IWSG and Bookstore Romance Day!

Today’s the day for the Insecure Writer’s Support Group (IWSG) where, on the first Wednesday of every month, writers get together to share their insecurities and offer encouragement. The IWSG was created by Alex J. Cavanaugh, and you can learn all about it and sign up for it here


Bookstore Romance Day is coming up on August 20th! What is Bookstore Romance day? According to the website bookstoreromanceday.org, it’s “a day designed to give independent bookstores an opportunity to celebrate Romance fiction—its books, readers, and writers—and to strengthen the relationships between bookstores and the Romance community.”

It’s not just for Romance writers. Any writers whose stories include romance can participate. I’ve been invited to join the celebration at The Eloquent Page, a local independent bookstore. All three of my books have romance aplenty mixed in with the magic and swordplay.

Check out bookstoreromanceday.org to see if a store near you is celebrating and join the fun!


And now on to the IWSG Question of the Month — When you set out to write a story, do you try to be more original or do you try to give readers what they want?

I write for me, so I write stories that I want to read. I don’t try to guess what others might like or might want to see. It’s impossible to please everyone, so however the story is written, there will always be those who wish things had been done differently. I write stories that are satisfying to me and hope they will find other readers who feel the same.


WIP Update: Life continues to keep me ridiculously busy and writing opportunities are few and far between, but I’m 15 chapters in and approximately halfway through the third book in the Trouble series, Trouble Times Three. I keep hoping things will slow down, but it hasn’t happened yet. One of these days, maybe.


Anyone else joining in on Bookstore Romance Day?


© Lori L. MacLaughlin and Writing, Reading, and the Pursuit of Dreams, 2022. All rights reserved.

Blog Tour! Saturday Sampler with Diane Burton!

I’m celebrating the release of my new fantasy adventure novel, Trouble By Any Other Name, the sequel to Lady, Thy Name Is Trouble!

Today I’m visiting Diane Burton with an excerpt from the book for her Saturday Sampler series. If you like a little romance with your adventures, be sure to check it out. See you there! 🙂


Trouble By Any Other Name


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© Lori L. MacLaughlin and Writing, Reading, and the Pursuit of Dreams, 2016. All rights reserved.

Celebrate the Small Things! With a Visit from Elizabeth Seckman!

Celebrate the Small Things is a weekly celebration created by VikLit and now hosted by Lexa Cain to celebrate the happenings of the week, however small or large. You can learn all about it and sign up for it here. CelebrateSmallThings_Badge

Today, I’m celebrating CTST’s own Elizabeth Seckman! She’s here to share how NOT to take care of your fans and followers. Here she is —


Thanks Lori for having me over!

Swept Away is my 6th book. I imagined by book 6 that a limo would arrive to take me to the magical promo-specialist fairy prepared launch.

Sadly, that’s not the case.

It’s still me—juggling the writing and the business end.

And that’s okay.


It wasn’t okay last year. writer

Last year, I was a magic-seeking burn out. I forgot all the lessons successful writers before me shared—this is a tough business…with a glut of talented competition.

It is a marathon…not a sprint.

If you try to achieve at sprinter speed, you’ll surely wear out.

I knew this. Wise people warned me, but still…

I wanted what they all had, yesterday. Not tomorrow. Not today.

That frustration and mule-headedness lost me a slow-building momentum.

All the smart things I needed to be doing to maintain fan contact were ignored.  Simple things like regular blog posts, Facebook interaction, Tweets…hell, I wasn’t even putting out my monthly newsletter.

I was too busy obsessing over the number of trees that I forgot the beauty of the forest.

So, here is my advice, which I will take myself.

There are only so many hours in a day. You are a writer. Therefore, if you have a book that needs to be written, the words come first. There is nothing to market if you have no product. So, while the book is in the works…get off Facebook.

But not forever.

Just until you hit your word count. I shoot for 500 words a day, M-F. When I hit my target, I am done. Then I have time for being sociable online. And I can online chat from my phone, so if I get a minute here and there, I do a social check-in.

Do the newsletter. These people, the ones who have signed up to hear from you, are your core group. They willingly signed up to get spammed…by you! Come on, we’re writers—come up with something interesting and share it once a month.

That’s the least we must do. We must maintain some contact, because unless we are writing block-buster magic, readers will be offended when our only contact is when we want to sell something.

Treat your readers well. It’s not their job to make our dreams come true, but our job to engage them.


Swept Away Cover He came looking for a ghost. Instead, he found a girl.

Tucker Boone is a war-hardened Marine on a ghost hunt. Fresh out of the corps, Tucker learns he has a missing half-sister, Maddy. The only clue to her whereabouts is a cryptic note…I’ve gone Mad, Mags. Tucker agrees to search for her and heads to Ocracoke, North Carolina where a ghost named Mad Mags is said to haunt the ancient graveyards dotting the island.

The note doesn’t bring him any closer to finding Maddy, but it does offer him a diversion to the doldrums of civilian life— his new island neighbor, Josie McCoy. Tucker is drawn to her quiet spirit. There’s something special about Josie…a connection he can’t quite explain.

By summer’s end, he’s mixed up in deception, murder, and the love of a lifetime. Logic tells him to head home and forget the truths he found on the island. But can he walk away? Josie offers him more than love; she offers him hope. When the clues pile up and it looks like she can never be the girl for him, he has to make a choice—play it safe and break her heart, or risk everything for a chance at being swept away.

 author photo

Elizabeth is a multi-published author and family laundry wench. She is the mother of four boys, who are quickly all becoming men! Her life is filled with stinky size-twelve shoes and beard clippings in the sink. Is it any wonder she enjoys days spent writing women’s fiction of stories of romance and happily ever after?

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