One of the reasons I went to work for the CIA was September 11th. I’ll never forget seeing the Pentagon burning on the horizon that day. I had just been in New York City looking at the Twin Towers a couple of weeks before. Typically, the Washington DC area was such a cutthroat, grouchy area, but after the attacks everyone came together, regardless of beliefs, and people were actually nice and respectful to each other – even while driving in the miserable traffic of the area.
I was recently on the show Politics & Profits with Rick Amato to talk about my first book, Single in the CIA. I was pretty nervous, but it was a great experience. I’ve never been a good speaker, and you’ll see what I mean when you watch this. Also, please forgive my recording – my internet froze for a moment while I was taping it.
You can check out my very first media appearance here.
I am so glad August is over. I’m not a fan. No offense to those of you with August birthdays, it’s nothing personal, I just find August to be terribly long and boring. It’s still super hot where we live and school starts in early August these days (at least in the last couple of places we have been), so summer vacation comes to an end. With the average temperature where we live ranging from 99 to 108 (sometimes 115!) degrees every day the weather is not conducive to outside activities with small children.
In my mom life I’ve come to look forward to fall, with its cooler temperatures and string of birthdays leading into the holiday season. I used to hate the holiday season – back when I lived on my own so far from my family. I spent many a Thanksgiving and Christmas alone, wishing for the time to pass, first in the D.C. area and later in South Florida. Of course in South Florida that loneliness was accompanied by a beautiful beach view from every window of my condo, and the constant sound of crashing waves, and maybe a bottle of scotch…. But I digress….
How times have changed. I look forward to the holiday season now – I guess having young children does that for you.
Anyway, I have a few projects that should be wrapping up before the end of this year. One is the release of my first full-length book since Single in the CIA. This latest book, a spy thriller full of humor, is set to release in October. Mission: Stand Down is the result of a compromise with the CIA. Apparently it is very controversial. After many appeals, I am very excited to have the green light to publish this one.
Many of you know that I have a page on this site where I post book reviews. Lately I’ve had some authors and publishers send me free books to review, and I’m very flattered by the attention. I only wish I had more time to read – but rest assured, I will get to reading all of them. Soon I will be adding children’s books to my reviews to go along with my CIA officer-turned-Mom brand. Most likely I will stick to “vintage” children’s books – ones I read as a child or were out when I was a kid.
All in all it has been a one-step-forward-two-steps-back kind of year for me. I have a couple more surprises up my sleeve that I was hoping to reveal before the end of 2017. Due to the constant roadblocks I’ve encountered this year I’m not so sure they will all be realized by December 31st, but I’ll keep trying.
I hope everyone is having a great summer so far and has a very happy 4th of July!
Just a quick summer update…
As most of you know, my books are available on Smashwords as well as Amazon and many other book retailers. Smashwords is having their 9th annual Summer/Winter Sale beginning July 1st and running through the month of July. All of my books will be 50% off for the entire month of July!
You can’t beat this deal, so check it out on Smashwords.
Lately I have been expanding my own personal brand as a former CIA officer-turned-Mom. This means lots of surprises to come during the next few months. In response to finding myself getting a lot of questions about how to go about self-publishing a book I decided to create a short instructional eBook on how to self-publish on Amazon. It was a little experiment, to see if I could create my own PDF eBook, all by myself. Created for busy moms (or anyone who doesn’t have much free time) who have always wanted to be published authors!
Check out the result on the eBooks page.
Stay tuned in the months ahead! I have lots of surprises in store for you!
From the latest in the Mingling in the CIA series – Annie Goes Overseas:
…Andrej poured a glass of wine as he attempted to explain the Basque-French menu to Annie.
Basque? Where is that? Is that some kind of fish?
She tried to disguise her confusion and appear enthralled with every word coming out of Andrej’s mouth. It actually wasn’t difficult; his accent made her feel like she was enveloped in a fluffy pink cloud. She grabbed the wine glass and took a large gulp of the very expensive French wine he had just poured for her. He was so elegant, so charming, so European…
From the latest in the Mingling in the CIA series – Annie Goes Overseas:
“But I live on the west coast of Florida,” Rick wrote. The message on her computer screen baffled her.
The west coast? Where is that? I didn’t know there were different coasts in Florida? Isn’t it all one state?
Annie was interrupted by the vibration of her phone. She picked it up to greet the exotic purr of Andrej’s voice on the other end…
Join CIA officer Annie as she continues on her blundering path, dragging national security along with her. From inappropriate relationships with foreign intelligence services to entitled use of government money to fund her love life, you will never view the CIA the same way again! Annie Goes Overseas is now available almost everywhere books are sold!
As I just had my second baby, I haven’t had much time for writing lately and will likely be absent from this blog for a little while. But, I want to thank all of the people who have been supportive of my books so far. It means a lot to me to hear that someone has taken the time to read something I have written, whether they like it or not.
I have a new book in the Mingling in the CIA series ready to go, but am still waiting on the CIA’s Publication Review Board to grant its approval for me to publish the latest in Annie’s adventures. I had fully intended to have the book out prior to my daughter’s birth, but that was not meant to be (sigh). I hope to hear some good news in the near future, and get on with the business of publishing in the few spare minutes I have each day.
Again, thank you to all of you who have been supportive, and stay tuned for more soon.
…Rebecca was a Logistics Officer at the Agency, and she was never home; she was always traveling TDY somewhere. She had recently arrived back from one of her trips, and walked in on Annie and Daveed. Annie had been performing an act that Rebecca was pretty sure was not a traditional massage technique. Rebecca had witnessed one too many of these lapses in judgment on Annie’s part and could not wait for their lease to end. She did not intend on having Annie as a roommate next year…
Now through July 31st, get all of my books 25% off at the Smashwords Summer/Winter Sale! Just visit my Smashwords page to buy!
…Annie perked up, pushing the memory of his wedding band out of her mind. She eagerly wrote him back, setting a date for the upcoming weekend. Hearing Allison’s meeting coming to an end, she quickly logged off and headed out to roam the halls for a bit. She liked to go up to the Seventh Floor, the place where the Director of the CIA and all of the real higher-ups of the Agency sat. It made her feel important, and the DCIA’s bodyguards were really cute…
…Annie looked over to where Beatrice, her elderly co-worker, usually sat. Beatrice was just waiting to retire, though she seemed much older than the usual retirement age. She wasn’t currently at her desk – she often snuck down to the Agency library where she could be found taking a nap on the sofa in the far back corner…