Day 15 Hope Tarr – Warm Hearts, Open Arms

Sharing The Hope of Happily Ever After

Operation CinderellaRomance matters because it embodies love—and love is the hands-down most powerful force in the Universe. By definition love isn’t stagnant. It exists through being shared.

While we may undertake the reading and writing of our beloved romance books as solitary pursuits, as a community we are far from solitary—or silent—in championing our genre and the plethora of positive messages it conveys. Love is stronger than hate; good will win out over evil; and everyone, absolutely everyone, deserves a relationship where they feel cherished and desired, respected and safe.

Small surprise that the romance community contains some of the most generous and socially conscious people I have had the privilege to meet. Brenda Novak’s annual auction on behalf of The Diabetes Research Institute, Lori Foster’s Animal Attraction benefit anthology, and The Nora Roberts Foundation in support of literacy are but a few examples of writers sharing the hope of Happily Ever After not only between the covers of their wonderful novels but in real life.

New_LJ_Banner_ScallopedModeled in spirit of the literary salons of the eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries, Lady Jane’s Salon™ is New York City’s first and only monthly romance reading series. In contrast to book clubs and bookstore-based readings, Lady Jane’s provides guest authors, patrons, industry professionals and media members the opportunity to meet, mingle, read aloud, and discuss great romances in a free-flowing forum that fosters conversations over Q&A. Since our February 2009 launch, we’ve donated our annual net proceeds to Women in Need, which assists formerly disadvantaged New York City women and children in building positive, independent lives.

When my co-founders Leanna Renee Hieber, Maya Rodale, Ron Hogan, and I launched Lady Jane’s we did so to fill a niche. We soon saw we were sating a hunger—the hunger for Happily Ever After beginnings and fairytales come true.

Lady Jane's Salon AnniversaryAs we approach our fifth year, we’ve grown our Salon family to include satellites in six U.S. cities. Without exception, every Lady Jane’s Salon donates its net monetary proceeds to a 501c(3) charity of the organizers’ choice. Charities supported include the Shout Against the Whisper campaign against ovarian cancer; Hope House of Colorado, which provides outreach and support to teen mothers; the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation; and Celebrate Differences, a Chicago-area not-for-profit which supports individuals and children with disabilities.

Over the years, we’ve taken the New York Lady Jane’s on the road to romance publishing conferences across the U.S. including the annual RT BOOK Lovers Convention. In March 2013, I took Lady Jane’s even farther afield to kick off the third annual Australian Romance Readers Conference in Brisbane. ARRC 2013 was the very first Lady Jane’s Salon™ held off U.S. soil. Our guest authors Cathy Maxwell, Anna Campbell, Keri Arthur, and Amy Andrews thrilled the 100+ attendees with their diverse, funny and sometimes poignant readings. In keeping with our mission, donated books were collected in support of Youngcare, which works to provide age-appropriate housing for young Australians with full-time care needs.

Can we expect to see a Lady Jane’s Salon—Oz sometime soon? I like to think we not only can but will along with additional satellites cropping up over the U.S.

When hearts are willing and helping hands outstretched, Happily Ever After knows no bounds.

Recommendations:

I ADORE Beatriz Williams’ OVERSEAS. Beatriz began attending Lady Jane’s before selling the manuscript and I believe the Salon was one of her first appearances as a published author.


Questions for Hope:

What is the craziest or ugliest object in your house, and why do you keep it?

A figurine of a gargoyle that I keep perched atop a china cabinet. Why? Gargoyles are the protectors. I think he’s cute.

If there was a movie made about your life, what would it be called? (And just for fun, who would play you?)

“Life is Beautiful.” – Yes, I know it’s been done but mine would be a much different version. And Sandra Bullock would make a good “Hope,” I think. We’re about the same age and I admire her so much for her talent, grace, and staying power.

What is the best non-monetary gift you ever received?

I’ve received so many! I would have to say any one of my cats. They’re rescues—and absolutely priceless.

If you had to pick one romantic scene or couple to recommend to a first-time reader of YOUR books, which would it be?

As I write both historical and contemporary, I’m going to take the liberty of suggestion two: Simon Belleville and Christine Tremayne of TEMPTING (Victorian-set single-title originally published by Berkley and re-released as an e-book for Kindle) and Ross Mannon and Macie Graham of OPERATION CINDERELLA (the launch to my contemporary Suddenly Cinderella series for Entangled Publishing). Both are Cinderella stories, though very different tellings.

 

Hope is generously donating three copies of Operation Cinderella, trade paperback or ebook to a U.S. reader and one copy of Operation Cinderella, trade paperback or ebook to an International reader (International readers enter here). U.S. readers, to enter, either leave a comment here or enter the weekly drawing on the contest page. Or both.  (Only one entry per commenter per post, though – multiple comments on one essay does not give you more chances.)  Comment entries must be posted by 11:59pm EST Aug 15 to be eligible, though winners will be announced the following week.

 


Hope TarrLady Jane’s Salon™ co-founder, Hope Tarr is the award-winning author of more than twenty contemporary and historical romances for multiple publishers including her Suddenly Cinderella contemporary fairytale themed series for Entangled Publishing and SUGAR co-authored with Jenna Jameson (Skyhorse, October 2013). Find Hope online at www.HopeTarr.com, www.LadyJaneSalonNYC.com, and on Facebook (www.Facebook.com/HopeC.Tarr) and Twitter (@HopeTarr).

Buy Hope’s Books on Amazon

  • Melanie Backus

    Loving, giving people make such a great difference in this world. Thank you!

    • Hope Tarr

      Blessings! 🙂

  • Laurie W G

    I commend you for your commitment to helping others. I’m looking forward to reading more of your books.

    Linda Lael Miller generously donates to battered women or single women in need. She also helps animals. Kristan Higgins donates to a couple of causes too.

    • Hope Tarr

      I know Linda and I know “of” Kristan and they’re both so awesome. THANK YOU for bringing them up. I wish I had had space to include a longer list of philanthropic romance authors — so many people doing amazing things to give back. My own dear friend Jacquie D’Alessandro recently self-published an adorable compilation of essays, THE WORLD IS MY LITTER BOX” and donated all her July proceeds to a shelter, I believe. You can read more about the project, and Jacquie’s other books, here: http://www.jacquied.com/.

  • Meredith Richardson

    Oh that’s wonderful!! The Lady Jane Salon sounds like so much fun and its so great that you’re donating to such a worthwhile cause 😀

    • Hope Tarr

      Oh, it IS fun, Meredith! I believe Jack Canfield says, “If it’s not fun, don’t do it.” 😉

  • brhill2010

    Lady Jane Salon is such a good cause. It is exciting to see that authors are helping people out in the world and not just in books. Thanks for being a romance writer and a humanitarian.

    • Hope Tarr

      Thank you! We are so proud of the Salon and blessed to be able to attract such amazing guest authors each month. But the soul of the Salon is our audience, loyal supporters without whom we wouldn’t exist.

  • Melissa Cowling Terry

    Lady Jane Salon sounds like lots of fun!!

    • Hope Tarr

      Oh, “she” is… 😉

  • Britney Adams

    What a wonderful way to help others! Thank you!!

    • Hope Tarr

      Thanks, Britney. xo

  • jcp

    Thank you for helping others.

    • Hope Tarr

      Thanks, jcp. The people and support we’ve attracted…well, it’s been amazing.

  • Mary McCoy

    I am hoping to attend the LJS in Naperville this year, and I try to never miss Brenda’s auction or Lori’s get-together.

    • Hope Tarr

      Hi Mary! I LOVE the Naperville Salon. Last year, I went on a “Lady Jane’s Book Tour de Force” and visited all of the Salons as a guest reader. I have been to the Naperville one twice now, and am looking forward to returning this October 1st to read SUGAR.

  • Kareni

    How very interesting to hear about Lady Jane’s Salon. I hope I’ll be able to attend a meeting one day.

  • Hannah Weitzman

    I’m sorry to say I’ve never read any of your books, but I’m looking forward to starting right now!

    • Hope Tarr

      Thanks, Hannah!

  • Karin Anderson

    It is always wonderful to see the turnout for events like these. I follow Brenda Novak’s auction every year!

    • Hope Tarr

      I know. It is AMAZING how Brenda has grown the auction, which gets better every year. I contributed signed books every year. This year, one of my publisher, Entangled, organized a group donation. I think the prize was a Kindle, not sure, but anyway it’s just awesome.

  • christinejensen

    Love leads us to do great things 🙂

    • Hope Tarr

      Wonderfully said. Thanks!

  • Ann Mettert

    Great stuff.

    • Hope Tarr

      🙂

  • Evelyn S

    What a worthy cause!! Thanks for sharing!!

    • Hope Tarr

      Thanks for reading and taking the time to post, Evelyn. 🙂

  • Kim

    I didn’t realize the Lady Jane Salon was also a charity endeavor. That’s wonderful.

    • Hope Tarr

      Thanks, Kim. The charity component has been crucial to our mission from Day 1 and I really believe that fostering the flow of giving and gratitude (which runs both ways) is a huge factor in the success we’ve had and continue to attract.

  • QuenKne M

    Kudos to all of you who step beyond your busy lives to reach out to help others and to make this world a better place.

    • Hope Tarr

      Thanks! ((smooches))

  • BookLady

    What a wonderful post! Thanks for sharing the info about Lady Jane’s Salon and the generous contribution writers are making in the community.

    • Hope Tarr

      Thanks for posting your nice comment, BookLady!

  • Cat C

    That’s so wonderful! Lady Jane’s Salon sounds like a great idea even before you add in the part about making a difference for good in this world. I’m thrilled to discover, upon doing some research, that there’s a satellite salon somewhat near me–I’ll have to check it out soon!

  • Jeanine McAdam

    I agree – giving back is very important. Great post!

    • Hope Tarr

      Thanks, Jeanine. xo

  • Larena Hubble

    I love how you give to others. That is so very great.

    • Hope Tarr

      I couldn’t do it without my fab Salon team!

  • Pamby50

    So many of the authors I have read list who they give back to. I am looking forward to adding you to my list.

    • Hope Tarr

      Lovely, Pam, thank you so much!

  • Becky Rabalais

    Love the idea of Lady Jane’s Salon. Where are they located in the US?

  • Jen C

    The romance community is one of my favorite parts of this genre!

    • Hope Tarr

      I know! So N-I-C-E.

  • rebecca moe

    Great post. Wish there was a Lady Jane’s near me–sounds like a fantastic time…maybe I need a trip to NYC?

  • Ann

    Would love to be near a Lady Jane’s! Sounds amazing.

    • Hope Tarr

      Ann, I don’t know your coordinates, but we have satellite Lady Jane’s Salon in: Denver, CO (temp lost their venue, should be back up soon); Raleigh-Durham, NC; Naperville, IL; San Diego, CA; Grenville, SC; and coming soon, Phoenix, AZ. The links to each are at the top of our website’s Satellite page:

      http://ladyjanesalonnyc.com/satellite-salons/

      • Ann

        Thank you for the information! I’m in Maine, so a bit of a hike 🙂

  • glittergirl54

    Good for you helping others with your success! Thanks for the post and the giveaway. I wish you the best.

    • Hope Tarr

      Thanks dear!

  • Marcy Shuler

    Lady Jane’s Salons sound great!

    • Hope Tarr

      Her Ladyship is having her fifth birthday on Monday, February 3rd. Our baby is turning f-i-v-e, I can’t believe it!

  • Glenda

    It’s great that Lady Jane’s Salon is able to combine helping others with the love of great stories!

    • Hope Tarr

      Thanks, Glenda!

  • Courtney Cogswell

    Lady Jane’s sounds amazing and I can tell you are one of my “people” based on your rescue cats answer above! Could it be that romance lovers are better people with bigger hearts? I may be a bit biased but I think absolutely, Yes! Definitely plan to check out your books 🙂

    • Hope Tarr

      Thanks, Courtney. Cat rescuers rock! When I lived in VA, I had two humane traps, cages, the works. Pretty sure I bought my veterinarian’s second boat. May also have paid for the first year of college for her youngest, not sure. 😉

  • Sandi in OH

    I’m not a joiner but this sounds like something I would enjoy.

    • Hope Tarr

      I think so, Sandi. We’re very low key in that you can work the room or simply find a seat and enjoy the readings. And I know what you mean about not being a joiner. Every time I’m in a sitch where the organizer makes everyone get up and move their chairs into a circle, I sort of cringe. I guess I’m a row and aisle kind of girl.

  • Karen Gallagher

    Looking forward to reading your books. I think I’ll start with Operation Cinderella.

    • Hope Tarr

      Oooh, I hope you like it. Had tons o’ fun writing it.

  • Ketta Peters

    You had me at gargoyles and rescue kitties!

    • Hope Tarr

      LOL!

  • leah g

    Lady Jane’s Salon sounds awesome. I will have to try and visit next time I visit New york!

    • Hope Tarr

      Please do! Hosting out of town guests is always a special treat. First Monday of the month, 7-9PM unless otherwise announced. Which reminds me, I have to get cracking posting our event info for 9/2–Labor Day! Another great lineup with Katharine Ashe, Barbara Wallace & Lindsey Ribar.

  • Lady Jane’s Salon sounds like so much fun! Thank you for writing for us today. 🙂 Off to check out your books now.

  • Sue G.

    What a great program you guys started. I think if more people read romances the world would be a happier place!

    • Hope Tarr

      Wise words. I AGREE!

  • Cheryl Hastings

    Another new author to enjoy! Nice to “meet” you 🙂

  • MooMoo Cake

    Operation Cinderella sounds great and so does Lady Jane’s Salon. Thanks for sharing!

    • Hope Tarr

      Thanks for posting your nice comment, MooMoo. 🙂

  • Katy M

    I didn’t know Lady Jane’s was a non-profit. I thought it was wonderful what you were doing there even before I knew that! Thank you for a great post; I’ll be looking for your books.

    • Hope Tarr

      Thanks, Katy! xo

  • Kim

    I love the idea of Lady Jane’s Salon! It’s a great way to give back. I hope to visit one of the locations one day!

  • M Kuxhaus

    Thank you for writing!

    • Hope Tarr

      Thank YOU for posting!

  • Flora Segura-Buchler

    What a wonderful blogpost! The Romance writer community is truly one that cares and consistently gives back philanthropically. Thank you for letting everyone know this.

    • Hope Tarr

      That’s lovely Flora, thank you. Your name is beautiful, btw. One of the good faeries in the Disney animation of Sleeping Beauty was Flora. And of course the Scottish heroine who hid Bonnie Prince Charlie. 🙂

      • Flora Segura-Buchler

        Not to mention that it was my maternal grandmother’s name as well. I was named for her.

        • Hope Tarr

          That makes it so special! I have been geeking out this summer on Ancestry.com, tracing my mother’s Irish-German family back to…the 1820’s so far. Really addictive. 🙂

  • Lorelei’s Lit Lair

    I love a Cinderella story!

    • Hope Tarr

      I know, it’s the best! Handsome prince, awesome shoes and mean girls get their comeuppance. Perfection!

      • Lorelei’s Lit Lair

        Thanks for the chance to win! I’ll look up your books and on Facebook

        • Hope Tarr

          Great–and thanks for Liking my FB Author page–much appreciated!