[[Welcome to my weekly writer’s diary where I’ll share my “Woot Woot!” moments and the not so “woot woot” moments of my writing world. And, yes, I might even share the occasional musing or two about reading and writing, two of my favorite things!]]
It’s Thursday ~ 01/17/13 ~ and…
It’s been a difficult week. I lost one of my dearest friends on Sunday. CJ Snyder – or Jan as I knew her – passed suddenly and all of us who knew and loved her are still in a state of disbelief and shock. She’d successfully beat breast cancer and was looking forward to taking her writing career to the next level when pancreatic cancer took her from us.
She had such a bright future in front of her. She published three wonderful romantic suspense novels that garnered her lots of fans – MAVERICK; WHILE YOU WERE DEAD and DEAD RECKONING (the first two books in her Black Fire trilogy). She was working on the final book in the series, DEAD TO RIGHT, and had more stories to share than she had time to write. She had a remarkably creative mind and an incredible writing talent.
Her books reflected her strength of character, her ability to see the good and the bad in people. She was genuine, spiritual, generous, sweet, and gave of herself to everyone she met. Over the twelve years we were critique partners, I came to depend on her weekly insights, her support and encouragement and, most of all, her friendship.
It’s thanks to Jan that I write romantic suspense. I struggled for years to make inroads into the traditional contemporary romance markets. When I began to reevaluate my career path, she asked me why I didn’t try to write for the romantic suspense market. I told her I couldn’t write suspense. She looked me in the eye and said, “But you already do.” It was a jaw-dropping moment for me. She was right. Almost every one of my contemporary romances held elements of suspense and I’d been stifling my voice. She knew my heart before I did. She freed my inner suspense writer and I’ll be forever grateful.
Her passing has left a huge hole in my heart. I miss her terribly. The past week has been exceedingly hard. But, I also know I wouldn’t have missed having her in my life even knowing she’d be taken too soon. She was my sister in every way that mattered.
Jan leaves behind four children and nine grandchildren, her mother, sister, two brothers and a lot of friends she turned into family.
Rest in peace, my friend. I love you!
Learn more about CJ Snyder: http://www.cjsnyderbooks.com/
See you next Thursday for another entry in Karen’s Diary Drop-In….