In my after-hours, I’ve been working away on the SSKPoD (Super Secret Kowalski Project of Doom). I’ve also mentioned it on Twitter. So what is it?
It’s a short story (free read). (I don’t think it’s going to quite hit novella length, but you never know. The Kowalskis love to talk.) During the crazy DABWAHA voting I offered to, as a bribe, write the having-the-baby epilogue for Joe and Keri (Exclusively Yours). Their daughter was born between Undeniably Yours and Yours To Keep, so I thought it might be fun to back up a little.
I’ve also had a lot of readers ask me for Leo and Mary’s story. A lot more than I expected, to be honest. So I was taking part in the Sizzling Book Club chat for Yours To Keep at Smart Bitches, where talk of Leo and Mary’s story came up again. And, while the chat was scrolling by at crazy fast speeds, the story just BAM—in my head. So I’m trying to jot down a couple of notes, but the chat’s still scrolling and I have to pay attention so I’m trying to get my husband to write a couple of things down but he writes so slowly and I can’t read his writing anyway, so it was a little crazy.
So here it is: the coming soon* Not-So-Super-Secret Kowalski Project of Doom:
Nothing brings Leo and Mary Kowalski more joy than the impending arrival of their seventh grandchild, although they can’t help but wish their oldest son and his wife could have just one of their many false alarms while the sun’s still shining. Between Keri’s first-time-mom anxiety and Joe’s fiction-writing imagination, the hospital staff’s threatening to install a revolving door.
When yet another late night call brings everybody to the hospital with the promise Keri’s really in labor this time, the clock ticks past midnight and into the day marking the anniversary of Leo and Mary’s wedding vows. As they wait for the newest Kowalski to make a grand entrance, the baby’s grandparents remember back to the Northern Star Lodge in 1969, where an angry young man wounded his last week in Vietnam met a dark-haired girl with a dimpled smile and a stubborn streak that matched his own. He was forbidden to socialize with the daughters of guests and her parents had grand plans for her future, but Mary lost her heart to the boy with the pretty blue eyes and refused to give up on him.
The contest: Mary Kowalski needs a maiden name!
Just leave your suggestion for her maiden name** here in the comments (or, if you came here from my FB page because they’re being snotty about contests, you can suggest a name there). I’ve got a crazy, busy weekend planned, so
on Monday on Wednesday evening (my time) I’ll announce two winners, each receiving a $25 gift card to their choice of Amazon, Barnes & Noble or All Romance eBooks. One winner will be the person whose suggestion I use and the other will be randomly drawn from everybody who enters.
* I don’t know exactly when this will be available yet. I’m shooting for no more than two months from now, but I have to make my word count on contracted books each day before I work on special projects.
**Mary’s background has never really been mentioned, so there aren’t really any guidelines for names. She’s a New Englander, but her family could originally have been from anywhere (and that backstory could possibly be decided by a really great maiden name.)
(Oh, and if you go to moderation, it’s okay. The last thing I do before I draw winners is check and make sure nobody got lost in there.)
I loved Yours To Keep and I plan on buying the rest of the books in this series soon!
I think her name should be Mary Lee. It’s so simple and cute and a bit country. I think with a name like Kowalski, she should have a cute spunky and short name.
Mary Gentilly has a nice ring to it.
I discovered your books about eight months ago and have read everything I could get my hands on. Thanks for writing such excellent stories.
mary mcknight is a good one.
i love all ur books. i need to get them signed once i get them in print when they come out
I too just recently discovered your books and am ripping through them. I was thinking something very non-ethnic, old new england;
Please keep writing.
Thank you for your wonderful stories! Coming from a big Irish family, I always pictured Mary as an Irish or English girl. My ideas for Mary’s maiden name are: