Thank you to all the Gather members and my friends and family for helping In Over Her Head advance to the next round! I can't tell you how thrilled I am to be a second-time finalist in a First Chapters contest!
Looking over the comments I've received, one thing struck me - I was earning a lot of Gather points. Now, I never joined Gather for the points. They're definitely very nice, but as I cashed in the last amount for a Borders card, I started to wonder. What could I possibly do with more books? I get many free ones at RWA conferences that I don't have time to read. And, sure I could use the points for Home Depot cards, but, really, I don't feel like working on the home projects. I'm too focused on my writing career.
What to do, what to do?
I thought it was a brilliant idea when I first saw it. Enough that I decided I was going to donate my current Gather points and, if I moved on to Round 2 of the First Chapters contest, I'd earn more and donate those. I'm also hosting one of the Wombats threads, with all points also going to Habitat.
One of our Writing Wombats, Ann, is from New Orleans and, though she'd had a difficult time accessing Gather due to the upgrade, she did keep in touch with us via email. Her words and thoughts during the second anniversary of Hurricane Katrina also inspired me to contactÂ the Habitat office in New Orleans. They do accept gift cards.
Jamie Chapman (The Wolf Huntress) and Dale Cozort (Bear Country) have joined me in this pledge, as have several of The Writing Wombats. Any comments and votes on our contest entries and our articlesÂ will generate points towards this cause. If other entrants,Â Wombats, or members of Gather, would like to join us, please send your contributions to:Â
New Orleans Habitat For Humanity
PO Box 15052
New Orleans, LAÂ 70175
Please visit Habitat's websiteÂ to see how your Home Depot cards can help.
Thanks toÂ Home DepotÂ for making these cards available, Gather for the opportunity to earn the points,Â SimonÂ & Schuster and Borders for participating in this contest and making it impossible for me not to enter, and you, the Gather community for liking my story enough to take me to the finals for the second time. I have truly appreciated everyone's feedback. Your input has made my writing stronger.
Big shout out toÂ Audrey and Flit for first proposing this idea.Â Â Your generosity has inspired more and may New Orleans be the big winner in all of this!