We Are Not Alone. . .
Sometimes it seems as though there are only 7 or 8 of us visiting my blog, since we’re the chatty ones. I just installed a statistics counter, though, which reported 71 visits to my blog in the last 24 hours! And those 71 people read more than 170 posts between them. So I welcome you quiet ones. Please say “hi” when you’re in the mood. I’d love to get to know you.
To those of you who visit and do not write-give us some ideas as to what YOU are doing and reading. I make a list of the books…thank you…we want to hear from you.
What do you like about D’s books? Which are your favorite?
I check in almost every day, but rarely write. I like to get the updates on the WIP, I like to see what others are reading and I like the dog talk now and then.
Brenda, to answer your questions, I like DC books because I think she really makes you care about the characters and the stories are usually complex and very interesting. Diane, you are one of the few authors I continuously read and can’t put the books down.
Brenda, you also asked about what we are all reading. I read mainly books that would be classified as “women’s fiction.” A recent book that I read that I really enjoyed was “Pug Hill” by Alison Pace. If you like dogs you will enjoy this. it is a story about a women who loves dogs and her romantic and family relationships.
I am going to start reading “204 Rosewood Lane” by Debbie Macomber next. I am just getting into this series. I had gotten 16 Lighthouse Road for Xmas and enjoyed it. When I finish this, I am going to read one of DC’s early books I ordered on the website a few months back. I am spacing them out since there won’t be a new book this year.
Hi Cheryl, glad you piped in! You’ve got me interested in PUG HILL. Now I ask you, if a book can be titled PUG HILL, what on earth is wrong with THE SEA TENDER??
DITTO DIANE! Plz ask your editors that question! Cheryl, I’m a huge doggie lover and will look for PUG HILL next time I’m at the bookstore. I’ve read all of
Diane’s books and many of them at least twice. KEEPER OF THE LIGHT is my all time favorite novel which I’ve read 3 times so if you haven’t read it you are in for a very special treat.
I am one of those silent readers also. I read your blog daily. I work in a library and catalogue books. When the Secret Life of CeeCee Wilkes came across my desk, I was intrigued. I took it home and could not put it down. I finished it in a day and a half!!!! I brought it back to work and told the director what an excellent book it was. She took it home and read it in two days!!! We have told everyone about the book and now we have ALL of your older books and they won’t stay on the shelves!!!! Everybody here just loves them. Can’t wait until your new one comes out!
Welcome, Denise! i LOVE librarians. Thanks you so much for spreading the word, and I’m delighted you’re enjoying my books. Where is your library located?
I work in a library in a small town in eastern Iowa (3,500 pop.) It feels like spring outside today!
I will look for PUG HILL-keep giving us lists of books-esp. if I finsh grad school in May-to celebrate my 60th in Sept…I will read the ones you suggest.
I agree with Diane about the title.
As to Debbie M.–like her books especially the ones about the yarn shop…
Denise-librarians are great-welcome. Spring in Iowa-wow…
Back to titles-they are important.
I wonder who told Austen she could use Pride and Prejudice…or Sense and Sensibility (Just finished rereading her books–did an essay on P&P and am doing a project on Austen…interesting life…)
Bridges of Madison County (could have no other name)
I firmly believe that the one thing the author should do alone is choose the title-sorry…but I know I agree about picking battles…in all honesty, Diane Chamberlain, author and “friend”, it doesn’t matter what you title your book, it will sell…you are already an author that we love…you have paid your dues and are well worth reading…You have sustained your ability to keep your readers interested. Need I say more????
Diane, I don’t know what is wrong with THE SEA TENDER. I think it is a very good title. PUG HILL is a pretty goofy title, but maybe you have to see the cover to have it make sense. There are a bunch of pugs in the park pictured on it, so it all ties together and that’s what caught my eye.
Margo, KEEPER OF THE LIGHT is my favorite DC book too.
I’m going to have to get that book for a pug-owning friend of mine!
Wow, it is nice to hear from the “quiet ones”. If any of you have not read “Keeper of the Light” get it and read it!! All of Diane’s books are great but that one will get you hooked!
Welcome quiet ones and hello Denise from Iowa. I’m from Iowa also and it’s wonderful to finally have spring like weather (36 degrees this morning is a heat wave for us!). Like Ann, I can’t say enough wonderful things about KEEPER OF THE LIGHT. I pull it down from my bookshelf every so often and re-read it just so I don’t ever lose touch with those feelings and characters. SUMMERS CHILD is another fav as is CYPRESS POINT, THE BAY AT MIDNIGHT, THE SECRET LIFE OF CEECEE WILKES, SECRET LIVES…the sequal and trilogy to KEEPER…well, basically they are all incredible as is Diane Chamberlain. A superb author and dear friend.
I have to come clean and tell you: I’ve been lurking silently on your blog for a while ! Partly because you mentioned doing research for an autobiographical book a while back, and I wanted to volunteer to contribute if you needed any info from 3rd – 6th grade. But also because I’ve taken early retirement, and now I have a bit of time to check in at a variety of websites each day…..my mom needs some help (memory-related mostly) so we’ve sold her house and moved her in with us. Also, I think I’ve had a faint fantasy that I could write a book someday, but after reading you explain how much work it is – I’ve certainly given up that dream !
Mom is as sweet as can be, but coordinating house move, selling her 2 houses, managing her finances, meds and other medical stuff….its been a full-time job for me. I do miss work. But I’ve become involved with some progressive political groups in the area, including a Book Club, so I’m really enjoying that (we’re reading Imperial Life in the Emerald City about Iraq’s Green Zone – enlightening and scary/sad book).
So thanks for getting me out of my lazy lurking mode to send a note….please let me know if you’ll be in the NJ area sometime and we can get together ! And if you do need info about the old days, just let me know….
Oh my. Where do I begin to respond to Joyce/Janni and explain her to the gang here? First, Joyce, do email me so we can chat more. I long ago lost your address and other info, and it would be good to catch up. . . although I suppose you’re pretty caught up with me if you’ve been reading my blog! I’m always at a disadvantage in that way.
Anyhow, Joyce and I were best friends for many years when we were kids. There was a comic strip in the paper called The Jackson Twins, who were named Jan and Jill. So Joyce became Janni (I don’t recall how Jan became Janni) and I became Jill. (Joyce, I hope you noticed I used the name Janni in my first novel. I still love that name. And have you read THE BAY AT MIDNIGHT? You’ll recognize the summer home for sure!)
Early retirement! So many of my friends are retiring and I feel as though I’m just gearing up. How wonderful for you. Your political involvement sounds rewarding and I (and I’m sure others here) would love to hear more about IMPERIAL LIFE IN THE EMERALD CITY. I know nothing about it.
Thanks for piping in! And please give your mom a hug from me.
Margo, I DID notice that Denise was from Iowa. I’ll have to get out there some day and visit with my readers.
Oh Diane, what a joy it would be if you came to Iowa! There are lots of fans here so I know we could have a great showing. I’d like to suggest anytime except winter, unless you don’t mind -20 wind chills, ice, snow…in that case I could loan you a parka and boots!
Joyce-Tell us about Diane growing up…did you girls grow up in the 70’s….???
I graduated in 1965. I can’t retire forever…I started this late.
I plan to finish my Master’s soon…then will continue to teach…
I will write after the degree is finished. I do wish I had more time to visit the kids and granddaughters…I’m like Diane-still going…
Joyce-I admire you-taking care of your mother…I did that for 90 days in a hospital room with cancer (I left to shower only)…it was horrible-my mother died at 60…long story–worth it…if she were alive–I would do all I could-you are blessed to have her…
FINDING FRIENDS-that’s so great…hope you two get together
Denise-I have a great teacher friend who has just retired who lives in Iowa (I have them all over).
We were part of the Folger’s Shakespeare Institute in 1996 (One month in D.C.–was great)
We email often…
Hi Diane… I’ll fess up too and with a twist, it appears I am your only “male” blog reader (so far). After adding your blog to our web site “Blog Spot” I have been a faithful reader. I became fascinated with how you explain your craft, especially the mechanics of how you perform your craft. What a great teacher! Your current WIP is centered on Topsail Island where I live. I can’t wait to read the book!
Reading your blog gives me insight into my partner/editor Sheree for topsail-island.info. I know I know, since I’m a male I’ll never fully understand but at least give me points for trying.
Thanks for letting me in and especially for sharing your fascinating creative process!
Welcome, Glen! How nice to see a guy here. I wonder if there are more of you out there? I know I have male readers because I hear from them every once in a while. Sheree (who manages the Topsail Island website) is lucky to have a sensitive man for her partner.
The responses to this post make me think I should write more about the art and mechanics of novel-writing. Thanks for stopping in, Glen.
Well Diane if you visit Iowa you have to hit S. Dakota too (I’m about 10-20 miles from the MN and IA borders). I just finished Summers Child and enjoyed it greatly. I think I figured out why I had a hard time reading Bay at Midnight as well. I couldn’t relate to any of the characters. Who knew.
We are experiencing spring for a week anyways. 50s-60s and all the snow is melting! It’s so nice (38 degrees) I have my window open!
Glad you enjoyed SUMMER’S CHILD, Krysia. With regard to THE BAY AT MIDNIGHT, do you think you had trouble relating because all the main characters were considerably older than you? Enjoy the “spring” weather.
Yes, I’ll send my email…..I thought maybe you could see it from your blog-log or somewhere…..I’ve shown your photo to my mom…..she seems to remember you, though I’m not always sure when she’s telling the truth. Sometimes the older memories are easier for her to remember than the more recent ones….
Hmmm, how to describe Diane ? Well, first of all, I guess I can say that we were STILL growing up in the 70’s, though not young children at that point ! I remember Diane being a fun-loving, creative girl who had lots of friends and drew others to her. We did things like backyard fairs to raise money for cancer (I think we raised $17 which was a big deal back then), acted in plays with Girl Scouts, and learned to play guitars so we could emulate the musical groups of the times. Diane was an ‘instigator’ who came up with ideas and the rest of us followed along (wish I could think of an example, but not at the moment). I know she had some anxieties but they didn’t get in the way of her fun ! Also I recall her parents being more fun than mine (your mother sat outside one Mischief Night hiding on your front stoop while we rang doorbells, remember ?). And her family had wonderful Sunday breakfasts with lots of yummy food, newspapers to read, etc – I loved those !
Anyway, I better not say anymore cause she may want to write her autobiography someday…..
I hope she writes her memoir…she sounds just as I have imaged her (sorry Diane, we are discussing you-at least in your presence)
Joyce-what is Mischief Night? Is that like Trick or Treat?
Good book girls SKYLIGHT CONFESSIONS by Alice HOffman…read it this afternoon (I know I should be working…)
Characters-authors-I have noticed as I just finished a series of mysteries by one author about one person (one protagonist) that the author has grown through the years…have enjoyed those…now to work
MIstakes and aggravations: When authors are not doing their research as Diane is doing, and when they change the facts.
In one mystery series, the significant other is 5 years younger than the woman; in another book, he is 8 years…now when I get to KNOW a character, I want the author to stick to the facts…This is a little thing…
Another-don’t stick a cell phone in a story in the l980’s and don’t have a dial up old black phone in the l990’s…I don’t know why I get so aggravated over this in stories, books, and movies…
In one of my grad classes, we are reading/writing short stories, etc….we all agree that the above are problems…
Another: confusing names and no one does this better than Chekhov….in some of his stories…
Sorry-just wanted to congratulate Diane on not doing this-not to say that the editing might not miss this some time…
That could be a possibility, I’ve never thought of that.
I agree on the mistakes and aggrivations. I also hate it when I’m reading and the characters and the scene changes and the convo stay the same (read a book like that once I was so confused).
well, joyce wrote about my youth in a very kind fashion. she even made my “instigations” sound charming, leaving out such things as the time i talked her into putting clear nail polish on her lips. We really were inventive kids and put on plays in our garages and such. joyce, it’s so sweet that you remember sunday breakfasts at my house. they were a special time that i appreciate mostly in retrospect. my parents were very strict, but they did have spunk.
Mischief Night, Brenda, was the night before Hallowe’en in the town we lived in. You did things like toilet paper trees and ring doorbells and hide. My mom watched us as we rang doorbells. . . until one poor woman started screaming at us (we were hiding) about how she was alone with her bunch of kids and had to leave them in the bathtub to come answer the door and on and on. Mom felt guilty and that was the end of that!
as for mistakes in books–no matter how careful i am, i still make them. and readers always catch them. one time i received a letter from a “fan” with pages and pages copied from my book. she was upset that my characters used incorrect grammar in dialogue and had copied all those pages to show me. it’s dialogue, for pete’s sake!
it reminds me of when my mother read my first novel, PRIVATE RELATIONS. she was mortified by some of the things in that book (it WAS hard to know my parents were reading what i wrote!). Mom complained that I used the word c-u-n-t. I told her I didn’t use it, my character did. I was innocent.
Brenda, your suggestion of an Alice Hoffman book gives me an idea for a post about writers that influenced me/us (she was definitely one of them). I’ll get to that soon.
I like Alice Hoffman.
Just read Margaret Maron with a protagonist, Amy…I think I might like those better than the Deborah Knott…however…keeping up with names in her books…
Diane-I have never thought of what you said to your mother-the character used the words…The F… word is in Maron’s books, and I hate that word…guess I will look at it differently now.
Right. We have to be true to our characters. i DO think of my readers’ sensitivities now in a way I didn’t use to, having heard from so many of them, though.