One of the many highlights was meeting Laura Frantz in person. She's been a long-time favorite of mine and getting a hug from her was something I had looked forward to for four years.
It was fun to sign books, participate in an author panel discussion, and dress up in a Edwardian Era gown. Bravo to Carrie Booth Schmidt, Annie JC, and Bonnie Roof for their hard work and dedication to bringing CFRR into reality.
After CFRR, I attended the 2016 ACFW Conference. There, I sat in workshops, listened to the keynote speaker, Ted Dekker, visited with friends old and new, and met with my editor. ACFW is a yearly highlight for me, and this year it was especially fun to be in Nashville. On the last day, I rode the trolley around town with two of my writer friends and we saw all the sights. We also visited the Country Music Hall of Fame Museum and saw some amazing memorabilia.
I flew home and had one day to clean my house and go shopping, then I returned to the airport and picked up Alena Tauriainen and Lindsay Harrel (and Lindsay's son, Elliott). They came to help me prepare for my release party and stay on for a brainstorming retreat afterward at my house.
My debut novel, A Mother in the Making, released on Thursday, September 1st and I was privileged to have a release party at a historic estate in my hometown. Dozens and dozens of people attended, so many so, I wasn't able to get to all of them! I tried to visit with everyone, but unfortunately, I missed a few. It was fun to read a scene from the book and then answer questions about my writing, about my book, and about the history of my hometown (where the book is set). After that, I signed more books. It was an incredible night.
After the party, Melissa Tagg and Susan May Warren came to my house and we visited, brainstormed Susie's next series of books, and enjoyed lots of laughter. Susie went home the next day, but Melissa stayed with Alena, Lindsay, and me and we relaxed, had a campfire, went to a movie, visited local sites, and brainstormed more stories. We also took the boat onto the Mississippi and spent several hours relaxing in the water.
Everyone went home yesterday and today I'm catching up on all my work! I loved the past two weeks, but I'm eager to jump back into my writing and switch gears as school starts tomorrow for all my children. Autumn is upon us, and with it, many more memories to be made.
Happy Labor Day! I hope you've had a marvelous summer and I look forward to hearing what you have planned for the upcoming fall months.
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