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Celebrations and #giveaway

News Flash: Janet Anderson-Murch won the author apron! Congratulations, Janet, and please check your email.

Edith/Maddie writing from a frigid – but not snowy – north of Boston.

I am a firm believer in celebrating blessings, victories, and milestones big and small, mine and those of others. Barb has done a great job of bringing us together about our gratitudes this month for Wicked Wednesday posts. Let’s also celebrate what we’re grateful for! Read down for a special giveaway, too.

So what am I celebrating today, three weeks into November, when it’s ever colder and darker here in New England?

A – Staying healthy after a weekend of hugging and eating and drinking with author pals and fans at the New England Crime Bake. It’s a major victory to celebrate, especially when the weekend was capped off by lunch with four of the Wickeds (and missing Sherry terribly)!

B – Toasting Susan Oleksiw and Leslie Wheeler for each receiving the Lifetime Achievement Award at Crime Bake. Leslie has a long history of editing great short stories, writing her own books, and heading up the Al Blanchard Award. Susan has several series under her belt, is also a long-time short story editor, and has been a mentor to many writers, me in particular.

I was delighted to write a paragraph of celebratory tribute that was read while Susan received her award.

C – This time next week I’ll be celebrating turning in Murder Uncorked, my first Cece Barton mystery. Right now I’m nearly done polishing the manuscript, and I’m feeling much better about it than I was a couple of weeks ago. And while this isn’t an official cover reveal and the book, out next October, isn’t even up for preorder yet, to celebrate I’m giving you all a sneak peek at the cool new cover.

It shows the wine bar patio, the adobe buildings, and Cece’s vintage sixty-six Mustang. What do you think?

D – And then there are birthdays to celebrate. Yes, it is my birthday month, and last night four dear friends threw me a belated party. We had food, wine, cake, and most important, we celebrated decades of sharing with and supporting each other through joys and sadness and everyday life.

I try also to celebrate a pretty leaf I see on the ground, an arthritis salve a friend made and sent, the taste of my dark roast coffee, and the joy of seeing the favorite young people in my life, plus so much more.

What might you celebrate this month? I hope you at least have a bite of delicious food to celebrate on Thanksgiving! I’ll send one commenter a celebratory author apron.

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