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January 2018 Book promotions

Friday, January 5, 2018 – book signing

6-8 p.m. at the Page and Palettes in Fairhope, Alabama


Words from the authors of Food and Romance Go Together


I thought it would be interesting to know why each author wrote her story for the anthology, Food and Romance Go Together.

Yesterday Ryan Jo Summers shared the story behind “Coffeecake Chaos.”

Today Jody Vitek shares the story of “Peanut Butter Kisses.”

Why Peanut Butter Kisses was Written 

When my publisher opened up submissions for a short story in the Food and Romance Go Together, Vol 1 anthology, I jumped at the chance. I had a file filled with story ideas and knew the one I wanted to write would make a great short story, but you had to have a recipe to go along with and play a role in the story. Figuring out which recipe I was going to use and how to incorporate the food into the story was harder than writing the story.

I had a high school reunion story line with the recipe for my peanut butter cookies, but I had to put the two together. Thinking I had to have my heroine Beth be the one to make the cookies, it was while writing the story that I quickly discovered my hero Hank who would be the baker.

Join Beth at her ten-year reunion, as she hopes to see her long-time secret crush Hank, what happens at the reunion, and what transpires afterward. I hope you enjoy Peanut Butter Kisses and try the cookies, as they are a family favorite.

Photo credit Bryan Ochalla


Ryan Jo Summers

Melange Books had calls for two different submissions; one was to love a Scotsman and one was for a food-themed story.I really preferred to do the love a Scotsman story, and even dreamed up a hunky Scot complete with kilt and attitude. Over the following days, I could not come up withe anything else to add and finally had to admit there just wasn’t a story. Sometimes you can’t force these things. What a shame, because my Scotsman was a dream-boat. (Sigh)
Meanwhile, over in the kitchen, the food-themed story was taking off. I was popping out characters, plot-lines, and even dialogue like kernels of corn in a microwave. I let the whole thing cook a bit, took it out of the mental oven of my mind and poured some buttery fine-tuning revisions over it and had a story. Sort of like pulling a frozen dinner from the oven.


It was based on the coffee cakes I used to bake for hubby in the mornings for him to take to work and share with his co-workers. The idea of a caterer came because I pet-sit/ dog walk as a side job and one of my clients was a pair of caterers. The two meshed and became “Coffeecake Chaos.  There you have the story behind the story.



Book Signing – July 8, 2017 from 10 a.m. – 12 a.m. at Pana Library

My selection is titled “Pumpkin Blossoms.”

Speaking engagements for FRIENDS FOREVER

April 6, 2017  I will be talking about my career as an author  at PJH Career Day

April 8, 2017  I will be talking about the pearls and pitfalls of publishing Friends Forever

DKG Meeting – 10 a.m. at Pana Community Hospital

April 22, 2017 –  I will be presenting the program “Telling Our Stories” at Lambda State Convention

St. Louis, Missouri

Past book signings.

Jan. 30, 2017 Gulf Shore Library, Gulf Shores, Alabama

Dec. 3- Nokomis Public Library.

Dec. 17 – The Hangar in Decatur.


October 5, 2016, from 5-7, the Oak Terrace Book Club is sponsoring

a book signing for the residents of Oak Terrace at the rec center.
I will be signing my book, Friends Forever from 5-6.
From 6-7 I will talk about the writing of the book and answer questions.
Books will be available at all of the signings for $15.00.


October 14, 2016, from 11-1, I was at the Franklin branch of the
Johnson Country Library in Franklin, Indiana, to sign my book. While
living in Franklin, I was a volunteer at the library and supervised student
teachers for Franklin College. I donated a book to the library
so people who could not attend would be able to read it.

October 22, 2016 from 10-12, I was at the Carnegie-Schuyler library in
Pana, Illinois, to sign my book, Friends Forever. I was so happy to have a book signing
at the library where I learned to love books! I also donated a book to the
Pana library where it all began.

To be published in 2018 – Friends Together

If you’ve read Friends Forever you will want to read

Book 2 of the Hickory Hills series

E-book is released


My romantic suspense novel has just been released and a digital copy is available at

If you prefer a paperback copy, please purchase at or

April Conference

April in North Carolina. If you watched the movie or read the book The Long

Ride by Nicholas Sparks then you viewed the beautiful scenery of North Carolina

and the college at Black Hills. I have the privilege of attending a writer’s retreat

at Black Hills, North Carolina with seven other writers. Our teacher will be Hope Edelman, author

of Motherless Daughters, Letters to My Mother, Motherless Mothers, and her memoir

The Possibility of Everything. 

While in North Carolina, I will fly into Charlotte and visit my writing partner

LJ Hippler, author of Cathedral Street and The New Road. 



Favorite Books

BookshelfMaking a list of favorite books is daunting. I love to read, and I read everything from romance to suspense, mainstream literary, and YA.

I want to read a good story and fall in love with the voice
and the characters. And I never want to turn to the last page.

Here are five of my recent reads that fit the above:

All the Light We Cannot See – Anthony Doerr
On Hitler’s Mountain – Irmgard A. Hunt
Beautiful Ruins – Jess Walter
Leaving Time – Jodi Picoult
Paris Wife – Paula McClain

Here are my five all-time favorites.

To Kill A Mockingbird – Harper Lee (because I love the voice of Scout.)
Romeo and Juliet – William Shakespeare (because I taught it for years.)
Night Shift – Stephen King (because it is a collection of short stories and not all of them are scary.)
Plain Truth – Jodi Picoult (because it was the first one I ever read by her.)
Motherless Daughters – Hope Edelman (because it changed my life.)