Winter Blogfest: Cj Fosdick

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This post is part of Long and Short’s Review Winter Blogfest. Leave a comment for a chance to win 1 of 4 Digital copies: 2 of The Accidental Wife and 2 of The Accidental Stranger..

MORPHING THE CHRISTMAS LETTER

For almost half a century I’ve sent out a dutiful Christmas letter each December that had three major intentions. Touching base with friends and family was always a given, but exercising my writing skill and incorporating a historical timeline were ulterior motives. The timeline was homage to my bent for all things historical. Each of our children will someday benefit from a Christmas binder of letters that includes a parallel view of the family in changing times, along with some family photos and greeting cards through the years.

When the nest thinned out several years ago, we opted to take Christmas photos of hub and I with one or more of the animals left in our domestic “zoo.” In my Pride and Prejudice phase, we rented costumes and posed as Darcy and Elizabeth with our favorite white Arabian. Another year, we posed in bathing suits on a snow-covered patio, enjoying summer drinks. “Greetings from tropical Minnesota” topped that year’s newsletter.

Keeping the letter witty, cheerful and held to one or two sides of a single page was often a challenge, especially when the year was touched by tragedy or death. Running a wildlife preserve on our woodsy Minnesota acreage the last 32 years, however, provided a balance of amusement. (I count four children and even their children among “wildlife” which included horses, deer, turkeys, dogs, cats, rabbits, squirrels, birds, snakes, rodents and even a pygmy goat and a pelican.)

I never lacked material to write about. It was hard controlling the word count. And after the holidays, I always regretted that I lacked time to focus on more than the occasional article or feature for a local paper or magazine. Somewhere deep inside my spurts of creativity the Great American Novel fluttered impatient wings. When I did carve out time in my busy life to freelance short articles or stories—that demanding novel within raged and pouted over the put-off. Things began to pop when I joined a few National Writing Associations and began to attend their writer conferences.

After placing in a short story competition, the judge wrote me a letter begging me to continue the story. An agent at a Las Vegas Writers Conference suggested I write a novella first, then pursue the longer novel I finally got around to pitching. I took their collective advice and my debut novel, “The Accidental Wife,” was scooped up by a small press and released in 2015 to good reviews and even a few awards. Confidence surged. I was motivated to continue with more novels. With an empty nest and only one dog left in our menagerie, I had no more excuses!

I write full time now, churning out the ideas that were always suppressed by time. The vanity license plate on my hot little red car expresses it all. “Novel CJ” is finally in gear. Book Two, “The Accidental Stranger” will be released January 6th in my “Accidental” series. The annual Christmas letter is morphing into a newsletter put out bi-monthly for fans. It is no accident; there is never a time-stamp on creativity or new careers. Never too late to promote delayed dreams! And to think…it all began with one of those much maligned, dutiful Christmas letters.

Jessica Brewster is being watched…and things go missing from the romote Wyoming home she shares with her toddler. In a freak accident, she shoots the bearded thief stalking her before she recognizes the mesmerizing green eyes that belong to the only man she ever loved.
Has Mitch bridged time to find her? In a race to save his life and change hers forever, she takes him into her home and heart. But his memory loss and puzzling clues curry doubt and expose mystery and danger. Is he truly her son’s father or an irresistible stranger in her arms?

About the Author: Cj was born and raised in Milwaukee, Wis. but has lived longer in Rochester, MN. where her writing career escalated from local and Nationally published award-winning stories, articles, and anthologies to her first novel–The Accidental Wife. Though she has lived on a woodsy 12-acre hilltop deer haven for decades, she has ventured down on rare occasions to climb a waterfall in Jamaica, float in the Dead Sea, kiss the Blarney Stone, and train wild mustangs, several dogs, cats, children and one patient husband.

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Comments

  1. That must have been cold in the snow.

    • Actually the cold bothered the camera more than either of us. We had to run inside to warm the camera up several times, then re-attaching it to the tripod for a couple more shots!

    • Debra, Congratulations, you won a free download of “Hot Stuff,” a short story with a link to a Feb. holiday. Send your email address to receive it.

      Cj

    • Congratulations Debra, You won a free download of “Hot Stuff,” a romantic short story by Cj Fosdick. Send your email address for a forward!

  2. Setting int he snow is more then my kind of crazy. I love it.

    • I love the snow Teresa! Couldn’t live without 4 seasons, though I treasure some of them more than others. Winter is great to sit before a blazing fireplace to read…or write. Your name suits the season!

    • Teresa, send me your email address. Congratulations! You won a free download of either one of the books in my “Accidental Series.”

  3. Sounds like you have very interesting newsletters and Christmas cards to send out each year.

    • Subscribe free to the bi-monthly adventures of a Minnesota writer who feeds wild deer and turkeys, etc. in her wooded surroundings. Great inspiration for an armchair time traveler who writes romantic suspense!

    • Jean, Congratulations. You won a free download of “The Accidental Wife,” first book in the series. Contact me with your email address. Cj

  4. What a wonderful time and place for writing! I enjoyed reading about your world and will check out your books to see what inspiration Mother Nature has bestowed upon you. 🙂

    • Teresa, Send me your email address to receive the FREE digital copy of The Accidental Stranger!

      You name fits the season and I liked that you would sit in the snow in a bathing suit, as well! Congratulations. Please follow up with a comment to me after you read TAS !! I’s love to hear from you!

    • K.S. Jones, send me your email address and I will send you a complimentary download of The Accidental Stranger to be released this Friday or it’s prequel, The Accidental Wife–your choice!

  5. CJ, Great post. Thanks for sharing. I do the same thing with a family & friends holiday letter for the last 20 so years. My friends & family always make sure they send me their new address so they won’t miss the yearly holiday letter, an added bonus. LOL I keep my letters in a folder, but I like you binder idea. Going to make that change. Good luck with your new release!!!

    • Thank Tena! I love history–reading, recording, living it! Maybe why writers write–to grab a bite of immortality?? We have a little pet cemetery on our Funny Farm here and ea. pet buried there has a “letter” and photos–so if anyone ever unearths them in a 100 or 1000 yrs., they’ll read a bit of history from this century about beloved dogs, cats, a pygmy goat and pony?? The Christmas letters may find a separate site there someday as well??

  6. Your home complete with a menagerie of wildlife sounds like my kind of place! Great post! Happy holidays!

    • Laura, Congratulations! Contact me for a Free download of either book in my “Accidental Series.” New book is released this Friday! If you need any info to give me a boost post on your website or FB, let me know!

      Cj Fosdick

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