Friday Fast 5: Epistolary Fan Fiction, Lists, Book Nooks, Hogwarts Houses, and Big News

It’s been some time since my last #FridayFast5, but it’s a fresh month, so let’s dive right in!

1. With Love, Jordan

Recently in a conversation with other authors about how we first got into writing Romance the discussion turned to Fan Fiction, and how so many got their start there. I never thought of myself as a writer of Fan Fiction but as some of the others talked about the kind of FF they wrote I realized there was a period in my life when I had, indeed, wrote Fan Fiction…of a sort. In the sixth grade, a few of my best friends and I were obsessed with New Kids on the Block. I don’t know if we planned it or did it on purpose to avoid epic battles, but each of us had our favorite.

Mine was Jordan, J1 was Joey, and J2 was Donnie (I am calling them J1 and J2 – partly to protect their identity and partly because they both had the same first name – if you were a child of the 80’s I bet you can guess the name). One of the ways we got our Fan Girl on (aside from spending all our money on any and every teen magazine that featured NKOTB on the cover) was to pretend that we were married to our fav New Kid. We’d write letters to each other from our respective husbands, who were off on tour, of course. So, for example, I would pretend to be Donnie, and write a letter to my wife J2, describing the various adventures I’d had that week while touring such and such city. The letters usually included stories of tour bus antics between the boys, and if I am remembering this correctly, there always seemed to be some disaster involving Danny. (oh, poor Danny)

When I was trying to explain this tween pastime to the group the phrase,  “Epistolary Fan Fiction” popped in my head. And really, that’s exactly what it was. I *think* I may have some of those letters stashed away somewhere (unless I burned them in a bout of embarrassed disgust when I was a few years older). If I manage to dig them up one day, I will be sure to share.

2. Listify Life

It’s no secret I adore lists. So I was excited (ok, maybe a little too excited) when author Roni Loren announced a fun new social media project called #ListifyLife. Basically, she posted a series of topics/questions that participants will answer in list form, with a new topic each week. Pretty stationary and/or fun writing utensils is highly encouraged. This week’s topic was “Books I’d Want to Live in for a While” – and while my answers could probably easily reach double digits- I limited myself to six (that’s all the room I had on the paper).

Listify week 2

Want to jump in on the fun? Follow the #ListifyLife hashtag on Instagram and join us next week for “Little Things that Make Me Happy”

3. From Cluttered Closet to Book Nook

Our house has always been rather anti-closet door. So when my oldest, Miss A, asked if we could convert her closet into a reading nook, I was all over it. Having already spent plenty of time ogling closets cum book nooks on Pinterest, I had some ideas of what I thought we could do. Over Spring Break, we got started. First of course, Miss A had to clean out her closet, no small feat in and of itself.

empty closet (434x800)
Canine photobomb courtesy of Franny.

Next came ripping out the wire shelving. Many of the screws on the drywall stud anchors had been stripped, so this was LOTS of fun…not.

Naked closet (418x800)
Yanking out the anchors led to some giant holes…time to break out the spackle.


Painting closet (800x436)

This dark purple was sitting in my basement, a can of “Oops” paint you can buy at Home Depot for $5 (I’ve had this paint for quite some time, so I don’t know if HD sells Oops paint anymore…I hope so, I loved using it for projects!) Next up is shelving and seating – look for a Book Nook Update in a few weeks!

4. A House Divided

While not keen on closet doors, our entire household LOVES Harry Potter. The husband and I spent many pleasant hours together listening to the series on audiobook, Miss A, a bookworm after my own heart, has long adored the series and is a champ at Harry Potter Trivia. As the youngest, Lil’ G was the last to jump on the Hogwarts Express, but in the past few months she has immersed herself big time. She started reading the series on her own and watching the films,  and loves playing Lego Harry Potter on the Wii. I also made the mistake of introducing her to the Harry Potter Puppet Pals series on YouTube.

The other night at dinner, Lil’ G decided she would play Sorting Hat and determine which house each of us belonged in, here are her results:

Dad: Ravenclaw, Mom: Gryffindor, Sister: Hufflepuff, Herself: Slytherin

She actually did a darn good job and we all agreed she had chosen the house that best represented our strongest traits. (Dad is intelligent and logical, Mom is brave and gutsy, Sister is loyal and empathetic. As for Lil’ G, she has always been one for the villains. She enjoys a good bad guy…and frankly, certain aspects of Slytherin House (ambition, wants to always call the shots) are certainly trademark G. So, I guess if we actually were a magical family, we’d have a horse in each race. 🙂

And speaking of Fan Fiction, Lil’ G has informed me she is writing a Harry Potter story, where she is Harry (Harriet?) Potter. Considering her House preference, this makes for an interesting twist indeed. When the Sorting Hat is debating between putting Harry in Gryffindor or Slytherin, he may go the other way this time!


A week ago, on Friday morning,  I received a phone call. I don’t think it would be hyperbole to say this call may change my life. I am a 2016 GOLDEN HEART® Finalist! My manuscript, Sometimes You Need A Sexy Scot was nominated for the contemporary category. The Golden Heart is sort of like the Academy Awards of Romance writing for unpublished authors (and the RITAs are the equivalent for published books). This is a thrilling opportunity, as many Golden Heart finalists go on to sign with an agent and/or sell their manuscript. I am over the moon about the honor, and thank my lucky stars to have this chance.  Early in 2016 I decided this was going to be MY year, and I plan to make good on that statement.

So that’s this Friday’s Fast 5! Happy April Fools to all you jerks who like to celebrate this holiday. Kidding…well, except to my carpool buddy who texted me this morning wondering why I hadn’t picked up her kids yet (when it was actually her turn). All jokes aside, I’m hoping to ramp up the consistency…see you next Friday.