at Court, the second of her Royal Wedding stories, will be released in June, 2015, by Harlequin Historical. The first book, Secrets at Court, was on Wendy the Super Librarian’s Honorable Mention list for Best of the Year (2014). She called it “one of the best done medievals I’ve read in a long time.”

Livia Grant
Signed her first publishing deal with Blushing Books in 2014 and had 3 full length erotic romance novels released in 2014: Wanting it All, Passion Series Book One, August, Securing it All, Passion Series Book Two, September, and Life’s Unexpected Gifts, Corbin’s Bend Series, in December.

Clara Kensie
The first book in her series, Run to You, finalled in two Rita categories: Young Adult Romance and Best First Book. The series was also named in RT Magazine Editor’s Picks – Best Books of 2014. The series was originally published in installments, and Harlequin Teen in May will compile it in two books with new titles: Deception So Deadly and Deception So Dark.

Vanessa M. Knight
Her first book, Second Time’s the Charm, a contemporary romance with suspense elements, was released in April 2014. The second in the Chicago’s Finest series, Stark Raving Mad, comes out this summer from MuseItUp Publishing.

Nicole Lieren
Nicole has signed a two-book contemporary-romance deal for her Heroes of the Night Series with Gemma Halliday Publishing. More than One Night will be out in the fall.

Cathie Linz writing as Cat Devon
Tall, Dark and Immortal in her Entity Series will be out in September 2015.

Noirin Leahy Mele
Her tale of Ireland, Dancing in the Heather, is available on Amazon.

Susan Elizabeth Phillips
Heroes Are My Weakness came out in August 2014.

Allie Pleiter
Allie had four books released: The Lawman’s Oklahoma Sweetheart, A Heart to Heal,Saved by the Fireman, and Small-Town Fireman. Two of her 2014 books, A Heart to Heal and Saved by the Fireman, received 4.5 stars and Top Picks from RT Magazine. She received the Readers Crown Award for The Fireman’s Homecoming and was a double finalist in the Love Inspired category of the RT Reviewers Choice Award. She also released her first independently published non-fiction: THE CHUNKY METHOD HANDBOOK: Your Step-by-Step Plan to WRITE THAT BOOK Even When Life Gets in the Way

India Powers
India will release Book 1 of her Mageblood Chronicles series, Demon’s Bane, through Three Hats Publishing, LLC. This book was her Golden Heart Final contender in 2013. The historical paranormal romance is expected in 2015.

Savannah Reynard
Stolen Child, Book 1 in her fantasy romance trilogy will be released in 2015 through Storyvixen Press LTD.

Elizabeth Rose
Was a finalist in the Florida Romance Writers’ Golden Palm Contest in the Young Adult category with her paranormal book, Mary, Mary, scheduled for an April release.
The Border Lords and Ladies boxed set made Amazon’s best seller’s list.
Liz has published six books in the Tarnished Saints’ Series and three in the Cowboys of the Old West Series. Her Western novellas have been in the Amazon Top 100 list (Western category). She is in the process of putting all her books into print, including the series, The Daughters of the Dagger; and MadManMacKeefe.
Her 40th book, The Gunslinger, was just released, and she has a new paranormal Gnarled Nursery Rhymes Series for young adults out this month.

Stephanie Scott
For her manuscript “Alternations,” Stephanie received the Heart of Denver RWA 2014 Molly Award First Place Winner, Young Adult category; and was a finalist in the Georgia RWA 2014 Maggie Unpublished contest, Young Adult category

Denise Swanson
Had three books published in the last year: Murder of a Needled Knitter, A Scumble River Mystery, from Penguin/NAL; Dying for a Cupcake, a Devereaux’s Dime Store Mystery, also from Penguin; and Good Girl Overboard, a Change of Heart series romance from Curtis Brown Unlimited.

Kathy Thigpen
Writing as Regena Bryant, Kathy’s Love’s Remnant was published by Willow Bend Books in September 2014. Kathy has been honored with an Orchid Award for excellence in the arts and entertainment field by the West Suburban Chicago Chapter of Top Ladies of Distinction.

Barb Valentin
Her first book in the Assignment: Romance series , False Start, was published by Gemma Halliday Publishing in October. It also received an Honorable Mention in the Illinois Women’s Press Association’s annual communications competition.

Ann Marie Walker
RT Magazine gave their highest rating to her and her writing partner, Amy K. Rogers, for their debut novel, Remind Me, in the Chasing Fire Series. The contemporary romance from Berkley is out this month.

Margaret Watson
To catch up: In The Donovan Family Series, Watch Me and Find Me came out in December 2013 and Love Me in January 2014. Trust Me came out in November 2014 and Cover Me will be out this month.

Paula White
For those of us who don’t know, Paula is a fifth-generation textile artist and has participated in several mixed media art installations. Her art quilt in honor of her late aunt will go up for auction, and the proceeds will be used to fight domestic violence. Check with Paula for information on display venues. An acquisitions editor at Simon & Schuster is interested in a book proposal about this as well.

2013-2014 Windy City Good News!

2013-2014 Good News
Windy City Romance Writers

Librarian of the Year
Nancy McCully, adult/teen reference and readers’ advisory librarian at the Glenside Public Library in Glendale Heights.

Amy Alessio
Taking the High Ground, a YA , is out from 4RV Press.

Mary Jo Burke
“The Last Case” won the Washington DC Romance Writers Marlene contest in the romantic suspense contemporary category.

Paul Calhoun, Jr.
Paul had requests for “Chocolate Covered Potato Chips,” from Christa Desir, Samhain; Avon Impulse; Nicole Resciniti, Seymour Agency; Margo Lipschultz, Harlequin; Laura Bradford, Bradford Literary Agency; Nalini Akolekar, Spencerhill Associates; and Elizabeth Poteet, St. Martin’s Press.

Dyanne Davis
Dyanne had an article in the RWR, “If you’re self publishing, do you still need RWA?” In 2013, she released The Gift, a paranormal romance, in The Undying Love Trilogy, WD Publishing. She published in 2013 a contemporary romance, Giving It Up, and a women’s fiction, An Imperfect Life, and in 2014, the paranormal last book in The Undying Love Trilogy, Full Circle.

Kristin Daniels
Two books by Kristin from Ellora’s Cave: Sunset Tryst in March 2014 and My Tye in April 2013.

Sonali Dev
Sonali has a short story in Scribbling Women and the Real-Life Romance Heroes Who Love Them, an anthology with 27 other romance authors telling their real life love stories. All proceeds go to WIN NYC. A Bollywood Affair comes out in October from Kensington.

Tracey Devlyn
From Sourcebooks Casablanca, Checkmate, My Lord came out in 2013 and received a Publishers Weekly Starred Review. A Lady’s Secret Weapon followed and was an RT Booklovers Top Pick and also a Night Owl Romance Top Pick. Latymer, a novella, came out in January 2014 from TDC Creations, Inc.

Karen Doornebos
Undressing Mr. Darcy, Karen’s women’s fiction/contemporary romance with Berkely, Penguin Random House, received 4 Stars from RT Book Reviews and 5 Stars from Austenprose.com.

Christine Foutris w/a Sophie Foster
Chris has a request from Amanda Bergeron of Avon Impulse for her contemporary romance, “Never Closer Together.”

Savannah Reynard
Savannah had a full request for Stolen Child from Christa Soule from Samhain and synopses for the following books in the fantasy romance trilogy. She also had a partial request from Margo Lipshultz of HQN.

Kelly Garcia w/a k.d. Atkins
Her YA manuscript, “Late Night Reflections on the Zombie Apocalypse,” took first place in the Emerald City Opener (Seattle RWA), YA Category; first place in the Heartland Romance Authors Show Me the Spark Contest; and third place in The Catherine (Toronto Chapter). It also got her an agent, Beth Phelan of The Bent Agency.

Blythe Gifford
Blythe has published The Witch Finder, a historical romance set on the Scottish Borders, in print and ebook. From Harlequin Historical, the third in her Brunson Trilogy, Taken by the Border Rebel came out last year. Secrets at Court, A Royal Wedding Story, the beginning of another Harlequin Historical series, is out now.

Nancy Hurst w/a Raven Quinn Bell
Nancy received a request from agent Nicole Resciniti for her historical novel, “The Master of Thornfield Hall.”

Vanessa M. Knight
Vanessa’s first book, Second Time’s the Charm, was released by MuseItUp in April 2014. The story is a contemporary romance with suspense elements.

Robin Kuss
Alex Logan from Grand Central Publishing requested her women’s fiction manuscript “Outrage,” and the story also received requests from Cori Deyoe, 3 Seas Literary Agency and Jita Fumich, Folio Literary Agency, and at RWA National, from Audrey LaFehr at Kensington.

DL Larson
Promises My Love came out May 2013. It was a Final
Fifteen in the 2014 Illinois Library Association, “Soon To
be Famous Illinois Author” Contest.

Nicole Leiren
Amanda Bergeron at Avon Impulse requested her
contemporary romance, “More than One Night.”

Cathie Linz
Cathie’s first three vampire romances with heat and humor
written as Cat Devon: Sleeping with the Entity (June
2013), The Entity Within (July 2013), and Love Your Entity
(January 2014). She will be doing three more vampire
romances for St.Martin’s Press, to be released beginning in
mid 2015. Writing as Cathie Linz, two of her reissues are
out in ebook format: Lover and Deceiver and A Glimpse of
Paradise, both in November 2013.

Ann Macela
Ann published a two-book contemporary romance series,
Wolves in Business, not shapeshifters, but alpha business
men. Book 1 is Wolf in Jester’s Clothing. Book 2 is Wolf
on Thin Ice. Both are available as ebooks and in print from
Amazon and CreateSpace.

Cindy Maday
Cindy had a request for “Just Like a Woman,” a humorous
contemporary romance, from Margo Lipschultz at
Harlequin and Amanda Bergeron at Avon Impulse.

Teresa McCarthy
Teresa has Books 3 and 4 of the Colorado Clearbrooks
series, Almost Daybreak and The Mischievous Bride, out
as ebooks. Book 1, The Clearbrooks, has also been
published in audio.

Kate Meader
Out in the Hot in the Kitchen series with Grand Central
are: Feel The Heat (2013), All Fired Up (2013), Hot and
Bothered (2014). Kate has a contract for three books about
Texan tycoons with Entangled Publishing, and another
contract with Pocket/Simon & Schuster for three books
and a novella in a new Chicago firefighters series. The first
story will be a novella in the Baby, It’s Cold Outside
anthology with four other authors, to be released October
2014. The first full length book will release March 2015.

Susan Elizabeth Phillips
Susan has a new hardback coming out on August 26,
Heroes Are My Weakness. She’s also giving two
workshops at RWA National, one with Jayne Ann Krentz.

India Powers
Over the past 12 months, she has received requests for
“Demon’s Bane,” a paranormal historical romance, from
Nicole Resciniti, The Seymour Agency; Alex Logan,
Grand Central Publishing; Tracy Montoya, Entangled
Publishing; and Rose Hilliard, St. Martin’s Press.

Kelle Z. Riley
Kelle sold a story, “Always A Mother” to Chicken Soup
for the Soul: Living with Alzheimer’s & Other Dementias
(April 2014), Chicken Soup for the Soul Publishing
LLC. The book entered its second printing after only one
week of sales. It is garnering praise such as “Now I don’t
feel so alone,” and “I laughed and cried and I feel so
much better now.”

Stephanie Scott
Stephanie had a request for her YA Sabrina-retelling
from Margo Lipschultz from Harlequin Teen.

Denise Swanson
Denise has books from two series of romantic smalltown
mysteries with a touch of humor out now: Nickeled
-and-Dimed to Death (March 2013), Murder of a Stacked
Librarian (September 2014), and Dead Between the
Lines (March 2014).

Barb Valentine
Barb has requests for manuscripts of “Fatty Mattie and
the Comeback Kid” from Laura Bradford, Bradford
Agency; Melissa Jeglinski, The Knight Agency; Nicole
Resciniti, Seymour Agency; Amanda Bergeron, Avon;
Margo Lipshultz, Harlequin; and Elisabeth Poteet, St.
Martin’s Press.

Julie Ann Walker
Julie contracted with Sourcebooks for books 9-12 of her
current romantic suspense series, Black Knights Inc. and
for books 1-3 of her new romantic suspense series, Six
Leagues Salvage. She also won the 2013 Book Buyers
Best Award for In Rides Trouble, was nominated for
National Readers Choice Award for Born Wild, and
nominated for a RITA for Thrill Ride. Thrill Ride, April
2013, and Born Wild, November 2013, made the USA
Today and New York Times lists. Hell For Leather was
chosen as one of Amazon’s Best Books of the Month for
May 2014.

Margaret Watson
Margaret has published as ebooks Personal Best, and
The Donovan Family series, Love Me, Watch Me, and
Find Me.

Paula White
Paula received a request for a full manuscript for her
romantic suspense/thriller “Sweet Home Chicago” from
both Grand Central Publishing and St. Martin’s Press.

2012-2013 Windy City Good News

WCRMAclogo2012-2013 Good News
Windy City Romance Writers


Northern Librarian of the Year

This year’s Northern Librarian of the Year is Amy Alessio of the Schaumburg Township District Library, for her work in the young adult and romance genres.

 Golden Heart Finalists

Sonali Dev’s “The Bollywood Bad Boy” and India Powers’ “Demon’s Bane” are finalists in the Golden Heart Contest of the Romance Writers of America.

J. Leigh Bailey

“Guyliner” ranked first in the young adult category in the Golden Rose contest of the Rose City Romance Writers. It also finalled in the Golden Acorn Contest from the Charter Oak Romance Writers of Connecticut. Leigh has signed with agent Sartiza Hernandez at the Corvisiero Agency.

 Regena Bryant

Was selected as Debut Author of the Year in the Shades of Romance Readers Choice Awards.

 Mary Jo Burke

Her Private Collection is coming out from Musa Publishing in June.

Mother Nature’s Man from the Wild Rose Press came out in January.

 Lori Burrell

“Flirting with Fire” was a finalist of the 2013 Yosemite Romance Writers The Smooch contest.

 Wendy Byrne

Mama Said . . . was a finalist in the Gayle Wilson Award of Excellence Contest, Southern Magic RWA.

 Kristin Daniels

My Tye was released April 10th through Ellora’s Cave. It will come out in e-book first, and later in trade paperback.

 Dyanne Davis

Has republished Another Man’s Baby from her backlist and has a new book, An Imperfect Life, out in both eformat and POD.

 Sonali Dev

In addition to her Golden Heart final, Sonali has sold two books to Kensington Publishing. The Bollywood Bride comes out in November 2014. The Bollywood Bad Boy will come out later. “The Bride” finalled in both the Molly Contest of the Heart of Denver Romance Writers and the Finally a Bride Contest of the Oklahoma RWA in 2011.

 Tracey Devlyn

The Romance Reviews nominated her debut novel, A Lady’s Revenge, for Best Historical Romance of 2012. The book was a finalist in the Gayle Wilson Award of Excellence Contest of Southern Magic RWA. Her latest, Checkmate, My Lord, received a starred review from Publishers Weekly.

 Karen Doornebos

Was a finalist in the traditional fiction category of the Chicago Writers Association’s 2nd Annual Book of the Year Awards for Definitely Not Mr. Darcy. Her next book, Undressing Mr. Darcy, comes out in Fall 2013.

 Kelly Garcia

“The Magic of Matchmaking,” a time-travel story, finalled in the young adult category in the Golden Rose contest of the Rose City Romance Writers.

 Blythe Gifford

The Brunson Clan trilogy was released from Harlequin Historical this winter. The books are November 2012, Return Of The Border Warrior; January 2013, Captive Of The Border Lord; March 2013, Taken By The Border Rebel. A related free serial, Tempted By The Border Captain, was published on the Harlequin website in February.

Blythe has signed a new, two-book contract with Harlequin.

 Bonnie Gill

Won first place in Western Pennsylvania Romance Writer’s Flash Fiction Bump in the Night Short Story Contest 2012 with her entry “The Spelling Contest.”

 Adrienne Giordano

Her romantic suspense Risking Trust, the first book in the Private Protectors series, was a finalist in the 2013 EPIC eBook Awards. Her romantic suspense novella Negotiating Point was a finalist in the Gayle Wilson Award of Excellence Contest.

 Lyndee Henderson

Has signed with Mary Sue Seymour of The Seymour Agency.

 Nancy Hurst

“Edward Rochester: The Master of Thornfield” is a finalist in the historical and inspirational categories of the Northwest Texas Great Expectations Contest.

 Vanessa M. Knight

“Second Time’s The Charm” won the Single Title category of the Great Expectations contest, North Texas RWA.

 DL Larson

Her historical novel, Promises My Love, is available at the end of April in hardback and e-book format.

 Nicole Leiren

For her manuscript “Unfinished Business,” Nicole accepted representation by Dawn Dowdle of the Blue Ridge Literary Agency.

 Cathie Linz writing as Cat Devon

Her new paranormal series, writing as Cat Devon for St. Martin’s Press, kicks off with back-to-back releases of Sleeping with the Entity (June 4th) and The Entity Within (July 2nd). Love Your Entity is tentatively scheduled for a Dec. 31 release. Find Cat at catdevon.com and as catdevonauthor on Facebook and Twitter.

 Ann Macela

Has a new two-ebook series, Wolves in Business, out on all the usual ebook sites. The two are Wolf in Jester’s Clothing and Wolf on Thin Ice. No, they’re not shapeshifters, just alpha businessmen!

 Kate Meader

Sold her 3-book foodie romance series called “Hot in the Kitchen” to Lauren Plude at Grand Central in September 2012. The first book, Feel The Heat will be released May 7, 2013, with the second in the series, All Fired Up, releasing August 6, 2013.

 Allie Pleiter

Has three books out in 2013: Family Lessons in April, The Fireman’s Homecoming in June, and The Firefighter’s Match in November, all Harlequin.

 India Powers

In addition to the Golden Heart final, “Demon’s Bane” won the Emily from West Houston RWA and finalled in The Gateway to the Best contest of Missouri RWA and Launching a Star from Florida’s SpacecoasT Authors of Romance.

Kelle Z. Riley

“Read My Lips” came in third in the The 2012 Golden Gateway Contest’s Published Division from From The Heart RWA. Her contemporary single title, “Royally Screwed,” finalled in the Catherine Contest of the Toronto Romance Writers. In the MARA Fiction from the Heartland contest, four of her manuscripts finalled: “Read My Lips,” “Royally Screwed,” “Counterfeit Commoner,” and “The Second Chance Club: A Diva’s Do-Over.”

 Stephanie Scott

“The Astronaut’s Daughter,” a 1960s-set YA romance, won first place in Northwest Houston RWA’s Lonestar Contest, Young Adult category. She has also accepted representation with Sarah LaPolla at Curtis Brown.

 Denise Swanson

The Mystery Guild has selected her next Dime Store book, Nickeled-and-Dimed to Death, as their alternate selection. This is the first of her books that they’ve optioned. Also, Murder of the Cat’s Meow was #20 on the New York Times Bestselling List.

 Julie Ann Walker

Hell on Wheels made iBookstore’s 10-Best Romances of 2012 List. Hell on Wheels and In Rides Trouble received starred reviews in Publishers Weekly, and Julie Ann made the New York Times with her Sourcebook stories. The latest, Thrill Ride, came out this month.