An alternate World in 6 Hours and 9 Minutes

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Book sales are nice of course. But to a writer, they are more than just sales. They are the equivalent of one more person, sooner or later, entering the fictitious world you spent a few years creating. This unknown reader will meet the characters that live there and have their own interactions and responses to them, be privy to every conversation and inner thought, every intimate

Catherine-Nelson-Future-Memories-1

Catherine Nelson: Future Memories

moment that unfolds between your characters, accompany your characters through their heartache, laughter, embarrassment, growth. They will explore the settings, the background, the cultural narrative, the messages that unfold. In other words, you will take a total stranger on an intimate journey through your words.
In many cases, readers keep their experience of that journey to themselves. Unless they are someone you know personally who wants to share, or someone who tends to write reviews, you will never know how those few hours
(or 6 hours, 9 minutes in the case of my second novel) affected them.
What a strange, and fairly new phenomenon!

New? Books have been around forever! Well, not really. The ancient Egyptians wrote on papyrus, Sumerians on stone tablets, monks eventually sat hunched over little tables, hand-copying or producing original books, followed by wood tablet technology. But it wasn’t until  Johannes Gutenberg introduced the printing press to Europe way back in 1439, that the printing revolution really began. Before and after this time, many people shared stories through the oral tradition. Thus the storyteller was engaged with a rapt audience, could work the stage, adjust the cadence of his story as needed, incorporate the name of a village to make the story personal.

Storytellers like Michael Katz still practice the ancient art of story telling and have the

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Story teller Michael Katz: photo by Larry Mills

ability to engage their audience directly, enthralling audiences wherever they go.
Storytelling is still very much alive when we get together with friends and share our lives and experiences.
But those of us storytellers who share our stories through the written word quite often miss the chance to engage with our audience–except at “meet the author” events and book signings.

Yet social media brings that chance back to the forefront. It’s not as intimate as having a storyteller standing before you, but you can join Facebook groups to discuss a novel with the author, drop them a tweet or talk to others who have been on that journey as well, without spoiling the story for anyone else who hasn’t read it yet. (What would Shakespeare, Jane Austen or Orson Welles have been like in a Facebook author chat group?)

As an author, some of my most cherished moments are when someone talks to me about the characters in my novels as if those characters are real people. On Saturday,  I stopped by the local tea shop to drop off a flyer for my upcoming book signing of The Things We Said in Venice (Saturday, May 20th at the ABC Bookstore The Hague, The Netherlands from 3:00-5:00p.m. in case you wanted to know). The owner of the tea shop came up to me and greeted me enthusiastically.
“I just LOVE your novel! It’s so well-written. Fokke and Sarah seem so real. I can’t put it down.” He went on like this in some detail. He didn’t exactly ignore his customers, but he certainly took the time to tell me his thoughts, and I felt the excitement of sharing a world with someone who appreciated it. How often does that happen?

Book sales are nice, but it is the anticipation of this sort of interaction that keeps us writers looking at the numbers. How many books have sold today? As the numbers slowly crawl higher, there’s a sense of excitement at the knowledge that someone else will soon enter this fictitious world we’ve created.

But as April clicks over to May, or May clicks over to June, the total count starts all over again. This means that on day 1 of a new month, an author runs the chance of being confronted with a big fat 0 in the morning, where a double digit stood just the evening before. This is a good reminder that in the digital age, a writer, self-published or not, has to have their cheerleading, look-my-way hat on more often than they wish. They need to get their novels not only in the hands of new readers, but to the press, to reviewers, in the news. I’m sure at some point, the sales take care of themselves, but in the meantime, we need to be not only authors, but shakers and movers.

Screenshot 2017-05-02 20.12.49It’s also good to remember what counts. In the right hand corner of my WordPress screen, there is a little icon with a pen that says WRITE. It is a simple icon used to start a new post, but I view it as a reminder of one of the most basic principles of being a writer. WRITE: Every day, twice a day, wherever and whenever you can fit it in. But in the mean time, there are 291 pages consisting of 83,825 words of storytelling just waiting for you. And millions more by other authors in bookstores, libraries, online, on your own bookshelf, just waiting for the right moment for you two to meet.

 

 

 

 

Failure and Success as Synonyms

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If you occasionally check out my author website, you might get the impression, based on the lack of updated blog posts, that I’ve thrown in the writing towel and dropped off the face of the earth.

Au contraire! I have been writing on a semi-regular basis, just offline. And what are the results of my efforts?  The completion of my second novel!

I wish I was writing to inform my multitudes of followers (humor me for a minute) that my second novel will soon be released.  The instant gratification part of me is twitching it’s fingers and wants to hire someone to design an eye catching cover and then upload my manuscript and self-publish. After all, I’ve spent over a year writing and rewriting, having it edited and rewriting again. As soon as it comes back from the proofreader, wouldn’t it be logical to publish it online?

I listened to that voice when I published my debut novel Green in October of 2013. In fact, I didn’t even consider the traditional route of attempting to get an agent or starting the arduous process of submitting to publishers. I read enough books about publishing and novel writing to know the chances of getting an agent and getting published are both slim. Take this quote for example:

“A literary agent may get 5,000 query letters a year. Only a fraction of these will lead to the agent requesting the manuscript. If you think about it, an agent reading one out of a hundred submissions must read 50 books every year!” Source: Mark O’Bannon’s article on Betterstorytelling.net.

I could find a hundred more quotes that would justify a second round of self-publishing as the most logical route. But there is another voice within me that has been gaining ground over the last six months, and she has been saying something rather wise: Why not try? Do the research; do it right; put in the time. If it doesn’t work out, who cares? You can self-publish.

But my ego cares. I’m sure on some level my id and superego also care. Because really; who wants to set themselves up in an almost statistically guaranteed position of rejection? And who wants to admit failure? Despite all of this logic, that steady voice within keeps telling me to defer the excitement of sharing my latest novel with the world and invest the time and energy into getting it published–despite the odds. After all, if I fail in being selected out of those thousands of manuscripts, I will have at least tried. This is almost as big an accomplishment as writing the darned book in the first place! wouldn’t you agree?

Now that I’ve made that decision, it’s almost like the universe is providing me with the framework to take the first step.

This past Monday I attended the first Connecting Women gathering of the year in The Hague. The topic? Failing: A gift in Disguise, presented by psychologist Vassia Sarantopoulou. (And yes, with a name like that she is Greek).

In less than an hour, she took the word failure and transformed it into a positive concept. Everybody in this world must experience failure to get to know themselves, gain clarity in their lives and to learn how to succeed; even if that success comes in another form than you originally intended, she explained.

During the presentation, she asked the audience to come up with an imaginary person who was struggling with a failure in their lives. The group came up with a woman named Lilly who was both a writer and hair stylist. I was not the one to suggest she was a writer! This imaginary Lilly became a case study for our group. The advice that poured forth, the strategies for addressing her passion to write and her frustrations around her failure to publish seemed to be speaking to the future me. If Lilly takes up the gauntlet and gives it a try, why can’t I? Because if you view failure and success as strange synonyms, you have changed the way you view the world.

 

 

 

Author Kristin Anderson’s double book review: Disappearing in Plain Sight and The Light Never Lies

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Earlier this year, I announced that I would be delving into the world of Indy author book reviews. Since then I have acquired a diverse array of reading material, and it was difficult to choose whom to read first. But then I came upon the intriguing Crater Lake series by Indy Author Francis L. Guenette. Set in a lake side community in Canada, the Crater Lake Series currently comprises: Disappearing in Plain Sight (January 2013, Friesen Press) and The Light Never Lies (2014 Friesen Press).

Disappearing in Plain Sight by Francis Guenette

When I read the first chapter of Disappearing in Plain Sight, I knew that author Francis Guenette was an accomplished writer, but I was worried that I had signed up to read a teen romance. Instead, I discovered a book that explores relationships between friends, lovers, personal identity and the myriad factors that shape a person’s current existence. Tales of love play out in various forms from unrequited love, struggling and successful. I enjoyed the cast of multi-faceted characters so thoroughly, that I delved right into Guenette’s sequel, The Light Never Lies; thus my double book review.

But before I start talking about the second title, I would like to acknowledge the refreshing setting and pace of book one, Disappearing in Plain Sight. Guenette’s easy writing style pulls you into the Crater Lake community in Northern Vancouver Island, Canada. Whether it is the wind blowing through the trees, the play of light on the lake’s surface, swimming or fishing or the hours spent in Izzy’s prolific garden, nature is a prominent force in this novel, creating a dynamic backdrop to everyday life.  Just as nature can be at one moment calm and peaceful and the next full of excitement and impending danger, a similar tumultuous landscape exists within the psychological make up of Guenette’s characters.

Due to the remote setting and the introduction of a handful of fast friends, I was expecting a slow-paced novel where characters lazily unfold, each chapter bringing more depth and history alive. Guenette does just this. But, what I found clever and unique about this book concept, is the contrast of the local crew with the clients of Micah Camp.

Micah Camp is not a typical kid’s summer camp. It is an accredited counseling center / residential program for young adults between 18 and 22 who have been through the often traumatic foster care system and need extra help transitioning to university and / or a career. Micah Camp helps these at-risk youth by providing a comprehensive counseling, assessment and job placement program. Many of these kids wear their past traumas like armor, and their often fast-paced lifestyles and hardened outlooks on life contrast greatly to the slow and ambling pace of the locals. Or so it seems.

By locating this camp within the idyllic lakeside community, she creates a juxtaposition of the locals outside the world of counseling and those within. These two worlds intersect through the presence of Izzy Montgomery, a Micah Camp counselor and Crater Lake resident. Attractive and compassionate, Izzy is the axis that ties the two worlds together and the cause of many a fluttering and frustrated heart. The further you are drawn into the personal histories of each character, the line between those within and those without begins to blur, as if the author is telling us that every human that has lived has a past to be reckoned with, and could benefit from a bit of soul searching combined with the helpful ear of a counselor to walk you through. It also becomes obvious that counselors don’t always come in the form of a person with a degree in the field. For example, Liam Collins, a middle-aged Native American man who runs the local saw mill isn’t much of a talker, but has the ability to fully listen and be present for others.

The author’s personal work history—Guenette has worked as a trauma counselor and researcher and has a master’s in Counseling Psychology—shines through in the writing. She fleshes out the characters with such thoroughness that they become people you think about long after you have closed the book. I recommend this book and found it a thoroughly enjoyable read.

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The Light Never Lies by Francis Guenette

The Light Never Lies  by Francis Guenette

The Light Never Lies brings back the full cast of characters from book one and throws in a whole new line up of characters and problems that bring chaos into the previously well-ordered world of Izzy Montgomery and her friends.

At first, I was frustrated by the sheer number of new characters. It felt unsettling, like there were just too many stories to follow. And then, like an overworked counselor, I threw my hands up in the air and began to accept the new reality, right along with the characters in the book.

Guenette adds a new element of suspense and insight through the introduction of Robbie, a young boy and half-brother to one of the lead characters with a special talent. Through his eyes, the readers gain insight and foreshadowing into events that will play out, and access to feelings and connections that exist between characters that they themselves haven’t yet realized.

Not only is the cast crowded in book two, but the pace is notched a few decibels higher with elements of impending danger taking the story in the direction of a thriller.

Although some may feel that The Light Never Lies could be read as a stand alone novel, I see great benefit in reading this series chronologically. I liken it to the following; if you had a chance to go back in time and gain personal insight into past experiences that shaped the way your friend or lover interacts with the world, wouldn’t you take it?

Guenette’s ability to get inside the heads of so many characters and express their inner workings in a believable manner makes The Light Never Lies a pleasure to read. Yet, the reading experience is not limited to interior thoughts. She puts the daily pace of life into the book by covering the simple things that fill the daily worlds of the characters, thus grounding the story in reality.

At the end of book two, Guenette resolves a fair amount of conflicts, but leaves enough open ended threads dangling to keep readers pining for more.  But you will have to be patient, because book three is not expected to be out before 2015.

I recommend The Light Never Lies but for the full reading experience, strongly suggest starting with Disappearing in Plain Sight.  For more information on author Francis Guenette, please visit her on Goodreads, or on her blog http://disappearinginplainsight.com. You can purchase her books on Amazon.com

Friends don’t let friends drive drunk and Indy authors support Indy authors.
Interested in submitting your Indy book for review by author Kristin Anderson? Please see the guidelines outlined in the post linked here

12 Great Indy Books to be highly recommended in 2014: is yours one of them?

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How many of you have read a great Indy author  in the last few years who really surprised you with their smooth writing, compelling plot and beautiful prose? Was it a great work of literature? Or perhaps a fun, yet witty romance that made you laugh, cry and fall in love? A book that kept you thinking about the transformation of the characters within the pages long after you finished?  Did you want to share that author with others, but weren’t comfortable writing reviews? Or perhaps you have written such a book yourself, but haven’t figured out how to get someone to review it.

As an Indy author, it’s hard to figure out just how to get your book noticed. This year, I would like to change that for at least some Indy Authors by writing reviews on my blog. The good news is, I am only interested in writing POSITIVE, yet critical reviews. Thus, if you send me your book and I am not able to honestly give it a strong recommendation, then I will simply not review it. If I review your book and you like my review, you are welcome to share it on your own website, on Twitter, put it on Facebook, etc, as long as you include my name Kristin Anderson and a link to the original review on this blog http://www.authorkristinanderson.com. Last but not least, your book must be thoroughly edited. I can let a handful of typos slide, but any more is distracting and breaks the flow of reading. (I have professionally edited a number of books, thus I find typos and spelling errors very distracting;  they remind me of work!)

Still interested in submitting your book for review? Here are the criteria and categories I will consider.

Requirements
1) Self-published within the last three years (thus from January 1, 2011 to present).
2) Less than 400 pages
3)  Thoroughly edited
4) Available as an e-book / Kindle

Genres
1) Fiction including general fiction, women’s fiction, environmental fiction, romance with a message,  and thrillers of the not overly violent persuasion.
2) Non-fiction about environmental issues and social justice that offers hope, rather than doom.

Reminder: Since I want to write positive reviews, I am seeking novels with a strong, coherent plot, well-developed characters, smooth writing style and an inspirational message. Romance with a message note: Heat is okay as far as romances go, but no porn or erotica. Non-fiction note: I am looking for quality of information and insight into contemporary environmental issues that is presented in layman’s terms, or introduces technical and complex ideas without getting too bogged down in  jargon.

Submission Procedure
Please use the contact form on this website to submit one paragraph describing your book and one paragraph explaining why you think I should review it. Please include a link to your website, title, date published and a valid email address. I retain the right to refuse any submission based on personal preference and you agree not to slander me for what may feel like (but is not) a personal affront.

The glories of e-book reading

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I sold some expensive jewelry from an ex  and purchased an iPad earlier this year. That one purchase transformed the way I consume fiction. Let’s just say that some people compulsively shop when lured in by tantalizing window displays and an appropriately placed sales sign and others are lured into the amazon.com kindle store, where books can be automatically downloaded. I fall into the latter category.

The biggest problem I’m facing? “Buy now with One-click.” Oh, that little yellow button. What is a girl-who-loves-to-read to do but click, click?

Here are some of the books I’ve purchased this year and enjoyed:

Black and Abroad by Carolyn Vines (autobiography with a good dose of humor and real life insight into being black in America and abroad).

Delusions for Breakfast by Kate Johnston (hilarious, subtle, deliciously written book about food and life).

Just This Once by Rosalind James (Burning hot romance set in New Zealand, this author keeps you flipping the pages and buying sequels, and yes, I’m admitting this in public!)

Crazy Little Thing by Tracy Brogan (Hilarious, well written romance sprinkled throughout with wit, passion and laugh-out-loud moments of absurdity).

Open City by Teju Cole ( a rambling, beautifully written anti-story–lacks cohesiveness–about a young Nigerian doctor doing his residency in New York who takes nightly walks through the city. Still not my favorite book, but the story and characters linger–which mean it redeems itself in some way. And to give it creds, the critics love it.)

Fifty Shades of Gray Kale by Drew Ramsey, M.D. (A wit-filled recipe book extolling the extreme goodness of leafy greens by a doctor who capitalizes on a copycat title to boost his ratings.)

This is just a sampling of the 26 books I’ve purchased this year and read outside my book club choices (only one overlaps).  At least I’m not talking about 26 pairs of shoes, or 26 cashmere sweaters. But what I like about reading e-books, is that you can highlight passages you like, look words up instantly online and make the reading experience interactive. And if I read it a second time, I can delete previously highlighted sections; something I can’t really do in my hardback and paperback copies. Since I have a screen with light, I can read in bed after I’ve wrestled the iPad away from my son (I swear he transforms into an Angry Bird whenever I ask for my iPad back) and I can continue reading after my husband has fallen asleep without disturbing him.

As an author, I am glad that my book GREEN is available in both Kindle and print format. Seeing as the print version has to be printed, it is of course, less environmentally friendly. On the other hand, it is a print-on-demand title, which means it is only printed if ordered–thus no wasteful stacks of unsold books waiting around for a reader.

I’ve priced the Kindle version at 60% less than the print version. Why? Because I actually want people to READ the book, and by offering a low kindle price, I can hopefully eliminate one barrier. My print version is priced as low as possible to cover printing costs and enable me to earn a small royalty.  Once again, my pricing decisions were based on the following premise: books are meant to be read and enjoyed and accessible to all.

Despite my new found love of e-books, print will continue to be my favorite. I especially enjoy my reminiscent strolls by the bookcase where I can touch upon a book like a long-lost friend, remembering the experience I had within its pages. Seeing all of those spines lined up on the shelf, uncategorized and jumbled together, I see a flash of my  interests presented in a spectrum of colors and shapes. An eBook just can’t replicate that experience.

Tales of an Indy Author book Release

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This past Saturday, after much anticipation and cumulative hours over the last three months sharing messages of hope, fear and excitement, nuanced with begging and pleading for attention and support with my friends, family and online followers alike, I finally had my book release. Phew! You can all wipe your collective brows and know that Author Kristin Anderson’s launch of her debut novel GREEN is now over.

Kristin Anderson signing debut novel Green

Kristin Anderson signing debut novel Green

But as my friends are now pointing out, my work as an author, has only just begun. Now I need to get the world to realize my “debut-novel Green by Kristin Anderson” has been released, that it is receiving great reviews and should be in that stack of books on your bedside table, or in your kindle library. Well, before I begin that journey, I thought it might be fun to share the highlights as well as the strange events that occurred during my book launch this past Saturday, November 16th.

Earlier in the week I thought about contacting my friend Welmoed, owner of Orange Gloss Styling, for her opinion on the best booth location from a Feng Shui perspective. This was the first sign that I was taking this whole thing a little too seriously. (But that was a brilliant idea, wasn’t it?) The night before the launch, my friend Bo Rodenhuis came over and rummaged through my tired collection of clothing with her fashionable eyes. As if invoking some fashion voodoo spell, she created a clothing combination I would have never come up with on my own, and voila! Style!

I awoke Saturday morning with feelings reminiscent of childhood Christmases–I couldn’t wait to jump out of bed and start my day. With the whole “Oh-dear!-what-am-I-going-to-wear” dilemma eliminated, my morning routine was a breeze.

My book launch was held at the Christus Triumfatorkerk in The Hague, The Netherlands, as part of the BezuidenhoutFestival– a neighborhood-centric festival for local clubs, politicians, and community leaders. There were a handful of groups selling handmade items, locally made honey, bridge clubs, a neighborhood watch program, a flower project, politicians and me. Even though the idea for my book was conceived in Santa Barbara, California and set in Los Angeles with a contemporary opposites-attract plot with the Deepwater Horizon Gulf Oil Spill looming in the background, it could not have been more “locally made.” ; I wrote 80 percent of this book in the Bezuidenhout, The Hague.

To my surprise, friends from just about every hook of my social life here in the Netherlands materialized. They brought offerings of flowers and candles, body lotions and kind words, along with euros to purchase my debut novel. Sister and brother-in-laws, in-laws and nephews joined the celebration. People I didn’t know who had come to the festival attended my book readings along with my friends and family, and even purchased my book. People stood in line for me to sign. This one day felt like a little movie of how I would like my life to be; how it would feel to be a full-time author–how right that would feel. Funny how just a few hours being in one role can change your life perspective.

Minister Ruud Stiemer purchasing Green

Minister Ruud Stiemer purchasing Green

friends purchasing my novel Green

friends purchasing my novel Green

Author Kristin Anderson with reader Janita van Nes

Author Kristin Anderson with reader Janita van Nes

Variety of friends purchasing my book!

Variety of friends purchasing my book!

Considering my eco-romance novel is set in Los Angeles, and is written by an American, it only makes sense that I needed to focus my launch on the U.S. market. Yet, I currently live in the Netherlands. So, I attempted to use some of the social media skills I’ve been learning in Zestee online media school, and create a virtual book launch as a counterpart to my physical launch here in the Netherlands.

But what is a virtual launch? Was the resounding question. My definition is that during the time of your physical launch, you post updates on your website or facebook author page, and plan a group chat through Skype or Google+ hangouts for a hands-on, interactive experience. I decided on Google+ hangouts. It boasted being able to chat with up to 10 people at a time, and I could even make it public, in case Maria Bustillos or another L.A. Times book reviewer might want to join in on the streaming conversation / video and interview me about my fabulous new genre eco-romance. So, I decided to make it public. It took me the better part of a week to figure out how to do a public chat, but I did it! And boy, was I surprised what a public hangout on Google+ could bring!

My first caller was published Santa Barbara author Leslie Westbrook. She’s the real deal, with an agent and multiple titles, and also just an all around friendly person that I knew when I lived in Santa Barbara. While we were talking about the dramatically changing landscape of the book industry, Yuri from the Ukraine joined our conversation. Leslie and I were having Blair Witch Project style flashbacks as Yuri’s toddler grabbed the camera and twirled it around, giving us a seasick overview of the strange warehouse setting where they stood. I tried to politely explain to Yuri that I was doing a book launch and that he was about to make me lose my dinner, but he only wanted to talk to us, and not listen. I quickly discovered the ignore button, and Yuri was no longer in the conversation.

Within a few minutes, another user joined the conversation. But instead of seeing a person, a strange icon appeared, which twirled in circles. The optimist in me considered for a nanosecond that this could be someone genuinely interested in my book. But when he didn’t speak or respond to my conversation, the pessimist in me imagined this spinning disk to be some sort of computer sweeping device munching through all of my files. I quickly discovered the “block sender,” button. Soon a message appeared from said sender that was extremely aggressive, sexist and derogatory because I had blocked him from my conversation. Thus the concept that rules of civility don’t always apply in these non-policed arenas of online interaction.

I closed my session and re-logged on in a private chat, inviting only friends. And friends came to hang out with me. They joined the conversation over the next few hours. As contemporary nomads, many of us author types have friends in various regions of the world. Thus, a virtual launch with a real-time media component, such as Skype or google+ hangouts is very handy. But before you consider doing a virtual launch, I recommend having a method to screen participants.

As the evening wound down, I went to bed as a happy, contented, exhausted author. I knew that the next day, or perhaps a few days afterward, I would need to start the hard work of actually marketing my book so that I can reach readers beyond the scope of my friends and friends of friends. Words that a family friend parsed out the day after my wedding when the job of clean up was at hand came back to me. “You are only Queen for a day.”

Five Days

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It is the sort of cold and dreary weather that is meant for authors and readers alike; tea-drinking, curl up and read or write sort of weather–indulge in the adventures within the book or within your mind.

Five days ago, I had a day, that if I write it up, will seem exaggerated in it’s perfection. It was a day where everything clicked. I had an interview scheduled with Lily-Anne Stroobach from Dutch Buzz about my debut novel GREEN. I was working in the church and had about twenty small, detailed tasks I wanted to finish before heading to the interview. I was able to accomplish almost all of them. As I finished my last email, my husband came over and reminded me I should head out now if I wanted to be on time. I asked him if he could make me a sandwich for the road, since I had to travel across The Hague and hadn’t predicted a growling stomach. Instead of rolling his eyes, he actually made me the sandwich, and even transferred my latte into a to go cup.

My tram pass was where it should be, my keys didn’t play hide and seek with me, my cell phone was actually charged and easy to find. As I slipped on my coat and headed toward the door, my husband handed me my sandwich and latte like a sexy personal assistant, and rather than looking emasculated by the experience, he was all confidence and full of encouragement.

I walked to the tram stop and within one minute, the tram arrived. Pulling in to Den Haag Centraal, my connecting tram also arrived within seconds. I stepped from one tram and walked to the platform, as if the world were aligning for me. The tram headed into an area of The Hague I had never encountered, and as I looked out on small shops and squares, I felt the excitement of one on a journey in a new city: senses alert, in the moment, drinking in the new impressions with the same thankfulness and pleasure as as one gulping water after a hard workout to rejuvenate the body. I wasn’t sure how many more stops, so I called Lily-Anne, who answered quickly, and told me it was the very next stop.

The interview went smoothly and Lily-Anne proved to be a fascinating South African Dutch woman, whose open personality and frankness clicked with mine. The ride home was another flawless journey, with trams lining up with such precision, it seemed they were ordered just for me.

When I went to pick up my son at school, I thought of a mom I needed to talk to. Just then, a little red car pulled up, parked, and out stepped said mom, directly in my path.

I headed back into the church to finish up a bit of work, and one of the church members who works in finance happened to come by. He told me that they would be paying me the balance of my bonus for the year at the end of the month. I won’t bore you, but the entire day continued in this manner–sales of my book popping up on the online reports, my son happy, time with my husband in the evening.

I realized this was a miracle of sorts, this day. And like a gambler who finally hit the jack pot, I wanted more days like this, and said something to that effect on Facebook. But my friend Kirsten Klitgaard pointed out in response: “Don’t get greedy, Kristin. I’m still waiting for ONE!” True. Point well taken. I truly enjoyed this day and the thought occurred to me, why today? Why me? Are there people who run around life with many days like this? Is this the Power of Positive Thinking? The Law of Attraction? A little teasing by the Universe? God moving just the tip of her pinky in my direction? But I don’t recall doing any particular meditations, or especially trying to be in the moment–it just simply was.

Five days from now, Saturday, November 16th, is my Official Book Launch party. I have always dreamed of writing a book. I have started over a dozen, but only ever finished one. So this book launch is a great moment in life, however it plays itself out.

It still feels far away. My life is just continuing along with all the sundry lists and responsibilities of daily life. But I know that this coming Saturday, there will be this event. It will happen in one form or another, and then life will move forward; this too shall pass.

As an author, I am thankful for all of you who have delved into my novel, getting to know the characters within, living with them in your mind and following them along on their journeys. I am thankful to those of you who have taken the time to share your thoughts on my book, have shared it with friends, who are taking the time to write reviews on Amazon. And I’m so excited to see what Saturday will bring! Who will purchase my book this day, who will log on to google+ and find Author Kristin Anderson and join a hangout with me.

If you are interested in hearing the interview on Dutchbuzz.nl, you can tune into the hour long program tonight (Tuesday, November 12th, 2013) at 22:00 (DUTCH TIME) on Den Haag FM 92.0. Or the broadcast will be available tomorrow on http://www.dutchbuzz.nl after 12:00.

See you in five days?