Thursday, April 22, 2010

Interview with Yours Truly!

Interview with Author and Writing Instructor, Janice Hanna Thompson

Janice, could you tell us a little about your new venture?

Of course! Thanks for asking. On April 20th, 2010, I debuted my new writing course “Becoming a Successful Freelance Writer” at The sole purpose of this venture is to teach struggling freelance writers how to earn money with their writing. Here’s how it will work: students can purchase one lesson (for $24.95) or all ten (for $199). They don’t have to feel compelled to buy the whole package, though they will get a package price, if they do. Each lesson will include an audio file and a video power point presentation of me teaching the lesson (available with just a click of the mouse), a corresponding audio script, a downloadable worksheet, a bonus feature, and full access to the site’s forum, where I will meet with authors for some group mentoring (at designated times). Right now there are ten lessons, but eventually those ten lessons will become ten separate categories with multiple lessons in each. For example, the current lesson on magazine article writing will eventually have multiple other lessons underneath it—all meant to teach writers how to make money writing articles. People who take these courses will have the benefit of meeting other freelancers in the forum and can also chat with me about their projects. Best of all, the site will continually grow. New, fresh material will always be available. (I’ll be recording new lessons routinely.) I’m so excited, because I know that struggling freelancers can and will learn how to make money with their writing.

What prompted you to set off on this new adventure?

For years I’ve been writing novels and non-fiction books. I’ve been so blessed to have over fifty books published, as well as dozens of magazine articles and even a movie script. It’s been quite a ride. . .and it’s not ending anytime soon! I’m currently contracted through 2011. The longer I’m in this business, however, the more I’m aware of the basic need of the average freelance author to make “better” money. Sure, many of them eventually sell books. They get advances and royalties, (though, not often in the range they had hoped). As a full-time freelancer, I’ve faced this myself. Several years ago, I found myself hollering, “Where’s the money?” I made up my mind to find as many creative ways as I could to bring in money as a freelancer. I’ve learned so much since then, and want to share what I’ve learned with others, so that they can benefit, too.

Why are you so passionate about teaching others how to make money with their writing?

I meet so many struggling writers. So many are just hoping and praying to sell a book. They pour all of their energies into that venture. Most don’t realize that they could be making money much sooner if they would explore other avenues (besides just books). The possibilities are endless. If I can share what I’ve learned about the money-making aspects of writing, then I’ve helped another struggling writer on his or her journey.

Tell us a little about your own writing.

As I mentioned above, I’ve written just about everything! Most of my writing is for the Christian market, so my stories have a clear faith element. Lately I’ve been writing romantic comedies, (most recently the “Weddings by Bella” series), but I also enjoy writing mysteries, kid’s stories, historicals and more. I continue to write magazine articles, because they provide a great financial supplement. I’m also very excited about my many write-for-hire projects, because a huge chunk of my income comes from those. To learn more about my books visit my author site at Books can be ordered directly from the site.

What has it been like, supporting yourself full-time as a freelancer? Is there really money to be made?

As I mentioned, there was a time (back in 2007) when I wasn’t sure I could do it. At that time, I hadn’t set any real goals for myself. That all changed in the fall of 2007 when I began to strategize about the future of my writing. Instead of worrying about the challenges I faced, I got busy and put together a plan. I began to look for non-traditional ways to earn money with my writing. . .and it worked! That’s not to say I’ve “arrived,” but I have managed to support myself full-time from that point till now.

I would think that the writing industry would be very competitive. Why do you want to see others succeed? Aren’t you shooting yourself in the foot when you hand off potential freelance jobs to other authors?

The writing industry is competitive, but that doesn’t mean I am! Sure, I want to make a name for myself, (most writers do), but I’m equally as interested in training up other writers to be the best they can be. Why? I believe that Christian writers have been called by the Lord to spread His love through their writing. How will they get the word out if someone doesn’t show them the ropes? I love to see others succeed because we’re all one big happy family and we care about each other.

I know that you worked for several years as a writing teacher at a school of the arts. Could you share a little more about that?

From 1996 – 2001 I taught creative writing at a Houston area school of the arts that catered primarily to home-school students. What a blast I had! (Truly, these were some of the best years of my life.) Several of my students traveled with me to national writing conferences (like Mount Hermon and ACFW), and a few went on to be published in various genres. My students will tell you that I was the most creative teacher on the block. I was always looking for a new, fresh way to teach the writing craft. My writing lessons have been compiled into a text, which I titled, “Creative Writing for the Christian Student.” It is available to freelance writing course participants. I love stirring up the creative gifts in my students! I hope that shows in these lessons!

If you could list one of the biggest frustrations that freelance writers face, what would that be?

The biggest frustration of all is this: Some markets don’t want to pay. This is especially true when it comes to the Internet. It’s so challenging to make a living when you can’t figure out who pays and who doesn’t! But that’s why I created this course! There are so many markets that do pay, and many of them are relatively untapped. Freelancers can earn money. . .they just have to discover where the money is! (And I plan to help them in that journey!)

You’ve said there’s money to be made. . .but where? What avenues are available to freelancers?

At, students will explore multiple areas where they can earn money with their writing. Lessons include:

· Setting Career Goals

· Magazine Article Writing

· Write for Hire Work

· Marketing and Public Relations

· Becoming a Public Speaker

· Becoming a Creative Writing Teacher

· Making Money as an Editor

· Writing and Selling the Non-Fiction Book

· Writing and Selling the Novel

Secrets From the World of the Pros

Each lesson will cover a host of possibilities and will give real, practical suggestions.

You’ve mentioned other lessons that aren’t yet available. Could you share a few here?

Sure! Each of the ten topics listed above will eventually become its own course (with multiple lessons in each). I’ll be heading back into the recording studio soon to cover the topic of magazine articles more thoroughly. I’ll also record lessons covering all aspects of fiction writing. We’ll talk about passive vs. active writing, plotting, characterization, and much more. I’ve also got a host of lessons coming up related to non-fiction books. We’ll delve into specific topics related to write-for-hire work (my favorite!) and will share a host of lessons on marketing and PR. Hang on for the ride! Participants in these various courses will get the tools they need to work as a pro in the industry.

How, exactly, will these courses work?

When participants sign up and pay, they will be granted access to the “inner sanctum” of the site, where they can view the various components of the lessons, (the audio file, audio script, worksheet, power point and forum). I would suggest folks start with the first lesson (Setting Goals) and go from there. They can print up a copy of the worksheet and follow along with the audio and power point presentation. Then, at a designated time, participants can meet with me in the forum to discuss the topic at hand. I love the fact that this is all so user-friendly and participants can work at their own pace.

If you could tell beginning freelancers one thing, what would it be?

Don’t give up. Keep going and keep looking for creative ways to make money. Examine new markets. Learn all you can about the industry. Become friends with editors. The potential for money-making is there, but much of it is relational.

Why do you feel so strongly about stirring up the gifts?

There’s a scripture I love where the apostle Paul speaks to his young protégé, Timothy: “For this reason I remind you to fan into flame the gift of God, which is in you through the laying on of my hands.” (II Timothy 1:6 NIV) The King James version uses the words “stir up the gift” instead of “fan into flame the gift.” The idea is the same. Gifts need stirring and fanning. As a published author, I make it my goal to “stir the gifts” of those hoping to be published (or hoping to be published in more markets). I know that these lessons will stir people up. I could sense it as I recorded them. Changing lives. . .and encouraging writers. . .what could be better?

I understand you won the 2008 American Christian Fiction Writers “Mentor of the Year” award. Could you tell us more about that? What role does mentoring play in your life and how will you incorporate mentoring into your online writing courses?

I have a theory about mentoring. I believe that everyone should have someone they’re mentoring and someone they’re being mentored by. If we ever think we’re too “big” to be mentored, we’re in trouble! And it’s imperative that we pour into the lives of those who are learning the writing craft, especially if we’re published and/or doing well in the industry. I’m tickled that I received the ACFW Mentor of the Year award. I can think of nothing better to be remembered for than mentoring others, to be quite honest. Writing books is great, sure. And getting my name out there is fun, too. But if I don’t mentor. . .if I don’t pass along what I’ve learned, then my writing is nothing but selfish pleasure. I don’t ever want to be known as a selfish author. I want to be known as a giver and an encourager. My prayer is that people who take this course will see my heart for all writers to succeed and earn money doing what they love!

Janice, where else can people find you on the web?

My freelance writing courses site:

My book-related website: www.janiceathompson

My blog:

My facebook page:

My facebook reader’s page:

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

ANNOUNCEMENT: My Freelance Writing Courses Site Is Ready to Roll!

Hello, writing friends,

I'm so excited! I've been sitting on this news for a couple of months. As most of you know, I'm a teacher at heart. Years ago, I taught creative writing and drama at a Houston area school of the arts. And from the time my first book was released in 2000, I've made the rounds from writing group to writing group, teaching the craft. I've even had the pleasure of teaching at conferences. And my courses have been available in .doc form for a while now. However, today's announcement tops everything I've done in the past (as it relates to my courses). As I debut this new site:, I realize that I'm stepping off in a new direction. The purpose of this site is to show people how to make MONEY writing. Yep. Money.

If you've been trying to figure out a way to earn money as a freelancer, the ten courses on this site will be perfect for you. They are available for purchase as individual lessons (at 24.95 each) or you can buy the whole package for $199. Here's a list of the lessons:
  • Setting Career Goals
  • Magazine Article Writing
  • Write for Hire Work
  • Marketing and Public Relations
  • Becoming a Public Speaker
  • Becoming a Creative Writing Teacher
  • Making Money as an Editor
  • Writing and Selling the Non-Fiction Book
  • Writing and Selling the Novel
  • Secrets from the World of the Pros
Each lesson comes with an audio file of me teaching the lesson, an audio script (so you can follow along), a worksheet, a bonus feature and access to the site's forum, where we'll meet up at pre-arranged times to talk about the lessons. In essence, you won't just be signing up for courses. You'll be getting some serious one-on-one time with me, as well. (We'll call it forum mentoring!)

There's money to be made as a writer. I've been working as a full-time freelancer for years, and I've learned so much. What I've learned, I want to share with others. Please prayerfully consider signing on to take these lessons. They will open your eyes to a whole new world of income-making possibilities.

Oh, and one more thing. . .the list of courses will grow over time. Each of these ten lessons will become its own topic, and there will be sub-lessons. (I'll be in the studio recording on a continual basis, so there will always be an influx of fresh material.)

Sound intriguing? Go to and sign up for my newsletter to learn more. Then, dive in! Learn what it takes to make money with your writing! If you're interested in sharing the news on your facebook site or blog, please feel free to share the youtube video link:

Friday, April 16, 2010

Have I Told You Lately That I Love You?

I thought that subject line might grab your attention! With so many different things happening in my life (deadline for a novel, my new writing courses, book reviews and so on, I'm afraid I'm going to overlook the people who make all of this possible: you!

Yes, this is celebrate YOU, the READER, day. I've been wracking my brain, trying to figure out what I can do to bless you. Pray for you, sure! I do! I pray God's blessings on each and every one. But I want to do more.

How about this. . .I'm going to write you a poem. Now, mind you, I'm no poet. Still, I'm going to give this my best shot. Let's make it a haiku.

My faithful readers
Blessing, encouraging, kind
God's precious gift, all

That's how I feel about you! You are a gift to me. When I'm bleary-eyed, facing a deadline, you lift my spirits! When I'm biting my nails, wondering what you'll think of my next book, you respond with love and encouragement. When I'm trying my hand at new ventures (writing courses, etc.) you send me, "You can do it!" notes. Oh, how you keep me going.

In so many ways I feel like Moses. When he grew weary in battle, those around him lifted his arms. You, my dear readers and friends, are my arm lifters. And I wish I could give you more than a poem. For today, I suppose that will have to do. That, and a sincere, "Thank you!" from my heart to yours!

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Funny Business

Hello, everyone! Thanks for stopping by. We have a fun topic today, so I hope you'll kick your shoes off and stay awhile!

Some of my readers have asked, "Why do you write humor?" It's a good question. My first response would probably be, "Because it comes naturally," or maybe, "Because that's what I feel called to write."

Humor writing is tough stuff. Sometimes we writers sit behind our computers, pecking away at the keys, hoping that our words will make others laugh. We don't actually know (until the book releases, often) if the humor element works. Talk about scary business! And, hey. . .it's just as important for a writer to maintain a sense of humor about things, as a reader! After all, we need our spirits lifted, too!

With that in mind, I want to share a little bit about humor writing.

“Through humor, you can soften some of the worst blows that life delivers. And once you find laughter, no matter how painful your situation might be, you can survive it.” - Bill Cosby

Humor writing comes naturally to some authors. Others have to work hard to be funny. (Sounds funny, doesn’t it. . .working hard to be funny?) I’m one of those who came into the world with an overactive funny bone. Oh, it occasionally gives me trouble. Life’s woes kick in and my funny bone gets arthritic. It locks up. Whenever that happens, I trip myself on purpose, just to loosen it back up again. (Hey, a girl can only go so long without laughter!)

So, what does this have to do with writing? Everything!

So, what makes a story funny? Here are a few tips to creating a tale that will tickle the funny bone:

Create unique characters: Think of your favorite sitcom. For me, Everybody Love Raymond is near the top of the list. Why did I love that show so much? The characters were (individually) hysterical. Each one had his/her own quirks. And those quirks got them into (and out of) jams. When you set out to write a comedy, create a cast of characters that you absolutely love. Don’t just focus on one or two. Choose at least three characters in your story who really have that extra “zing.” Characters that readers will remember for years to come. In my “Weddings by Bella” series, I created several funny characters (and boy, have I heard from readers about them). These characters include Aunt Rosa, Uncle Laz, Bella and the trio of “sisters” from Splendora Texas. These wacky people will stay with me for the rest of my life! I think some of my readers have adopted them, as well.

Exaggeration: If your character is tall, make him really tall. Chubby? Make her exceptionally chubby. Nervous? Make him overly anxious. Claustrophobic? Carry it a bit further than the norm. Does she like to wear lipstick? Make it Pollyanna Pink or Ruby Red. Give that character an exaggerated “sticking point” that readers will remember. And, exaggerate plotline highs and lows, as well. Is she in a valley? Make it a deep one. Is he on the mountaintop? Give him the experience of a lifetime.

Situational comedy: Spend time watching for humorous moments in your own life. What “situations” get you giggly? Think about placing your characters in a “situation” that will play out in a humorous way. By way of example, let’s look at I Love Lucy. Did we really find it believable that a housewife would take a job in a chocolate factory and end up shoving candies down her blouse? Um, probably not. Did we laugh like hyenas when the episode aired? You betcha! I Love Lucy was the perfect example of a situational comedy. Week after week we waited to see what “situation” our gal would end up in. We empathized with her (this is very important) and we thought she was a little kooky. In short, we saw a little of ourselves in her.

The Rule of Three. Why do you suppose so many jokes begin with the words, “Three nuns walked into a bar,” or “Three men were on a boat,” (etc.) There’s something about the number three, isn’t there! It’s the “This, this, then THAT!” effect. Work in threes and your audience will love you!

Slapstick: Think of Larry, Mo and Curly. Sure, their antics got a little old after awhile, but you get the idea. “Physical” comedy (tripping over things, physical gags, etc.) has always had its place in humor writing. Use these events sparingly, but don’t rule them out.

Pacing: There’s much to be said about the placement of words, phrases and inflections. Pacing it truly everything in comedy. In many respects, it is learned by trial and error. If you aren’t sure something is working, run it by your critique partners. See if they’re tickled by your words.

Living the Life: Let humor lead the way! In my own life, I find that being funny on the page is easier when I’m truly walking through life with a joyous attitude. It’s not always easy (and life often intervenes, threatening to remove any hint of humor), but for those who live a life of faith, it is possible. The Bible is loaded with all sorts of great scriptures about joy. Check out this verse: "A merry heart doeth good like a medicine, but a broken spirit drieth the bones." (Proverbs 17:22) When we transfer our “merry heart” to the page, then we’re sharing the joy with our readers. Is there any greater honor?

That's it for now, writers! Go forth and giggle!

Monday, April 12, 2010

BOOK REVIEW: Scattered Petals

Hi everyone! Yes, it's true! I'm actually posting book reviews on this site. I'll continue to post them on my Double Booked review site for a while, but eventually most of my writing-related posts will now shift to this site.

I'm thrilled to be able to review a book for a fellow Revell author. Though I've never met Amanda Cabot in person, I received her book as a gift.

I wasn't asked to review it, but decide I'd do so, anyway, because I really liked it! Here's the synopsis:

Longing for adventure, Priscilla Morton leaves Boston and heads for Texas, never dreaming that the adventure she seeks will leave her badly injured and her parents dead. Priscilla is determined to rebuild her life and make a home for herself in the beautiful Hill Country. But the bandits who took her parents' lives also destroyed her hope for the future. Ranch foreman Zachary Webster knows what the future holds for him, and it's not a woman like Priscilla. She deserves a cultured East Coast gentleman, not a cowboy who's haunted by memories of his mistakes. The best thing he can do is leave her alone. When necessity draws them together, Priscilla and Zach begin to forge a life that, like the scattered petals of her childhood, is filled with promise. But then the past intrudes, threatening their very existence.

As I said, I've never met Amanda before, but her book has certainly won me over. In many ways, it reminded me of Jeanette Oke's classic, "Love Comes Softly." The premise is similar, only with a huge twist. My heart really went out to the heroine, who faced overwhelming obstacles early on in the story. This is truly a tale of triumph and courage. It touches the heartstrings. I highly recommend this book to women who are dealing with issues of forgiveness. It will soften your heart, for sure.

Nicely done, Amanda!

Friday, April 9, 2010

To Plot. . .or Not?

Hi y'all! I'm leaving today for a writer's conference in Marshall, Texas, where I'll be teaching on plotting. I'm a firm believer in plotting my novels, but I know not all people feel the same. Some people do a better job flying by the seat of their pants. I believe it's truly possible to do both - minimal plotting and SOTP (seat of the pants) writing, too! Even though I plot my novels, the characters are always doing and saying unexpected things, and I'm always open to re-direction, should the Spirit move.

So, here's a question for you writers out there: Do you write by the seat of your pants, or do you plot? What works best for you?

And here's a question for the readers in our midst: When you're reading a book, can you tell if it's poorly plotted or not? Do you ever get to the middle of end of a book and end up frustrated because it seems to be going nowhere (or worse. . .seems to be contrived)?

As I said, I love to plot, but I also love the freedom of following my characters as they lead the way. so, let's talk about it!

Oh, and just a quick reminder. . .this is the last day to enter the drawing to win a free copy of "It Had to be You" (my new "Weddings by Bella" book). To enter, go to Monday's post (April 5th) and leave a comment sharing your favorite scene from one of the first two books.

Happy weekend, everyone! Please pray for traveling mercies as I head up to Marshall Texas, and then on to Daisy, Oklahoma, where I'm researching for a book project! And look for a HUGE announcement from me in a few days. God is up to all sorts of cool things in my writing life!

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Roller Coaster Writing

I thought it would be fun to post this article, which I wrote a couple of months ago.

Have you ever boarded a roller coaster at an amusement park, only to wonder what you’d just gotten yourself into? If so, then you know what it feels like to be a full-time freelance writer. Up one day, down the next. . .the average freelancer rises over the crest on the proverbial coaster, only to plummet back down the other side, losing her stomach in the process. Scary stuff, the writing biz.

Even those of us who are fortunate enough to have book contracts aren’t immune to that inevitable “stomach in the throat” feeling when we don’t know what’s coming around the next bend. “Will my readers love my next story, or boo me off the stage?” “Will my editors decide the gig is up and send me packing?” “Will I be able to meet my next deadline if I take on extra work on the side?” “Can I really support myself in this crazy business?”

Oy, the questions! How they fly. And yet, the writer plows ahead, undeterred. What propels her, besides the rent, electric bill and so forth? Her undeniable love affair with the written word. She is addicted. . .unashamedly, head-over-heels addicted. She couldn’t give it up if she wanted to.

And so she perseveres. She eats, sleeps and breathes her WIP (work in progress). The laptop becomes her faithful companion. She wonders if others fall asleep thinking of the next step in their plotline. Her dreams are filled with images from her story—colorful, vibrant and alive. Morning awakens and she rushes to pick up her characters where she left them the night before. When her fingers hit the keys, her breathing steadies. She’s at home once more.

Perhaps you can relate to this writer. Maybe you’ve walked a mile in her shoes. If so, then you know what it’s like to give yourself over to your craft. There are high highs and low lows, and many unexpected places in-between. The joys are many, but so are the sorrows. And the freelancer, for all of her trying, still battles the inevitable questions and fears. She also wonders about the financial. . .a lot. And like the woman in this story, she seeks out other work, hoping to make ends meet. She edits on the side. She pitches magazine articles. She shares her story with writers groups. She offers her services as a creative writing teacher at a local homeschool group. And all with one thing in mind. . .to support her habit.
There is no twelve-step program for this poor soul. She’s in this thing for life. When her days come to their rightful end, she will be found at her computer, rigid fingers still perched on the keys, the words THE END etched in crisp black print against a frozen white screen. Times New Roman font, of course. 12-pitch. Just in case an editor happens by.

Yep, writing is tough work. But this weary author, for all of her joys and sorrows, hopes the gig won’t be up, even when this life is over. If there’s not a laptop waiting for her in heaven, she plans to take it up with the Almighty. Surely he will offer her a position as a freelancer. After all, the stories up there will be out of this world. Literally.

NOTE: Don't forget to leave a comment on Monday's "Weddings by Bella" post so that you can enter the drawing to win a copy of "It Had to Be You."

Monday, April 5, 2010

Weddings by Bella Contest

Howdy, y'all! Happy Monday. I pray you had an awesome Easter weekend. I spent it with my family. What darling grandbabies I have! We had a blast. Best of all, it was a great time to reflect on what God has done for us. (If you're like I am, the list if pretty overwhelming!)

Today I want to announce a new contest that I'm hosting in honor of the release of my next "Weddings by Bella" book, "It Had to Be You." This is the third and final book in the Bella series. It was tough to write because I knew I'd be saying goodbye to Bella, D.J., Rosa, Laz and those silly sequined ladies from Splendora once I wrote that last line. An interesting thing happened as I penned the book--the story took a bit of a turn. Yes, it's still light-hearted, but there are some really tender and deep moments, too.

Oh, what a lovely ride it's been, spending time with the Rossi clan. And how fun, to get to know so many new readers! I don't think I've ever seen the kind of reader response that I have from these books. (Turns out, there are a few people out there who love comedy! Go figure!) In honor of the outpouring of love and support, I'd like to host a contest. It's going to end on Friday, April 9th. On that date, I'll be hosting a drawing to give away two copies of the book. All you have to do is leave a comment after this post, telling me your favorite scene in one of Bella's stories. I have my favorites, and I'll share them at the end. (Honestly, some scenes were such joy to write that I laughed my way through them!)

So, that's it, readers. If you want to enter the drawing to win a free copy of "It Had to be You," just leave a comment sharing your favorite scene. And while I'm thinking about it, let me thank you - all of you - for the way you've supported me as I've marketed these books. What a blessing you are!

Sunday, April 4, 2010

EASTER NOTE: My Writing, My Faith

Good morning, friends. What a brilliant, awe-inspiring day!

I want to pause for a moment on this Easter Sunday to share something personal with my readers. I want to address the faith issue found in my books, and to explain why I write the stories I do.

Many people have asked, "Why do you write for the Christian market? Isn't there more money to be made in secular writing?" There is more money to be made in the ABA (American Bookseller's Association), for sure, but that's not where I feel called. I do hope that some of my books will cross over those invisible boundary lines and make their way into the hands of readers who usually read ABA books, but my primary audience is still Christians.

I know a lot of people are hollering, "When you write for fellow Christians, you're just preaching to the choir!" I suppose there's some truth to that. But I have a strong passion to encourage and uplift Christians, primarily woman. So many have been through rough seasons in their lives. The light-hearted, faith-filled stories that I write are meant to remind them that life goes on. There is hope. You will get through this. . .and you can experience joy along the way!

Why do I feel so strongly about this? I've been through several rough seasons in my own life. Between 2006 and 2007, I went through multiple personal tragedies, one of top of another. By the time I got to the fall of 2007, I was at a really low place. But God used the books--and the writing--to lift me out of the pit. I figure, if writing can do that for the writer. . .it can do that for the reader.

Today, as we ponder the miracle of Easter. . .as we think about resurrection, new life and empty tombs. . .be reminded that people in the 21st century are still looking for answers, just like they were 2000 years ago. That empty tomb is symbolic of the hollow place in each heart; the place that only Jesus can fill. Pray with me, if you will, that my books will make their way into the right hands. Let's begin to trust God that Christian fiction will be a mighty tool to uplift and encourage believers and unbelievers alike.

Bless you all this Easter season. Thanks for being such awesome friends!

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Spring Has Sprung!

It's April 1st and south Texas has never seen prettier weather! Perhaps I'm so tickled by it because I spent nearly a month away from home. It's good to be back, especially with the bluebonnets out in force! Perhaps I'll post a few pictures over the next couple of weeks. In the meantime, I thought it might be fun to update you on where I stand with my writing. It's been a busy season.

For those who have been reading the "Weddings by Bella" (Revell Publishing) series. . .thank you! Oh, how I love my fans! You've been so good to me. The outpouring of love and support was amazing when the first book (Fools Rush In) released back in September. I bit my nails as the second book (Swinging on a Star) came out in January, afraid my readers might not like it as much as the first. (This always happens in a series, by the way. We authors fret that our readers won't care for the subsequent books. Call it insecurity. Call it nerves.) Imagine my surprise and delight when I heard from dozens of you, saying you liked the story! And now I'm thrilled to announce that the third book (It Had to Be You) will release in a month! I got my first author copy tonight and passed it to my awesome friend, Kay. I'll let you know what she says, but I happen to love the way Bella's story wraps up. Hope you do, too!

As for my other projects, I just turned in a book for a new romance line at Summerside. My book is set in 1957 in a soda shop in Laguna Beach, CA. It's titled "Love Me Tender." If you like the music, movies, television shows and love stories of the 50s, I think you'll get a kick out of this story. I'll be giving you more information as the release date draws near.

In the meantime, I'm buzzing along on Love Finds You in Camelot, Tennessee. It's a quirky (hysterical!) story about the citizens of the town of Camelot putting on the play, Camelot! This book (like my others from Summerside) is written under my pen name, Janice Hanna.

One more announcement! I'll be debuting a new line of freelance writing courses soon. To sign up for the newsletter, go to These courses will help aspiring freelancers earn real money with their writing.

That's it for today! I'm excited about all that God has in store. Please sign up to follow this blog. I'd be honored! From this point on, this will be my primary blog, where you can learn about all of my books.

Happy Spring, y'all!