Jennifer's Journal


Monday, October 01, 2007

October Newsletter

The sweet olive (osmanthus fragrans) is blooming here at the lake, also the antique roses, the yellow trumpet datura, crepe myrtle and mums.  I particularly love the sweet olive because its delicious
scent comes creeping around the house corners when you least expect it.  In fact, it blooms any time there's rain and a few days of temps between 70 and 80 degrees, whether in late winter, spring, or fall. 
I've bought perfumed oils in New Orleans called Sweet Olive, but none has ever captured the special fragrance of the tiny yellow and white blooms.  My heart aches for those who have never breathed it.
So what has happened since last month?  Not at lot, and yet it seems I've been busy beyond words.  Just like the rest of the world, right?  I sent a package of books and other giveaways to author Elaine Grant who belongs to HeartLa, the Baton Rouge Chapter of Romance Writers of America.  These will be put in the "goodie bags" for attendees at their annual Reader's Luncheon to be held this month.  The Barnes & Noble book signing in Shreveport, LA, went off  as planned.  I arranged to have my web site updated with new
material, including reviews for the Masters at Arms series, revised cover art and a blurb for GUARDED HEART and a few other bells and whistles.  After much procrastination, I finally commissioned
bookmarks for the Masters at Arms series.  And I've spent a fair amount of time with other promotion for GUARDED HEART, including a presentation page in "Romance Sells", the booklet listing upcoming
romance releases that goes out to librarians and booksellers, plus providing text and graphics for major advertising in the February issue of Romantic Times BOOKreview Magazine.
Speaking of RT, as the magazine is known among authors, I think I told you I'll be attending its 2008 BookLovers convention in Pittsburgh, April 16 – 20.  This is the 25th Anniversary of the well-
known romance convention, and is slated to honor the "pioneers" of the industry.  As an honoree, I'll be doing a special Author Chat on Friday, April 19, 11 am to 12 pm, along with Virginia Henley and
Bertrice Small who have been friends for years.  The setting will be a comfortable living room arrangement of sofas where readers can participate in casual conversation with the three of us.  RT, unlike
the national convention of Romance Writers of America, is geared toward readers and fans of romance novels.  It should be a fun time, with lots of parties, the usual male cover model contest and a huge
literary book signing event.  It's not too early to think about attending.
One of the most exciting things I've done this month has been to plan a book video for GUARDED HEART.  These videos have been done for two other sword master books, DAWN ENCOUNTER and ROGUE'S SALUTE.  It's always fascinating to see my story in video form with background music.  I'm not precisely sure when this latest video will be ready to go, but it should be up on my web site by the end of the
I've been asked several times lately if I have a page on Myspace.  I'd thought about it but nothing more.  This past week, a cousin, Jean Low, asked if she could create one for me as a fan spot.  I agreed at once as electronic tinkering is not exactly my strong suit.  I haven't done a lot with the site as yet, but expect to eventually.  Take a look at:
Much time was spent these past weeks finishing projects for the quilt show presented by my guild.  This was held September 28 -29 in Jonesboro, LA.  Three of my quilts were hung in the show, a Mardi
Gras quilt embroidered in bright colors on a black background, an appliqué quilt with a romantic theme, and a batik quilt using all my favorite jewel-tone colors.  A number of my knitted items were showcased in the wearable art section as well, and I worked at different jobs throughout the weekend show.  We writers have to get out of our offices now and again, you know!
Saving the best for last, I've also been packing.  I'll be leaving soon for several weeks of travel by rail across the United States and Canada.  I've ridden the trains in Europe and taken Amtrak from New York to Connecticut, but this will be my first long train journey in North America.  I can't tell you how much I'm looking forward to the time away – even if I will be carrying my AlphaSmart (lightweight, dedicated word processor) with me in case the clicking of the train wheels on the track conjures up story ideas.
The winner of this month's autographed book is:  If this is your email address, send a message from it to  In the subject line, type "Book Winner" and include your name and USPS address in the body of the message.  Please be patient if your book doesn't arrive at once, however, as I may be away by the time your email reaches my computer.
Warmest wishes for a grand autumn, properly spooky Halloween, and relaxing journeys like mine!

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