Monday, December 31, 2007

Happy 2008

Goodbye 2007, Hello 2008!
After a year with more downs than ups, lucky for me I've landed in a pile of Crimson Rose petals. My heartfelt thanks again to Siren Publishing for returning my rights, and especially The Wild Rose Press for offering to buy, Never My Love. Don't worry. This epublisher has it more together than the epub that shall be nameless. I'm anxiously awaiting my new cover, and as soon as I have it and a firm release date, I'll let you know. Please take a moment to checkout their website. There are so many fine authors at TWRP that I'm sure you'll find something entertaining.

On a personal note, Ricky graduated SUNY Albany, with a B.A. in psychology. Yeah, Ricky!! I'm so proud of him. Erica graduated SUNY Albany, with a B.A. in communications last year, and although she got into five law schools, she decided to pursue an MBA in Economics and Fraud from Utica College. Currently she's working in the Oneida County District Attorney's office. She hates when I mention that, but I'm so proud of her.

I hope you all had a wonderful Christmas. (Santa left some pretty neat presents under the tree for me.) Mom and my sister, nieces and nephew are all fine, and I pray to God we continue to be blessed 2008. Oh, and I've been elected president of CNYRW!! CNYRW ROCK!
I look forward to hearing from all of you in 2008. May this year be your happiest!
"There are never enough stars in the sky, sunshiny days, sleep-in mornings, quiet afternoon, rainbows to wish on, or good friends like you."
Love and Peace, Susan

Monday, October 8, 2007

Magic happens

Hello everyone!
It's been a while since I've blogged, but I've been experiencing a writing draught. It's like the flu, annoying, painful at times, hard to shake without plenty of rest, a downright nasty feeling for a writer. Actually, I was unaware I was suffering until it lifted.
It began in August. Not only had my romance writing trickled down to barely one-hundred words a day, but I'd become critical of every word I typed. Not even my worst rejection letter, a business card stapled to my SASE saying "No," in pencil, had quelled my enthusiasm in such a monumental way. For weeks after Dallas I'd been on a writer's high, bursting with words, largely due to making new friends (special Hi to JP, Vicki, Kat, Kathy, Melissa, Mary, Maggie, Melanie), and my meetings with Diana Carlise and Brenda Chin. Then those blasted letters started arriving from Phoenix Bankruptcy Court. I won't bore you with what's happening, but the fight to get my rights back to, Never My Love, had eroded the part of me that found writing a joy, and cursed my folly to pursue my publishing dreams.
Everything changed this weekend. For all the failed attempts to drive there the past two years, I wanted to hang a sign, "Lake Placid or Bust," on the Mustang. After several wrong turns(a 3 1/2 hour ride according to Mapquest took 6 hrs), in a raging downpour I'd arrived in Lake Placid. It's true what they say. Magic happens here.
As I approached the town, two black swooping structures, one half the size of the other, loomed in the distance between colorful leaves, reminding me of a mother dragon and child. Frightened at the thought of skiing down the things, I raced past. A banner over the road declared the, "Flaming Leaves Festival," was underway this weekend at the Ski Jump Hill, a serendipitous sign. Eager to see more, especially all the places I'd written about from memory, I turned down Main street.
Main Street had changed, cramped with more stores, choking with traffic. The sidewalks were pumpkin-colored cobblestones, something I'd forgotten. I ate lunch at Charlie's, the former Goldberries Restaurant, Cassie's favorite. Roomer's, the night club where Cassie and Evan met after four long years, wouldn't be open until evening, but ZigZag's, a local bar, was open. There, I had a drink, silently toasting my return, praying Cassie and Evan's story will someday become published.
Next I drove, not walked, up the steep hill to the Wood Lake Inn, recalling a romantic scene set there. Due to the mist, Mirror Lake was barely visible, but I sentimentally took photos. Unfortunately, the rain was so heavy, I decided to leave early, without climbing to the summit of Mount Jo, or seeing the endless view from White Face Mountain. I promised myself that next time I'll stay the weekend, climbing during the day, and dancing in Roomer's Night Club until dawn. Maybe I'll talk to few mountain men. ;)
Thank you Patricia, for being the most patient, adventurous, traveling buddy. Next time I won't turn off 87N, no matter how badly mother nature is calling. (Good thing we didn't bring Harold!)
So, do you have a magical place? Take a minute, or more, to share. And be sure to check out the changes to my website. I've decided to post the first chapter of, Never My Love. And the magic continues...

Sunday, July 22, 2007

Driving with the Top Down

Hello everyone!

My summer has started off great-- quality time spent with family and friends, and lots of sunshine. Perfect convertible weather. So far, I've driven to Inlet, Old Forge, and Lake George, all with the top down, at times playing poker with the weather gods. Can I make it to the next stop before that black cloud dumps on me? Yes, I've encountered a sudden shower, but no real damage ever happened. I love to drive with the top down. It's amazing the things you see with an unobstructed view. Course, the trade off, you're exposed to the world. Sorta like writing a romance novel.
Last week I traveled to Dallas, to the annual convention of Romance Writers of America. Imagine 2000 romance writers, mostly female, in one hotel. Then imagine a fire alarm at 2AM. Not a pretty sight for those firemen. We may put our heroine's in sexy lingerie, but as a group, we sleep in bazaar clothing. That's just one of dozens of stories I could tell you, but I'm saving the best ones for future books. HA! Names will remain anonymous, as usual ;)
One of the best parts of the conference, besides an endless supply of chocolate desserts and free books, is making new friends. Judy, Kathy, Melissa, Vicky, Kat, Melanie, Mary and Maddie, thanks to you, this trip was amazing. I hated to leave, and wish we didn't live hundreds of miles away. I hope our paths cross again.
The most nerve wracking, scariest part of the conference, was pitching my books to editors. I am the world's worst pitcher, meaning I can't sum up my 400 page manuscript in two to five sentences, but I'm great at asking for help. And it paid off. Blaze editor Brenda Chin requested the first three chapter of my new manuscript, Run to Me (former Wanted Republican). Yahooooooo!
Wild Rose editor Diana Carlile, requested Never My Love, which is the best news since my present publisher, Triskelion, is having financial problems.
Never My Love will not be coming out in August 2007.
God, that was hard to type. Yes, I'm disappointed, but not discouraged. I'm told by New York Times Best selling author, Maggie Shayne (, that these things happen in the publishing business, and if I want to be part of it, I have to move forward, not look back... just keep writing. And that's what I've been doing since receiving the unfortunate news. Maggie, from the bottom of my heart, thank you so much for your encouragement and support.
So family and friends, I'm spending the rest of my summer vacation working on several news books, with the goal of publishing them someday. Until I have happier publishing news, I'll keep hoping for more sunshine than rain, and driving with the top down, despite a few black clouds.

Monday, June 11, 2007


Whoever said you can't go back never went to a Reunion. Last weekend I did just that, and I had a blast. The campus was almost like I'd remembered, with a mix of old building struggling to keep their dignity with new structures. I met up with former roommates that I hadn't seen in *** years, and after a few minutes, it was like we'd never been apart. Some even looked like they'd stepped out of a time machine, (Ellen), and all looked fantastic to my teary eyes. Each of us brought pictures of our beautiful children, and some had grandchildren! We compared jobs and family stories like we used to compare lecture notes. It seemed like yesterday we were eating cafeteria slop, walking down the big hill to the "Library" for a beer, or up all night studying for a chemistry exam. We vowed to stay in touch, and to return in five years, God willing, to do it all again. We'll bring more pictures, drink more wine and tell more stories. It's true what they say: Time flies by faster and faster as we get older, but for once it was wonderful to press rewind.
P.S. Please stop by my website, and sign my guestbook at And check-out an excerpt of Never My Love, on sale August 2007 from Triskelion Publishing.

Sunday, May 13, 2007

Life is Good

Hi all! Phew. It's been some month:
1. No, I didn't get the chemistry job...
2. Yes, I did have a root canal, and my jaw still hurts from all those needles...
3. Yes, I'm having mysterious chest pains, not related to my heart, but it could be gall bladder trouble...
4. Yes, I'm going to my LeMoyne class reunion. Several of my suite mates are attending. I can't wait...
5. I killed the biggest spider I've ever seen, today. Massive. I get the chills thinking about it...
6. Decided not to teach summer school this year so I can sit by the pool and write more novels...
7. My son is coming home from college this week. Love you, Ricky!
8. My daughter will be working as an intern for the Oneida County District Attorney's office again this summer. Way-to-go, Erica! Fingers crossed that she gets an acceptance letter for law school soon. Love you too, sweetie...
9. My website is days away from launching, thanks to my multi-talented critique partner, Nicki Greenwood. (check out her blog at I can't wait for you to see it!
10. Big news: I secured an appointment with Harlequin senior editor Brenda Chin, at our Romance Writers of America annual convention in Dallas. I'm going to pitch my contemporary romance, The Politics of Love, for the Blaze-line. Fingers crossed she requests a partial manuscript...
11. Eighty more days until the release of my e-book, Never My Love. Meantime, I strongly recommend my fellow Triskelion authors. There is something for every taste in reading. CHECK IT OUT: And be sure to check out my fellow Central New York authors at:
12. I spent mother's day with my family at my sister's camp overlooking the Old Forge channel, and contemplating future novels. Life is good...

Sunday, April 22, 2007


OMG-- this weekend has been beautiful!! We've waited so long for sunshine, and now it's here. There's buds on the trees and the grass is greening and I have an abundance of tulips and daffodils bordering my house. Yesterday, I put the top down on the Mustang and drove to see Ricky at SUNY Albany. There, the air seemed electrified, more so than usual. Today is the biggest day of the year, Fountain Day. The college turns on this huge fountain in the center of the quad, and the kids do what college kids do, run in it, play Frisbee, toss each other in it. As you can imagine, security has been maximized. While I dipped my toes into the water, Ricky asked if I wanted to go back to being a college student. "Hell no," I replied! I love my life right now. This has been an amazing year. My first book is coming out in August!! Erica's home, having graduated from SUNY Albany, cum laude in Communication. We recently visited Widener Law School, in Wilmington's, Delaware. Yes, Erica wants to be a lawyer. My dad would be so proud. Mom's doing well, and can't wait to spring clean. And I interviewed for a Chemistry teaching job in New Hartford last week. (Say a prayer that I get it!) So after dropping off a, Tony's tomato pie, to a bunch of hungry roommates, I bid adieu to the college scene. On the way home, I thought about the time I would go back to visit. Definitely when my kids were babies, where I could hug them and hold them and protect them from life's traumas. In light of what's happened this week at Virginia Tech, you're probably like me, and have phoned a loved one or hugged someone you care about a little harder. I wish we all could live in peace and be happy with everything that this planet has to offer. It's times like this, that make little things much sweeter, like visiting your son just to say hi, or sitting on the deck with your daughter, listening to her plans and dreams for the future. Enjoy your sunshine!

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

Easter time

Happy Easter! Hard to believe a year ago I'd spent Easter Sunday in Assissi, Italy, without my family but a group of wonderful friends. We had a seven course Italian feast, including several wines. How many of you have ham for Easter? This year, I'm back with my family in Central New York, and I broke with tradition by serving Vodka riggies. Ricky, Erica, Mom and my niece, Danielle, really enjoyed the meal. I broke the Italian tradition of a huge meal and tons of desserts, but with teaching and writing somethings gotta give. Hey, what's more important? Right answer: being together! Besides, we had more time to play Rummy. The last time Mom played cards with my kids, they played go-fish. They really enjoyed playing "an adult card" game, and showed no mercy with their poor grandmother! This is one holiday that I didn't stress over. A good day. It's so nice to spend holidays with family.

Sunday, March 11, 2007

That time of year

It's that time of year, when young and old hearts think of love. But here in CNY, what's really exciting is seeing those six-foot tall mountains of snow finaly whittle away. This year, there was so much snow they used dump trucks to haul it out of town. After a few glorious, warm, spring days, the land is green. Not shamrock green, more like tortise shell green-brown. Still, it's a welcome sight after weeks of seeing white. Soon the grass will be speckled blue with crocuses. Such a pretty site. And the air will smell perfumed, instead of rotten leaves.
Robin's are another sure sign it's spring. I saw my first robin yesterday. He moved off the road in the nick of time. But the real sign that spring's here, is all the sports cars on the road. Yesterday, my Mustang came out of hibernation, stored in my Mom's garage for the winter. She laughed at me as I put the plates on. Yeah, I was that excited. On the drive home, I almost put the top down. Maybe next week!
I wish you all love, and a happy Spring!

Sunday, March 4, 2007

The "Call" Celebration

Saturday, March 3, was a special day... My fellow Central New York romance writers celebrated my "call." I want to thank our president, Midge, for planning my awesome "call" celebration, especially the added personal touch of NML's cover photo on the cake. Midge, you're the best. Since the party, I've been proudly showing off my engraved pen and cardholder set, and have been busy emailing the party photos to family and friends. Truly, it was wonderful to be honored in this way, and deeply appreciated. I'll never forget today.
And to those of you members who answered my questions for the past two years, no matter how stupid, thank you for your patience and willingness to share your knowledge. The specialness of this chapter is no exaggeration, and I can't wait to brag at this year's presidents meeting in Dallas.
Special thanks to my critique partners that made Never My Love a reality: Gwen, Jen, Arlene,(the Laptop dancers) and, "my coach," Nicole. For all their time, hard work and friendship, they deserve a lifetime supply of chocolate kisses!
My journey to becoming a writer was the hardest thing I've ever done. Publishing is a tough business, especially for romance writers. There are those who still persist in belittling our work as not literate, or trash. Hogwash. It's easy to pen a story where people are tortured or killed. Try writing a story where the two most unlikely of characters meet, iron out their differences until annealed to mutual respect, and have a world of trouble treatening to keep them apart. To top it off, have a satisfying, happy ending. Only the insane would even try. Instead, college professors, lawyers, teachers, physicians, and even jet pilots, along with other extremely talented men and women, write this way every day. Why? Because we love making people feel hopeful rather than hopeless.
That's why I have always loved the romance genre in all forms, whether an historical, regency, paranormal, futuristic, vampires, werewolves,changelings, mystery, suspense, or romantic comedy. I read them all. From my first novel by Sandra Brown, Sunny Chandler's Return, I have been hooked.
So if you've never read a romance, hopefully, Never My Love will be your first of many! ^-^

Saturday, February 17, 2007

Why I wear flip-flops in the winter

Some of you may think I'm crazy for wearing flip-flops in the winter. That tells me you don't live where I do, the famous "snow belt," of New York State. For those of us who live here, wearing flip-flops, and even shorts in the winter is our way of thumbing our nose at Old Man winter. We also have beach parties, play lots of Jimmy Buffet and the Beach Boys, and some northerners occasionally sport a Hawaiian shirt. Are we crazy. No way. The scientist in me would explain that we have so many months of cold weathers that we get acclimated to the weather. For example, one time I visited my cousin Maria, (hi Maria!), in Orlando. It was early April, and she still wore her winter coat and gloves. But we showed up wearing T-shirts, shorts and you guessed it, flip-flops and we were still warm! The writer half of me would romanticize that we aren't in denial, just having loads of fun and making the best of a sucky situation. So the next time you see guy on the weather channel getting orgasmic at the amount of snow that's falling up here, imagine him in a Hawaiian T-shirt, Bermuda shorts and flip-flops. That should keep you chuckling for days! LOL

Friday, February 2, 2007


I rarely a procrastinator, but I finally made a list of New Year's resolutions. First on the list: Make time every day to write. Okay, that's an easy one. There's so many people talking in my head that some days I feel schizophrenic. I've learned to not fret, and just write down whoever's story is on my mind, even though I end up working on about five different stories at once. Right now I'm working on two more stories in my White Knight series for Triskelion, BROKEN and LIVE LIKE YOU'RE DYING. There's my romantic comedy's, THE POLITICS OF LOVE, and it's sequel, WANTED:DEMOCRAT. Then there's my NASCAR book, SAFE AT LAST. Whew! Thank goodness for winter and spring break.
My next resolution is to reshape my flabby body. Like Cassie in NEVER MY LOVE, I have a sweet tooth. And then there's my love of Italian food, and Finger Lakes wine, and chocolate ice cream .... Anyway, I've decided this is my last diet. If I don't succeed, then so be it. But I'm trying very hard this time. If I bring Hershey's kisses into my house, my security alarm will go off and the police department will show up and arrest me. ^ _ ^
My last resolution is to declutter my house. That's the toughest. But I need more room in my den for my writing stuff, and my new postcards, business cards, and book markers. Over the years I've started so many collections: depression glass, milk glass, Precious Moments, tons of Disney stuff, a tea cup collection, beanie babies, even Magic cards (my son's). What's a collect-oholic to do? Watch out e-bay, here I come!
What do you collect? Anything really weird? Drop me a note!

Monday, January 15, 2007

The real story

What a week! I've heard from so many friends who've stopped by to check out my blog. Some are from as far away as California, where it's sunny and warm. I will get to San Fran some day Cindy. And then there's friends from NYC, hi Rosemary and Maria from Tennessee, who are too shy to blog but are readers. I'm so happy to hear from all of you. If you're lurking, e-me!
The highlight of my week was the receipt of the cover of my first book, Never My Love. Isn't it beautiful? That's Mirror Lake, Lake Placid, New York, in the fall. Just spectacular. Cassie and Evan re-meet there one beautiful fall day. But that's all of the story I'm going to reveal now. Stay tuned.

This time of year the real story is the weather. Up to this week, mother nature had Central New Yorkers fooled into thinking she went right from fall to spring. We got four inches of snow. NBD Usually we have four feet. I'm not complaining. I have to drive forty miles to work every day and I'm loving the lack of the white stuff. We had an unusually warm fall and a green Christmas with temperatures in the low sixties. I can't believe I rushed like a lunatic to get my Mustang off the road by Halloween. The car has never seen snow, and I wanted to keep it that way. Too bad I missed the convertible days in November.

Yes, I have a Mustang convertible. My new toy. A birthday present to myself that was long overdue. Ladies, do yourself a favor and don't ask for diamonds. Get a convertible. Mine's a 2001, laser red with beige roof and interior. Gwen knows! She's been cruising with me. Yes, Cindy, I have a cool car. You should see it. It's the first car I've ever owned that I really wanted, and it took me a year to find it, but it was worth the wait. The sun behaved for weeks and I went cruising every weekend. I had the Beach Boys or Turtles blasting, or my daughter favorite download, Mustang Sally. What fun! I can't wait to get it back on the road. Lake Placid or bust!

Sunday, January 7, 2007

Just another Sunday?

Hi all,

I want to thank Melanie and Nancy for stopping by to say hi. Melanie, I can't wait to meet you in Dallas. I hope you like to party! I can't wait to introduce you to one of my favorite authors and fellow CNYRW, Nancy Henderson. She'll be there, too!

Just another Sunday?? After last week I thought I'd be in better shape today. Not physically, I've given up on ever being a size four again. I'll be lucky to stay in the teen sizes if I don't get my butt to the gym! Anyway, I've been mentally exhausted from returning to my for-pay-day-job, while my other-fulltime-job, can't turn off. Yikes. The writer in me, Susan, is trying to take over my day job!
Do you know what it's like teaching to a class of eighth graders and being struck by an idea? Imagine this.... I'm trying to teach them the science behind why we are afraid of falling objects, and for the guys I used the example of spitting from the top of the Empire State Building. You can't do it, not because it's gross, but it hurts(and you'll be arrested). The spits got added energy due to it's height, even in your mouth. (of course they loved that example) For the girls I had them imagine getting engaged on Valentine's Day. How romantic! But when you catch your dream-man less than a week later kissing another woman, you head back up those steps to the top, and you know what you want to do with that ring? Now, what do you think would happen to your ex-fiance if your former engagement ring hit him in the head while he stood on the sidewalk...
Suffice to say I got my point across about the energy of falling objects depending not only upon the weight of an object, but times the height (always the teacher). Then it struck me. I knew who this scene was made for. Emma! She's the best friend of a run-a-way bride in, "The Politics of Love," my WIP romantic comedy set in Boston. Unfortunately, Emma's story is the last in a trilogy centered around people who meet and have opposite politcal offiliations. But that didn't stop me from pounding out the first scene for Emma's book on my lunch break!

I'm often struck with ideas at the worse times, like yesterday, driving to our month meeting of the CNYRW. My mind works overtime on that drive. By the time I got home I was exhausted! But before I went to bed, I jotted the ideas down. So you think my alter-ego would be finished and just shut up today so I could relax? No. Rather than relax, which means phoning friends or reading a romance novel or e-book, I still felt supercharged. I jumped out of bed, changed my T-shirt and went right over to my laptop. After several hours, I had a plot outline and characters GMC for this paranormal I've been dying to write but never figure out how it ends happily. Whew! I don't know if this happens to other authors, but I'd bet my house that it does. Fellow writers, would I lose my house?

I have to say that without making a penny from my writing I feel like I've hit the lottery by becoming a romance writer. And if I inspire just one person to pick up a pen, and believe they can become a writer, that makes me even happier. *g*. See you in a week!

Wednesday, January 3, 2007

first blog

Okay, I decided to try blogging today...

Last year's New Year's resolution, a personal goal, actually came true. A RWA recognized publisher offered to publish one of my books! I received the "call " 8-1-06, from the submissions editor at Triskelion, and my entire life pivoted 180 degrees. Now, I'm one of those people thats addicted to reading romances. My keeper shelf in my bedroom is a unit with at least 100 books. In my computer den, I have two more units with at least 300 more keepers. There's no way of knowing how many I've borrowed from the library or given away. I read about 4 books at once, and rarely miss a day of reading. There's books in my car, different areas of the house, even my garage. I like just about every kind of romance except the real gory stuff. That kind of stuff lives with me for days and I'd rather be thinking about a Lisa Klepas character, or expecting to run into one of Susan Elizabeth Phillip's characters on the street. They are two of my favorite writers, and there are so many more. (some other blog). A few summers ago, while sitting peacefully by my pool, I reread every book I had saved. Not only was it the first summer in twenty years that I'd had off, but by the end of the summer I'd decided to stop dreaming of being a writer and rejoin CNYRW.

It's still hard for me to believe I'm a writer, let alone soon to be "published." In my head I'm still just a fan of romance writers, the most hard-working, creative, self-less writers on the planet. You don't believe me? Well, here's the story about my first National Conference in Reno: First of all, I was so excited to attend that I got to Syracuse's Hancock airport a day early. No kidding. When the ticket lady asked me if I knew what day it was, I thought she was joking, (I'd been up all night afraid I'd miss the 6:30am flight) . I had two choices, come back the next day when my ticket was good, or catch a later flight. I'd entered the airport so early that my ticket was flagged and I got the full body pat-down check. To make matter worse, my connecting flight was delayed due to bad weather in O'Hare. I was so tired by then I was nauseous and wished I'd stayed home. As luck would have it, I spent the four hour lay-over with Charly Phillips, who I absolutely love. We kept each other sane. When we finally boarded, I spied Heather Graham , another writing goddess, in first class. We'd never met, but I'd brought one of her books with me to get autographed at the conference. Later we ended up playing craps together at the hotel's Casino. Turns out we both love the game. This was just the beginning of a slew of cosmic-level coincidences, too numerous to mention. The next day I picked up my badge, and spent the day star struck. Besides an avid reader, I'd previously been an online reviewer for At the afternoon booksigning event, I flitted around visiting all the author's that I'd critiqued. I even snagged the very wonderful, and goddess in her own right, fellow CNYRW Kris Fletcher, two-time Golden Heart finalist, to be my personal photographer so I have the pictures to prove how giddy I'd been that day. I was such a groupie, that I forgot I was a writer until some women who'd come all the way from San Fransico for the booksigning event noticed my first-timer badge. We were waiting in line for Deb Macomber's autograph, and naturally chatting when they asked me what I wrote. They were amazed that I was a new writer, and asked if I had a business card. When I handed them my business card, it finally hit me. I'm a writer! I missed the Atlanta conference, but I've booked my flight to Dallas, as a PUB. Yippee!