Sunday, November 2, 2008

Dating da Vinci Launch Week

Ciao, Bellas!

As I officially launch the release of my second novel, Dating da Vinci, about a grieving widow getting her groove back, I’m on a mission, and it may not be the one you think. Sure, I need to get word out about the humorous and poignant novel bearing my name and hope sales go gangbuster, but what I want is deeper than that.

I want readers to go on their own journey to find joy in the everyday – even joy in the mundane – from here on out. I can see that look on your face. You’re doubtful. You’re thinking, “what have you been, in some writer’s cave where you haven’t read the news? Smear campaigns! Toilet economics!”

Well, I have peeked my head out of my cave, and you know what? The sun is still shining. Here in Oklahoma, my tree-lined yard has become a palette of autumn’s gorgeous hues. The world, it seems, is still turning. The only thing I know for sure is that I’m the only one that can control my thoughts (though politicians try very, very hard), and what I choose to think is how grateful I am for what I have and to keep my trap shut every time a negative word tries to escape it. (Snark is still acceptable.)

Instead of just “don’t sweat the small stuff” mantra, I like, “savor the small stuff” for practicing gratitude and the present moment. It’s still hard, but gets easier the more I do it. My protagonist, Ramona, has had it so much worse than I ever have. She lost her soul mate, has questions about his past and her future, and she goes on a journey to find what could bring her happiness and peace, creating a wholly new life.

So let’s celebrate la vita allegro – joyful living! To be registered for a chance to win this “one love” organic tote bag and signed copy of The Stork Reality, my first novel, and Dating da Vinci, just comment to this post and you'll get an extra entry if you post a comment on my interview with The Long & Short of It on Nov. 4th. I'll notify the winner on Nov. 5th. You can learn more about the book in this video interview with the Oklahoman, and be sure and visit malena for a chance to win more prizes, read book reviews and get great recipes for the holidays.



  1. I share your philosophy, Malena. The happiest people I know are the ones who take their pleasures from the everyday. An attitude like that also carries you far through rougher times, and makes it much easier to enjoy the fabulous times too . . . like launch days! Congrats and best of luck with your newest book.

  2. Thanks, Malena, for the reminder to revel in the small stuff--such as the dog who has gotten into the Halloween candy TWICE now. As I just said to the DH, she's sixteen. If she dies from eating chocolate, she'll die happy. Good to see that she still has a spark of life left in her--not to mention a streak of the devil! So rather than getting mad about picking up a second mess, we laughed that she's still got it.

    Best of luck with the official launch of your delightful book. I absolutely loved it!

  3. Yep, the sun is still shining here, there were deer browsing in my back yard this morning, I didn't sleep in and got an extra hour added to my day, and I bought gas yesterday for $2.19!
    Small stuff is good.
    Congrats on the release!

  4. Man, it sure is depressing living here in the nation with the highest avrage standard of living(not). Wake up, people! We may have some hiccups in our economy but life is so much better here that people risk their life every day to come to the US!

    You're so right, Malena. We should be joyful that are lives are so good.

  5. Christina, Thanks!
    Marie, our little Shih Tzu got into bubble gum from my toddler's Halloween back. He was chewing away. Pretty funny. He tried to bite when I took it away. Probably liked how sweet it was.
    Cheryl, DEER! That's so awesome. I don't get to see those unless I visit the east part of the state.
    Arklern - Ha! Yes, it helps when we put things into perspective globally.

  6. Savor the small stuff. My new motto. I have known people in my life like that and I try to be like them, because you know what? Those are the people I want to be around.
    Great thought, have a great great launch. I know it will be a resounding success.

  7. Good luck to you on your launch! As cheesy as it may sound, I'm so grateful for an extra hour today, and no set plans! Can't wait to read your book!

  8. Michelle, Yeah, I read somewhere that you need to ask yourself if the people around you energize you like a battery or drain your energy! And to steer clear of the ones who drain you. It's sometimes unavoidable, but I do try to keep those contacts to a minimum. :-)

    Shelley, I'm with you. Love the extra hour! I used my extra hour today to write on my fourth novel. I vow to win Nanowrimo this year and I didn't write yesterday so I've done 2800 words today so far. Now I'm off to take the kids to the park.

  9. Malena~ I totally agree.

    I've been talking about exactly this for years but I use a bucket analogy. There are people who fill your bucket and people who are dippers. You need to surround yourself with fillers. People who add happiness and wonder to your life. If you have a full bucket, the people around you can catch the overflow and you'll have enough to fill someone else's bucket when they need a lift.

    Malena, you're definitely a filler.

    Congratulations on your launch. I'm so looking forward to reading your book.

    Robin :)

  10. Congrats on your release Malena another book to add to my must get list.

    There is so much we can enjoy from everyday life the smile of a baby the joys of watching my dogs trying to get chocolate of me they love it.

    Have Fun

  11. Robin, Love that bucket analogy! I'll definitely put that one into play! I have a life coach coming to one of my parties this week so I'll share her top 5 ways to cultivate la dolce vita, with her permission.

    Helen, Thanks for stopping in. It was the most fun watching my friend's 1 year old daughter as a ladybug Friday night and seeing the grown up's expressions when they answered the door to see tiny little human so excited to say trick or treat. And last night I was back at my alma mater, Univ. of OK and it's such a spirited atmosphere you think you'll just float away. Too fun.

  12. Late to the party, but wanted to add my SUPER CONGRATS to you Malena!

    Dating da Vinci sounds like a great book and I can't wait to add it to my TBR mountain.

    who is grateful for all her wonderful Casa Sisters

  13. congrats and best wishes on your new book

  14. I knew I loved you, Malena! Savor the small stuff...what a great motto!

  15. Very true, Malena on savoring the small things.

    Enjoy your launch!


  16. Love your attitude and positive outlook, Malena! We need more of that in this world, I am convinced. It is just one reason why I am utterly unapologetic for writing a sappy, happily-ever-after series. Bring on the positive side of life, I say!! Whether escaping into a novel or facing the real world, a person needs to keep a smile on the face. Amen!! Thanks for the reminder, and HAPPY LAUNCH DAY!!

  17. Congrats on the release Malena!

    (Chick Lit Writers member)

  18. Thanks, everyone! I'm feelin' the love.

  19. Have a great book launch, Malena! Can't wait to get my grubby little hands on your books. You'll have to sign them for me, too. :-D

    Would love to attend the launch celebration, but can't make the trip to OKC that week. I'll be there in spirit though.