Official Blog of Author Courtney Rice Gager (aka me). Written from my office (which just so happens to be a comfy chair in the corner of my kid's playroom). Mostly literary musings, with the occasional "guess how many cookies I had for breakfast" confession. Because we're all friends here.
Miriam Miller likes the simple things in life: a good book, close friends, and a healthy relationship with God. But, destiny comes calling, and her neat, little life turns upside down.
Ethanial, an angel of God, has been sent to reveal Miriam's true calling -– she is the Princess of the Light, the woman chosen by God Himself to vanquish the demons intent on infusing the world with evil. And her first assignment: restore the soul of a homeless man known only as The Walking Man.
Enter Joe Deacons, a man intent on stealing her heart. But as Miriam embarks on her journey to save the Walking Man and fulfill her calling, it becomes clear that Joe isn’t what he appears to be. Miriam must decide: Is she willing to risk her soul to save those she loves?
About N.N. Light
Light was born in Minnesota, lived in Southern California only to move to
chilly Ontario, Canada to marry her beloved husband, Mr. N. She is blissfully
happy and loves all things chocolate, books, music, movies, art, sports and
Entering a Twitter pitch contest is a lot like leaving a glass slipper behind in hopes that a handsome prince (or in this case, a savvy agent or editor) will find it, fall madly in love with your manuscript, and rescue you from the depths of the query trenches into the enchanting world of publishing.
At least, that's how I like to think of pitch contests. Then again, I have a little girl who is really into princesses, so maybe I have a bit of a one-track mind right now.
In my case, a recent #adpit contest did have a fairytale ending. The fabulous Kara Leigh Miller saw my pitch and, after reviewing a partial, requested my full manuscript.
When I received notice that Anaiah Press would be offering me a contract for publication, it was exactly how I had always imagined. (You know, little cartoon birds fluttering around to lots of whimsical music.) In all seriousness, Kara was extremely professional and enthusiastic about my manuscript. Therefore, I am thrilled to announce that I've signed with Anaiah Press for my next title, Tess in Boots, a contemporary romance scheduled to be released in January 2015.
I know the manuscript is in very capable hands, and I can't wait for this next chapter to unfold!
I recently decided I needed a new author photo. My old one was a hastily-cropped snapshot of me at a Christmas party about a million years ago, and it was getting a little...well, dated. You can take one look at this photo and see that the girl pictured is definitely not someone who worries about tooth enamel and drives significantly under the speed limit while singing "The Wheels On The Bus" to a toddler strapped in the backseat.
Yes, I needed a new author photo, and - after a lot of debating - I decided I was going to have to take this thing myself. Oh yeah, and I had to do it in 24 minutes or less, because that's approximately how long Little Miss will sit still to watch an episode of Dora The Explorer.
So I set out to take my new author photo, armed with my iPhone and a well-lit neutral wall. And that's how I came to the conclusion that I take extremely awkward selfies. I mean, every picture was absolutely painful. Was my smile always that crooked? Why was one eye so much bigger than the other? This was not a case of me being too hard on myself. No, this was a simple case of laughably bad photos. In fact, I wish I'd thought to save and post them here, because you'd all get a good giggle for the day.
After a lot of cringing, I finally realized what was wrong. I was trying too hard. I was too aware of the fact that a photo was being taken. I was too wrapped up in trying to hold my head at a certain angle, or trying to smile just wide enough. I was TOO aware of my audience.
Eventually I realized that I took a much more relaxed photo by setting a camera timer, dancing like a nut while it counted down, and then freezing to smile for the photo. It took a few tries to get the timing right, which resulted in several "oops, still dancing" shots. (Again, I wish I'd saved them.) (I should also mention that I'm a really nerdy dancer, so by this point the whole experience was quite hilarious.)
But I finally got a few decent photos to choose from. Because I stopped trying so hard and enjoyed the process.
If you're curious about the winning author photo, it's below. I'm no photographer, and I'm certainly no model, but this feels like a pretty authentic representation of me. And yeah, I decided to wear my glasses because I can't see a thing without them anymore.
All of this hyper-aware selfie taking got me thinking about my writing, and wondering: Are there times when I'm TOO aware of my audience? Times when I'm overly guarded? Times when I'm dancing around words because I'm trying to take the safest path?
I'm certain there are. And the thing is, I don't want my words to be the written equivalent of awkward selfies. I want my words to dance. I want to let my words elicit chills, and tears, and big belly laughs. I want my words to be a little less guarded, and a little more real.
As writers, I think we all do. I think we all need to remember the 24-minute lesson of the awkward selfie.