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It Takes a Village

While the phrase “it takes a village” always sounds a little cliche, it really does hold true for the career of most writers. It’s the rare author who launches from the starting gate into the stratosphere without many people behind her (or him) helping in so many ways.

It’s hard to even recount some of the many, many people who have helped me to get to where I am at this point in my career. Certainly first and foremost to thank is my husband, whose constant support has bolstered me through the ups and downs I’ve experienced as a writer. And I’m most appreciative of his reliable income: when mine was most unreliable, I was still able to persist in my efforts to help sustain us financially with my income as an author. Without him I could not have continued to try to plug away at a career as an author. And my kids, who have ridden the highs and lows alongside me as well and been my biggest cheerleaders. That goes for so very many family members who have been there for me on the sidelines (starting with my mom, who bought me my first laptop so I could write books while waiting for my kids at various after school practices and while on the road for soccer matches).

Many fellow authors loom large for me: those who have been in the trenches alongside me and shared in the frustrations and successes—and there have been many of both. These include writers I’ve befriended and become good friends with online, some from writing groups, others I’ve met at conferences. And of course the lovely ladies of the Girlfriends Book Club—an amazing group and super supportive. Many of my writer friends are women and it’s a unique sisterhood we all have forged for ourselves in this business that has often been inherently more challenging for women than men. But there are a lot of guys who write whose input and support has been invaluable as well.

And there are authors who were way ahead of me in the business and were kind enough to reach a hand down to help pull me up: the lovely and hilarious Meg Cabot, who kindly blurbed my first novel for me; Jane Porter as well for that matter. And a host of author friends who kindly took the time to read and blurb my books also, which is asking a lot when they have their own books to write and edit: Kristy KiernanEileen Cook (who’s got the book of the spring launching soon!), Lauren Baratz-LogstedSuzanne MacPhersonBev Katz RosenbaumWade Rouse (who also has a much buzzed-about book coming out soon), Beth HoffmanSarah PekkanenAd Hudler.

And some top-tier authors who are all-around good people: the late Pat Conroy, such a lovely, humble and exceedingly talented writer, and Jamie Ford, so funny and so poignant, both come to mind.

Along the way I’ve had some terrific editors, who help so much to polish a book to its full luster: Chris Keeslar, Emily Westlake, both in the land of traditional publishing, and now folks like Anne Victory and Nikki BuschJen Pooley (who will honestly tell you when you need to know when to fold ’em), and Bev Katz Rosenbaum. I couldn’t be where I am without thanking Kim Killion, who creates excellent covers for my books. And my assistant Joanne Levy, who truly has the patience of a saint when it comes to disorganized me.

And I can’t forget my excellent agent Holly Root who without doubt has the patience of Job with me…and who will one day get The Book from me. It’s fermenting in my brain as I write this. And a shout-out to agent Jeff Kleinman, who gave me lots of early encouragement when I really needed it.

And last but of course far from least, loyal and lovely readers: without whom I’d never have gotten past my first novel—and wow, did readers help to bolster my confidence when I launched my first novel! I’d be an awfully lonely writer without supportive readers, who send the most wonderful emails and post awesome reviews just because they’re really nice people, and who continue to seek out books I’ve written and pop in to say hi when they’re on Facebook (and, um, maybe even send me some adorable panda pictures, which I love to obsess over): I can’t say enough about how grateful I am to you all, who have stuck with me over the years and given me the impetus to keep on keeping on in this crazy business, because I know there are people out there who enjoy reading the books I write. For that I can’t say thank you enough!

Geeze, I didn’t mean to get all Academy Award on you here–not like I’ve been handed a gold statue and been asked for my acceptance speech or anything! But I think it is so important to thank everyone who has contributed to my getting here: I think more so in publishing than in  most traditional jobs, an author stands on many, many strong shoulders to get to where they’ve gotten, and to you all I say thank you, thank you, thank you! (and if I forgot to mention you, many mea culpas for that failure!).

Great news! I just released Throne for a Loop, book six in my It’s Reigning Men series! It’s available here: iBooksKindleKoboGooglePlayNook


And what do you think of the cover for book 7? I love it! It’s available for pre-order, coming out May 24! You can get it here: iBooksKindleKoboGooglePlay


Oh and for a limited time I’ve got an awesome free book for you if you sign up for my newsletter: Something in the Heir, book 1 of the It’s Reigning Men series! Sign up here and you’ll be first to hear about deals and giveaways.



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Categories: News

Resolutions Schmesolutions!

I have mixed feelings about resolutions. I mean when it gets down to it, they seem like a self-flagellating set-up for failure (by the way, I was going to post a picture of self-flagellation just for a laugh, but all the pictures I found were absolutely gross!). As if something miraculous happens at the stroke of midnight that means all of a sudden you’re going to eliminate sugar while binging on kale, exercise two hours a day, write masterpieces and publish them at a rate of one per month, master the fine art of marketing, and oh, while you’re at it, make world peace a reality. 

Yeah, I’ll get right on that.

I know some folks who are serious goal-setters, with annotated bucket lists (I really do not love the whole bucket list concept—it feels really trite to me), but if it works for them, good on ’em. I know one gal who is a bucket lister-extraordinaire: somewhere hovering around # 70 was this bold ambition: go to medical school. Well, last spring, at the age of 54, she completed her undergraduate degree, and now, at age 55, is enrolled in medical school. I can’t tell you how impressive I think this is–I mean, damn, what an undertaking. While the rest of us are lamenting hot flashes and praying to God for an early retirement, she has undertaken a whopping commitment that will have her busting her ass (and never sleeping, though maybe she’s maximizing the downsides to hot flashing all night)) well into her 60’s—and that’s before she even ends her training. WOW! That is A-MAZING to me. That said, she’s left teenaged kids home with her husband, which is something I could never do. Although what a cool example to set for your kids. But then again, you only have your kids with you for such a short period, it would break my heart to leave them behind like that. But that’s just me.

Okay so on to my resolutions. I do have writing goals that I am determined to achieve, and I do believe it helps to write them down, not only to just have it there in black and white, but to help you see it and remind yourself of it and even, if you’re lucky, tick off some of those achievements when they occur (usually a few years later).

Now’s time for you to laugh. I just took a look at my 2016 Goals for Writing (which I’d forgotten to look at since I wrote it a month ago). Top of the list?

  1. Organize my life

Well, crap. So far, not so good on that one. Believe me, if/when I achieve this one, I’ll let y’all know.

the rest are in no particular order, and I’d just like you all to light a candle or two on my behalf if you have it in your heart that maybe I can get through these this year:

2. Master Facebook ads (i.e. listen to, then apply my 50-hour tutorial on FB ads)

3. Build mailing list

4. Write lots more books (haha, don’t ya like how I didn’t write a number. Though I’ve got 5 slated to publish and in my fantasies I’d write at least 3 more. Operative word being “fantasies”. Perhaps this is how I maximize that failure to sleep that menopause imposes on us at this age.

5. Have books made into audio books (this will be when the money starts falling from trees, or when I master Facebook ads, whichever comes first)

6. Have books translated into German (see #5 as far as realistic goal)

7. Make bestsellers lists.

So there you have it. I have my work cut out for me. And as I scramble to meet my deadline with a book to my editor by January 30, again, I will put it out there that I wouldn’t turn it down if you all wanted to light a candle for me to actually get it all together. 

And if I don’t? Well, there’s always 2017…

Oh hey! I accomplished something I forgot to write down. It was really an overlap from 2015 but it happened, so yay me: I overhauled my website, and it just got finalized last week. Feel free to check it out and tell me what you think! (now wish me luck with maintaining it, technophobe that I am…).

While you’re over there, I’ve got an awesome free book for you if you sign up for my newsletter: Something in the Heir, book 1 of my It’s Reigning Men series! Sign up here and you’ll be first to hear about deals and giveaways.

Also, Throne for a Loop, book 6 of the It’s Reigning Men series, comes out March 8 and is available for pre-order here:

iBooks                           Kobo                       Kindle

Now it’s your turn: what are your goals and aspirations are for 2016 and beyond?

Categories: humor, Jenny Gardiner, Something in the Heir

Merci Beaucoup-Grazie Mille-Danke Schoen-Muchas Gracias

search You guys totally rock! There are so many ways to say thank you, but it’s not easy to truly express how appreciative writers are that we have readers who can’t wait for our next book to release, and who happily immerse themselves in the worlds we create as if they truly exist. I know that happens because it does to me as a reader too, and there are many times I’ve reached out to fellow writers just to thank them for giving me a great place to escape to for a little while. As a writer I know how much it means for a reader to let me know that my book has touched them somehow. And when bad things happen in the world and times get particularly uncertain, even scary, what an amazing thing it is to be able to retreat to your favorite stories, to a place of comfort and good cheer. So I’m particularly thankful, as a reader, for the many writers whose words have entertained and informed me over the years, but even more so as a writer, for all of those readers who have enjoyed my books and better still reached out to let me know. It keeps me focused on writing more books, so I hope you’ll keep those emails and social network comments and great reviews coming, and I thank you for joining my crazy world for a little while!

And if you’re looking for a new author to try out, you can get a free book of mine here when you sign up for my monthly newsletter and you’ll be first to hear about steals and deals…and I’ve got a fabulous freebie I’m going to be announcing in January, so you’ll know first!

And I’ve got all sorts of new books out!

Upcoming books

Book 5 of the It’s Reigning Men series, Shame of Thrones, which comes out December 16, is available for pre-order from iBooks, Kindle, and Kobo.

And I’ve got a release date for Book 6, Throne for a Loop! It’s going to be released March 8 and is available for pre-order from iBooks, Kindle, and Kobo.

Wishing you all a happy, healthy and safe holiday, with plenty of time to relax and read ;-)



Anywhere But Here by Jenny Gardiner Slim To None by Jenny Gardiner

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Categories: Bad to the Throne, Bite Me: a Parrot A Family and a Whole Lot of Flesh Wounds, Books, Chick Lit, Heir Today Gone Tomorrow, I'm Not the Biggest Bitch in this Relationship, It's Reigning Men, Jenny Gardiner, Love is in the Heir, Naked Man on Main Street, Shame of Thrones, Something in the Heir, Throne for a Loop, Winging It: A Memoir of Caring for a Vengeful Parrot Who's Determined to Kill Me, women's fiction, writing