Thursday, October 06, 2005

Hearing from readers

I love to hear from readers! It still amazes me that people all over America and even in other countries are reading and enjoying the books I've written. Sometimes I hear from someone who's just discovered a book that's several years old and was a favorite of mine. It is so good to know that those stories are not forgotten.

In this business, you're only as good as your next book, and you can't afford to sit back on your laurels, whatever those may be, so it's often a much-needed boost of encouragement to know readers are hooking into the stories and characters I've spent so much time and energy creating.

I remember renting a post office box in the hopes that someday I would hear from someone who'd read my book. What a joy it was to unlock that box and find those envelopes inside. I always sat right in front of the little substation and read the mail. I kept a letter opener in the car so I could open them neatly.

Know what? I still have a letter opener in my car. I still read those letters when I get to my car -- sometimes as I'm stopped at traffic lights. And the little box I started out with as a keepsake box for mail has grown into two big boxes of fan mail.

Sometimes readers send a picture and I have those thumbtacked around the area surrounding my work area. It's often an encouragement to look over at those and know I'm writing this story for YOU!


  1. I have enjoyed your recent Harlequin Historicals but the other day at my library's book sale I found an old book of yours, LAND OF DREAMS. It's a great book and I am enjoying it very much.

  2. Maureen, Land of Dreams is a favorite of mine, too. It's been reprinted several times and published in many languages. Thanks for letting me know you're enjoying it.

    I'm holding a contest on my blog this month, one entry for each comment, so please send me your email address so I can enter you.

  3. Dear Cheryl, I really enjoyed your recent 'Bounty Hunter' ... I love your characters and the way you bring them to life in the exciting stories ... a book is gooood when you hate to put it down for a minute yet don't want it to end ... ;-) That's the way of your stories ...

  4. I am checking the GW and used book stores for the first HH, My DD is reading them after I do, we love your style and your characters!

  5. Cheryl,

    Should the Bounty HUnter be read prior to the Million Dollar Makeover? I see that you published the contemporary on before the historical which seems to be the story of the great-grand-mother.


  6. Sylvie, actually, you should read MILLION-DOLLAR MAKEOVER first. It contains a mystery about Lily Divine, Lisa's great-great-grandmother and leaves you with questions about the true story. THE BOUNTY HUNTER is the true story.

    You COULD read TBH first, but I think it might lessen your enjoyment of MDM.

    Thanks for asking!

  7. Thank you Cheryl. I just did read MDM. I just loved it. I'll go hunt for Lily's story in the BH now. Did you actually wrote them in that order too or you did it in parallel?


  8. I wrote MDM first and TBH afterward. But I had to plot out TBH first and do a bang up job of it, because MDM was book #6 in a series, and the other authors had to know how to set up the mystery of the gold mine and the clues about Lily Divine and Amos and Elizabeth. They used some of the same characters I did in MDM, like Tildy Matheson. We had an email loop and we planned the town and characters all out ahead of time.

    I had to know Lily's story down to a T before they could write theirs because of the set up.

    The other authors were working on their stories well ahead of me, because I was contracted for HIS SECONDHAND WIFE first and had to finish that, even though it ended up coming out after MDM. Go figure.

    Well, anyway, that was a busy year. I wrote four books, a first for me.

  9. You have me puzzled here. You mentionned that MDM is the #6 in a serie? Do I understand right that there are other books from other authors that will deal with the same characters?
    I can see by your explanation that there is much more to writing a book than we readers see from our end.