We went down south a few weeks ago to one of our favorite places, San Diego. What a great time! We even swam in the ocean. We love that area so much we plan on moving there in the next year or two. Here’s a shot of me jumping for joy on Coronado Beach. Why do I jump for joy? Because I’m happy and it’s fun. Unless I’m stiff, of course. Then it feels like I’m going to break something.
I met my favorite author, Kristan Higgins, at the “Readers for Life” Literacy Autographing in New York. She is so sweet! I also attended three workshops she gave at the RWA conference. If you’re a fan of romance novels with humor like me, and you haven’t read ALL of her books, you need to. Go! Now!
The event this year raised over $48,000 to benefit literacy programs. Nice to know my small purchase of a few paperbacks helped a lot. You can help too! This year’s beneficiaries are ProLiteracy Worldwide, Literacy Partners, and Literacy Assistance Center. Visit their websites to make a donation. Every little bit helps.
While in New York last week for the Romance Writers of America conference, my hot Spanish wife and I thought it would be fun to visit some of the places where they shot the movie You’ve Got Mail. It’s one of our favorite romantic comedies—we’ve seen it at least ten times. Okay. Maybe twenty. Kathleen Kelly (Meg Ryan) and Joe Fox (Tom Hanks) ate hot dogs in that window behind me at Gray’s Papaya, 2090 Broadway. I didn’t eat one myself but I did enjoy some of their refreshing 100% fresh pineapple juice since it was a hot day and it was the best I’ve had ever! I want more!
They shot the scene in this Starbucks at 2252 Broadway where Joe Fox says, “The whole purpose of places like Starbucks is for people with no decision-making ability whatsoever to make six decisions just to buy one cup of coffee.” LOL. Starbucks will also have a special place in my heart because I met my sweet honeybunch at a Starbucks in San Jose.
Cafe Lalo (201 West 83rd Street) was used for the memorable scene where Joe goes to meet Kathleen for the very first time. His friend and branch manager Kevin (Dave Chappelle) peeks inside the cafe when they get there to see if Kathleen is in there.
And of course the final scene at the 91st Street Garden in Riverside Park where Joe comes around the corner with his dog, Brinkley, and they kiss and get their happily-ever-after. Man, just writing this blog post makes me want to watch the movie again.
We spent the fourth of July weekend in the Monterey/Pacific Grove/Asilomar area of California and drove down to Big Sur for the afternoon. That’s where we discovered one of the most beautiful beaches in California—Pfeiffer Beach. The place is not easy to find but well worth the effort. If you’re lucky enough to find an open spot in the parking lot, do yourself a favor and pay the $10.00 parking fee, instead of walking the two miles from the main road. The people walking looked tired! Pfeiffer Beach is one of the hidden gems of the West Coast.
I have the best wife in the world! Check out this picture. Yes, I’m sticking my tongue out at her right in the middle of the wedding ceremony. The officiant said that laughter was important in a relationship and I just had to show him how much I agreed. There’s not a day that goes by where we aren’t laughing.
Laughter keeps us healthy, keeps us happy, keeps us young. My life is a romantic comedy every single day and I’m so grateful to have such an amazing person by my side.
Last week I received a message from Sally, who lives in a small village in the UK near Cambridge. She wrote to tell me she loved my first book, Five Minutes Late. At first I wasn’t sure if Sally could be trusted since she told me that she was married to the world’s best husband. I knew for a fact that could not be true because my wife has always told me that I am the best husband in the world.
I decided to give Sally a chance and wanted to learn more about her. I found out we had a lot in common! She teaches a foreign language and so does my wife. She’s also an author! In fact, she is currently writing a book about pottery and the hero in my next book, Kissing Frogs, is an art teacher who specializes in pottery! What are the chances?
Sally Wallace-Jones has a children’s book in print. It is called Miu and the Pharaoh and is about a small Egyptian cat who really wants to know what life is like inside the Royal Palace. It’s a very cute book. What Sally doesn’t know is I bought the book on Amazon to give to a child of one of my friends. I would have never even known about her if she hadn’t taken a moment to brighten an author’s day with a sweet email. Now I will brighten a child’s day with something from Sally. Life is beautiful the way so many things are connected, don’t you think?
Many of the settings I used in Dog Day Wedding are real places! In the story, Giovanni goes for a walk with Precious and the dog stops in front of Village House of Books in Los Gatos to drink from the water bowl outside. This book store is very dog friendly and even has a patio for the doggies with relaxation music (in case your pooch wants to meditate or nap). My Honeybunch snapped a picture of me outside during our visit there on Valentine’s Day. LOVE this book store.