As Marilyn knows, the seeds of Lottie’s Legacy sprouted when I was attending her class/critique sessions at her home in Springville some years back. If it hadn’t been for Marilyn’s encouragement the idea might have dried on the vine. I stumbled around in the weeds for a long time.
The book would have progressed faster if I hadn’t been distracted by life. During a gap of close to seven years, I worked on the manuscript by fits and starts. Yes, that’s a cliché, but it’s true. I put my house and orange orchard up for sale, sold it, moved twice in one year and built a new house. At times, I gave up on Lottie's Legacy altogether.
It wasn’t until July 7, 2007 that Lottie got a new lease on life. Pat Smiley was the speaker at Sisters in Crime in Fresno. She told of her trail to the publication of her first book. It took eight years. She was in Elizabeth George's critique group in Southern California. She said that of the five people in that group, she was the only one to finish a book (and subsequently published).
I thought, ‘By golly, I’m going to finish Lottie’s Legacy even if it never gets published.’ I hauled the entire manuscript out of my file cabinet, spread it out on the dining room table and took a scissors to it. I had 22 chapters that needed pruning. I spent an hour cutting and pasting. It was hard to toss out scenes that I liked but didn’t fit.
I got involved with Visalia Writers and the polishing began. Changes were made, then when I thought it was ready, I sent out e-queries. But while I’d been busy working over the manuscript, the economy fell off a cliff. My e-rejections came back so fast it was breathtaking.
I’d used CreateSpace to publish Leaves from the Valley Oak, an anthology of work from the Visalia-Exeter Writers’ critique groups. The product turned out to be beautiful, and we were all very pleased. I kept hearing and reading about e-publishing and self-publishing. I decided I wasn’t going to wait for the economy to recover. With the help of my good friend, Sylvia Ross, I developed the cover and self-published the book in June this year. It’s now available at www.amazon.com and www.amazon.com/kindle, at the Book Garden in Exeter and from the author.
About Lottie’s Legacy:
Deena Powers’ life has come apart at the seams. Her father has been killed in an auto accident, and her aunt is under suspicion for a murder. Convinced her aunt is innocent, Deena intends to prove it. And who better to ferret out the truth? After all, Deena’s a private investigator.
When she arrives in Four Creeks in California’s San Joaquin Valley where her aunt lives, she’s in for a number of surprises, the first being that her former high school sweetheart, Avis “Buzz” Walker, is the officer investigating the crime. Past feelings stir and sparks fly when Deena starts asking questions and sticking her nose into his investigation.
Although a burglary of her office in Southern California is an unwanted distraction, Deena continues doing what she does best, and soon learns that the eccentric dead woman was about as popular around town as a summer dust storm.
Deena is sure she knows who the killer is, but proof is elusive and she is forced to enlist the help of Buzz Walker in order to delve into the dead woman’s colorful past. The trail leads back fifty years where a secret is uncovered, one that involves her aunt. When seemingly unrelated events converge, Deena is brought face-to-face with a ruthless killer.
Gloria Getman was born in Wisconsin, grew up in Ojai, California, graduated from Nordhoff High, and Ventura College. Marriage and children followed. Later, when the family moved to Exeter, CA, she went on to graduate from CSU, Bakersfield with a BSN in nursing. After 25 years as an RN, she retired and began writing.
Her nostalgic piece “Hair to Hate” was published in Yesterday’s Magazette and Reminisce Extra. Her poetry has appeared in South Valley Arts, the Sun-Gazette, and the SGS Newsletter. She won third place in the Central Valley Writers Workshop competition in 2007 and third place in the 2010 Lillian Dean First Page Competition for a novel at the Central Coast Writer’s Conference. Three of her short stories are in the Visalia-Exeter Writers’ anthology, Leaves from the Valley Oak. She’s a member of both Central Coast and San Joaquin Sisters in Crime, plus SLO NightWriters.
Her first novel, Lottie’s Legacy, a cozy mystery, is available at www.amazon.com and www.amazon.com/kindle.
Visit her blog: http://gloriagetman.blogspot.com/
(And a P.S. from me. I loved this story from the first time I heard it. I'm so glad it's finally a reality!)