Tuesday, October 05, 2010

Laura Alden, Guest Blogger

Today, I'd like to welcome Laura Alden as guest blogger.  Laura's first mystery, Murder at the PTA debuts today!  That makes October 5th a special day for her, and, I hope, for us.  It's my pleasure to introduce you to a new mystery author.  Welcome, Laura, and good luck with Murder at the PTA!

Thanks so much, Lesa, for inviting me to guest post today. October 5 will forever be an honorary holiday in my house because today is the official release of my first book. Yes, a mere twelve years after taking the first step on the path to publication, I’ve finally achieved authorhood. My path was full of the typical speed bumps, detours, and road closures that so many authors encounter and the last obstacle was something for which I was completely unprepared: the dedication.

How I’d forgotten this part, I do not know. I’d made notes about who I wanted to thank in the acknowledgements -- don’t forget Julie, don’t forget about the sports stuff -- but somehow dedicating the book to someone hadn’t crossed my tiny little mind.

As I recall, I had 48 hours to make the decision. I frantically scribbled lists of possible suspects.

My husband. Though he’s not a reader (the last book he read cover to cover was in an English class) he’s been a staunch supporter of my writing. From making dinner when I was stretched too thin, to bringing me the occasional breakfast in bed when I was too exhausted to move, to rubbing my back when I got computer-neck, he’s been the best helpmeet possible.

Mrs. Haggard, my high school American and English Lit teacher. Even though she passed away years ago, her enthusiasm for her subjects lives on in my love of Shakespeare. And the A+ she gave me on a creative writing assignment was the spark that made me think I could actually, maybe, you know, write for real someday.

A former employer. If I hadn’t left my management job due to a growing dislike of the corporate environment, I might never have taken a less stressful position and might never have turned to writing to keep my mind occupied.

There were others to consider: Ms. Boettcher, my 4th grade teacher who caught me reading when I should have been doing math homework -- and said nothing. All the librarians I have ever known. All the booksellers I have ever known. All the people who love books. All the children who have ever begged to be told a story.

But even as I was scrawling down the possibilities, I realized there was only one good answer to the dedication question. As soon as I wrote it down, I saw how fitting it was:

To my parents, who gave me life, love, a college education, and a voracious appetite for reading. Thanks, Mom. Thanks, Dad.

The other day my dad called. We chatted for awhile, then I heard him ask my mom if she wanted to talk to me. “No,” she said. “I’m reading.”

Love you, too, Mom. Lots and lots and lots.

Thank you, Laura.  As a reader, all I can say is, I love your mom.  And, good luck with Murder at the PTA!
Laura Alden's website is http://www.lauraalden.com/
Murder at the PTA by Laura Alden.  Penguin Group (USA), ©2010. ISBN 9780451231093 (paperback), 320p.


Mason Canyon said...

Laura, congratulations on the launch of your new book today. Wishing you much success with it. I'm looking forward to reading it.

Lesa, thanks for hosting Laura. It's fun getting to know a 'new to me' author.


Thoughts in Progress

Laura Alden said...

Thanks for having me, Lesa. And thanks to both you and Mason for your good wishes!

Lesa said...

Thanks for stopping by, Mason. It's fun to "introduce" readers to new authors and series.

Lesa said...

My pleasure, Laura. And, good luck with the book, and the series. I really liked Beth Kennedy.

Laura Alden said...

Beth is thrilled that you liked her, Lesa :)

Dean (aka Miranda) James said...

Congratulations on the publication of your book, Laura. And welcome to the Berkley Prime Crime family, too. I bought your book yesterday at Murder by the Book in Houston, and I'm looking forward to reading it.

Lesa said...

I hope you like it, Dean. The Berkley Prime Crime family is a pretty good one, in my opinion. I hope you and Laura both stay in the family for a long time.