Allow myself to introduce…myself
When I was trying to decide what to write for my first blog post, the obvious answer was to introduce myself. I’ve had to write several bios now, and they tend to include mentioning my “everything up to now”—military brat, mother, wife, daughter, former U.S. Army officer, military spouse, career counselor, volunteer, financial aid coordinator, pro basketball player. (Okay, kidding with that last one—just making sure you didn’t zone out.) My point is, in defining myself, I tend think of things that came before. Yes, important. Yes, all that made me who I am. Yes, part of my journey to where I am now.
But…who am I now?
I didn’t start writing until I was over forty, so I have a bunch of decades of “before.” I’d thought about writing for years, but never put pen to paper until I got a nudge to try. What are you waiting for? a friend asked me. How much longer are you going to wait and wonder?
So, I gave it a shot. I wrote some weird fantasies (think Jasper Fforde) that made me laugh. I got the nerve to share, and they laughed too. It took me awhile and an inbox of rejections before I realized I would probably be better off writing what I read the most—mysteries, cozy to be specific. Cozy might be an odd choice for me, since I swear like a sailor (or more accurately, a soldier) and my humor is often gutterish, if that’s a word. (Oh yeah, I’m a writer: it is now a word.) But I love me a good cozy mystery: the escape from the real world to a wholesome albeit murderous small town and…food. There is always food.
So I learned about writing, about query letters and agents, pacing and editing, critiques and beta readers. Learned how to develop story structure, stakes and motivation, and character arcs. And I learned how to write like a G-rated Disney princess.
Just to be different, the year 2020 was pretty awesome for me. For one, quarantine was totally my jam. All my people in one place and stretchy pants 24/7? Yeah, baby. But also, that summer I signed with my agent. After that, I joined the agency editing queue and began the mother of all impatient waits, aka submission of my manuscript to editors at publishing houses.
agent posted an opportunity—a publisher looking for more writers for a multi-author
series. It sounded like an interesting concept and I figured, what the heck,
and threw my hat into the ring. The publisher liked my ideas and writing, so,
four months after signing with my agent, I signed a contract to join the Aloha
Lagoon world with Gemma Halliday Publishing. My first Aloha Lagoon book came
out in November, and I have signed a contract for a second. (If I might additionally
plug add, a big reason I got the gig was due in part to the short story
I wrote, which is an NC17/humorous/paranormal PI story. It will appear in the
Chesapeake Crimes anthology Magic is Murder! coming this Spring.)
So my first published book is not the book that got me my agent. That one is still floating around in the Sea of Submissions. Perhaps it will sink to the murky depths or just maybe, a seagull-slash-editor will snatch it up. Either way, such is the business.
So, to introduce myself, I am Rosalie Spielman: Author and blogger, wife, mother, daughter, sister, cook, laundress, pusher of the button on the Roomba, baker, personal shopper, taxi driver to teenagers, and servant to the four-legged creatures who make the Roomba a necessity. In Army-speak, I am the S1 through S4, XO, and chief of staff. And I’m dang good at (some of) those things. (Sometimes the Roomba gives me trouble. I mean, I literally have no cliffs in my house, yet it keeps finding them!) I love trees but am a sucky plant mom, enjoy watching baking competitions, am an entry-level fandom geek, and my favorite pizza is that abomination to society, the Hawaiian. I cross-stitch but won’t admit to it in front of the cool kids. (Oh…well, never mind.)
Hello, it’s nice to meet you all, and nice to be here. I look forward to “chatting” with you each month! Feel free to leave any questions or comments!