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!