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  • Susan Zurenda

Getting Ready for March!

Welcome to the beginning of my musings as I and others prepare to bring my debut novel, Bells for Eli, into the world. My publisher, Mercer University Press, offered to send me to the SIBA (Southern Independent Booksellers Alliance) 2019 Discovery Show in September 2020 to present my debut novel, Bells for Eli. I am not only honored but beyond impressed at what they’ve been able to accomplish to prepare an ARC (advance review copy) in time for the show with my publication date set six months from now in March 2020.


Among other happenings at SIBA from September 13-15, 2019, I am reading at Parapalooza, an event at which 16 authors will read a single, favorite, hand-picked paragraph from their new or upcoming books. As a book publicist who has attended the SIBA Trade Show several times, I have thoroughly enjoyed listening to the authors reading at Parapalooza while I sipped leisurely on a margarita (a pitcher provided on every table), never considering how difficult it is to pick a single paragraph.


Let me tell you, it’s a hard assignment to choose one paragraph that captures the essence of your book. I’ve narrowed the field to four choices from different sections of the novel, but haven’t been able to decide on the one. I’ve asked friends and family for their opinions, but each has a different favorite. I think the conclusion here is for me to shuffle the four selections, close my eyes, place them in front of me, and point my finger. Wherever my finger lands, like the planchette on the Ouija Board that Eli and Delia consult in my novel, presto, the decision is made.

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