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Thursday, October 17, 2013

Simple Pleasures




Sometimes the best things in life are simple. Before I even attempted to become a writer, I was a reader. I could read three to four books a week. Easily. I devoured romance books. And the simple pleasure of sitting down in a comfy chair, with a blanket and a book, is indescribable. Words simply cannot portray the sheer pleasure I receive from opening a new book and entering into a fictional fantasy.

Another simple pleasure is receiving an autographed copy of your favorite book from your favorite author. Better than that, is receiving an autograph from an author friend. One of the things that bothered me the most about digital books was that you could no longer do this. Or so I believed. Luckily, some brilliant man invented the Authorgraph and low and behold we can now sign and share our Authorgraphs through Social Media. What a concept. Although I have to admit that there still isn’t anything quite like opening the pages of a real book and seeing an author’s autograph. Just the sound of the pages gives me pleasure. And the smell…ahhh…isn’t it lovely?

Over the weekend I was lucky enough to get the chance to sign my first Authorgraph to a wonderful reader named Teresa Jones. It was such a pleasure to write how much I appreciated her. Another simple pleasure. It’s funny how something so simple as a signature changes everything. It personalizes things and makes you feel special.

And as special as being on the other side of the authorgraph was to me, I had to return to my favorite autographed books and relive receiving them. So I thought I would share with you my special autographed books and what made them so special to me.

The first autographed book I ever received was from Leigh Greenwood in 2003 whom I met at my first local chapter meeting ten years ago. I’d never been to anything like this before and getting the chance to meet one of the authors who had shaped my love for western romances simply made me entire day. I came home floating on cloud nine.



The next autographed copy came from one of the authors in my very first critique group named Ciara Gold. I was so thrilled to see her sweet message in the book Celestial Dragon and see my name mentioned in the dedication with the words “This one is for you!” Wow!

I received an autograph from Cherry Adair during my first RWA seminar in Raleigh. I really enjoyed her class and she soon became one of my favorite contemporary authors. The best part about that particular trip to Raleigh though was getting the chance to meet my critique partners but that’s whole different blog for another day. I had a blast, picked up a great new book, some new knowledge, and came home with some excellent memories. It was one the best experiences of my life.


The next autographed book comes with an interesting story. I haven't been able to attend an RWA national conference yet, but my very sweet critique partners never let me feel left out. Last year my absolute favorite thriller author James Rollins attended and my critique partners were kind enough to get a special autographed copy of his books for me! I squealed like a little girl when James Rollins actually tweeted out that he hoped I enjoyed my books! It's one of the many reasons why this group of girls, whom I rely on so much, are some of the most special people in my life. There is nothing as awesome as having friends who think of you, even when you're not there. Thank you girls, you know who you are!
Now to share my two favorite autographs with you, the first from our very own Lydia Dare/ Ava Stone at our first meeting. Not only did she sign my copy of Tall, Dark and Wolfish, she dedicated the book to her critique partners. What an awesome feeling! Of course, we won’t mention the fact that I had to burst her bubble to remind her that “No, she doesn't live in the regency era and yes, she is actually an American and not English.” Poor thing, she took the news better than I had first imagined. LOL, love ya Ava! 


And last but certainly not least, is the special book I received in the mail from SamanthaGrace. The best part about this book was the acknowledgment in the back of her book mentioning yours truly. It reads “I would like thank Suzie Grant for sharing her abiding love of the sea, and for her patience in answering numerous questions or pointing me in the right direction.”

I am truly humbled honestly. I love to talk about sea faring and ships. I was just doing something that I loved to do and I could talk ships all day long—if you let me. I never expected such a sweet acknowledgment. I've actually never felt quite so proud as I did the day I saw this dedication. Not only did I get the chance to help such a fabulous author, but now I have this tangible memory that I get to return to time and again to relive.

So tell me about the autographed books you've received over the years and remember to appreciate the simple pleasures in life. Sometimes those are the best kind. Special thanks to Teresa, Ava Stone, and Samantha Grace for letting me share these memories.       

24 comments:

  1. My favorite autographed copies:
    First books from my critique partners. Love!
    Autographed Lord of Scoundrels by Loretta Chase
    Autographed hardcover Voyager from Diana Gabaldon

    All of these make me happy! :-)

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    1. Yeah I agree, crit partners take top spot! Someone recommended Diana Gabaldon to me and I think I'm going to give her a try. Thanks for responding, Deb!

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  2. I was thrilled to get autographed books from my favorite at the first RWA signing I attended. I gathered up more books than I could carry. But, my favorite signed book was the first Lydia Dare book. I had been part of the early critique process and was so thrilled to hold this book.

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    1. Aww. :) Those Lydia Dare books wouldn't have been the same without all of you in that early critique process.... Even Samantha Grace who wasn't sure if she could ever get on board with a werewolf hero. (Same came around. LOL)

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    2. Ditto! It was so exciting because Ava (as Lydia) was, I think, the first to get a really big book deal from our little group. It was so exciting to feel a part of that in some little way. And getting that first signed book was definitely a treat :)

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    3. LOL Did Samantha really not like werewolves? I did not know that lol! Yeah the Lydia Dare team was an inspiration to us all I believe. You two were the trail blazers.

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    4. :) We won her over, but she was the most skeptical of the bunch back in those days.

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  3. Suzie ~ I'm still holding on to my English roots. ;) Besides, I spend more time in Regency England than I do 21st Century America. LOL

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    1. LOL I knew you would say that! That was probably the funniest thing I've ever heard. I tell that story to everyone I meet LOL. =P Well, I have to admit I still lubs ya even if you're part brit.

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  4. This past year at RT Julue Farwood autographed a book for me. Her book, Ransom was what made me want to start writing romance, so this was really special to me!

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    1. Leigh Greenwood was my inspiration as well and my very first autographed book so those hold a very special place. I'm so glad you got an autograph copy from the author who inspired you, Julie!

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  5. 5 or 6 years ago, I found out my faaaaaavorite author, Sophie Kinsella, was going to be speaking/signing at our local B&N. Unfortunately, I found out the *day of* and couldn't get out of work :( BUT, my hubby put on his chick-lit hat, marched down to B&N and not only got a book signed for me, but also asked her a question on my behalf (I had just started writing at the time!) It was AWESOME. And while I love that autograph, I look at it as a symbol of my husband's love and undying support for me :)

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    1. Oh I don't anyone can trump that story, Jerrica! How sweet! You two are too stinkin' adorable! I love that he did that! My husband hasn't gotten me an autographed copy from my favorite author but he did go down to Walmart at midnight to pick up one of the first copies of Troy, my absolute favorite movie. But I love that Eric asked a question on your behalf. How super sweet! No wonder you're a romance writer lol. That is a great story!

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    2. I just tried to click like on Jerrica's comment. : )

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    3. That's when you know you're on Facebook too much, Christi! LOL!

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  6. One of my most prized autographed copies, partly because I'm a huge fan and partly for sentimental reasons...is a Julia Quinn autographed copy. During my first pregnancy, I was placed on bedrest. Ms. Quinn had a book coming out at the end of October but I was due before then. Bored out of my mind, I emailed Ms. Quinn and she was gracious enough to send me an advanced, signed copy with a letter from her editor. I still have it in its original packaging.

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    1. Oh wow! That is a wonderful story and so nice of her to do that for you! Thanks for sharing, Christi!

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  7. I can tell you the very first autograph book was when I won a copy Sam's debut book. That was really cool. Every autograph book is special to me.

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    1. I have to agree with you that, Melody! It's so special to really get to know the authors we read. Thanks for sharing!

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  8. I love autographed books, Suzie! There's just something special about an author taking the time to make it even more "yours." I have books that I cherish more than those of my favorite author just because the author took the time to listen to me and sign it. <3!

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    1. I agree! I think when an author really personalizes it, there is just something really cool about that! I think this is the one tool that is under used by authors.

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  9. I have a shelf on my bookcase just for autographed books. I have Thea Harrison, Katie Rues, Keri Arthur, Barbara Annino, Rose Pressey, Laura Kaye, Elisabeth Naughton, Donna Grant and so many others.

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  10. Aw, you made me tear-up, Suzie. You were such a great help to me on that book, and I'm so glad it meant something special to you to see your name in the acknowledgements. It was well deserved and a sincere thank you. I always think of you when I see Miss Lavigne's Little White Lie on my bookshelf. :)

    I have a special shelf where I keep autographed books by my critique partners. Before I was published, that shelf served as my inspiration. Now it reminds me of all the blessings I have in my life. :)

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