Thursday, March 15, 2012

The Magic of Following Your Heart Guest Blog by Holly Robinson


The Magic of Following Your Heart

            Many thanks to Roxanne for inviting me to stop by her amazing site—and for all that she does on behalf of authors everywhere! 

            Despite Roxanne's warm invitation to visit here, I have to admit that I'm looking over my shoulder as I write this, waiting for a spirit lover or vampire to emerge from the shadows and take a nip out of my neck.  I can only hope that the paranormal creatures lurking here will generously tolerate me for a bit.  In exchange, I promise that my novel, Sleeping Tigers, delivers some magic!

            I followed my heart to become a writer.  Originally a biology major who intended to become a doctor—you know, the kind of doctor who wears safari gear and cures cancer in African villages—I started writing for fun and found that I couldn't give it up.  My heart led me to weave stories, articles, essays and books—sometimes my own, and sometimes for other people, as a real life ghost writer.  My parents were horrified, certain that I would never be able to support myself, but I soldiered on and eventually managed to earn a good living doing what I love best.  There is magic in following your heart, because doing so leads you to work that feels like play. 

            In writing my new novel, Sleeping Tigers, I tried to infuse some of my heart into each of the characters, knowing that was the only kind of magic that could bring them to life.  Like Jordan, the protagonist, I survived breast cancer—and that experience taught me how to live my life differently, lingering in the glory of each moment.  I also put a lot of my heart into Jordan's misguided brother, Cam, because I have two beloved brothers of my own.  Thankfully, they have made better choices than Cam, but I know that I would go to the ends of the earth if I thought it would save their lives.   

            Writers weave a certain magic when they create a book that casts a spell on you.  But it's up to you, as a reader, to open your heart and let the energy of the words infuse you with new emotions and ideas.  Give yourself permission to sit in a quiet place and disappear into a book, or hold your e-reader in a way that discourages conversation on the subway as you climb mountains in Tibet, fight off vampires, or kiss a man you've been longing to touch ever since you spotted him across a crowded room.

            The coming together of a writer and a reader is a magical dance, a joining of two hearts in a unique connection that, if we're lucky, might be remembered for a lifetime.


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Sleeping Tigers

By Holly Robinson

Jordan O'Malley has everything she ever wanted: a job she loves, a beautiful home, and a dependable boyfriend. When her life unravels after a breast cancer scare, Jordan decides to join her wildest childhood friend in San Francisco and track down her drifter brother, Cam, who harbors secrets of his own.

When Cam suddenly flees the country, Jordan follows, determined to bring him home. Her journey takes her to the farthest reaches of majestic Nepal, where she encounters tests—and truths—about love and family that she never could have imagined.

Funny, heartbreaking, and suspenseful, Sleeping Tigers reminds us all that sometimes it's better to follow your heart instead of a plan.

Get it for the Kindle and in paperback


Biography: Holly Robinson


Holly Robinson is a journalist and comic whose work appears regularly in national venues such as Better Homes and Gardens, Family Circle, Huffington Post, Ladies' Home Journal, More, Open Salon and Parents. Her first book, The Gerbil Farmer's Daughter: A Memoir, was published by Harmony Books in May 2009 and was released in paperback in June 2010. It was a Barnes & Noble memoir selection as well as a Target Breakout Book.

Ms. Robinson holds a B.A. in biology from Clark University and an M.F.A. in creative writing from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst. She and her husband have five children, two cats, a single gerbil and two very stubborn small dogs. They are currently renovating an antique house north of Boston, and will probably never finish it.

To learn more about Holly Robinson, please visit www.authorhollyrobinson.com

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