I just returned from a week-long "working vacation" in Colorado and Wyoming. One of the first emails I saw when I checked my computer was an announcement that the Laramie Awards first place winners for their 2014 entries were announced.
Talk about Deja Vu!
Last month, I was on my return trip home from a family vacation (but my husband is resigned to the fact that any vacation to Yellowstone is also a information gathering and research trip...he's married to a writer. We never stop writing).
...anyways, we were on the drive home, and I received a message from a fellow writer that COME HOME TO ME was short listed for the Laramie Awards.
My first reaction was "Huh?" The name of the awards sounded familiar, but I couldn't quite place it. I was still on cloud nine for DIAMOND IN THE DUST being a finalist in the RONE awards (winners will be announced in September)
I couldn't remember exactly what the Laramie Awards are, and why COME HOME TO ME would even be in the running for this award. When I did some digging, I remembered that I had submitted the book for review nearly a year ago, so I forgot all about it! It all came back to me, though.
I remember chatting with my editor about writing competitions and how I had entered YELLOWSTONE HEART SONG in a few before it was published, and how I was not a fan of these things.
She casually suggested that I should try entering another competition, and the Laramie Awards came up in the discussion. I looked it up, and quickly dismissed the idea. The only book I had out at the time that could even remotely qualify as an entry was COME HOME TO ME (the first book in the Second Chances Time Travel Romance Series, set along the Oregon Trail). The deadline for submission was a few days away. She told me to enter. She prodded me with "What do you have to lose?" and "It'll be good for you," along with "It's a great book, you really need to enter."
Yeah, but it's a time travel book! was my argument.
In her normal fashion, she argued back that it was more than a time travel book. It was a well-researched western historical.
So, on the last day to enter, I sat at the computer, staring at the entry form late that night. It was shortly before midnight when I hit the "submit" button.
Fast forward to today. The winners were announced, and I couldn't be more speechless that COME HOME TO ME won its category! WOW! What an absolute honor and humbling experience. I couldn't be more in shock when I saw my name and the title of my book as one of the winners.
A huge congratulations to all the winners, a few of whom I know and consider my online writing friends.