Welcome to 2012, everyone! I want to take this opportunity to tell you what you mean to me. 2011 was a fantastic year for me, career-wise. I’ve been writing a long, long time with the usual ups and downs that accompany most careers, but starting with Target selecting The Secret Life of CeeCee Wilkes as their summer bookclub pick in 2008, things have really been going my way and I owe it to you, my readers. Many of you had never read me before CeeCee and you gave my books a chance. You spread the word. Publishers in the United Kingdom and Australia also began publishing my books and my UK readers took me all the way to the #5 spot on the bestseller list this year with The Midwife’s Confession (and the #1 spot on the UK Kindle list). You’ve helped me generate new excitement for my books among various publishing houses and helped me land new contracts that will keep me writing for years to come. I am so grateful!
But there’s more to my joy than the ability to keep working. I will never take for granted being able to support myself at something I love, but you know what the big bonus has been? Getting to know so many of you, even if it’s simply through a comment on Facebook. I’m one of those “joiners”. I’ve never met a group I didn’t want to be part of. When I was diagnosed with Rheumatoid Arthritis in the mid nineties, for example, I immediately went to the fledgling Internet and found a support group to join. I found friends there. People who understood. And they are still my friends all these years later. I love being in communication with like-minded people and I’ve found so many of you through my writing. You occasionally email me with questions about my books. You talk about your own lives on my Story Weekends. You help me figure out sticky plot points on my blog. You share your favorite books with me and other readers on my Facebook Page. I learn about your lives, your kids, your recipes, the things that bring you joy and the things that bring you down. Being in touch with you takes time away from my writing, but it’s so worth it. You’re so worth it.
So thank you for sharing 2011 with me. Thank you for reading my books, for opening your hearts to the stories I’ve created, and most of all for your friendship. Have a wonderful New Year!