Deep Gratitude Hits Home – My First Booksigning Event

This year has been a roller coaster. Not just for me–for many of my friends and family, for just about everyone I know. Then there is the gratitude that comes with knowing we are all not alone. We can laugh together. We are able to still hug our loved ones though the doubts. And those who have lost loved ones understand another’s loss–they send encouraging thoughts, offer their help, and when there are no words…simply pray healing for that person’s heart. This is all derived from a sense of caring, compassion, and being motivated to help one another knowing we are all, in some way, broken but not defeated.

The morning after my first book signing, I awoke at 2am to journal. Journalism is nothing new. The insomnia has to be fed in positive and constructive ways, and sitting down with pen and paper to write down things running through my head is a natural occurrence.

What was different that morning, however, was waking up in the middle of the night feeling an overwhelming sense of gratefulness. I curled up in my robe with tea, and wrote in my journal, teary-eyed and smiling. I knew this type of ‘knowing everything is going to be okay’ was beyond anything I could describe here on the blog. My heart beat with meaning, with satisfying love, and with contentment… is how I can best describe it.

An author from whom I had bought several of her books had endured the death of her husband only the night before my book signing. I didn’t want to type my condolences in some thread on Facebook (though I am grateful for those who did), but I wanted to hug her. I wrote about my first book signing, too, and what a wonderful experience it was. Not bragging, but simply seeing those in the community come out to buy my book. To talk with me about my book, and to see, in action, what beautiful people surround me on this journey. I was overwhelmed with love and happiness at what I thought would be a room of empty chairs.

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~ Morning of book signing photo, as I wrote out an outline on flashcards for the event. ~

My sister helped to take a few pictures as friends, family, and new acquaintances approached the signing table. I had a great time speaking with individuals one-on-one. I’m not one for sitting around when socializing, especially as the guest-of-honor at an event.

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Look! No sweater to cover up those arms! Insecurities, be damned.

People showed up. More people than I ever thought possible. It wasn’t the mosh pit of a concert (thank goodness), but it was a gathering of smiling faces, a pleasant reunion with some I haven’t seen in quite a while, where even the local Italian bakery my family and I frequent, made a delicious cake for the event as soon as they found out about it. My husband and daughter surprised me with the cake only moments before I spoke to the small crowd.

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“CONGRATULATIONS!”

I hugged my husband and daughter when I saw the gift they had bought for me, and later laughed when my husband told me the pastry chef and bakery owner asked him what message to put on the cake…this was his reply: “You’re asking the wrong person. My wife is the writer and would know what words to put on there.”

As you can see, the message is simple, but still, looking at it now, it makes me smile.

The stack of books of my new novel, Serendipity Summer, soon dwindled down to small stack as people offered warm smiles, questions, book chat, and I got to catch up with a couple of good friends. My family gave hugs and congratulations as their kids were hanging out with my young daughter in the childrens part of the library. Though not everyone was blood related, I felt at home as I handed each person who showed their support by buying my book a copy of Serendipity Summer with a bookmark and the pen I signed it with. The potpourri mason jars, once filled with pens, emptied by the end of the event.

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The front book on top of the table, beside the business cards, is my original proof copy. I read the excerpt from it, and the big jar in the back, was for the giveaway of the self-spa gift set raffle.

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It was a wonderful time of celebration and beautiful memories. The morning after the event my husband asked when I had woken up. He always seems to know when something is off or if I’m going through an emotional time.

My daughter was shuffling around in her pj’s, petting the dog and yawning while my husband was turning omelets on the stove, with a spatula, for breakfast. I had a cup of coffee this time and looked at him with watery eyes as I wrapped my hands around the warm cup.

“What’s wrong?” He asked.

He stood holding the spatula, eyebrows crinkled, while my daughter and dog began to fill my lap, offering kidlet hugs and puppy kisses.

I chocked up but finally got out what I wanted to say.

“Nothing. Absolutely nothing.”

He turned the heat down on the stove eye and started towards us.

“Happy tears?”

I nodded as he embraced all of us in a big hug.

INTERVIEW WITH AUTHOR LAURIE KOZLOWSKI

lauriekozlowski:

My first author podcast interview! I was interviewed by lovely author and writing friend, Kyrian Lyndon on Heart to Heart with Kyrian. Please stop by to hear our fun chat and to read her review of my newest romance book release, Serendipity Summer. #bookworm #fictionbooks

http://kyrianlyndon.com/2014/11/10/interview-with-author-laurie-kozlowski/

Originally posted on Kyrian Lyndon:

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I had the opportunity to interview the author, Laurie Kozlowski, on my radio show, Heart-to-Heart with Kyrian. Here is a podcast of that interview.

lauriekauthorpic_Kyrian Lyndon

About the Author:

Laurie Kozlowski resides in Northeast Georgia with her daughter and husband. Having small town roots, she’s intrigued with the charm, drama, and humor of the south, often weaving those themes into the fiction she writes.

Her first contemporary romance book, Serendipity Summer, is the first of four books in the Riverbend Way Series. The Riverbend Way Series is contemporary small-town romance fiction. The series touches on serious modern day issues, a twist of earthy and sometimes bawdy humor, and a heavy dose of love.

Laurie enjoys incorporating family-centered themes and stories including friendship, hope, and healing.

She also writes under the pen names of Roxie Nash and Lulu Zoko.

When not writing, she loves to make music and jewelry, picnic near the river…

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Practicing Self Acceptance

The past couple of months has been a huge challenge in self-acceptance for me and our family. Like so many others, we try to stay positive though we worry about bills and unexpected crises arising that could make or break being able to ‘get by’ comfortably.

I am tired of the worry. I am sick of the stress. It will always be there, but one thing I know for sure-I’m the person who has to account for my thoughts and actions throughout and at the end of the day. The best thing I can do for myself and my family is to be myself and accept it no matter where the cards may land.

I’m lucky to have a husband who loves me for who I am. But it isn’t really what he thinks-or anyone else, for that matter-that keeps me going. It’s knowing what I am capable of regardless of what I think people think of me. It’s about caring less about what others think of me and caring more about myself. I’ve lost and have kept off ten pounds for a month. I’m getting to where I want to be.

I see people’s selfies all the time on social media. I love seeing others be confident and happy…and even silly. But I cannot stand to see a full body photo of myself.  Yesterday I took a full body picture despite my insecurities. The picture was originally taken without my short-sleeve sweater on…but then I saw my arms and covered up more. My husband sighed. He loves it all. Even the wiggly bits.

I’m a big woman with a big heart and an even bigger dream of succeeding as an author in a society where the skinny ladies get all the compliments and admiration. But you know what?  I’ve decided I don’t need all that anyway. But I’m no longer going to hide. Good for the skinny girls. They are more than thier number on the scale, too.

And good for me for taking this Halloween full body photo with my sweet pumpkin husband.

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Me after our Halloween night out with family. Happy to be me:

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Author Spotlight: Debut Author, Kyrian Lyndon and ‘A Dark Rose Blooms’ review #poetry

lauriekozlowski:

Check out my review of A Dark Rose Blooms on Book Escape Reviews. Kyrian Lyndon, the author, wrote this short poetry book and included an excerpt from her upcoming novel series, Deadly Veils. I’m hooked on her writing, and hope you’ll stop by to find out more about Kyrian and her work. A Dark Rose Blooms will be published soon. You don’t want to miss it!
Thanks for reading ~
Laurie

http://bookescapereviews.wordpress.com/2014/10/12/author-spotlight-debut-author-kyrian-lyndon-and-a-dark-rose-blooms-review-poetry/

Originally posted on Book Escape Reviews:

Please welcome Kyrian Lyndon–writer, author, and poet, in celebration of her new poetry book, A Dark RoseBlooms. I’ve had the honor of reading the ARC, and am also posting a review of the soon-to-be-released book of poems, as well as sharing some things readers may not know about this debut author. It’s your time to shine, Kyrian, so congrats on your new book release!

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Review of A Dark Rose Blooms

Five Stars  * * * * *

A Short and Potent Book of Heartfelt Poems

I thoroughly enjoyed the beautiful collection of poems featured in A Dark Rose Blooms. I have always greatly admired those who pour their hearts out in poetry, because in gives an insiders view of important moments and emotions within a person’s life. This book captures the lighthearted and fun moments as well as a few deep, solitary, and sometimes quite dark moments…

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Serendipity Summer by Laurie Kozlowski *Cover Reveal* #Amwriting #Romance

In case you missed it on Facebook (I hop back and forth these days), I’m excited to share the cover of my debut contemporary romance novella, Serendipity Summer!

Serendipity Summer is the first book, of four, in the Riverbend Way series, set in the rustic and charming mountain town of  Riverbend Way, Tennessee. I’ve enjoyed developing the main characters and the side characters–including a couple of memorable animals that will make a regular appearance, throughout the series. I have wanted to hold on to the story for a while, now–but as everything has been coming together nicely, and just for the sake of making sure everything is just how I want it, the release date has been adjusted to the last week of October.

I am still learning the publishing ropes, so if anything changes, I will be sure to post the changes, and keep you updated. All should go well, though, because I’ve published, once before. I’m looking forward to having a release day celebration with giveaways and prizes! This is an exciting time! I have had the honor of being invited to be featured at a book signing event and have begun to order swag and promo items in preparation for my first release! (more details to come.)

Without readers, we authors wouldn’t be able to do what we do–so, thank you!

I am still tweaking the blurb, but I’d like to share the first teaser–and the second teaser (not yet posted to Facebook), of Serendipity Summer. But first, take a look at this beauty of a cover The Killion Group designed for me with images from Hot Damn Designs!

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 ****Teaser #1****

Her gaze traveled back up to his gorgeous eyes.

Eyes looking upon her with a familiar heat she’d seen only once before.

She struggled not to choke on the water as it dawned on her who was standing before her. A man who had made it into many of her dreams, but never, permanently into her life.

 

****Teaser #2****

The sound was far off in the distance, but Jake gradually became aware he was the person being observed as an older and feminine voice chimed in.


“No, Kady-bug. Not your Uncle Trevor. Just a friend of Mommy’s. We were having a sleepover.”


Jake resisted the urge to chuckle and kept his eyes closed to listen in.


“Why is he on the couch, in a suit, and not in jammies?” the young girl asked.


“Sometimes at sleepovers, not everyone wears jammies. They can sleep where ever they want to.”


Anna indulged the girl.


Now trying to swallow down a full-fledged belly laugh, Jake hid the grin on his face, knowing Anna would be angry as hell if he continued to pretend to sleep while the kid put her through the great inquisition.


Finally letting a deep chuckle go, he opened heavy eyes.

~ Serendipity Summer by Laurie Kozlowski ~ Copyright, 2014.

 

Author Spotlight : Romance and Women’s Fiction Author, Ann Roth #Women #Relationships #Fiction

lauriekozlowski:

Women’s fiction and romance author, Ann Roth, is featured on my new book review site, Book Escape Reviews. If you love heart-warming stories of love, family, and friendships, you are sure to enjoy Ann’s new e-book exclusives! I hope you stop by to check out Ann in the Author Spotlight post! Thanks :)
~ Laurie Kozlowski

http://bookescapereviews.wordpress.com/2014/10/02/author-spotlight-romance-and-womens-fiction-author-ann-roth-women-relationships-fiction/

Originally posted on Book Escape Reviews:

Ann Roth has written numerous romance novels for Harlequin, but most recently, has also waded out into self-publishing. I’m excited to feature her new e-book exclusive titles today, in celebration of this wonderful author’s work! Congrats, Ann, and thank you for writing such heartwarming, romantic, and beautiful stories for readers to sink their hearts and minds into.

~ Another Life Book Blurb ~
Learning of her husband Stephen’s fatal heart attack is the worst thing Mary Beth Mason can imagine… Until she learns about the other family he left behind. Another wife, another daughter, another home…

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* Click Here To Buy This Book*

~ Review of Another Life ~

Five Stars * * * * *

An Unconventional Story of Two Widowed Mothers

When I first read the story blurb for this book, I knew I had to read it. Never could I have predicted how it would all…

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