Thursday, December 1, 2011

Carole Bellacera's December 2011 Newsletter

December 2011 Newsletter

Dear Friends & Fans:

‘Tis the season to be jolly, right? Then why am I feeling so sad? Or rather, so S.A.D. Yes, I’m talking about Seasonal Affective Disorder, a mood disorder that affects 6.1% of the U.S. population. I’m sure most of you have heard of it; maybe you’ve even experienced it yourself. It’s a condition often referred to as “winter blues.” I first noticed it as far back as in the 90’s, although I didn’t know what it was at the time. It was late in the day in November, and my son was out delivering newspapers. He was late getting home, and being a typical mother, I began to worry, so I went out looking for him. As I drove around my neighborhood streets, darkness was quickly approaching, and with it, a sense of dread filled my heart. I just assumed it was a mother’s worry about her son, but even after I found him, and we were on our way home, I couldn’t quite shake the feeling of doom.

In the last few years, I’ve found myself dreading October and November, the shorter days of sunlight, the advancing winter. And this year has been particularly hard. I look back to the days when I loved winter. We were avid skiers then, and always went to Vermont in January or February for a week’s vacation. But when my sister broke her femur skiing in 2008, it ended our skiing as well. At the time, I looked at it as a wake-up call; we were in our 50’s, and had never been seriously injured in 12 years of skiing. And when I saw what Kathy went through in her recovery, I knew I didn’t want to risk that happening to me. Now, I wonder if I made the right decision. Maybe if we were still skiing, I wouldn’t be feeling so blue at the approach of winter.

But I know I’m kidding myself. This isn’t something that a ski trip will fix. Not when you’re dealing with S.A.D. In October, during an especially bad week, I actually called my primary care provider to make an appointment for my depression. To my astonishment, the receptionist told me that my doctor’s appointment book was full for that week, and to call back the next Wednesday. By the time Wednesday rolled around, I was feeling okay again, so I didn’t call. But…I keep thinking…what if I had been suicidal? I imagine most people who are probably wouldn’t come out and admit it to a receptionist. The more I think about that, the angrier it makes me!

I should call and make an appointment; I know that. But I keep thinking…maybe it’s not S.A.D. Maybe it’s just…life. Maybe it’s about change. After all, Christmas isn’t what it used to be—a house filled with happy children. I remember how I used to get so excited about all the holiday cookie baking, the present wrapping, the tree-trimming. Now, it all feels like chores. And I don’t want to feel like that! I don’t want to be a Scrooge. When I was a child, I remember hearing an elderly relative say they weren’t putting up a tree that year, and I just couldn’t understand it. Now…I do. And I hate that! Of course, Christmas has never been the same for me since I lost my mother on December 19th, 1998. Thirteen years, and I still miss her terribly. So, maybe this is part of the reason I feel so blue this time of year.

Yesterday I baked my first batch of holiday cookies while watching “One Life to Live” on TV. And suddenly I had a flashback to Christmas, 1975. Frank and I were living in Carolina Beach, North Carolina. It was our second Christmas together, and I was so thrilled to be playing Suzie Homemaker, baking in my own little kitchen in our rented mobile home with “Days of Our Lives” playing on TV. Even though the weather wasn’t Christmassy at all, it felt like a winter wonderland for me as I sprinkled red and green sugar on cookies. Little did I know at the time that my own little Leah had just started to grow inside me. How could that possibly have been 35 years ago?

Another day has passed since I began writing this newsletter, and I’m feeling better. Maybe it’s the therapy of sharing with y’all. Or maybe it’s because I’m counting my blessings—and I have many. My wonderful husband of 37 years (our anniversary is coming up on December 7th), two great “kids,” Leah and Stephen, and the most adorable grandsons in the world, Luke and Zealand. I have a new novel coming out in March, and I’m reissuing my very first novel, BORDER CROSSINGS, in a few weeks. I belong to a great church and sing with a choir directed by the best musical director in the world. I have lots of friends and two fantastic sisters. I’m healthy and active, and so is my husband. Yes, I’m blessed.

But you know what? I’m still going to call my doctor and make an appointment. And if any of you are suffering from S.A.D., I urge you to do so as well. Let’s not suffer in silence—because we’re not alone, although it feels that way sometimes. Depression makes you feel alone, and that’s why it’s so important to seek help.

Okay, moving on...thanks to all of you who voted for my cover for LILY OF THE SPRINGS. I'm pleased to announce I'm going for the one with the girl in shorts walking down the road. I really loved the other cover, too, but I feel this particular cover fits the concept of the book better. I appreciate all of you taking the time to give me your input. (I think I knew in my gut this was the cover I wanted because every time I got a vote for it, my heart soared. And when the other cover got a vote, I felt deflated. As it turned out, this cover got more votes than the other one.)

Congratulations to Wilma Frana, my November contest winner. Wilma, if you’re reading this, e-mail me at with your address so I can send out your autographed book and jewelry. Everyone else: Stop by my website and enter my December contest.

God Bless & Happy Holidays


Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Which Book Cover???

Help!!! I need to decide on which cover to go with for my next novel, LILY OF THE SPRINGS. Vote for your favorite cover:

# 1 - Girl in Shorts

# 2 - Girl in White Dress

Here's the blurb for the book:

In 1952 Kentucky, 18-year-old Lily Foster, the daughter of strict Southern Baptist parents, finds herself pregnant by the town “bad boy.” Lily finds herself married to a man who doesn’t want to be a husband. Jake has no intention of letting the inconvenience of marriage stop him from what he believes is his due. In actuality, Lily is the one who is trapped. She loves Jake—always has, since they were children playing in the woods on adjoining properties--and she’s convinced she can eventually make him love her. All it will take is desire and patience. Once the baby arrives, they will be the perfect little family.

From Lily’s home on Opal Springs Ridge to a four-year stint at an army base in New Boston, Texas, and finally, to life on their own in Bowling Green, Kentucky, Lily struggles to maintain a rocky marriage with a moody, immature husband while raising two daughters. Set during the “American Dream” period of the ‘50s and into the turbulent ‘60’s, LILY OF THE SPRINGS is a story of a woman’s indomitable spirit and her fight for independence and identity in an “Ozzie & Harriet” society.

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Carole Bellacera's November 2011 Newsletter

I just returned from the South Carolina Writers Workshop last week. This year was even more fun than last year because my daughter, Leah—a brand new writer—joined me. What a treat to experience the conference through a first-timer’s eyes. Leah handled herself with aplomb, and I don’t think anyone would’ve guessed it was her first writer’s conference ever. I was so proud of her!

Check out this photo taken of us on the night before the awards dinner.!/photo.php?fbid=2403288595482&set=a.1163416079444.26106.1049116991&type=3&theater

At dinner, Leah and I were lucky enough to sit at a table with two New York agents, one on my right, and one on Leah’s left. I really enjoyed chatting with Mollie Glick who regaled me with what her life was like as an agent, and how tough it is when they get rejected—by editors and authors. (Specifically, when an author is courted by two agents, and they choose one over the other. I could only wish I could be in such a position; I can’t even imagine having two agents fighting over repping me.) At the buffet line, while trying to negotiate a salad plate and a dinner plate, I inadvertently dropped too much butter on my plate. Mollie took one look at my plate and said, “You’re way too skinny for that much butter. Can I have some?” Need I say how that made my night? And of course, I shared my butter with her. 

The weekend turned out to be a big success for both Leah and me. Three agents asked for Leah’s book proposal, and Mollie asked for mine. Fingers crossed.

But the best part of the weekend awaited me in Charleston—my boys, Luke and Zealand. What a thrill it was to see their little faces light up when they saw Grandma. (After all, it had been over a month!) I spent three days with them, and enjoyed every single second. Check out the videos I’ve posted on YouTube.

Oh, and you’ve got to see the birthday video I made for Luke. (He turns 3 on November 7th.)

Great news! I’ll be reissuing my first novel, BORDER CROSSINGS, in print at Amazon’s CreateSpace this month! I’m so excited to give this book new life. (The first is always super special.) I’ve created a book trailer for it. Check it out:

And if you’d like to read the first chapter, you can do so here:

Congratulations to Cheri Oggy from Dry Ridge, Kentucky, my October website contest winner. Be sure and enter this month’s contest to win a copy of one of my books and a piece of jewelry from Beautiful Evening Beads.

Have a great November and a Happy Thanksgiving! (I still can’t believe this year is winding down.)


Monday, October 3, 2011

Carole Bellacera's October 2011 Newsletter

Dear Friends & Fans:

On vacation last month in Myrtle Beach, I realized the definition of Heaven. It’s having little arms wrapped around you, and a sweet little voice saying, “I love you, Grandma.” It’s a snuggly little blond toddler giggling and trying to take the glasses off your face. It’s…being a Grandma. 

I feel so blessed, getting to spend a whole week at the beach with Luke and Zealand. (And also with Frank, Leah and Zac.) It had been a whole two months since I’d seen the boys, and you know how much a child can grow in two months. Of course, the week went by too fast, as it always does, and soon enough, we were saying goodbye—and for the week after we got home, I suffered baby withdrawal. Luckily, though, I’ll be seeing them again later this month when I go down to South Carolina to attend the South Carolina Writers Workshop conference. I’ll spend an extra few days in Charleston afterwards. (What kind of grandmother would I be if I went within two hours of my grandsons and didn’t go see them?)

I’ve got lots of exciting news this month. As you know, if you read the post I sent out in mid-September, TANGO’S EDGE is now available in print—and I’m really excited about that. Call me old-fashioned, but there is nothing like holding a REAL book in your hands…especially if it’s one that has your name on it. Although TANGO’S EDGE has been available on Kindle and Nook for several months now, I guess it didn’t really feel “real” to me until I could actually hold the book in my hands. If you haven’t seen my book trailer yet, you should check it out, because I just love it!

Romance reviewer, Harriet Klausner, has this say about TANGO’S EDGE in her . “Tango's Edge is a strong romantic suspense thriller starring two likable lead characters, a super support cast, and a powerful world stage ice dancing background. The story line contains more twists and spins than a dance routine…”

Other good news—LILY OF THE SPRINGS is coming out in print and on Kindle in November. This is the book set in the 50’s and 60’s, inspired by my mother’s life growing up in Kentucky. I’ve waited a long time to share this story with you, and I just know you’re going to love it.

And even more good news—I’m going to reissue all my out-of-print books, the ones that are available at Kindle, in print, every couple of months until they’re all available once more. Buying back my rights from my New York publisher was the smartest thing I’ve ever done! Now, I’m back in control of my work, and it feels great!

Congratulations to Joan Woods of St. Petersburg, Florida, the winner of my September website contest. Be sure and enter this month’s contest. You could win a copy of TANGO’S EDGE.

Have a great October. (How can it possibly be October already?)



Thursday, September 8, 2011

Tango's Edge Now Available in Print at

Finally! TANGO'S EDGE is out in print! Watch the book trailer, and order your copy at

The Winter Olympics - Salt Lake City, Utah

“Will you help me to defect?”
It’s the desperate question from Russian ice dancer, Mikhail Kozlof to his American counterpart, Kerry Niles, which ignites a treacherous cross-country trip, political intrigue―and an attraction that neither can deny.

After a night of passion in a picture postcard winter resort, lust turns to love―and a return to reality. The American government is closing in, and soon, Mikhail will be whisked away from Kerry.

Once sequestered in a safe house outside Washington DC, Mikhail is face with an impossible situation―he must deny his love for Kerry to protect her from harm’s way.

Tango's Edge Book Trailer

Friday, September 2, 2011

Carole Bellacera's September Newsletter

Greetings, Readers.

Can you believe how fast summer went by? Yeah, I's still warm outside and we're still doing summer-like things--swimming, cooking out, going to the beach...etc. But let's face it, the days are much shorter now. I realized that last night when Frank got home from tennis late, and I was setting the table for dinner out on our screened porch--the censor motion light came on. And my heart sank.

I'M NOT READY FOR WINTER! Or autumn, for that matter. Boy, have I changed. Back a few years ago when I was still an avid skier, I always looked forward to the cool, crisp weather of fall because I knew in a matter of months, we'd be heading up to Vermont for our annual ski trip. But then my sister, Kathy, had to go and break her leg--on the last run of the last day of vacation, and Frank and I haven't been skiing since. Seeing what Kathy went through in her recuperation put the fear of God in me. A broken leg may not sound like much, but believe me, when you're a woman of a certain age (or a man, for that matter) it's a big deal. Thus, Frank and I (mainly because of me) have given up skiing, opting to take a cruise every couple of years rather than the annual ski trip. I guess that means we're officially old.

So, no, I don't look forward to autumn and winter anymore. It's just another reminder to me that another summer has come and gone, and who knows how many more will be in my future? I know how that sounds. Geez, the woman must be depressed! But no, I'm really not. Really!!! I take full enjoyment out of every day, and I'm grateful for all my blessings--and I have a lot of blessings. I just guess at this point in my life, I'm more conscious of the passage of time, and isn't that normal?

Anyway, I'm looking forward to our annual Myrtle Beach vacation next week, and praying (with all my might) that Hurricane Katia will not be a threat. (The grandsons are joining us, and if I don't get my baby fix, I don't know what I'll do.)
Speaking of hurricanes and earthquakes, can you believe last week? I was standing in the kitchen, unloading the dishwasher when the earthquake happened. Everything started to shake, and my initial thought was that our practically new clothes washer had gone off-balanced again. But it didn't take me long to realize we were actually having an earthquake. I was in a smaller one in Hawaii years ago, but it was nothing like this. I wouldn't say I was scared, but it sure was disconcerting. And then Hurricane Irene--we didn't get much of an effect here in Northern Virginia, but it sure made an impact east of us. And those poor people in Vermont really got hammered! I think one hurricane per season is quite enough, don't you? (Please, Katia, stay away from land!!!)

Hey, guess what? I have exciting news! TANGO'S EDGE, my romantic suspense novel about an American ice dancer helping a Russian ice dancer to defect, will be available in PRINT very soon. Stay tuned for more about that...
Be sure and stop by my website and enter my monthly drawing for a copy of one of my books and a unique jewelry piece from Beautiful Evening Beads.

And have a great September!!!


Sunday, June 19, 2011

Carole Bellacera's June Newsletter

June 2011 Newsletter

Dear Friends & Fans:

Greetings from the Bluegrass State of Kentucky!!! I’m here visiting my beautiful Avon representative sister, Kathy. We’ve been having so much fun, and I’ve been spending way too much money (a lot of it on Kathy’s Avon products—she’s a great saleswoman!)

On my second night here, Kathy hosted a fantastic cocktail party for me with her friends and clients. We had lots of good food and wine, (yes, wine…even though we’re in a dry county here) and she had my books on display for new readers (which was pretty much everyone…except for Linda.) I met some really nice ladies, all of whom are talented in their own right (you know who I’m talking about—Linda, Brenda, Donna, Dorothy, June, Pam.) What a blast!

This whole week has been a blast. You know how I like “junkin,” right? I know I’ve mentioned that. Well, Kathy does, too. And just in case you don’t know what I mean, we like to go to consignment shops, thrift shops, junk stores (and there are a lot of them around here) and just see what we can find. Well, we found some treasures this week, let me tell you! But more importantly, we had some experiences that we’ll laugh about for years. Case in point—we were in Goodwill, me, Kathy and Linda, and I had a wardrobe malfunction. It actually started before we left the house. I put on this blouse that had a cut which made it impossible to hide my bra straps, so Kathy offered to let me borrow her strapless Victoria’s Secret bandeaux. I accepted. My first mistake. I had my suspicions about this thing from the beginning. So, we’re in Goodwill, and I’m moving around, checking out shorts and Capri’s (good news! I’d lost 5 pounds in the past month, and gone down a size.) Unfortunately, I wasn’t the only thing moving around. That damn bra kept…slipping, and the girls were…well, popping out. (How on earth these nubile young women wear these as outerwear, I’ll never understand!) Finally, I’d had enough. I was standing at the back of the store, and in a moment of complete insanity, I reached under my top, pulled that offending thing down to my waist, over my skirt and let it fall to my ankles. Only then did I look up (as Kathy and Linda, a few aisles over, we’re convulsed in laughter) and see this man down at the end of the aisle, his eyes agog, his mouth hanging open in complete astonishment. I quickly stepped out of the bandeaux, and only then did I realize what it must’ve looked like. Let’s just say that I was, no doubt, the subject of conversation at somebody’s dinner table that night.

Anyway, shopping wasn’t the only thing we did this week. We did a lot of eating—as much fattening stuff as we could possibly stuff into our mouths—and drinking of the nectar of the gods. (We are not good for each other, but we sure have fun.)

Last night we drove to Kathy’s friend’s house out in the country—way out in the country. Donna owns this beautiful farm of 12 acres, pasture and woodlands, with a beautiful creek running behind her house. We met her goats (up close and personal) and her horses, dogs and cats. As soon as I get home, I’m going to put a video on Facebook of Donna’s goats. They are so cool! Did I ever tell you how much I love goats?

Anyway, the week is drawing to a close. I’m leaving for home tomorrow. Oh, and I have some other exciting news! A few weeks ago, I auditioned at my local mall for a singing competition, and I’m one of 20 finalists (out of 100) and will be competing in the finale on June 26th. The grand prize is a $1,000 mall gift card. I’ve decided to sing Michael Buble’s “Feeling Good,” the song I sang at the church variety show a couple of years ago. Wish me luck!

Thanks to those of you who’ve purchased one of my Kindle books. The sales are good, and I’m thrilled.  If you haven’t checked them out yet, here’s the link:

Hope all of you have a wonderful June. Don’t forget to stop by my website and enter my monthly contest.



Wednesday, May 25, 2011


I'm excited to announce that two of my novels are now available on Kindle. SPOTLIGHT & TANGO'S EDGE.

On January 6, 1972, ten-year-old Devin O'Keefe takes part in a peaceful demonstration march through the Catholic ghetto of Bogside, Northern Ireland-never suspecting that the demonstration is doomed to become Bloody Sunday, and that he will watch the British Army kill his brother along with twelve other defenseless marchers. Wounded in the arm himself, Devin vows revenge on his British oppressors-and steps into a cycle of violence that will leave him with a shattered family and an empty heart.

Eighteen years later, Devin has become an earnest rock-n-roller who uses his songs to relate the horrors he's seen to an international audience of millions. His American tour photographer, Fonda Blayne, is falling in love with him-but she has no idea that his brooding silences may be rooted in a very real danger. Devin hopes that he's left the violence of his homeland in the past-but some very powerful and deadly forces are hoping to take advantage of his life in the spotlight...

" exciting contemporary tale that uses music and romance as a means to provide insight into the complex Northern Ireland issues. The story line is enjoyable and the lead couple is a dynamic pair. The support cast provides focus to how complicated the issues in Northern Ireland really are. With this tale and BORDER CROSSINGS, the SPOTLIGHT is sure to fall on Carole Bellacera." -- Harriet Klausner, UNDER THE COVERS, Affaire De Coeur

"...Bellacera's riveting and romantic suspense shows the seamier side of the fight for Northern Irish independence, and the toll that has been taken on its people." -- Patty Engelmann

" once sensuously romantic and edge-of-the-seat suspenseful, this is a book to savor." --Maudeen Wachsmith for Romancing the Celtic Soul

"Carole Bellacera, author of last years' award winning novel BORDER CROSSINGS, a gripping novel about terror, death, hope and love in Northern Ireland, has done it again! excellent thought-provoker." -- Peg Gaabo, for the IRISH CONNECTION NEWSPAPER

"This beautiful and poignant tale of trauma and triumph is written with such style I found myself held captive with each word. SPOTLIGHT is an engrossing tale of horrifying proportion and bittersweet victory. Carole Bellacera has an impeccable talent as a story-teller with writing skills to match." --Karen Williams, Rhapsody Magazine, July 2000

"Rarely has a book about the pop music scene grabbed me from the prologue and held me so totally immersed through the epilogue...This is one wonderful, awesome book...Ms. Bellacera showcases her wonderful skills as a writer with her dialogue, plotline, and characters. This author's talent is extraordinary and her obvious love of the Irish puts her storytelling on a par with the likes of Nora Roberts." --Betty Cox, Writers Club Romance Group on AOL

Friday, May 6, 2011

Carole Bellacera's May Newsletter

Hello, Readers.

I hope you're enjoying the beautiful spring weather (unless you're one of my fans in Australia, and in that case, the beautiful autumn weather.) :) I hope you're not suffering from allergies like I am. This has been a rough spring for me. I swear, I can't remember what it's like to breathe through my nose. I hope to do it again someday.

Other than not being able to breathe, April was a great month. We went down to Charleston to spend Easter with Leah and Zac--and our two darling grandsons, Luke and Zealand (ZZ for short.) I've come to realize that there's nothing more beautiful in the world than the sound of Luke saying, "I love you, Grandma." (He's two, and since Christmas, has started to speak in full sentences. And he's quite the chatterbox.) ZZ , at 17 months, is my laid-back, always smiling little sweetheart. A real cuddle-bunny. :) As you can see, I'm slightly enamored of my two little guys. I wish I could figure out how to insert photos into this newsletter, because I'd love to share some with you (besides the one on my main page.) But I can give you a link where you can see some recent videos.

I hope you all have been enjoying my chapters of TANGO'S EDGE. I just posted Chapter 5 this morning. INCENSE & PEPPERMINTS is progressing well. I'm starting on Chapter 11 today. I've been getting positive feedback on the book from some colleages, and by the time I finished writing Chapter 10, I had tears in my eyes. And that's a good thing. If I can generate emotion in myself when I write, then I'm bound to generate it in my readers.

I'm still shopping LILY OF THE SPRINGS around--looking for an agent and/or a publisher. I have two agents reading it, but I've pretty much given up on the first one because she's had the manuscript since October, and I haven't heard a thing. Besides, I'd rather go with the second agent because she's in New York. Anyway...bottom line--I'm not quite ready to go the self-publishing route yet. I think I'll know when it's time.

Well, that's about it for this month. Have to get back to work on INCENSE & PEPPERMINTS. Don't forget to go to my website and enter my monthly contest to win a copy of one of my books and a custom-made necklace set from Beautiful Evening Beads. You can check out my a sampling of my jewelry pieces at I have my first craft fair tomorrow at the Culpeper Street Festival. Wish me luck! :)

Have a great May!


Friday, April 8, 2011

April 2011 Newsletter

Dear Friends & Fans:

I want to thank those of you reading TANGO’S EDGE, and especially those who’ve sent me e-mails, telling me how much you’re enjoying it. You can’t possibly know how much this means to me. How much your messages makes my day just a little better. Just know when you take the time out of your busy day to tell me my story has brought you even the smallest amount of pleasure, it fills my heart with joy.

You see, my self-confidence has flagged in the years since my last novel came out. The fact that I haven’t sold a book –or even found an agent who’ll represent me–since 2006 has done a number on me. Had me questioning my talent. Questioning why I was even bothering to write. Yet, I’ve somehow managed to keep writing, finishing the complete manuscript of LILY OF THE SPRINGS (and still searching for an agent to represent it) and now happily and eagerly working on INCENSE & PEPPERMINTS, my Vietnam combat nurse story. I knew, somewhere deep inside, that writing novels is what I’m meant to do—whether or not I’m successful at selling them. And now, your e-mails and comments on Facebook confirm that. So, thank you, from the bottom of my heart.  Knowing you’re reading my books makes the rejections just a little less stinging.

Writers today know that the publishing world is changing, and whether or not it will be beneficial for them is still up for debate. It’s harder than ever to break into publishing with a traditional publisher. Just ask some of my author friends, ones who’ve had 50+ books published—and who now can’t sell, and like me, can’t even find an agent. Authors whose books have hit the NYT Best Sellers list with one book are finding subsequent books aren’t selling—not to the satisfaction of their publishers. You know what that means. Publishers dropping authors. I’ve heard rumors of some authors who’ve published with big NY publishers are now being published with small press—just to keep their books out there. I’m a prime example—started out with Forge Books, a New York house, and finally, with my fourth book, UNDERSTUDY, forced to go with small press so it would be available in trade paperback. But now, it’s almost impossible for a mid-list author like me to sell to small press even—because bigger name authors are also being forced to go with small press. It looks like in the future, the only books that will be published by major houses in New York are the mega-selling authors like James Patterson, Nora Roberts and Stephenie Meyer. So, more and more of us are turning to untraditional methods just to get read—thus, I’m posting TANGO’S EDGE online. Having you read my work reminds me that I am a writer. And not only that, my books are good—and they deserve a readership. Thank you for reminding me of that.  I posted Chapter 2 of TANGO’S EDGE this morning, and if you haven’t read the prologue and Chapter 1, they are available at:

Well, we’re off to Charleston for Easter to visit the grandsons. My daughter, Leah, allowed me to do the Easter baskets for them, so I’ve been having so much fun putting them together. I just got back from Charleston a few weeks ago, having spent a week down there with them. Luke, 2, and Zealand, 15 months are so much fun at this age. Luke is talking a mile a minute (and Grandma taught him to say, ‘Grandma, you’re cracking me up!) and Zea is such a sweet little cuddle-bunny. (I’m going to try to post pictures; sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t.) You know, I never imagined you could love a grandchild as much as you loved your own children (how stupid was that?) but you do—every bit as much. I’m praying like crazy that Frank will find a job down there and we can move there this summer!!! Is that too much to ask?

Anyway, I hope all of you have a wonderful Easter! Take care, and I’ll talk to you again next month!!!



Friday, March 4, 2011

Carole Bellacera's March 2011 Newsletter

A Late—Very Late—New Year’s Resolution

Dear Friends and Fans,

Okay, so I’m late in coming up with a New Year’s Resolution—considering I’m writing this on March 4th. But I’ve always been a proponent of “better late than never.” And my New Year’s Resolution is—to keep in touch with y’all better.

Yes, I have a million excuses—things like my paying job of instructing, the writing of my new novel (into the 8th chapter. Yay!) and of course, the hubby and grandkids. But I’m not going to bore you with all that. I’m just going to try to do better.

So, you may be asking yourself, “why now?” What happened to make Bellacera decide to honor us with a newsletter? No…I don’t have a new book coming out to promote…yet. But two things happened this week that made me realize that I wasn’t holding up my end of the bargain—the one between author and fans. You signed up to get a monthly newsletter from me, and I’ve let you down by not providing one. Bottom line—it wasn’t just all those excuses I mentioned above; it was the fact that I feel like I have nothing of interest to say to you. After all, I haven’t come out with a new book since 2006 (God! Hard to believe it was that long ago!) and although I’ve been working my butt off, trying to find an agent for my most recently completed novel, LILY OF THE SPRINGS, it just hasn’t happened for me yet. So, I guess I just figured you wouldn’t be interested in hearing about how a “has-been” author is trying to get a fresh start in the publishing business. But it finally occurred to me–why not? Many of you are aspiring authors, and if you’re frustrated and dealing with rejection like me, maybe you won’t feel so alone. As we all know, writers often feel isolated, and when you’re hearing nothing but “No, no, NO!!!!”…well, pretty soon you start believing that all those people who say no are right—that you aren’t good enough!

I’m getting off-track here. Back to why I decided to write this newsletter. I received an e-mail the other day from an old friend I knew in Crete. We’re talking way back in 1974. He said that he’d read on my website that I’d be visiting San Diego soon, and would I like to get together? At first, I was confused. I hadn’t been to San Diego since 2008, and had no plans to go. And then I was embarrassed to learn that it, apparently, had been that long since I’d updated my “news” on my website. That’s just downright embarrassing. And I have no excuse!

A second thing happened a couple of days later. I got an e-mail from the organizer of a local book club who’d chosen my novel, UNDERSTUDY, for their February pick. That’s a miracle in itself—after all, the book came out in 2003, so I was surprised anyone even remembered it, much less would choose it for their book club. They invited me to attend the meeting to discuss it—and I had a great time! Just getting together with readers who so obviously enjoyed my book reminded me how much I’d missed this kind of interaction with my fans.

Several years ago, I stepped back from the publishing business because I was burned out, frustrated and disillusioned, but most of all, I wanted to recapture the joy I felt in just writing. Writing without worrying about the opinion of an editor or an agent—or even a reviewer (and I’ve been very, very lucky with reviewers.) I wanted to write for just me—to remember why I began writing all those years ago—for the sheer pleasure of creating a fictional world filled with characters that came to life—and who will be alive as long as one single book exists somewhere on this planet.

And that, my friends, is exactly what I did when I wrote LILY OF THE SPRINGS (formerly titled SHEPHERD MOON and KENTUCKY WOMAN.) I will never give up on getting this novel published—no matter how many times an agent refuses to look at it, no matter how many times a publisher rejects it. If I have to, I will self-publish it, and that’s something I vowed early in my writing career that I’d never, ever do. But to get this book read, if that’s what it takes, I’ll do it. But I’m not close to that yet. I’m querying four more agents, and then I will start on publishers—starting at the top, and making my way down to small press. It may take some time, but I guarantee you, someday you will be reading LILY OF THE SPRINGS.

You see, it doesn’t matter to me if I make any money or not from my writing. Seriously, it doesn’t. Don’t get me wrong—it would be great to actually make an income from my writing, but my real desire is to simply be read. I want to share my work with the world. And now, with the internet, we writers can do exactly that.

So, that’s why next Friday, on my birthday, March 11th, I’m starting a new blog serializing my e-novel, TANGO’S EDGE. This is a romantic suspense novel which came out by Cerridwen Press in ____. The sales were hardly illustrious, and finally, I bought back my rights. I love this book, and I think you will, too. (A short synopsis follows this newsletter.) So, instead of allowing it to languish in my computer, I’m going to share it with you. Every Friday, I’ll post a new chapter for your reading pleasure.

Thanks so much for your patience. I hope you’ll give me another chance to share my work, and my life with you, dear friends.

God Bless—and I’ll be back in touch next month.

Carole Bellacera

Tango’s Edge—Coming March 11th, 2011

The Winter Olympics - Salt Lake City, Utah

“Will you help me to defect?”
It’s the desperate question from Russian ice dancer, Mikhail Kozlof to his American counterpart, Kerry Niles, which ignites a treacherous cross-country trip, political intrigue―and an attraction that neither can deny.

After a night of passion in a picture postcard winter resort, lust turns to love―and a return to reality. The American government is closing in, and soon, Mikhail will be whisked away from Kerry.

Once sequestered in a safe house outside Washington DC, Mikhail is face with an impossible situation―he must deny his love for Kerry to protect her from harm’s way.