Empowering The Writer!

Alan Alda, Dead Cats, and Making Story Matter

I heard Alan Alda speak last Saturday night. He was charming and fun.  He grew up in Vaudeville and knows how to tell a story.  What I wasn’t expecting was a bit of plot development insight. Referring to Aristotle’s observation that a story has “a beginning, a middle, and an end,” he observed that so does a dead cat.   …

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Advice on Author Readings? Go!

It isn’t unusual for authors of other genres to read their work at book signings. However, in Romance, we haven’t done it that often until Hope Tarr, Maya Rodale, and others started Lady Jane’s Salon in NYC. Now there are a host of Romance genre reading programs, many using the “Lady Jane” in the title, around the country. The first …

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Trademark Me: Be Love


Some people go for tattoos; others for significant jewelry—and use them to create symbols that define their lives. I’ve done one of the two. I’ll let you decide which.   However, recently, I found myself mulling over the idea of a definitive statement for me. What truly defined me? What principle has guided everything I have done in my life, …

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What to Say to a Veteran

This was first published on foxnews.com November 12, 2012.  It is currently being used by the Palliative Care Unit of Texas Health Harris Methodist Hospital on their certificates honoring the service of their patients: Thank you for stepping forward when others step back. Thank you for placing yourself between us and danger. Thank you for delaying plans for college, marriage, and …

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Maxwell’s Thoughts About Endings—

  I received a request for  general rules on how to end a good, loving story. Or any story for that matter. Although I HATE writing rules, here are my thoughts.   Good endings wrap up loose ends. All questions should be answered.  When I start your book, you and I have a pact: I’ll read to the end; you’ll tie …

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            I have an aged parent.  I’ve also been losing aged parents that I love very much for the past several years.             Worse:  I’m turning into an aged parent, and I don’t know how I feel about that. My goal is to live my life fully—but, you know, I’m slowing down.  Fortunately my sense of …

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The Men on Romance Covers . . . Yes, They are Real

“That is Paul Marron in your cover art,” she said holding up the inside cover illustration from IN THE HIGHLANDER’S BED—and that is how I was introduced to Sheree or, as she is better known on FB, S G-s Tieh. I love meeting people when I travel for events.  I adore my fellow romance readers.  We come from all walks …

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Busy, Busy

          I’m busy.   I’m writing plus preparing to head out for Avon Books’ first KissCon in San Rafael, CA.  The second will be the next day in Seattle, WA. But let’s face it, all of us are always busy.  Living a full life calls for connection with friends and family, with our hobbies and communities. Though sometimes …

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Five Things About Life I have Learned Writing Romance Novels


           I need to be around readers, especially those who love the Romance genre as much as I do. It is easy to trivialize what I do. Reading for pleasure in a world full of problems? Ha!             But then I connect with readers who value feeding the imagination, who believe reading makes their individual worlds …

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Veterans Keep Giving, Long After the Uniform is Retired

This was first published on www.foxnews.com 11/11/2014  Veterans keep giving, long after the uniform is retired: We represent every economic class in this country, every culture, and every race. We are teachers, accountants, police officers, and administrators. We serve as nurses, doctors, firefighters, lawyers, mechanics, electricians, barbers and hairdressers, therapists and technicians in every shape and form. We own small …

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"The Books You Love To Read. Three time winner of the Historical Love and Laughter award" - Cathy Maxwell