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Friday, August 19, 2011


I’ve been tasked with sharing what’s surprised me most since I became published.

Since smart-ass responses are always first to arrive on scene when my brain is asked a question, I’m inclined to tell you how shocked I am that I don’t yet have a butler, a private plane, a pool, a pool boy, or even one of those really nice bird baths.

In reality, there hasn’t been much that’s surprised me. I’ve been delighted by some really great response to the story, including a 4 ½ star from RT Book Reviews, a listing as one of ten “notable debuts” in Writers Digest, and a declaration from Booklist magazine that “Fenske’s off-the-wall plotting is reminiscent of a tame Carl Hiaasen on Cupid juice.”

Incidentally, I think “Cupid juice” sounds deliciously filthy.

But I while I’ve been thrilled with the great reviews, I wouldn’t say “surprised” describes my reaction.

I could give you some dorky answer about how I didn’t expect to be so dizzyingly, terrifyingly, nauseatingly busy with book promotions and signings and guest blogging and my own daily blog and all the usual stuff like maintaining a day job and a house and an impressive belly button lint collection.

That’s true, but it’s a dumb answer because of course this was going to be a busy month. Duh. But when you sign the book contract, you also sign a fine print clause that says, “I hereby surrender my right to complain about anything related to being a published author because I JUST GOT EXACTLY WHAT I’VE BEEN DREAMING OF FOR YEARS!”

So that’s not my answer, either.

I guess the one, solid response I can give you to the question of what’s surprised me most about being published is that people are reading my book.

I know this sounds like a terribly moronic concept. You would think it might have occurred to me at some point during the last 17 months that one or two people might stumble upon Making Waves on the shelves at WalMart or Barnes & Noble.

But deep down, I don’t think it ever registered that anyone besides my agent, my editor, and my mom might read the book. In the back of my mind, we were going through these exercises in selecting cover art and choosing titles just so we could all pat ourselves on the back before tucking the manuscript in a drawer and calling it a day. My brain never wrapped itself around the idea that anyone might actually read the book.

But they have been, and I’m glad about it, and I’m trying hard not to be too terrified by the notion that oodles of strangers are reading words I’ve written and thinking, “wow, that chick is a pervert.”

Or something like that.

If you’re one of the people who has read the book, I thank you from the bottom of my heart. If you aren’t, I still thank you for reading this blog post without leaping to the conclusion that I have some sort of serious mental health issue.

Wait – you are thinking that, aren’t you?


She always wanted to belong… Just not to a dysfunctional pirate crew…
Juli has trouble fitting in, though she’d prefer to keep the reasons to herself. But when she mistakenly stows away on a ship of misfit corporate castoffs, her own secrets become the least of her concerns…

He knows plotting a diamond heist may be considered unusual behavior…
But Alex isn’t feeling very normal when his unscrupulous boss kicks him to the curb. Meeting Juli doesn’t do much to restore normalcy to Alex’s life either, but it sure is exhilarating!

As Alex and Juli bare their secrets—and a whole lot more—they find that while normal is nice, weird can be wonderful…

Tawna Fenske traveled a career path that took her from newspaper reporter to English teacher in Venezuela to marketing geek. An avid globetrotter with a fondness for the sea, she shares her heroine’s violent allergy to seasickness medication (though, sadly, has never stowed away on a pirate ship). Tawna is the author of the popular daily blog “Don’t Pet Me, I’m Writing” and lives in Central Oregon, where she is working on her next novel, Believe It or Not, in stores March 2012. For more information, please visit or follow her on Twitter @tawnafenske.

Leave a comment for the chance to win one of 2 copies of Making Waves. Open to US and Canada readers only please.


Tawna Fenske said...

Thanks so much for inviting me here! It's been a wild and crazy ride for sure, and I've appreciated all the support along the way.


Laura said...

You are hilarious and I love the concept for this book. Definitely not anything I've read before and I look forward to checking it out. I will also be checking out your blog. And I promise not to think that you're a pervert. ;) By the way, isn't "filthy" just such a fun word? I'd like to try anything that sounds "deliciously filthy".

Sherry said...

I really enjoyed your post. Your books sounds like it will be a very good book and I'm looking for to reading it.

shadow_kohler said...

Great post! Your book sounds very good. :) Thanks for sharing!

Tracie said...

By your "answer(s)" I'm thinking that your mind is a very busy and active place! Whew!
Good luck and happy writing!

Tawna Fenske said...

Thanks for the lovely comments, guys!

Laura, "filthy" is one of my favorite words. Go figure.

Sherry and Sherry, thanks a bunch!

Tracie, by "busy and active," you mean "disturbing," right?


tracy-d74 said...

It's always great to get an author's perspective on being published. The book sounds great!

tracy DOT dickens AT yahoo DOT com

Jess said...

This sounds like a really good read! Thanks for the giveaway!

Ju Dimello said...

Hi Tawna,

It was nice to "meet" you!

I'd probably vote for the bird bath ;) Or well, the pool with the pool boy.. (If I could decide what an author must have... those count as inspiration right?

Congrats on your release :) Making waves sounds like a fab book :) Loved the cover!!

And thanks for the giveaway too.. count me in: judimello AT gmail DOT com