When I first started writing, I only confided in a few people – not sure how it would all turn out. When I completed the first draft, I was so thrilled with the accomplishment, I told a few more. When they loved it, I decided that I would pursue publishing it, but I wanted a larger pool of readers… so I told even more about it. Those who read the novel in its infancy, who shaped the storyline, providing their honest opinions with emails as they read, who read through typos, run-on sentences and overused words – these fantastic people are my Original Fans. And we should ALL be thanking them, because they are as much a part of writing Reason to Breathe as I am!

Please allow me to introduce them to you…

Ironically, the first person I told I was writing the novel, who encouraged and believed in me throughout the entire process, has never read the book. But I love you all the same – Thank you Amy! (It will be an audio-book eventually! Ha!)

Faith read Reason to Breathe as it was being typed – literally. I’d send her daily doses of the VERY first draft of the novel.

Faith ~ I trust you with my words, and everything else for that matter. You are my first fan, having read just about everything I’ve written (the only person who’s read the first draft of the sequel). I consider you an extension of myself when I’m writing and a voice of reason in my life. You are my person, and I am so very lucky to have you in my life! (Faith is the reason that Jared Mathews stuck around longer than a few pages!)

Reason to Breathe went through some major transformations from its conception to the ePublished version. There are only two people who read both versions before it was released – Faith and Emily. If they didn’t like the changes, then I knew I was in trouble. But they loved the final version as much as the first!

Emily ~ You are my most enthusiastic fan. Thank you for helping me edit the final draft – a stack of pages with highlighted smiley faces, “LOVE!”s and “Wow!”s written all over the words. You want everyone you meet to read the novel and emphatically tell them so! What will always stay with me is when you told me you cried during one scene in the novel, and I made you show me the tear drop on the page – I still have it!

Faith may be the very first person to read everything I intend to publish, but Elizabeth will always be the last.

Elizabeth ~ You have been an amazing editor, and I don’t know what I would have done without you. I am so grateful we have bonded over this experience! As an avid book lover, your passion about all things “words” has made working alongside you thrilling. I have the greatest respect for your talent and appreciate the grammar boot camp you’ve provided on the proper use of commas! I invite everyone to visit her site www.nerdlightbooks.com to share in her passion by reading her book reviews.

I was in Maine at a friend’s family cabin when I happened to mention I was writing a novel. Chrissy asked to read it, and with slight hesitation, I agreed. I was ninety percent done, but it was the most nerve racking experience to watch someone read my work right in front of me – and she read 300 pages that night!! That same weekend in Maine, I researched and plotted how Emma would be tortured through the last few chapters.

Chrissy ~ Thank you for your insight and passion. You taught me so much about writing, getting to the point, and that opening up isn’t a bad thing. I’m so very fortunate to have you in my life!

Steph ~ You will always be my Sara. You know me better than I know myself, and I trust you! You’re always honest, even when I’m not ready to hear it, and for that I love you! We’ve shared so many laughs, some at the expense of my clumsiness, and you’ve been a part of it all! It means so much for you to be a part of this as well!

Meredith ~ Your words of encouragement and praise will always stay with me. I adore you for believing I would be on Oprah, although it doesn’t seem likely any longer – you had me believing!

Amy S. ~ You are one of the few readers who didn’t know me, making your opinion, including your top ten favorite scenes, that much more important to me. I loved that you could envision this on the Big Screen, even recommending songs for the soundtrack. Maybe someday…

Erin ~ Your honesty was refreshing, and you helped remind me that high school is not high school for everyone!

Nicole ~ You lived in Weslyn for over 400 pages, and your comments about what you’d like to do to Carol will always stay with me, and make me laugh!

Galen ~ Asking you to read Reason to Breathe has bonded us, and for that I am grateful. Loved when you told me you shivered when washing the dishes!

Stephanie ~ You’ve been so patiently waiting for the sequel, and you continue to remind me that you’re still waiting every time I see you! Ha! Soon – I promise!!

Kara ~ You are unlike any other reader, and I am grateful for your unique perspective. Your expectations of my success have been as if it’s already happened, so sure of me. You’ve touched me!

Katrina ~ We become sixteen year-olds whenever we’re together – and I love that! Talking about boys, movies and finding so much to laugh about… sometimes at the expense of bad movies! You’ve been an amazing person to know.

Lisa ~ You read Reason to Breathe to get to know me better, probably learning more than you realized. Your guidance has left an impression – Thank you!

Ann ~ You transformed an idea into an amazing book cover! You captured the moment perfectly, with not much to work with – that is talent! Thank you!

Dru ~ You challenged me to add spice to the vanilla – and I did! I am grateful for your honesty, and the results have created something I’m very proud to share with everyone. Without knowing it, you encouraged me to open my own doors.

Dan ~ The first guy to read the novel, and despite the “girl stuff”, you made it clear that you were just as enthralled as every other reader – and that this is a story for everyone to read. You connected with me, on many different levels, and for that I will be eternally grateful!