"Love in an Elevator" Just Won its First Award!

NTRWA Great Expectations Contest - Finalist Banner for Kilby Blades - Crocodile Tears and Love in an Elevator.jpg

Last night, I was so busy wrangling the littles and cooking a dinner I wouldn’t even get to eat myself (long story) that I missed a call I would much rather have been taking from Fenley Grant. It was the best kind of call from someone with a strange number: a call to tell me I’d won something. Not a free three-night stay in Las Vegas if I agree to listen to a brief ::cough::not brief::cough:: sales pitch—something far more awesome than that.

I’m excited to share that early chapters of my brand-spanking-new manuscript, “Love in an Elevator”, just finaled in the Great Expectations Contest put on by North Texas RWA! I know, I know—it’s not good that I just put a 1989 Aerosmith song in your head. And if you have a better title for the book, seriously let me know. I don’t have an official blurb up (yet) but here’s a very brief taste of what it’s about:

When Farrah unwittingly offends her deaf neighbor in the Manhattan apartment building she just moved into, she vows to redeem herself, one elevator ride at a time. Learning that the mysterious Jason is a fellow bibliophile, she takes to lending him volumes from her rare book collection in order to get back into his good graces. When passed books turn to passed letters, and passed letters turn to more, complications arise.

Years-long tension between Jason and his best friend, Alec, come to a head. A celebrated author, Jason keeps his identity in the dark. According to Alec, Jason is too quick to reject the Deaf community, should be out and proud about his accomplishments and should stop dating hearing girls. But who Jason dates may be a moot point—how can he be close to Farrah anyway if he still hasn’t told her who he really is?

But wait, there’s more…I’m a DOUBLE-finalist!

My unpublished Women’s Fiction Contemporary Romance, “Crocodile Tears” also reached the finals in the Mainstream Fiction with Romantic Elements category. This is exciting because it’s ALWAYS exciting to know that other people are interested in your work. This is doubly exciting (triply exciting?) because this brought me to a new milestone: this is the fifth contest that “Crocodile Tears” has won and the twenty-fifth contest that I’ve won overall. Here’s the description for that one:

It's Hatfields & McCoys meets Romeo & Juliet—an enemies-to-lovers story steeped in a century-old family feud. After a ten-year absence, Ruby Paige returns to her small Oregon hometown to attend the funeral of Dale Flynn, the patriarch of a family that has feuded with hers for generations. Outing their secret friendship is the least of her worries—Ruby fears seeing the man who raped her at fifteen, who was never held accountable for his crime. Conflict ensues with Dale's estranged son and heir apparent, Wes, when Dale astonishingly wills half of his fortune to Ruby.

But there's one condition: she and Wes have three weeks to demystify the origins of the feud and convince their families to bury the hatchet. But the journey, which takes them across the country in a ’69 Chevelle, summons Ruby’s ghosts: lingering grief about having left home and estrangement from her family. Worse yet, the circumstances of the rape and her growing feelings for Wes are caught up in the dark history of the feud—circumstances that led the Flynns to become sole owners of a wine empire once half-owned by the Paiges…

At this point, I don’t have a release date for either of these books, but if you’re excited about them, tell me which you’re most jazzed about in the comments below. Also, sign up for my mailing list if you want to be notified when these release!

In the meantime, I want to say a huge, huge thank you to North Texas RWA for holding this contest and lining up wonderful editors to judge the final round. I truly appreciate the opportunity!