If you’re wondering what to get for your writing friends for Christmas, there are a few simple things we might all really enjoy. No sweaters, fruitcakes, or winter robes. Forget candles and do-dads. Jewelry doesn’t make the list. Actually the items on my list don’t really cost anything at all, but possess a value beyond dollars and cents. If you want to make a writer happy, consider the simple things on this list:
First. Take the time to read what we write. Nothing pleases me more than to know I have published something that you enjoy reading.
Second. Tell me what you think, particularly if you have enjoyed the book. Though constructive criticism is welcome too, I treasure the collection of notes that have filtered in affirming that my efforts have been appreciated by readers. Among them:
Locally: “I started reading the evening I bought the book. I had to force myself to put it down after the first few chapters and pick up the comics to read so that I would be able to sleep. The next day, I let myself finish it. Wow, what a ride!”
From New Mexico: “I wanted you to know how much we enjoyed your books. Both were page-turners and I was sorry to finish them!”
From Wichita: “Sundrop Sonata kept me intrigued right up to the end. Glad I bought the book.”
From a friend at church: “Do not ever stop writing!”
From Facebook friends: “Finished reading Sundrop Sonata a few days ago. Ludlum and Clancy have nothing on you. It kept me engaged and intrigued to the end. Well done.”
Facebook: “I downloaded your book Sundrop Sonata this afternoon. I just finished it. Excellent!”
Facebook: “Loved your book! Lots of great plot twists, and of course I appreciated the solfege clue. ”
Third. If you belong to a book club, submit my titles as featured books. Invite me to speak at your meetings. The actual writing is a solitary activity and I don’t get out much. Speaking engagements allow writers to meet possible readers, connect with new friends and share enthusiasm for literature.
Fourth. Recommend the book to the rest of your circle of friends and family. Take it a step further and post reviews online, such as on amazon.com or goodreads.com. Times have changed since I was a young adult with the idealistic dream of writing novels. Today’s world is driven by online reviews. Writers greatly appreciate a short note about their books that anyone can see. Excerpts from my favorite reviews:
“Hold onto your seat. The story leaves the reader breathless and hopeful that Izzy has another heart-thumping adventure in the near future!”
“Isabel (Izzy) Woods is an engaging heroine with flaws and strengths wrapped in a core of determination. I loved her. More please…”
“Couldn’t put this one down! Exciting from the first page until the ending. A MUST read!”
“My test of a good read is looking up from the page and taking a second to figure out where I am and what I should be doing. It’s been a little while since I’ve been pulled in so thoroughly. Thank you for a great read.”
“I found this book a fun read. I am looking forward to Ann’s next book! The story engaged me from the first pages and I hardly had time to work until I finished the book!”
“Wow! What a story….packed with action, compassion and just enough of the technical workings of the piano to draw us in and keep us tied up to the very end. I look forward to another Izzy escapade!”
“Sundrop Sonata is a gripping, can’t-put-it-down novel. I must give a top rating to this thrilling adventure and look forward to Ann’s next work.”
“A whopper of a tale with plenty of twists and turns and suspense. Wheee! what a ride.”
“Excellent mystery story. Kept me on the edge of my seat from beginning to end.”
“This book was a fun and exciting mystery. I couldn’t put it down. I highly recommend Sundrop Sonata.
“Read it in one day. Just couldn’t put it down.”
“This was one of the most exciting and compelling mysteries I have ever read, and I have read a lot of good mystery books.”
“Best book I’ve read in a long, long time! I am totally sleep-deprived because I couldn’t put the book down. Just one more chapter…Ann, please write another book!”
“I looked forward to time to read more of it everyday, and now sorry it’s over! Look forward to more from this author.”
Okay. Let’s face it. I like all the reviews and I’m so grateful that folks enjoyed the book enough to write a note about it. It would be interesting now to see how many good reviews mentioning a movie it would take before—oh that’s just a bit over the top.
I do appreciate the feedback. For those who have requested another book, I want you to know I’m working on the next one, which brings me to the final item on my Christmas wish list.
Fifth. Time. Oh how I wish I had more time to spend sorting words, knitting them together, and dreaming up the next adventure for Izzy and her family. If you know how to increase the available hours in any day, please send me a few.
Ann’s books may be ordered here: