Writing is a joy, but for me, it is an introspective process that requires solitude: a silent dialogue between me and the paper. I thrive on creating new characters, new twists and turns in their lives, and when the book is closed, the characters lie there like dried flowers between the pages, waiting for you to open it so as to whisk them into living.
Over the years I have received several pictures from readers half a world away. Some show me one of my books on their kitchen table. I see them touching the paperback cover or holding up their reading device so I can get a glimpse of it. I cherish the moment they are showing me. As a writer, this moment is what I live for, it is highly rewarding, because my characters are about to rise from the pages, about to be fleshed out in your mind, which makes the distance between us evaporate completely.
So here are just a few pictures readers have sent me, and highlights of how I came to know them. If you are reading my book, send me your picture (PM me on Facebook) and I will gladly post it just like this, here on my blog, as a big thank you to you!
My friend, the amazingly talented Australian artist and the author of Sydney's Song, Ia Uaro, ordered my poetry book from Amazon. She wanted to give it as an end-of-the-year gift for Dr Rada, who is a Polish Jew and--get this!--became fascinated with Japanese at an early age, and now teaches the language. The Aussie-Japanese-Polish connection. How neat is that! Then Ia shared with me the image of the paperback edition of Home as it arrived at her place.
I imagine sitting across from her at the kitchen table, touching the same wood grain. I imagine her giving my book as a gift to her dear friend.
Here's to new friends: in a recent tour of South Africa I met a lovely new friend, Dana Stein. Dana works in a research lab, she takes great photographs, has great style in choosing clothes, and most importantly, she has just opened a new page in her life, a new budding romance.
When she went back home to Israel, Dana sent me this picture of my new spy thriller, Marriage before Death, set on her dining room table. You can tell that Dana has great taste not only because of choosing to get my book--just kidding!--but also because of the elegant, flowery decorations on the wooden bowl in the background.
This is Gisela Sedimayer, beaming at her husband so can take her picture for me with my historical fiction novels. In one picture she is showing the cover of Rise to Power, and in the other--A Peek at Bathsheba.
Gisela is a wonderful writer of a series of books. She says, "Surviving cancer and finding myself still alive after two years of just sitting around, but still locked after my two little girls and my husband, Albert, I finally came to my senses again. Since I couldn’t work at a traditional job any longer, I couldn’t stand or sit too long, Albert, my husband, taught me how to use a computer. I started to write..."
Deb Warrick may seem like a shy gal but having gone through trials and tribulations in life made her the strong, energetic woman she is. Deb is married to Don Warrick, who narrated several of my books. She is instrumental in the process of producing these audiobooks, and more importantly, she is nursing him to health after the aggressive cancer treatment he went through. Don gave her my poetry book, Home, as a birthday gift.
Deborah Brooks Langford is a lovely poet and author with whom I exchange information about all things writing and publishing. Notably, she was one of my earliest readers. Here she is holding my family saga, Apart from Love. I will forever be grateful that she bought my book before I started gaining any fame.
Renee Pierce Williams is a great children's books author, and her talented daughter illustrates them for her. She took this picture of her husband reading Rise to Power. She told me that he was enjoying it but, he is too busy trying to compare my story with the actual Bible (which he reads every night.)
I love the intimacy of this picture, which only she could capture.
This is Charlene Zall Capodice, wonderful grandmother and mother and an avid reader living in New Jersey. She is holding up the Kindle edition of my WWII love and suspense novel, Dancing with Air.
Last but not least, here is a reader holding up the paperback edition of my biblical story (with a modern twist) A Favorite Son.
So remember--when you read my books, just contact me on Facebook and if you send me a picture of you (or of your kitchen table) I will post it so I can remember this moment!