If you follow any of my social media accounts, you already know how much of Downton Abbey fan I am. I've seen all six seasons a lot more than once, and so when the details of the movie were released, I could not have been more excited.
The movie opened on September 20th, and I bought advance tickets for the same day. And for two, what seemed like incredibly short hours, I immersed myself in the 1920s again with the familiar characters I've grown to love. And I don't regret a moment of it. In fact, I'll probably see the movie again before it leaves the theaters.
I've written a full review of Downton Abbey that you can read, but I wanted to share with you all here that this is, by far, the best return Julian Fellowes (the creator of Downton Abbey) could have given us. If you're a fan of the show, you don't want to miss the chance to see this on the big screen.
Originally posted in Funds for Writers by C. Hope Clark
This happens at every appearance I make. Someone hears me speak or hold a conversation, then they buy my book, saying, "I don't normally read fiction, but after hearing you talk, I believe I'd like to try one of your books." We then talk about which one to start with, and a sale is made. Hopefully a fan is made as well.
I already know you don't want to appear in public. Most writers don't. Frankly, I'd rather be home in my cutoff sweats and t-shirt with no makeup typing away on a new chapter. I'd rather not put my dogs in a kennel to drive a state away or pack up boxes of books. . . pondering on whether to bring 30 or 130 copies.
But once I am there, I own it. I love someone coming up and saying, "I love your books." or "I've followed you for years." But it doesn't stop there. I ask if they write, or what they read, or where they are from, or what they do for a living. How often do they come to Edisto Beach (I do a lot of signings down there) or come to South Carolina.
Because asking about your readers makes them love you more. Why? Because it shows that you care more about the reader than simply making a sale. People love for others to care about them.
You should care about your readers. These people have offered up to you hours of their finite life, which is a phenomenal gift. A certain number of heartbeats and breaths they'll never get back, all because you were chosen to be a permanent part of their life. . . of their memories.
Y'all, that's what you ought to be thinking when someone picks up your book. So, when they say they've chosen your book, especially if it's a genre they don't normally read, then feel honored and thank them from the bottom of your heart in return.
Outliving Her Past is a book that is near and dear to my heart. I've wrestled with how I wanted to make this book available, and ultimately, I've decided to indie-publish it on February 15, 2020. I previously shared the first chapter with you, and it's up at Wattpad as well.
Though a romance is included, Outliving Her Past is mostly women's fiction. It deals with serious issues like racism, hate crimes, murder, and small-town prejudice. Because of how important it is to me, I want to release it sooner rather than later.
Kate Marks has spent her entire life trying to outlive her past, but her father's illness drags her back to the hometown she never wanted to see again. Back to the judgments and the hate that seems normal to the family living here.
An attorney in Charleston, SC, Kate moved as far away from her family as she could, enduring their disapproval, but that disapproval segued to unfettered fury when she fell in love with a man her family will never accept. She's determined to live her life her way, but her father's ultimatum sends her reeling, and when her brother is arrested for a hate crime, she's forced to confront the prejudices that bind her family together.
Her normal life in Charleston awaits her, but has she been tainted by the evil that darkens her past?
Yet Another Hurricane
We've spent the last few days in hurricane mode as Hurricane Dorian targeted the east coast. It's now Thursday evening, and the storm has finally pulled away from our area and is headed toward North Carolina. Someone asked me why I would continue to live here when hurricane season is something I have to face every year. My answer was simple. Because this is where I live. This is my home.
The eastern seaboard is a target for hurricanes every season, and more often than not, we're watching the tropics every season. And, yes, there is a chance that our homes could be destroyed, our city demolished, but, in reality, those scenarios can happen anywhere, whether it's by an earthquake, a tornado, or any other natural disaster. There are no guarantees that we will always be safe.
I grew up in Charleston, and I can't imagine living anywhere else. Some day, I might want to own a mountain home, but I'll always have a home here. Preparing for and watching a hurricane does disrupt the normal flow of my life, but it's a disruption I'm familiar with.
In 1989, Hurricane Hugo devastated our area. I was in college then and could only watch the damage being done to my home from afar. I would have evacuated had I been in the city at that time just as I evacuate for anything over a Category 3. I don't take unnecessary risks, and I heed the warnings of the experts. But I wouldn't leave Charleston forever because hurricanes threaten us every year. It's just something I accept about living in a coastal community. I prepare and pray. And I'm ever aware that the next hurricane could be catastrophic.
My thoughts, experiences, challenges, and goals. Right here. At least once a week or so. Oh, and opinions, too. Those will definitely come in. Join me!