Tuesday, January 29, 2008

The Liar's Diary Blog Day and Giveaway

Patry Francis was the catalyst for me to commit to fiction writing and to start blogging. I read The Liar’s Diary when it was released in hardback and Patry was the first author I ever felt compelled to email. I wanted to tell her that I couldn’t stop thinking about her characters, and to this day I really never have. The story and the writing drew me in so deeply that I was thinking about them and talking about them for days afterward. To my complete surprise, Patry responded to my email and she has been a friend and an inspiration ever since.

I was going to craft my own post for this incredible event today, but Susan Henderson has generously given us all permission to use her content and for that I thank her. It is much better than anything I would have written.

Before moving on to what this is all about, I want to say that I've read and highly recommend this book and I will send a copy to the first five people who comment. If you love it as much as I did, please write up a review and post it on Amazon, your blog or wherever you'd like.

The following entry was written by Susan Henderson at Litpark here:

Today, over 300 bloggers, including bestsellers, Emmy winners, movie makers, and publishing houses have come together to talk about THE LIAR'S DIARY by Patry Francis. Why? To give the book the attention it deserves on its release day while Patry takes the time she needs to heal from cancer.

Before I talk about this book, I'd like to tell you a story about how this extraordinary day happened.

First, you need to know something about Patry Francis.

What if you worked for years as a waitress and then went home at the end of the day to your husband and four kids, and in those rare minutes of free time, you dared to dream that one day you might write a book? This is the story of my friend, Patry - a story that leaves out years of false starts, revisions, and rejection slips. It's a story that writers know intimately, though the details are different. Every one of us is well acquainted with the struggle of getting a story on paper, of honing it and believing in it enough to send it out, only to receive rejection, or worse, silence for our efforts.

Imagine, after many years, you beat the odds. You finish that book. You find that agent who sells your manuscript. Your dream is about to become a reality. But just as your book is due to be released, you discover you have an aggressive form of cancer.

Patry's story struck such a deep chord with many of us, not just because she is our friend, but because those of us who know her or read her blog have relied on her company through the ups and mostly downs of trying to write and sell a book. She is our buoy. She has shown us time and again her great gift for shedding light in the dark. Even her blog post about her cancer showed this - in her greatest time of need, she was still somehow comforting all of us and showing us glimpses of joy.

Patry is part one of this amazing story.

THE LIAR'S DIARY in paperback.

Now you need to know something about Laura Benedict:

On New Year's Day, or thereabouts, Laura wrote to me, calling my attention to Patry's publication date. "Perhaps we could do a 'Patry Francis/Liar's Diary' blog-o-rama or carnival or something to promote the book?" she wrote. "I'm such an amateur at this stuff that I don't know what's possible."

I didn't give a moment's thought to what we might try to pull off, or how; I simply said, "Yes! Let's do it!"

It's very important to me that Laura is recognized for her initial gesture - not just because she's a great and generous woman, but because it says something about the strength of the heart over the kinds of power most of us are without. When you see the amazing outpouring of support and the high-profile people who joined this effort, remember it started with one small voice.

Laura is part 2 of this amazing story.

THE LIAR'S DIARY in hardcover.

Now let's talk about you:

In less than one month, over 300 bloggers, writers, readers, and just big-hearted people signed on to take part in this day. I am overwhelmed and grateful for every single person who said yes or helped spread the word, but let me reserve some enormous thanks for the people who traded hundreds of emails with me to put this together: Karen Dionne of Backspace, Jessica Keener of Agni and The Boston Globe, Dan Conaway of Writers House, and Alice Tasman of the Jean Naggar Literary Agency.

What began as a personal gesture of caring for a friend became an astonishing show of community - writers helping writers; strangers helping strangers; and most surprising of all, editors, agents and publishers, who have no stake in this book, crossing "party lines" to blog, to make phone calls, and to send out press releases.

This effort has made visible a community that is, and has been, alive and kicking - a community that understands the struggle artists go through and rejoices in each other's successes. It's a community made up of many small voices, but - guess what? - those many small voices can create some noise. So while today is for Patry, it's also a symbolic gesture for all of you who work so very hard for little or no recognition, for all of you who keep going despite the rejections, and for all of you who have had illness or other outside factors force your art or your dreams aside. We are in this together.

Time to talk about THE LIAR'S DIARY.

Whether you like text, audio, or video, I have a taste of the book for you. Let's start with an audio clip of THE LIAR'S DIARY. This audio clip comes courtesy of Eileen Hutton at Brilliance Audio.

This video for THE LIAR'S DIARY was created by Sheila Clover English, C.E.O. of Circle of Seven Productions, who was moved by Patry's story and volunteered her lightning-speed creativity!

Here are the publisher's words:

Answering the question of what is more powerful—family or friendship? this debut novel unforgettably shows how far one woman would go to protect either.

They couldn’t be more different, but they form a friendship that will alter both their fates. When Ali Mather blows into town, breaking all the rules and breaking hearts (despite the fact that she is pushing forty), she also makes a mark on an unlikely family. Almost against her will, Jeanne Cross feels drawn to this strangely vibrant woman, a fascination that begins to infect Jeanne’s “perfect” husband as well as their teenaged son.

At the heart of the friendship between Ali and Jeanne are deep-seated emotional needs, vulnerabilities they have each been recording in their diaries. Ali also senses another kind of vulnerability; she believes someone has been entering her house when she is not at home—and not with the usual intentions. What this burglar wants is nothing less than a piece of Ali’s soul.

When a murderer strikes and Jeanne’s son is arrested, we learn that the key to the crime lies in the diaries of two very different women . . . but only one of them is telling the truth. A chilling tour of troubled minds, The Liar’s Diary signals the launch of an immensely talented new novelist who knows just how to keep her readers guessing.

And now, here are Patry's words, which I lifted off her blog: "Though my novel deals with murder, betrayal, and the even more lethal crimes of the heart, the real subjects of THE LIAR'S DIARY are music, love, friendship, self-sacrifice and courage. The darkness is only there for contrast; it's only there to make us realize how bright the light can be. I'm sure that most writers whose work does not flinch from the exploration of evil feel the same."

Ready to buy the book? Why not buy one for yourself and one for a friend? And if you like it, tell people!

Here are links to THE LIAR'S DIARY at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and Powell's. You can also buy directly from Penguin to save 15% (after you add the book to your cart, just enter the word PATRY in the coupon code field and click ‘update cart’ to activate the discount).

A long list of thank yous.

You're about to see a very long list of those who are taking part in THE LIAR'S DIARY Blog Day. I hope you'll check out the links because some of these folks got very creative. For example, my friend, Aurelio O'Brien, made up these buttons and stickers:

litpark aurelio o'brien eve cancer survivor button

Wow... to every one of you on this list! Thank you, so sincerely:

Patti Abbott
Mario Acevedo
Susan Adrian
Samina Ali
Christa Allan
Joelle Anthony
Jorge Argueta
Vicki Arkoff - MAD Magazine, Nickelodeon, MW Book Review
Melanie Avila
Tricia Ares
Terry Bain
Gail Baker - The Debutante Ball
Anjali Banerjee
Lauren Baratz-Logsted
Elizabeth Bartasius
Carolyn Burns Bass
Brett Battles
Laura Benedict
Pinckney Benedict
Janet Berliner
William Bernhardt
Alexander Besher
Marcie Beyatte
Brenda Birch
Roberto Bonazzi
Raven Bower
Laura Bowers
Beatrice Bowles
Tara Bradford
Gayle Brandeis
Stacy Brazalovich
Susan Breen - Gotham Writers Workshops
Heather Brewer
Eve Bridburg - Zachary Shuster Harmsworth
Sassy Brit
Heatheraynne Brooks
Debra Broughon
Josie Brown
Pat Brown
Ruth Brown
Ken Bruen
Rachel Kramer Bussel
Aldo Calcagno
Austin S. Camacho
Bill Cameron
Lorenzo Carcaterra
Vincent Carrella
Karen DeGroot Carter
Rosemary Carstens
Cynthia Clark - Futures Mysterious Anthology Magazine
Jon Clinch
Kamela Cody
Oline H. Cogdill - Sun-Sentinal
Tish Cohen
Eileen Cruz Coleman
Myfanwy Collins
Dan Conaway - Writers House
Laurie Connors - Penguin
Eileen Cook
Richard Cooper
David Corbett
Auria Cortes
Bill Crider - Pop Culture Magazine
Kim Cristofoli
Ann Mare Cummins
Sheila Curran
Kristie Cutter
Jordan Dane
Josephine Damian
Daryl Darko
A.J. Davis
Kelli Davis
Alyssa Day
Alma Hromic Deckert
Jim DeFelice
Mike Dellosso
Katrina Denza
Bella DePaulo
Karen Dionne
Felicia Donovan
Julie Doughty - Dutton
Gerry Doyle
Terri DuLong
Firoozeh Dumas
Christine Eldrin
J.T. Ellison - Killer Year
Sheila Clover English - Circle of Seven Productions
Kate Epstein - the Epstein Literary Agency
Kathryn Esplin
Rachel Fershleiser at SMITH Magazine
Ryan Field
Michael A. FitzGerald
William Floyd
Natasha Fondren
Jamie Ford
Connie May Fowler
Heather Fowler
Therese Fowler
Jenifer Fox
Thaisa Frank
Michelle Gable
Gary Gach
Leighton Gage
Neil Gaiman
Colin Galbraith
Jayson Gallaway
Jane Ganahl - Red Room
Erika-Marie S. Geiss
Linda Gerber
Shane Gericke
Tess Gerritsen
Karin Gillespie
Anne Glamore
Kathi Kamen Goldmark
Jewelle Gomez
Susan Helene Gottfried
Deborah Grabien
Elizabeth Graham
Caroline Grant
Robin Grantham
Bob Gray - Shelf Awareness
Nancy O. Greene
Robert Grudin
Lisa Guidarini
David Habbin
Jim Hanas
Lynette Hart
Melanie Harvey
Michael Haskins
Melanie Lynn Hauser
Bill Hayes
Maria Dahvana Headley
Susan Henderson
Heidi the Hick
Georgia Hesse
Billie Hinton
Vicki Hinze
Lori Hope
Khaled Hosseini
Eileen Hutton - Brilliance Audio
Gina Hyams
International Thriller Writers
David Isaak
Susan Ito
Lisa Jackson
Arachne Jericho
Allison Johnson
Jen Jordan - Crimespree
Jungle Red Writers
Lesley Kagen
Polly Kahl
Jessica Keener
Charles Kelly
Lisa Kenney
Beth Kephart
Jackie Kessler
Merle Kessler
Kristy Kiernan - Southern Authors Blog
A.S. King
Jeff Kleinman - Folio Literary Management
Sandra Kring
R.D. Laban
Rebecca Laffar-Smith - Writers Roundabout
Clair Lamb
Daphne Larkin
Judy Merrill Larson
Caroline Leavitt
Virginia Lee
Leslie Levine
Mary Lewis
Richard Lewis
Sharon Linnea
Julie Anne Long
CJ Lyons
Jonathan Maberry
Amy MacKinnon - The Writers Group
Tim Maleeny
Ric Marion
Nancy Martin
Adrienne Mayor
L.C. McCabe
Damian McNicholl
Ellen Meister
Christa Miller
Kyle Minor
Jacquelyn Mitchard
P. A. Moed
Terri Molina
Pat Montandon
David Montgomery
Alexis Moore
Joe Moore - Inkspot
Amanda Morgan
Sarie Morrell
Amy Nathan
National Post
Tia Nevitt
Carolyn North
Aurelio O'Brien
Martha O'Connor
Andrea Okrentowich
Lori Oliva
Aimee Palooza
Michael Palmer
Stephen Parrish
Marie Peck
Marcia Peterson - WOW! Women on Writing
Jason Pinter
Anthony S. Policastro
Douglas Preston
Publishers Marketplace
Terese Ramin
Jody Reale
Martha Reed
Janet Reid - FinePrint Literary Management
Kamilla Reid
Lance Reynald
Michelle Richmond
Maria Robinson
John Robison
James Rollins
M.J. Rose - Buzz, Balls & Hype
Renee Rosen
Jordan Rosenfeld
Russell Rowland
Anneli Rufus
Hank Ryan
Marcus Sakey
Harris Salat -Visual Thesaurus
Rachel Sarah
Maria Schneider - Writer's Digest Magazine
Nina Schuyler
Dani Shapiro
Rochelle Shapiro
Charles Shaughnessy
Jessie Sholl
Robert Siegel
Clea Simon
Lynn Sinclair
Jen Singer
Shelley Singer
Sisters in Crime
Robin Slick
BPM Smith - Word & Bass
Bridget Smith
Claudia Smith
Kim Smith
Stephie Smith
Alexandra Sokoloff
Char Solomon
James Spring
Emilie Staat
Kim Stagliano
Maryanne Stahl
Bella Stander
Kelli Stanley
Marta Stephens
Bronwyn Storm
Jennifer Talty
Judith Tannenbaum
Mindy Tarquini
Alice Tasman - the Jean Naggar Literary Agency
Charles R. Temple
David Thayer
The Outfit
Joyce Tremel
Danielle Trussoni
Louise Ure
N. L. Valler
Barbara Vey - Publishers Weekly
Bev Vincent
Brenda Wallace
Therese Walsh - Writer Unboxed
John Warner - Tow Books
Gary Wassner
Brenda Webster
Sarah Weinman
Kimberly M. Wetherell
Dan Wickett - Emerging Writers Network
Jennifer Weiner
Laura Wellner
Susan Wiggs
Liz Wolfe
Cheryl Wyatt
Stephen Wylder
Irvin Yalom
Belle Yang
Dawn Yun
Michele Zackheim
Victoria Zackheim
Ernie Zelinski
Crystal Zevon

If I've accidentally left you off the list, or if you've just now decided to join us, drop a note in the comments section with a link to your blog. Every single voice counts!

This entry was written by Susan Henderson


CindyLV said...

Hi Lisa,

I'd be commenting on your post even if you weren't offering a book! I can't imagine the feeling of finishing, let alone publishing a book. And this sounds like it will be, not only a fantastic read, but incredibly helpful, too.

Thanks for your continued support on my blog, with my writing, and most especially, thanks for being an inspiration to me!

Lisa said...


I'm so glad I "met" you too. I appreciate your support in this DC craziness too. I'm really glad you showed up early because I KNOW you are going to love this book. Just shoot me an email with your address and it will be on its way!

Barrie said...

May thousands and thousands buy this book!

Lisa said...


Hooray you for stopping in. Please make sure to email me with your address and a copy is yours!

Leatherdykeuk said...

I'd love a copy and I promise to pimp it afterwards :)

Usman said...

Hi Lisa,

The entry just affirms that those who are committed to writing shall see their dreams come true.
Not only is Patry's story an inspiration for us, but also for the reason that she is battling another time. May she keep well.

kristen said...

Oh, Lisa, am I one of the first five??? I've wanted to read this book forever and I promise to pay it forward on my own blog with a review and a giveaway. I am so honored to know and read so many writers who band together to support one of their own. This is a wonderful wonderful thing and I salute all who have participated.


Lisa said...

Rachel, Usman and Kristen,

You are among the first five woohoo and so please email me your mailing addresses and I will have this sent out to you. Thank you for commenting and helping Patry!

Melissa Marsh said...

What an incredibly generous group you all are! Patry is very lucky to have you. :-)

Charles Gramlich said...

I was so struck when I first heard of her getting cancer that I had to shut the window down and wait a while before I could come back to it. I will definitely look into this book. Sounds great.

Carleen Brice said...

You were the one who told me about today, but somehow I missed the part about emailing Litpark. I tried to comment over there today, but they must be busy! (Good!) Thanks for letting me know about today!!

Julie at Virtual Journey said...

Great post for a good cause and a gifted writer, all the best with this, Lisa.

Larramie said...

While having no trouble writing my own post in praise of THE LIAR'S DIARY and warm, loving, most gifted Patry, I feel the lump in my throat growing when reading every other post.

Yet today IS a celebration of writing, reading and creating alternatives. Patry needs to rest, so what...we don't and it's such an honor to be able to help this wonderful friend.

You've been generous, Lisa, with your giveaway and I encourage those who have read/loved the novel to "gift" this new edition to a friend. Let's SELL OUT the bookstores!

Anonymous said...

Lisa, I read about Patry for the first time in yesterday's PM lunch. Now you've inspired me to pick up Liar's Diary. I'm heading out of town tomorrow so I will grab it before my trip. Thank you!!!!!

Sarah Ockler

Lisa said...

Melissa, I think we're all pretty lucky to have each other. :)

Charles, Yes, I think she posted about it in November and she was so busy on book #2 that she wasn't posting often then, but for some reason I went to check her blog right after she shared with everyone what was happening. It was just before her first surgery and I was stunned. She has been a real inspiration.

Carleen, Well as always, you are right on top of things -- talk about getting a post up quickly! I wish I could take off tomorrow morning to see Obama at DU. This darn paycheck thing!

Julie, I don't think I've ever seen the blogosphere buzzing quite this loudly before. The power of virtual friendship in action!

Larramie, I've been visiting sites all morning too and as I said to Amy at The Writers Group -- I'm a little verklempt with every anecdote I read. I feel so honored to know Patry and to be able to take part in this.

Sarah, You YA debut superstar! You will be glad you did. I can't believe you're on the road again. Please bring back plenty of tales from your travels -- I love your NYC posts.

Lisa said...

Oh and P.S. Larramie --

I'm not sure we can sell out the bookstores, but when I placed my third giveaway order with Amazon this morning, it said there may be a one to two day delay for shipment -- hmmm, sounds like they're getting a lot of action today.

Yogamum said...

I will definitely pick up a copy of this book! It sounds great and her story is inspiring.

Larramie said...

YES! Amazon has now been swamped!!! *VBG*

debra said...

This is a testament to the power of ONE. And one more and one more. Thank yo so much for sharing. I can't wait to read the book.

Patti said...

i don't say this lightly: this was/is astonishing. i don't know what else to say except god speed.

steve said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
steve said...

When I first looked at the beginnning of your entry, I thought you said Patry inspired you to commit fiction writing, until I saw "to" between "commit" and "fiction." Sometimes I feel like I'm doing that. Anyway, you've done a great job of putting this together. I hope it sells some books. And Julie--the link to amazon.uk is on my site.

Usman said...


I am delighted to get a book and shall send you my address.
I've said this before and I shall say again, I've never seen such camaraderie in any other group other than writers; where the caring for each others works and lives is so paramount.
And I've seen quite a few professions up close.
I'll chime in with my reviews as soon as I read the book.

Jennifer said...

What a wonderful and generous way to support your friend, Lisa!

I've read Patry's story on a couple of blogs today, and seeing the way people have responded has really touched me. I just ordered a copy of her book from Amazon, and I'm really looking forward to reading it! I like to read books before I give copies to reader friends, but this sounds like something to stock up on for birthdays/whenever gifts.

Thank you for always sharing your heart. I haven't been able to comment as much as I'd like to lately, but I want you to know that you're an inspiration--and really, really good at pointing the way to inspiration elsewhere, too. It's appreciated more than you know.

Lisa said...


I think you'll enjoy it. When you have time, browse through her posts at Simply Wait. She really is amazing.


One of these days you have to tell me what "VBG" means. I keep forgetting to ask. I hope tomorrow one of the organizers will have some numbers on book sales from today. Amazing day.


I smiling and laughing out loud all day today. The sheer volume of people involved in this is unlike anything I've ever seen before and as you said, it shows what can happen when one person has a good idea.


I couldn't agree more.


I hope I didn't confuse anybody by lifting Susan Henderson's content (I credited her up front and at the bottom of my intro paragraphs) -- I'm just one of the over 300 participants, just like you and all I did was post about it like so many others.

I know Patry is very special to you and you've known her for quite a long time. I hadn't known about Simply Wait's prior incarnation.

You cracked me up. Yes, do do aspire to commit fiction writing now and then :)


I could never have imagined something like this either. I'm so delighted to be sending this book to you! I hope you are starting to feel better.


It's time consuming, but I've been clicking through many of the links of the other bloggers too. I'm so glad you will be reading the book. I think you'll like it and it's hard to read it and not want to love it knowing this story. Thanks so much for your warm comments. I hope you're doing better now too. :)

Patry Francis said...

Lisa, I think we bonded in so many ways through those early e-mails. Through characters, and the place where we grew up (just a few miles from each other) and above all, our commitment and love for writing. Thank you SO MUCh for this. xox

Lisa said...


I feel the same way. You have inspired so many of us and now through this special event, you've inspired even more. We love you Patry!

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Literary Quote

It is worth mentioning, for future reference, that the creative power which bubbles so pleasantly in beginning a new book quiets down after a time, and one goes on more steadily. Doubts creep in. Then one becomes resigned. Determination not to give in, and the sense of an impending shape keep one at it more than anything.

Virginia Woolf