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Monday, April 1, 2013

Deal Sharing Aunt

Today I am a guest at the Deal Sharing Aunt. I hope you'll drop in and read my interview. If you leave a comment at the site, you could win a beautiful Celtic necklace.

Last Friday, I had the honor of presenting checks to literacy groups - money that was raised through the Book 'Em North Carolina event held on February 22, 2013. It was raining cats and dogs but as a blizzard swept across the northern half of the country, readers and authors traveled from Colorado, Indiana, Illinois, Missouri, Maryland, Minnesota, Michigan, Virginia California, Pennsylvania and Florida.

In 2012, we raised $9,000 for literacy and despite the horrible weather, we raised $9,600 this year. The money was given to the Dolly Parton Imagination Library to purchase books for children from 1 to 5 years of age; Communities In Schools to buy books for students of all grade levels; and Friends of the Robeson County Public Library for literacy campaigns to benefit all ages. In addition, money was given to the Lumberton Police Department, earmarked for schools. And Chief Mike McNeill has been going into some of the schools and reading to the children. Each group was given $2,400.

In addition to raising money for literacy, the event provided an invaluable resource and networking opportunities for authors at all stages of their careers. When I first began in this industry, I found other authors acted as though I was their direct competition. As a result, none of them wanted to help me find my way or answer questions. I vowed back then that if I ever achieved any level of success, I would help any authors in any way I could. Often, that means connecting them to others who can help their careers. It has been very gratifying to hear from authors who have found publishers or literary agents or answers to their questions.