After my fairytale booksigning two weeks ago at Nora Roberts' husband's bookstore, I was invited back to Turn the Page Bookstore in Boonsboro, Maryland for a Girls' Night Out. I had no idea what the Girls' Night Out was about, but I figured if Nora Roberts was involved, that was good enough for me. So Dana, Alethea Kontis and I made our way back to Dame Nora's for a night of food, fun, and chatting, even with Nora herself. She talked and mingled wearing killer high heeled shoes that in my case would've really been killer, since I would have at least broken an ankle, if not my neck. She hung out for the evening, just like the rest of us.
The event was open to the public, and lots of women mingled with authors and artisans who were present. The bookstore doesn't just sell books, but offers a variety of local artisan's works, from jewelry to hand-made lotions and soaps. A massage therapist gave hand and arm massages for free, which for a writer is a wonderful thing. There were door prizes and lots of fun to be had.
Several local ladies told me how wonderful Nora is. She doesn't just "pocket all the money" this lady said. Nora gives back to the community without ever tootin' her own horn about her generosity, which includes scholarships and supporting the local arts and crafts. Her Inn is furnished from the local furniture shop two doors down the street. The food for this event came from the restaurant just up the street. I know how supportive she is to the writing community but I hadn't realized until lately that she does the same with her local community. One of the ladies said that Nora could've chosen any communtity to help, but thank God, she chose Boonsboro.
And yet, she still manages to write about five books per year. One fan asked the store manager, who knows Nora well, how Nora does it. Lots of hard work, the store manager said. She said Nora puts in a full day of writing just like anyone else would put in a full day of work. No ghostwriters, just drive and dedication. You only have to be around her a few times, or see a couple of interviews, to know this woman has a work ethic and determination that is admirable, if not frightening. So my goal in life isn't to be Nora Roberts; there's only one, but I want to have that same drive.