This entry is dedicated, with the green eyes of envy, to my little sister Allyn M. Stotz, who just released her seventh book: Grumpy Kyle. Being an author is tough, but I think anyone who has been published can tell you that one of the greatest moments in the process is when you open up that first shipped carton of a new book. You are truly holding your own newborn in your hands, with one giant difference: It comes to you already grown up.
You dedicate so many hours and months to formulating your ideas; getting comments from readers, family, friends and anyone who will listen; suffering through endless rounds of corrections; and then worrying that a book will NEVER EVER get into print. With a human kid, that’s done mostly after the birth. With your book, you see your own creation matured when it finally arrives on your doorstep.
Mom and I are working on the book that, by far, has been the most difficult child. Mom came up with a wonderful, but complicated plot that has required a lot of research. I’ve sought advice from the FBI, from a Richmond detective, from my pharmaceutical experts (thank you Rick and Jane) and from readers. I’ve spent countless hours researching some of the issues online. I’m almost through the first draft, and I’ll soon be sending it out to my wonderful editor Tam and my beta readers. But to get to this point has been an arduous process—so arduous in fact that we put out Treasured Fate first, despite the fact it was written after this one. Maybe it’s appropriate that the name is Family Fate. Families can be complicated, challenging and sometimes frustrating. But being part of one is also beautiful, rewarding and fulfilling.
Come to think of it, so is writing any book.
Congratulations to Allyn on getting to the rewarding part: holding the latest addition to the Swope/Parente/Stotz writing family in her hands. Get your copies of Grumpy Kyle at Amazon, Barnes Noble or her publishing house Guardian Angel.