Thursday, February 23, 2012

Barefoot Truths: You’ve got to have friends…

And most of us don’t have enough of them. Not the close kind, the kind of friends you can turn to both when things are going perfectly – blue skies forever - and when life is at its worst and you feel like nothing will ever be right again.

A question that people ask me after reading my novel Barefoot Girls is: what was your inspiration? Well, the book was about a lot of things - the unique mother-daughter relationship, finding true love, the past and its potential hold over our lives – but most of all, it’s about friends.  Specifically, it’s about women’s friendships: our basic need for them, the blessings and benefits that come with them, and the challenges that are also inherent within them.

In our ever-faster ever-busier modern lives, it seems to me that friendships are falling by the wayside, being dropped like dead weight as we rush onward, trying to keep up with a million responsibilities and interests. This is a mistake as that extra effort that goes into your friendships repays you a hundred-fold in the end. Your friends are your mirror, your cheerleaders, your helping hands, your shoulders to cry on. They are there for you in ways your family, your significant other, and your children just can’t be. Maybe it’s because

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Barefoot Girls Ebook on Sale!

My novel Barefoot Girls is now available as an ebook at your favorite ebook store! Although the print version won’t be available until late spring or early summer (just in time for reading on the beach – the perfect way to consume this story in my oh-so-humble opinion), those with ereaders will be able to download and read it immediately.

So, the usual question on most people’s lips is: what’s it about?

A Brief Description of Barefoot Girls
When her hometown newspaper reviews Hannah O’Brien’s newly released novel, the nature of her book is called into question when the reviewer suggests it is a memoir depicting her neglectful alcoholic mother – Keeley O’Brien Cohen, the most beloved of the Barefoot Girls -  a little too accurately for fiction, citing rumors rather than sources.

Deeply hurt and betrayed, Keeley cuts Hannah out of her life. Desperate, Hannah does everything she can to apologize and explain, but her pleas fall on deaf ears. Meanwhile, the rest of Hannah’s life starts to unravel, pushing her to risk her engagement to Daniel, the one man who had been able to scale the high walls around her heart. At the eleventh hour, the Barefoot Girls are able to convince Keeley to send Hannah the keys to the Barefooter house, the home and heart of their friendship. Barred from their clubhouse since she was twelve, Hannah grabs the chance to visit the little shack filled with memories and perched at the tip of Captain’s Island in the Great South Bay on Long Island, New York.

As Hannah battles to come to terms with her equally blessed and troubled childhood and understand her mother and her sister-close friends, she’s confronted with the power of forgiveness and the dangers of holding on to the past.

More info?
If you really want to know more, do what savvy ebook readers do: download a free sample. It gives you 30% of the book for free (Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Smashwords) and a chance to see if it grabs you. For links directly to the stores, see my Books Page.

Hope you enjoy it!

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Book Cover for Barefoot Girls!

My wonderful and incredibly talented cover designer, Mimi Bark, has completed the ebook cover design for Barefoot Girls and I am madly in love with it! Isn’t it bee-you-tee-ful??? Mimi, you are amazing!

It achieves exactly what I wanted the cover to do – to spark memories of carefree summer days as well as communicate the feeling of Captain’s Island, the setting of the majority of the book. Captain’s is a fictional composite of several islands out on Long Island, New York, but the island that inspired it most was Oak Island, the island where I spent the summers of my youth.

The way the cover captures Captain’s is with the inclusion of the dock where the little girl is sitting. Captain’s Island is in the Great South Bay and, like most islands there, the dominant places to play and entertain are the docks and the long boardwalk (also made of wood) that connects the houses - there are no roads. The docks that stretch out in front of each house have well-used diving boards and ladders, flagpoles with stars and stripes snapping away at the top, the occasional lawn-chair for sunbathers, bobbing moored boats, and plenty of activity all day long.

Or sometimes, you just sit, like the girl on the cover, feet dangling in the water and watching the boats go by, giving the water a kick occasionally to watch the droplets make expanding circles on the surface. When I first heard Otis Redding’s “(Sittin’ On) The Dock of the Bay” as a little girl, I thought

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Girl-Shaped Shadows – Free Ebook Copies!

One of my favorite short stories, Girl-Shaped Shadows, one I wrote about eight years ago and had the pleasure of seeing published in a literary magazine (Eureka Literary Magazine to be specific) is now on sale in your favorite ebook store!

Priced at the appropriate short story rate of 99 cents, (I still can’t get over the fact that people are selling full-length novels at this ridiculous price – novels take years to write! YEARS! Hours and weeks and months of hard labor! For 99 cents? That’s less than a candy bar made in a factory that makes thousands of candy bars an hour! Okay, rant over.) I’m hoping that this book will give readers a bite-size version of my fiction for those who love shorts.

If you’re interested in reviewing the ebook (honestly, of course) on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Smashwords, or any other ebook store where it is being sold, I will happily give you a FREE copy to read, review, and hopefully enjoy. Just email me at and I’ll send you a coupon from Smashwords so that you can download a free copy. Please let me know where you intend to review the book in your email.

What’s it about?
Here’s the official product description:

Eleven-year old Isobel and her guardian and aunt, Marmalee, do everything they can to avoid the sunlight – fearful of skin cancer and suntans – yet they find themselves unavoidably drawn to the beach near their home in Connecticut one sunny June day by the very people they abhor most: the Normals. The lure? The gorgeous Mrs. Johnson, her aunt’s new love-interest. The problem? Isobel’s nemesis and object of obsession: Mrs. Johnson’s daughter Chloe.

Things take a surprising turn on this brilliant burning day by the sea when Chloe abandons her best friend, Hilary, for Isobel, her new best friend. Are things what they seem? Could Isobel’s wildest fantasy be coming true? Or is some darker truth about to be revealed?

Why are you giving it away for free?
Reviews are very important to a lot of people when deciding whether to purchase an ebook. In fact, they’re probably important to you.

How long will this free offer go on?
As soon as I think there are enough reviews out there, the offer will be officially over and will be announced as such here on the blog, so get your fresh hot copies now, while the getting is good!