Oh Happy Day!

condo copy



















I didn’t think it was ever going to happen! After several months of “everything that can go wrong going wrong” (with the exception of a hurricane, but the season’s not over yet), I now own a vacation home–a two-bedroom oceanfront condo on my beloved Topsail Island! It’s hard to believe I’d never even heard of Topsail until about five years ago. I was invited to participate in an event on the Island sponsored by Quarter Moon Books, and instantly fell  in love with it. I chose it as the setting for my last two books, Before the Storm and Secrets She Left Behindand the more research I did into the area, the stronger the pull. I met so many lovely people down there during my research trips, most notably one of my brave male commenters here on the blog, Glen Pierce. Glen introduced me to many other people, and before you could say “Topsail is actually pronounced Top-sul,” I was looking at real estate.

I do wish I’d kept a journal during this process, because I’ve lost track of all the stumbling blocks I encountered. At times, I felt as though I was living inside one of my novels with its twists and turns. Every morning, I’d get up and wonder “What’s going to go wrong today?” Buying real estate these days is not for the faint of heart.

I’ll be going down in a few weeks to explore my new home away from home. Believe it or not, I’ve only spent about five minutes in it and I’m anxious (in all meanings of the word) to truly check it out. I know from pictures that it’s lovely, but I also know I want to make it mine, with some new decor and two framed bookcovers  (can you guess which ones?) on the wall. My friend, interior designer Elizabeth Samuels, who also has a place on the Island, is going to help me out, because while I can write, I can’t decorate. We all have our gifts! I’ll post more pictures once I’m there. In the meantime, join me in this chant: No hurricanes. No hurricanes. . .


  1. Robin Cain on September 22, 2009 at 11:26 pm

    Congratulations! Having read your books in that setting and now reading about the history of the island, I can imagine how fabulous it is! This must mean you will have wonderful future books using that locale, no? 🙂

  2. Diane Chamberlain on September 23, 2009 at 12:01 am

    I have no plan to write another book set on the Island at this time, Robin. I don’t want to wear it out! The next two books (not linked) are set in Wilmington, though, which is nearby. Thanks for the congratulations!

  3. Ingrid King on September 23, 2009 at 7:14 am

    Congratulations! It must be so exciting to have made thisd dream come true for yourself. And it will be so much fun to make this YOUR home. I’m looking forward to seeing the inspiration your new home will bring reflected in future books 🙂

  4. Margo on September 23, 2009 at 7:55 am

    Oh Diane, I’m SO THRILLED for you!!…what a wonderful day this is for you. I can’t imagine anything better than living on an Island, waking up to the wonderful sights and smells of the sea and falling asleep to the roar of the ocean waves. I don’t believe there is anything more enchanting than the seashore with nature at it’s best. It can only inspire you more with your writing, if that’s even possible…you are already blessed with a gift but to be able to live and create at Topsail is a dream come true.

  5. Margo on September 23, 2009 at 7:57 am

    P.S….I caught your comment to Robin about the next ‘2’ books in Wilmington…I know about THE LIES THEY TOLD but did I miss something earlier about another WIP??

  6. Gina on September 23, 2009 at 8:50 am

    Yay!! Congrats Diane! It sounds wonderful!

  7. Kaye Barley on September 23, 2009 at 9:05 am

    Oh Diane – it’s beautiful! Needless to say I am beyond jealous! But thrilled for you. We’ll be there for a week next May and maybe you will be too??!

    I was excited to read that your next book will take place in Wilmington – we love Wilmington too. Their historic district is to die for. The waterfront area is too. AND one of the finest independent bookstores I’ve ever been in.


  8. Denise on September 23, 2009 at 11:15 am

    Congrats, Diane! I know how happy and excited you must be!

  9. Diane Chamberlain on September 23, 2009 at 12:02 pm

    Thanks, all! I’m so excited.
    Margo, the book after The Lies We Told is in proposal formd (The Midwife’s Confession–you may remember about a year ago I was all set to write it and then received word from my publisher that I needed to put it off). It’s due May 1, but I’ve been so swamped with revisions on TLWT I haven’t been able to get to work on it. Ack!

  10. Margo on September 23, 2009 at 3:21 pm

    Oh Diane, I’m so happy THE MIDWIFE’S CONFESSION is back in the works!…If I remember, you were working on this while with John in the Outer Banks…you (and all of us) were SO excited about it only to be disappointed that it was a
    ‘no go’…this is wonderful news. (-O:

  11. brenda on September 23, 2009 at 4:12 pm

    Great great idea-the vacation home…love it…
    Also can’t wait to read the books. I love Wilmington-near Myrtle Beach-which still happens to be my favorite beach in the world-for a vacation that is exciting and fun. However, I love Carmel by the Sea for the rest…of course.

  12. Margo on September 24, 2009 at 7:54 am

    Brenda, I love Carmel-By-The-Sea too…also love Nantucket Island…I’d love to visit Wilmington and Myrtle Beach someday…would probably love it as much as my other favorite seashores. (-O:

  13. Ann on September 24, 2009 at 2:32 pm

    I am SO happy for you – I know how easy it is to fall in love with Topsail Island! We have been going there for a week every May for about 20 years and every time we go across the bridge onto the island I feel like I am “home again”.

  14. Ashley on September 24, 2009 at 10:47 pm

    I’m a Canadian girl through and through.. so while I have NO idea about most of the places everyone is talking about (other than what I’ve read) I’m SO happy for you, Diane! I don’t have a ‘summer home’ but just recently moved into my first house.. my ‘big girl’ house (:P I’m 24 in Oct)
    Can’t wait for TLWT or The Midwife’s Confession.. I am in DIRE need of something new to read! LOL

  15. Margo on September 25, 2009 at 8:18 am

    Ashley, how exciting for you to have your 1st home!!…you’ll have so much fun decorating and really making it ‘your’ place…while waiting on Diane’s new books, may I suggest to you THE RICHEST SEASON by Maryann McFadden…this is her 1st novel…the 2nd novel she wrote came out this year SO HAPPY TOGETHER…they are very, very good and help fill the space till our wonderful Diane has another book release. (-O:
    Ann, even tho I don’t live near NC, I’ve always been excited for you when you would write & tell all of us that you were on your way to Topsail…you’re so lucky to live close to the sea.

  16. Diane Chamberlain on September 29, 2009 at 12:14 am

    Oh, my, my blog’s going kaflooey again. Not on the commenters’ end, just mine. It’s neglected to tell me that comments abound! So I’m late responding to a few of you. Ashley, congrats on your big girl house! That’s exciting, and pretty impressive at 23. Ann, yes, I’m definitely psyched at owning a little teeny piece of TI. Margo and Brenda, I have a longing to go back to Carmel. Also for Big Sur. Of course, now that I own that teeny piece of TI, I won’t be able to afford to go anyplace else for a while!

  17. Emilie Richards on September 29, 2009 at 2:52 pm

    I am thrilled with your new purchase, but take serious issue with your claim that you’re not an interior decorator. Your house in Vienna was lovely and it was all your own doing. You’re creative to the bone, and I might need you to help me with “my” new purchase. I’m thinking house swaps?

  18. Diane Chamberlain on September 29, 2009 at 5:26 pm

    Oooooh, house swap! I could get behind that idea. Thanks for the compliment on decor. I can’t wait to hear more/see more of your new vacation home.

  19. brenda on October 3, 2009 at 8:00 pm

    Diane, you now own a little bit of heaven…on earth…you deserve it…you give us so much pleasure with your books.

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