I had no idea how to get my characters started. It never occurred to me to see how other authors styled their characters. I thought this would be an easy process. OMG! Was I wrong, or what? I began to research writing. I spent days on the computer looking for information. I found a romance writers group in Massachusetts, went to a meeting and met authors such as Blanche Marriott, Annette Blair and Hannah Howell. They were kind enough to give me courage. Blanche was good enough to critique my first novel (as awful as it was). She read it, told me the truth and gave me a pat on the back. "Keep going", she said.
I had received MANY publisher rejections by this time, I had found my voice and figured I couldn’t lose by self-pubbing my first book, For Love of Livvy, in the Vinnie Esposito series. I took that book to the New Jersey Romance Writer's conference and sold copies to any person who happened by the booth. I'm good at sales. I've been selling all my life in one way or another. Engaging customers is easier for me than most. I'd also decided to publicize the book using a publicist. I combed the conference in search of LeeAnn Lessard and the rest was history until the book sale started that evening
LeeAnn introduced Publisher Carole Spencer. I offered Carole Spencer For Love of Livvy to read. Thrilled with the offer, she took it with the promise of getting in touch with me. Yeah....I'd heard that before. Without placing too much faith in her promise, I went about selling the book.
A few weeks later, I received an email from Carole with an offer of a contract for the novel. I accepted her offer. The Snoopy Dance ran over and over at our house like a replayed film short. Four years later and three series books published, I still get as excited as the first time I was offered a contract. Vinnie Esposito and her crew of characters are becoming more and more popular. I must be doing something right. Not everyone likes cozy mysteries, though there are readers who adore them. I think the humor in the three novels, For Love of Livvy, Dirty Trouble, and Dead Wrong make up for the lack of hot sex scenes to my readers. Set in Rhode Island, (a colorful state with a colorful past and present) I use actual locations with fictional characters and try to get the facts straight.