My Lovely Blog

It has been a long time since I’ve done one of these Lovely Blog things. Never on this site, anyway. When sister in Hadley Rille Books and Heroines of Fantasy Louise Turner asked me to join in, I thought, “Oh, no.” Let’s be honest, most of you reading right now know pretty much everything about me you want to know, right? But the topics for this lovely blog thing are quite different, and I actually got excited about it. So, without further disclaimering…

What is your first memory?
My first memory, one that I know I remember without the help of old pictures, movies, or retellings, is of my dad. Anyone remember Palisades Park in New Jersey? Starting in 1961, they held the Little Miss America pageant, into which my parents entered me in 1969. I was five. I remember my dress–an aqua dotted swiss my mom made. She and my baby sister had matching dresses. Wonder of wonders, I was a finalist. And here is my first memory.

I don't think I'm in there, but you get the idea.

I don’t think I’m in there, but you get the idea.

I had no idea what was going on. I was only five, after all. They called my number. They called it again. Someone gently nudged me from behind and, looking in all directions, I still had no idea what was going on. People were cheering and clapping. Looking out into the sea of faces, I saw my daddy, tears in his eyes, urging me forward. I remember my little heart boinging, because my dad didn’t exactly cry. He’d get teary, but never let them fall. They were falling, but he was smiling, and I knew it was okay. To this day I can imagine his face in the crowd. To this day, it brings tears to my own eyes.

(An aside–the runners up, of which I was one, had to come back the following week. While backstage, the angelic little blonde with long baloney curls, a big white bow in her hair, wearing a red dress and white gloves standing behind me, waited for that second I was called onto the stage to stick her little white-gloved hands into my hair and muss it completely. And that is how I went out onto the stage. Crying.)

palisades park

What books do you love?

What books don’t I love? There are so many favorites, but the ones that stick with me most are:

The Giver, Lois Lowry. Od Magic, Patricia McKillip. The Gold Coast, Nelson DeMille. City of Thieves, David Benioff. Night Circus, Erin Morgenstern. All the Harry Potter Books. All the Lord of the Rings books. Dove Isabeau, Jane Yolen. Stargirl, Jerry Spinelli. Lamb, Christopher Moore, and The Once and Future King, TH White.

Libraries or bookshops?

I was a library fiend as a child and teen. Not so much once I got older. Never, since Amazon made it so easy to have books delivered first to my door, then directly into my Kindle. Does this make me a bad person?


I wasn’t quite sure what this question meant. A.)Do I like learning? B.) What schooling I’ve had? C.) Am I in favor of old dogs learning new tricks? All of the above?

I love learning. It never ends. Whether I’m teaching myself to write (which I did) or listening to my endless courses on CD (almost always linguistics or history) I am constantly learning. There is always something new, something exciting to discover. My formal education ended with high school. I considered going to college once my kids were all in school, but it was either that or write. I chose writing.


I am currently at work on Waking Savannah, the third in my Bitterly Suite. There are several more waiting in the wings–Being Charlotte (book 4 in The Bitterly Suite,) Into the Light (a spinoff series,) Traegar’s Lunatics (not a romance) and The Shadows One Walks (fantasy.) I can’t wait to have at them.

Writing is something I do full-time. I am fully aware of how lucky I am to be able to do so. Monday through Friday, from 10-4, I’m at my desk. And while I’ll take a Facebook break now and again, I’m spending all that time either working on a manuscript, or doing some other writing-related thing–like this.

What’s your passion?

Aside from writing and my family (which includes my cats) my passion is linguistics. My love of language is what fuels my love of writing, and vice versa. I’ve “taken”  seven linguistics classes via The Great Courses (marvelous thing.) Some of them I have listened to twice. I will even admit to listening with tears in my eyes sometimes, because I’ll learn something about words and language and history that hits me like a beautiful piece of music, or a painting, or a horse race*.


*I can’t watch a horse move without weeping. I’ve never made it through a horse race without bawling.

And I am also passionate about cooking. Cooking is an art and I am really good at it, I believe, because I truly see it as an art, not just food. If I were not an author, I would have a restaurant called “One the Fire,” serving Italian country style–whatever is on the fire that day. I use the name in (Dreaming August.)

Part of this game is tagging other blogs. So… LM Pampuro

Reference the source of the tag at the start, and choose as many others as you see fit to carry on after you – I just opted for two on this occasion.  I don’t think there are any timescales, and I’m not likely to put my post up until Friday at the earliest…


Filed under Writing is Life

4 responses to “My Lovely Blog

  1. Terri, I just love imagining you as a five-year-old girl in a Little Miss pageant! I’m sorry that nasty contestant messed up your hair on the second round. Hopefully she got her just deserts later in life.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Terri-Lynne DeFino

      Well, she didn’t win. I have thought about her many times over the years and wondered what became of her. Thanks for stopping by, Karin!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I used to watch that contest all the time! I probably saw you. 😀 We enjoy a lot of the same books. I’m always kind of hoping they’ll make City of Thieves into a movie.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Terri-Lynne DeFino

      My book club was in love with Kolya. We universally named him the literary character we would “do.”


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