Forever I’d been intrigued by mysteries. I’d read Agatha Christie, Nancy Drew, and loved the Hardies Boys. As a child I’d select the surprise ball to find the little trinkets hidden inside. Upon opening a Highlife Magazine, I’d immediately turn to the page to uncover the concealed objects within the picture. Treasure hunts were irresistible. The Game of Clue logical. And problem solving, stimulating.

For many friends I was a contradiction. A “Shit!” rarely escaped my lips yet I would immerse myself in books and movies about serial killers and gore. So when I lived through the tragic events surrounding my best running friend’s death, even though I was feeling terrible pain, I was absorbed.

New York Times Best-Selling Author Ann Rule

New York Times Best-Selling Author Ann Rule

25 years later when I completed Run at Destruction, my own True Crime account that chronicled this period in my life, I was determined to find an agent/publisher. In order to do this, a book proposal was needed that included my marketing plan. In the spring of 2007, I located the email of the New York Times Best-Selling author, Ann Rule on her website http://Annrules.com. I’d always admired her True Crime books, especially Small Sacrifices. I naively wrote her, asking if she’d read my manuscript and then, if she liked it, write a blurb.  Amazingly, Ann wrote me back, herself – not someone she’d hired. She does it all!  Ann said, “I try to read bound galleys that have been purchased and are scheduled for release and write blurbs if I find the books something my readers would enjoy. So I have to say ‘no’ right now, but you could contact me when your have sold your book and it’s about six months to being published.”

So… time warp to the spring of 2009. I had found my publisher (http://titletownpublishing.com) and my book was to be released in August of 2009. I had met Ann’s criteria and emailed her once again.  But, this time I heard nothing. I could tell from her website she was in the process of writing at least two new books, working on two mini-series about earlier ones, and on book signing tours.  So… maybe she was too busy. I found her P.O. Box number from her website and decided to mail her a pre-publication galley of Run at Destruction with a nice note. Maybe that would attract her attention.  I heard nothing.

Again, I emailed her. Had she received my galley? Moments later she responded!  As I’d expected, she said she’d been so overwhelmed with her schedule and the many other galleys she’d received from first-time and established authors.  She located mine and responded, “I’ve read the first several pages and I can tell you’ve done a good job… I will give you a quote. Congratulations on finding a publisher. It’s not easy these days.” 

I was getting my blurb! But, in the meantime, I had to tell Ann that my book’s first publishing date, to provide a limited early release, had been moved up to mid-May instead of August. Could she provide me something within one month?  She said she’d try…

For the past month, I waited – checking my email daily, foolishly sending her two friendly reminders when my impending date was drawing near. Last Friday a group of 15 women friends (some still running) traveled to Chicago for our annual trip. I now had three days to meet the May 4th deadline. I’d brought my laptop and while we gathered in one of our hotel rooms for wine and snacks, I checked my email and there it was – Ann’s amazing comment!  What made it better is that I was among my best friends that had been encouraging me since day-one. They made me read the following to them multiple times:

“Run at Destruction is a tragic–yet fascinating–true story of an unfathomable death in the Heartland of America. It happened in a wholesome community of runners and educators, perhaps the last group you would expect to be involved, however tangentially, in secret affairs, deception, and infidelity. Except for the bond between mothers and their children, there may be nothing stronger than women friends who are there to pick up the pieces when the world explodes, and to listen with true concern. Author Lynda Drews writes of her lost friend, and of her own efforts to find justice for Pam Bulik. Readers will find themselves walking along with Drews as she describes an enviable friendship, her grief when it ended suddenly, and the layers she peeled away to find the truth. Wonderfully written. A must for true-crime readers.”                                      – Ann Rule, Author of The Stranger Beside Me, Small Sacrifices, and Mortal Danger

I so admired the time Ann put into this blurb, to get to what my book was really about. And, for someone she had never met… I could certainly tell, as could all of my cheering friends, why she’s recognized as being the “Best” in her field!  What a wonderful lady!

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