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You’ll want to live on Angel Lane when you read this terrific new novel by Sheila Roberts. Here’s her guest post:


fabulous new book

fabulous new book

What’s more fun than having a new book out? Having a new book out at the same time as your good friend! I’m excited about my new release Angel Lane, but I’m doubly excited that it coincides with the release of Susan’s fab new Willow Lake chronicle, Lakeshore Christmas (my personal favorite!). This means we get to do some fun events together to celebrate the birth of our new brain babies. And our calendars are full! We’re doing everything from women’s show appearances to radio interviews. At one of our book signings (Eagle Harbor Books, Bainbridge Island, WA) we’re even having a Christmas cookie contest with a fabulous prize for some lucky winner. How fun is that? Several of our events will include our buddy Suzanne Selfors, popular YA author, who is enjoying the success of her latest book Coffeehouse Angel, so then it will be triple the fun.

and another!

and another!

Since we moved out to our little lake I haven’t seen as much of Susan as I used to, so I’m looking forward to some serious hang-out time and hoping lots of readers will come hang with us and find out what our new books have in common.

Speaking of things in common . . . at first glance Miz Wiggs and I might look like polar opposites. She’s totally fit and is a fearless skier. I’m an out of shape blob who dreams of someday conquering the bunny slope. I could happily spend hours playing all kinds of goofy parlor games. Susan plays with me just to be a sport. If locked in a room and left to solve the world’s problems we would . . . never reach an agreement on how to do it. So, you may be wondering, what the heck do we have in common? The same thing most girlfriends do: love of family, loyalty to friends, delight in finding a great new recipe, an addiction to chick flicks, What Not to Wear, and anything chocolate. We also share a love of reading and a sense of adventure. (No, I won’t climb Mt. Rainier with her, but I’ll cross the ocean in a rowboat (we’ve done something darned close to that!). And we both keep each other highly entertained. Now, here’s hoping we’ll keep you entertained this fall, too.


Field’s End Writers’ Conference 2008Photo by s.j. luke, onsetimagery

WHO: This year’s line-up of authors and speakers includes: Roy Blount, Jr. (keynote speaker), Stephanie Kallos (opening speaker), Knute Berger, Alice Acheson, Lyall Bush, Laura Kalpakian, Thomas Kohnstamm, Rosina Lippi aka Sara Donati, Jennifer Louden, Nancy Pagh, George Shannon, Charley Pavlosky, Sheila Rabe aka Sheila Roberts, Suzanne Selfors, David Wagoner, and Timothy Egan (closing speaker). Professional actor Ron Milton will be on hand for the Page One sessions.

WHAT: Third annual Field’s End Writers’ Conference, “Writing in the Garden of the Gods.”

WHEN: Saturday, April 26, 2008
9:30 a.m. to 6 p.m.

WHERE: Kiana Lodge
14976 Sandy Hook Rd. NE
Poulsbo, WA 98370

DETAILS: This one-day conference, held at the spectacularly beautiful Kiana Lodge near Bainbridge Island, is a combination of lectures and breakout sessions presented by an eclectic group of people in the literary world.

The day offers three groupings of breakout sessions. Guests will select three workshops to attend according to their interest (literary fiction, poetry, nonfiction, screen writing, dialogue, genre, travel writing, editing, journalism, historical fiction, and commercial fiction). Each breakout session will also offer a Page One workshop, where conference guests can anonymously submit the first page of something they’ve written for possible live reading and critique by the guest authors.

Lunch is provided and there will be an early evening wine and cheese reception and book signing providing conference guests, authors, and speakers a chance to mingle. Shuttle buses will be available to carry walk-on ferry passengers to and from Kiana Lodge.

Registration begins February 1, 2008. Early registration is recommended as the conference is limited to 250 guests and has sold out in the past. Cost to attend is $135 if you register before February 28, 2008 and $150 after March 1, 2008. Groups of 5 or more can register for $130/person. To register for the 2008 Field’s End Writers’ Conference, visit

Founded in 2002, Field’s End is a writers’ community whose mission is to inspire writers and nurture the written word through lectures, workshops, and instruction in the art and craft of writing. Located across the Puget Sound from Seattle on beautiful Bainbridge Island, Field’s End is an affiliate of the nonprofit Bainbridge Public Library, which is located at 1270 Madison Avenue on Bainbridge Island. For more information, call (206) 842-4162 or visit


Kirsten Graham
Concept 2 Launch
(206) 890-3435

kirsten graham
c o n c e p t 2 l a u n c h, LLC
creative consultants

Sometimes fiction is the best revenge. Please enjoy this video and guest post from one of my favorite writers, Sheila Roberts:

Writing as Revenge by Sheila Roberts

I think the best book ideas come from a real life experiences. And some of the most irritating experiences can provide the best material. If I hadn’t been irritated with my husband, I never would have come up with the idea for my new book On Strike for Christmas about a group of friends who go on strike to gain more appreciation over the holidays–with near disastrous results.
On Strike for Christmas     My  husband was grumbling about having to spend yet another holiday with my big, loud family and I had just had it. What was his problem, anyway? He’d been doing this for years. Now that I think about it, maybe that was his problem. The poor man spends more time with his in-laws than his own family. But when I made my threat I wasn’t thinking so rationally. “I’m going to put you in a book,” I threatened.
     He just laughed.
     Until I actually did it. And once I got rolling I’d give him regular reports. “Your nickname is now Bob Humbug.”
     “Ha! I like it.”
     The members of my critique group liked it, too, although they began to wonder about one of the couples in the book, Bob and Joy, who were modeled after my husband and myself. I even began to wonder myself – not about Bob and Joy, but about Sheila and her husband – when we’d discuss the book and I’d hear comments like, “This marriage is in serious trouble.”
     I’d think, It is? Oh, no! We’ve been married for years and we’re in trouble and we don’t even know it!
     Fortunately, I was eventually able to sort fact from fiction.  My husband had his own identity crisis once he had a chance to see an early copy of the book. Suddenly it wasn’t quite so funny being the prototype for a naughty husband. He returned one afternoon from his work commute, holding the book and looking like the personification of Elvis’s “Blue Christmas”. “Am I really that bad?” he Sheila Robert
     It was my golden opportunity to say, “Yes! That’s why you’re in a book, you big turkey.” But I didn’t have the heart. My Bob Humbug is really a sweet guy with a very tender heart, and he looked so darned sad I simply couldn’t do it. He had obviously learned his lesson, so I assured him that fiction often requires some over the top writing. (And there is plenty of that in this story.)
     Still, he took the underlying message to heart, and now, like Scrooge, he’s a changed man. And he’s given the story an enthusiastic thumbs up. He’s even planning on making guest appearances at my book signings. So there’ll be no Christmas strike at our house this year, just a lot of fun as we celebrate both the holidays (with my family, of course!) and the release of my first novel with St. Martin’s Press.

Publishers Weekly loves this book as much as Debbie Macomber and I do. From the PW review:

Roberts’s sweetly vengeful dig at do-nothing husbands follows a smalltown knitting club of wives who are sick and tired of toiling over elaborate Christmas preparations that their husbands don’t appreciate. As they go on strike, the women try to stay in solidarity, while the husbands plan retaliation at the hardware store. Roberts revels in detailing the husbands’ awkward, often disastrous handling of tasks their wives habitually do for Christmas (taking the kids to see Santa, planning the party, doing up the house). By the end of this gently feminist sendup, each side learns to be grateful for the other’s efforts.

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