Buy the Book
Southern Independent Booksellers Alliance (SIBA) is a large organization with thousands of members, mostly owners of bookstores throughout the south. SIBA presents the annual "Pat Conroy Southern Book Award." They also host an annual "Discovery Show," which is a trade show for their members.
This year, it will be held in Savannah at the Hilton Savannah DeSoto on September 16-18, though it'll kick off on the 15th (my late mother's birthday) with a party at the Tybee Island beach house of New York Times Best Selling Author, Mary Kay Walters. She'll be this year's keynote speaker as well. The entire weekend is packed with events, and some of the sponsors are St. Martin's Press, Penguin Random House and HarperCollins...so it's safe to say that this Discovery Show is a pretty big deal.
The events include "featured authors," all who have a book that meets certain "southern" criteria, and in most cases, has a Fall 2016 release date. Fewer than 100 authors are invited to attend, ranging from well known/established all the way down to nobody newbies like me. No matter where one falls on the scale, they have to be nominated.
My publisher, BQB, nominated me and "Watching the Water." I'm most pleased, but also feeling very humbled and surreal, that I have been selected to be a featured author at the Discover Show! SIBA has placed me at a Sunday morning breakfast event called "Buffet of Books." There will be up to 10 authors and we'll each have 10 minutes to talk about our book and characters, and possibly read some of it to attendees. Terri, my publisher, will be preparing me for this, thank goodness, and says the goal is hoping that the booksellers will read the free copy I'll be giving them, carry it in their stores, and hand sell it for me.
The most humbling thing, though, is that Terri said, "This is a fabulous opportunity that only a select, handful of authors get." I'm slowly coming out of a fog over the fact that I was chosen. I got a message from my editor, Paige, that said, "I'm so excited for you, Donna!" And you know, I'm excited, too, and never imagined this when I signed contracts with BQB in January 2016. For the first time since my beloved husband John died, I feel like there might be something out there for me, and that this might go somewhere.
Watching the Water
To my big sister,
Rebecca Ann Williams
If you hadn’t given me that lighthouse figurine to place on my desk
as inspiration, this story might not have ever been finished.
You cleaned my house so I would have time to write. You were the first
to read every page and told me to keep going.
Thank you, Becky.
Baby Sis loves you.
To the memory of my late husband, my soulmate, my It Guy, my “Hon,”
John Ward Morton
When it came to reading, you were more of a Clancy guy, but you
read this manuscript and encouraged me to take it as far as I could.
I’m trying to do that now and wish you were here to share the journey.
I know you know, though.
Someday we’ll talk about it.
Time and tide, Hon.
I’ll love you forever.
The heart has reasons that reason cannot know.