Whenever I begin a new project, I also begin a list called “What I Love About This Story.” I start by writing down those first ideas that sparked the fires of my mind, and then I add more ideas as I discover them during my push through early drafts. I use this list as a touchstone to remind myself during the hard times why my story is worthwhile. It’s easy to forget the GOOD STUFF when I’m wading through the muck, and the end is still months away, and it feels pointless and hopeless to continue. This list becomes a crucial reminder: Yes! This is a story worth telling!
And as I’m about to go back into finishing drafting/revising my current work-in-progress, I feel like writing down this manuscript’s love list (in addition to my Pinterest board) will be helpful.
This is my first adult rom-com and I’ve only been sharing snippets of it with my critique partners.
So, here we go.
💕Love List 💕
Second chance romance. Bucket Lists. Lace. And tule. And wedding dresses. Vintage clothing. Old Bay. Swans’ Cove. Maryland Eastern Shore Little Town. Holiday season. Laughter. Animal shelter. Hockey. Therapy. Ice rink. Self-confidence. Therapy. Friendships. Giggles. The sweet smell of cinammon apple pie baking in the oven. The flavor of Julia Child’s Beef Bourguignon. The sound of the waves. Family dinners. Support. Chemistry. Scenes full of sexy moments…including sizzling sexy moments and laughing sexy moments and full-of-emotions sexy moments. and so much more ;-)…
Do you have a love list for your manuscript? Or maybe for your job? Or your day? Don’t hesitate to let me know in the comments. 🙂
I’m used to explaining how to pronounce my name: both my first and last name. I’ve done it for years.
A few weeks ago, Trish Doller tweeted about how helpful it would be for authors to have a pronunciation guide for their name.
I had been meaning to do that for a long time.
Some days, I do believe it would have been easier to go with a pen name for more reasons than one. Other days, I’m happy I decided to publish under my name. Lots of pros and cons. But I digress. Today’s post is about how to pronounce “Elodie Nowodazkij.”
“Elodie” is a common French name. And I may just have spent ten minutes looking at a graph showing its popularity per years. According to data extracted by several websites from l’Insee (National Institute of Statistics and Economic Studies), I can share with you that there were 83 babies named “Elodie” in 1900, while 7118 babies were named “Elodie” in 1981. And I was one of them. It actually reached a peak in 1988. So you could say my parents started a trend. 😉 Based on this data, 58 babies were named Elodie in 2018.
Outside of France, it is not a very common name at all. I usually tell people, it’s like, “Melody without the ‘m’.”
For my last name, “Nowodazkij”, well it’s harder because one doesn’t pronounce all letters. The “j” at the end is silent for example. And for the little story, it’s spelled like this because it was transcribed that way from Cyrillic to German when my husband immigrated to Germany when he was a kid.
So, for those of you who are wondering how to pronounce “Elodie Nowodazkij”, you can listen to me below saying it (or you can click here).
At some point, I was thinking of starting a 5-minute podcast on “How do you pronounce…?” And ask authors to tell me one story about their name.
There are pretty amazing books coming out in August. Let’s face it: There’s always a lot of amazing books coming out 🙂
Some authors organize pre-order / library request campaigns. Basically, all you have to do is either pre-order a book (pre-orders are really helpful to authors) or recommend it to your library (you
And recommending the library purchases a book doesn’t cost you anything (and you can do it from home too) so if you’re on a tight book-buying budget, you still can support an author and read amazing books and get free stuff.
Here are two on-going campaigns for books coming out in August I’m very very excited about.
CRY OF METAL & BONE by L. Penelope (On Sale August 11th – pre-order/library request campaign runs unti 8/11)
I absolutely loved the first book in this series. It took me out of a reading slump I was in. And the CRY OF METAL & BONE (on sale August 11th) just got a starred review from Booklist!
NOW THAT I’VE FOUND YOU by Kristina Forest Pre-order campaign (also includes library recommendations)
I just bought Kristina’s first book I WANNA SEE WHERE YOU ARE after seeing it recommended by Nic Stone. I mean: ballet, road trip and romance? Plus that cover? Gorgeous.
Kristina’s second book “NOW THAT I’VE FOUND YOU” is coming out on August 25th and it also sounds so so good: “A YA novel about searching for answers, love, and your eccentric grandma in all the wrong places.“
Thank you SO MUCH! I’ve just realized that I forgot to update you all here on the results of my TRUST ME, TRUST ME NOT campaign.
For all orders of TRUST ME, TRUST ME NOT in September, I donated $1 to the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society. I raised $90 that way…but this was matched by the wonderful Sam, Katy and Katie, meaning we’ve raised $360 to the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society.
It’s my book birthday. TRUST ME, TRUST ME NOT is my 8th book. And this book has been with me in some pretty difficult times and yet helped me move forward. And what better way to celebrate this book birthday than to hopefully raise some awareness and share my own experience to maybe help someone else.
Yesterday I shared my book release campaign. I’m donating $1 per purchase to the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society for the entire month of September for #BloodCancerAwarenessMonth and my friend (and very talented author) Katy Upperman is matching those donations up to $100. And while I was writing I was thinking on how even though cancer doesn’t define me, it’s not like I can simply wish it away. I can enjoy the moments and be present and sometimes I wonder if I talk too much about it. But, you know what, even though it doesn’t define me, it’s part of my daily life. I see the scars. And I feel it in the neuropathy in my feet. I see it on the calendar as I start mobilization in about 10 days. I also do a lot of other things. And I can talk about a lot of other things. It’s a balance. And it’s important to me. It’s also important to me to share what I wrote in the author’s note of TRUST ME, TRUST ME NOT.
So, I thought that on my book birthday, I’ll share it with all of you.
So here we go….
All my books feel special
to me. But this one? Those characters who have become real in my imagination?
They feel extra special. Maybe because there is so much of me in them. Maybe
because they have helped me move forward. Maybe because I am so proud of this
belong to you now, but for a while they were only in my mind. I started writing
this book what feels like forever ago, even though it’s been maybe over a year or maybe two years. It’s kind of a blur.
I was diagnosed with Hodgkin lymphoma in October 2017. After months of feeling tired. After months of coughing. After months of backache.
started with shooting pain in my shoulder and arm after drinking a sip of
alcohol. It was so bad that I started taking Tylenol if I knew I was going to
have a glass. It was the holiday season. And I do enjoy a glass here and there
and really didn’t want to miss
drinking Champagne on New Year’s Eve.
I googled my symptoms as I do and I found that having pain while drinking
alcohol could be an early symptom of Hodgkin’s lymphoma. I thought I felt something underneath
my arm too, but it wasn’t always
there. My mind went on overdrive. And did I mention I have anxiety?
the pain wasn’t going away and my
upper back pain was actually intensifying, I went to my primary care physician
at the end of 2016. But he basically told me that he’d never heard of the pain with the alcohol symptom
for lymphoma, and that based on his physical evaluation he really didn’t think I should be too worried. He dismissed my
concerns and told me I should do physical therapy for my upper back because it
could very well be muscle weakness. And me having anxiety, I thought, Okay…my
heightened concerns stem from my over-imaginative mind, so I’ll do the physical
therapy and see. He also told me I could
do bloodwork but I figured if he was really worried and not just appeasing my
worries, he’d tell me otherwise. I
didn’t do my bloodwork (which could
have very well shown nothing at that stage because Hodgkin’s lymphoma is funny like that).
months of physical therapy. I changed physical therapists so that it was closer
to my work (I was teaching German at a wonderful community college then). None
of them asked me to undergo x-rays. I went back to my primary care physician
because of a lingering cough in August 2017. Unfortunately it was a different
one and she dismissed my concerns. She also didn’t notice I had lost weight. I hadn’t noticed either but it was summer and I was
wearing clothes that fit. I did have to buy new pairs of jeans but I figured it
was because I had been more active. After all, I was doing physical therapy.
cough continued. My back pain was keeping me up at night. I was feeling like
remember driving to work one day, coughing and yelling in my car that no matter
what was making me cough, I was going to be okay. I knew. Deep inside, I knew
there was more going on with this cough.
started jogging again which in retrospect and after finding out what was going
on in my body makes me wonder how I managed to run. Granted it wasn’t fast or long, but still…
decided to continue working out too. But one day, I felt dizzy while working
out. I blamed it on not drinking enough water.
teaching two classes and writing and doing a thousand things as always. But one
day, I felt dizzy teaching, which I blamed on maybe not eating enough. I
started eating more snacks despite the fact that I wasn’t hungry. I continued working and writing and
telling myself it was okay. Because I went to see my doctor.
I had an
itch and a rash during that time too, but I also have sensitive skin so what
are the chances?
found a lump above my chest in early fall of 2017. And then I went back to see
my primary care physician and everything went very fast after that.
time I got diagnosed I had a very large mass in my chest, which was now
basically poking out of my chest wall, hence the lump. It was such a large mass
that the thoracic surgeon who did my biopsy told me I shouldn’t sleep laying down because the mass could be a
risk to my trachea. That was scary. I remember sitting with my husband on our
bed and we were crossing our fingers that the surgeon would call me back to let
me know the biopsy showed Hodgkin’s
and not some other cancer which had way less of a good prognosis.
laughed and reassured my family when I got the diagnosis. Because we got the
news we wanted. But still it was hard. And it got even harder.
was a time we weren’t quite sure if I’d still be alive today. And I am. And I am
I’m still in treatment today. Hodgkin’s is a very treatable cancer but sometimes it takes
longer when you’re not in the majority
of patients who are cured with first-line treatment. I didn’t talk about cancer much online at first and I didn’t tell many people, because I thought I was going
to be part of the large percentage of patients that go into remission after
their first-line treatment.
I had experiences which plainly sucked. I could probably write a book about fighting
for your rights, fighting to be heard, fighting for your care as a cancer
remember telling one of my oncologists that I was worried about getting a PICC
line (peripherally inserted central catheter which is a form of intravenous
access) because the mass was narrowing my SVC (superior vena cava), and that
oncologist dismissed me. I asked him twice. I asked the nurse who told me, “Well, if they say it’s possible, we should try.” My husband wasn’t in the room with me and it was painful and I was
scared and the nurse kept on hitting a snag and then my heart galloped and she
said, “I’m never doing this to you
again. If they want you to go through it again, they need to send you to
met with that oncologist again (who wasn’t my primary oncologist but higher up), he smiled,
raised his hand, and walked back out of the room. Like it was nothing. Like
that wasn’t traumatizing. I mean,
granted it was nothing like a bone marrow biopsy, but still…(that’s
another story). That same oncologist told me once the first chemo didn’t work as well as it usually does, “Now you’ve
become interesting.” Oh and I could
tell you so much more. Like how he dismissed a treatment that was not coming
from his “group” as inefficient and
yet our third opinion from MSK saw it as possibility because “studies have shown it works.”
longer my oncologist for these reasons and many others. We trusted the Fellow
we had, but that same oncologist who had dismissed my concerns kept on pushing
for one treatment plan, making it seem like it was our one and only option. We
weren’t so sure about their treatment
plan forward, and when we asked questions, we didn’t get many answers. It was a very hard time. I
couldn’t talk without getting out of
breath. I couldn’t drive. I couldn’t walk without getting dizzy. And I was scared of
going through that treatment plan still feeling the way I did. Both the
oncologist we saw at MSK and the one we saw at the University of Maryland
Greenebaum Cancer Center gave us hope again.
is so important.
going to go into details because this is a note from me to you, not another
book ☺ Just like I’m not going to go into details on the ER visits,
and the neuropathy and dealing with health insurance and billing and all that.
treated at the Greenebaum Cancer Center and I’m very grateful to my team there. As I’m writing this, the plan is for me to go through an
autologous stem-cell transplant and yes, I’m very scared about the entire process, but I have
a wonderful team and I advocate for myself and I’m heard and I feel in control of the things I can
be in control of and I learn to deal with the things I can’t necessarily control.
As a cancer patient, I’m so grateful to the Greenebaum Cancer Center for truly being an comprehensive cancer center. My sessions with Vicky Wilson have helped me tremendously. I’m less anxious, less stressed. I know that it’s okay to not always be okay. And I owe it to her.
after switching chemo, I found a way to create different moments, like organize
a fundraiser for associations who help young adult facing cancer. And one of my
highlights? Jenna Fisher (who I loved in The Office but would watch in pretty much anything) not only
donated but she also tweeted at me ☺
get me wrong, there were a lot of hard moments, but there were also a lot, a
lot of good ones throughout treatment. And therapy helps!
I’m very grateful to my oncologist, Dr. Aaron Rapoport, for letting me be a part of the team and especially for giving us hope—and for never making me feel like I didn’t matter. To the nurses (especially Liz and Meeghan and the infusion nurses) and Megan (from the Ulman Fund) and Nancy (Survivorship Navigator) who always manage to put a smile on my face and who also sometimes just let me cry when I need to cry.
I may be
tearing up writing this author’s note.
don’t know what to do for someone who’s close to you, who is going through treatment, is
in remission or might have relapsed, or got diagnosed recently, sometimes you
just need to be there. Organize a meal train (thank you to the Chemical
Engineer’s boss for starting one for
us and for his colleagues for keeping us fed during the months of chemo
treatment). Send a card. Mow their lawn. Text them. Call them. Connect with them.
Even if they’re far away. Don’t forget them. And it’s okay to talk about something else. And it’s okay to ask about it. Everyone reacts
differently. And not everyone has the same experience with chemo and treatment.
But I think not feeling like you’re left
behind is important. And when you’re
going through treatment, you may be too tired or too sick or too vulnerable to
be the one keeping that connection. So, reaching out without always expecting
an answer really helps.
Sometimes this cancer treatment thing takes a
long time, and it’s important to not
lose that connection.
you’re reading this author’s note, I urge you to advocate for yourself, to not
let your anxiety (if you’re prone to
it) be used as an excuse as to why you are feeling strange or sick. Sure, it
can be related to anxiety but you do need to be checked out.
to be listened to.
to have your medical team take your concerns seriously.
some days, I do wonder if maybe the first-line treatment would have worked if
we had caught it before the mass went through my chest wall. And I’ll never be sure so I don’t dwell on it. But still…it’s important that your worries do not get dismissed.
If you are
suffering from anxiety or depression, then my wish for you is to be able to
also find a professional who can help you get through the tough moments and who
can give you the tools you need.
know what else? Enjoy the little moments.
those little moments too, because sometimes you have to readjust. But those
moments, you can still find them. A ray of sunshine. A laugh. A good book. A
Those moments? They truly are the big ones ☺
I probably should add the “Buy links” here but you can find all those in my release campaign post here.
If you’ve read that far, you can also share that release month campaign by retweeting Katy 🙂
or retweeting Katy,
Or sharing this post…
But mainly, what you can really do is spread awareness and advocate for yourself and others if you can and enjoy the little moments.
I started writing TRUST ME, TRUST ME NOT what seems like forever ago. And yet, I “only” started writing it in March 2018. I was still undergoing chemo for Hodgkin’s Lymphoma then. I was in my 5th month of chemo then. I’m still in treatment today.
MSKCC’s website explains: “Hodgkin lymphoma (Hodgkin’s disease) is an uncommon form of lymphoma. It is distinguished by the presence of large abnormal tumor cells called Hodgkin Reed-Sternberg cells. Although Hodgkin lymphoma can occur in both children and adults, it is usually diagnosed in young adults between 20 and 34. ” As per the Leukemia & Lymphoma society, in 2019, there are expected to be 82,310 new cases of lymphoma diagnosed in the US (8,110 cases of HL, 74,200 cases of NHL). You can find some of the symptoms here.
So, yep, this book has been with me through quite a bit.
And since its release is on September 5th, during Lymphoma Awareness month, I decided to run a release month campaign to raise funds for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society.
For every purchase of TRUST ME, TRUST ME NOT during the month of September, I’ll donate $1 to the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society.
Plus, when you order and fill out the form below, you’ll receive an exclusive epilogue and you’ll also be entered in a $25 gift card to your favorite bookstore giveaway.
You can pre-order the e-book before September 5th or you can purchase it starting September 5th and during the rest of the month, It is available on all e-retailers. And you can also get a paperback copy on Amazon.
To receive the exclusive epilogue from Lacey’s point-of-view and be entered in the giveaway, you can simply fill out this form.
If you’d like, you can also add it on Goodreads, BookBub, and request it on Overdrive (for your library)
How can I help spread the word?
You can share this post with your friends or on social media. You can share a picture of your order or of the book. I’ve prepared a tweet and a text you can use. And below there are the pictures of the giveaway in different sizes…but your own pictures of the book might actually work better 🙂
Spread the word on Twitter
Click on TweetThis to tweet the following text: Grab your copy of TRUST ME, TRUST ME NOT now! For each purchase of the book in September, @enowodazkij will donate $1 to @LLSusa for #BloodCancerAwarenessMonth – Plus, there’s a giveaway and exclusive content. All details here: https://elodienowodazkij.com/tmtmn/
You can share those images (your own images of the book could work better :-)): You can download them (for IG, Twitter, Facebook here )
She thought she left the cult behind. He thought he’d always protect her. They were oh so wrong.
Twenty-year-old Lacey Simon jumped from a building on fire to escape the cult her stepdad was leading, so college should be oh so easy. Except Lacey can’t seem to move on. Not only does she receive threatening letters, she’s also failing her classes. Fun times. Only Hunter, the firefighter who saved her from the fire and who’s been there for her ever since, reminds her that her stepdad no longer dictates her future. He tutors her in English, and he makes her laugh, blush and help her be more daring. But why does it feel like he’s only doing this to redeem himself from mistakes of his past?
Twenty-one-year-old Hunter Harrington used to think he was invincible until a frat party turned tragic and he discovered a dead body in the pool. Ever since that day, he’s been doing his best to keep his grades up and help others. Yep, he even joined the volunteer firefighters’ college program. When he’s accused of plagiarism, he’s forced to spend more time with Lacey. Not that he minds. He’d love to get even closer. But he has secrets of his own that could destroy their relationship before it even starts. And can he really keep her safe?
Can they trust themselves and each other enough to no longer be afraid to love and…to stay alive?
This is my first pre-order campaign. Ever. And I’d like to thank Erin Bowman for her amazing insight on how to organize a pre-order campaign.
I can’t believe I’m almost ready to release SEE ME, SEE ME NOT. It’s another of those books that has been simmering for awhile and all the flavors have finally taken 🙂
I’m so excited to share this book with you all, and I want to give a little something to everyone who pre-orders an e-copy. INTERNATIONAL READERS are welcome to join this campaign and will not only receive the swag but also be entered to win the
And yes, I mean EVERYONE. (Well, at least while supplies last.)
If you preorder SEE ME, SEE ME NOT by August 28th, I’ll send you a swag pack including:
» 1 SEE ME, SEE ME NOT bookmark
» 1 SEE ME, SEE ME NOT stickers (selection made at random, image may vary)
Here’s a peek at the front and back of the bookmark, and the stickers…
PLEASE NOTE: I have different quantities of bookmarks and stickers, and they will only be available while supplies last. This means the sooner you preorder and fill out the form, the better chance you have of getting all three! (I’ll probably run out of stickers long before I run out of bookmarks.)
Once the contest closes, I’ll randomly draw runner-up and grand-prize winners!
In addition to the swag pack, FIVE runner-up winners will receive:
» a limited edition signed print of the SEE ME, SEE ME NOT cover (roughly 6” x 11”)
And in addition to the swag pack, ONE grand-prize winners will receive the following bundle:
» a limited edition signed print of SEE ME, SEE ME NOT’s cover (roughly 6” x 11”)
» a signed paperback copy of SEE ME, SEE ME NOT
» a signed copy of Katy Upperman’s debut: KISSING MAX HOLDEN
» a signed copy of FEAR ME, FEAR ME NOT
» A flying pig charm! 🙂 Winged Pig pendant charm with hand stamped initial letter charm on high quality key ring or bangles or bracelet or stainless steel chain (Etsy)
» $10 gift card (to Amazon or B&N, winner’s choice)
Preorder SEE ME, SEE ME NOT by 11:59 PM ET on August 28th and fill out the form below. No really, that’s it! Simply fill out the form letting me know you’ve ordered your copy, and you’re guaranteed a swag pack while supplies last, as well as a chance to win the runner-up or grand-prize. I’m not requiring a proof of purchase for swag packs, but I will ask to see your receipt if your name is drawn as a runner-up or grand prize winner, so hold on to it! Again, this is open internationally
Here’s the form to enter. If it doesn’t load for some reason, click here.
Try as they might…
SEE ME NOT,
Tessa and Luke can’t escape their past
OH MY…You have no idea how long I’ve been waiting to show you this cover…they’re the perfect Luke & Tessa.
Luke and Tessa.
I know I’m not supposed to have favorites but their connection is so strong and their chemistry is pretty off the charts too. They have their issues (pretty big ones…like a sister who disappeared and a past that doesn’t want to let go) but the way they grow closer and trust one another is…<3 ❤ ❤
Six years ago, Tessa Gardner’s sister, Mellie, disappeared. Despite lingering guilt and the never ending desire to find her, seventeen-year-old Tessa works hard to keep it together. But when her childhood crush, seventeen-year-old Luke Simon, rolls back into her small Texan town, he threatens to topple the delicate balance she created. She’s drawn to him—and the way he makes her smile. He’s the only one who seems to understand her, but he’s got a dark past of his own. Even the fake psychics who swear Mellie is still alive tell Tessa that Luke will cause her pain.
Luke Simon knows a thing or two about guilt. He moved in with his uncle to escape his past, but memories threaten to eat him alive. He does what he can to keep his anger in check—quieting his thoughts by making out with one meaningless girl after the next. Tessa, and her long legs and her hard-earned smiles and her kindness is the only girl who’s ever mattered. She’s the one untainted memory he has from his childhood and he could talk to her for hours. He could do anything with her for hours. But the truth about his past might send her running. Or worse.
While Tessa and Luke try their hardest to live in the present, their pasts lurk in the shadows, more intertwined than they could imagine. When the bodies of the fake psychics are found, Tessa realizes that the truth about what happened to Mellie is right around the corner—and it may be too late to save her sister—and herself.
My new book, a YA romantic suspense novel FEAR ME, FEAR ME NOT has been in the making for several years. I could say I wrote it in 3 months, but it’s actually taken me 3 years to get the story where I wanted it to be. It will be published on September 27th, 2016 and you can already pre-order it here.
While browsing the pre-made covers of Najla Qambers , I came across one I fell in love with for a book about another character. The photographer was Lindee Robinson, so I reached out to her to see if I could see more pictures of different couples and I found Erin and Dimitri 🙂
Thank you so much Najla and Lindee!
SCREAM meets FRIDAY NIGHT LIGHTS in this new young adult romantic suspense novel by Elodie Nowodazkij.
Fear is power. They fear me. They don’t fear me enough. Every year a girl disappears in Gavert County, Texas. Their bodies are found days, sometimes months, later with an angel wing carved on their face. They call me “the Angel Killer” and I’m on the hunt again. But this time, it’s personal.
Seventeen-year-old cheerleader Erin Hortz has been warned about the Angel Killer all her life. She never walks alone in the dark. She doesn’t talk to strangers. She doesn’t accept drinks at parties. All she wants is to finish her senior year with a win at the Miss Junior Queen of Hearts pageant, capture the perfect light over the lake with her new camera, and finally catch the attention of her best friend Nadia’s brother—former football star Dimitri Kuklev. Since his injury, they’ve been spending a lot of time together. And getting to know the real Dimitri—not the one she put on a pedestal in her diary is better than she could ever have imagined. And she’s falling hard.
Nineteen-year-old Dimitri’s injury brought him from football superstar with universities from all around the country knocking at his door to not knowing what he wants to do with his life. Taking classes at the local community college is supposed to get him back on track, but all he wants is to be on the field again. The only person who seems to understand him is the one he swore to keep in the friend zone: Erin. His sister Nadia’s best friend and the reason why he can’t keep a girlfriend. Between their early morning jogs, their time spent at the lake laughing, and their late night conversations, he’s having a hard time remembering why it’s such a bad idea.
But when Nadia doesn’t come home after a party, Dimitri and Erin know they must find her before it’s too late—even if that means risking their own lives and everything Erin’s ever known.
Because the main suspect is Erin’s father.
Annnnnd you could win a $50 Amazon Gift Card by participating in The Cover Reveal Giveaway…