A READER’S TALENT by Dianna Love

By New York Times bestseller Dianna Love

Dianna LoveI believe that every person is born with a gift.  Sometimes that gift is obvious—what we call a talent—for something like music, art, acting, engineering, architecture or the equivalent.   Other times those gifts are not as obvious and don’t fit into these categories, but I believe there are many talents and gifts that are as vital to the lives of others as the more “traditional” gifts.

One of the most overlooked—and most important—abilities in the world is the talent for encouraging others.  My mom had a gift for loving and caring for her family, and she was the first to encourage me to pursue my art.  She saw something in me—a passion for creating—when I was in grade school, and she stopped at nothing to allow me to pursue that passion and develop that gift.  Because of her encouragement, I ended up with a successful career in art that spanned 30 years.

Then I found a new passion in writing with no idea that it would turn into a second career.  But the nudges and encouragement of the writing community stoked the fire I had for telling stories, and little by little, a trickle turned into a stream, then into a river, and now my life is about creating worlds, telling stories and meeting readers – I’m thrilled beyond words.

I see examples of people nurturing that passion in others every day when I’m on the road at book signings, and even when I open my email.  Readers are some of the most powerful people on earth because their love for stories is the reason an author writes.  We would not have millions of books today if not for readers who love them.

I can’t begin to tell you how much it means to Sherrilyn Kenyon and me when readers come out to see us at book signings, or when I get a note from a reader saying they love the books or wanting to know when the next book comes out.   That enthusiasm for our stories—that encouragement to keep writing– keeps both of us going when we’re deep in the writing cave working late into the night on the next adventure.

Because of encouragement I’ve received along the way, it’s always been important to me to give back and help others.  Art teachers and my mom urged me to pursue my art, and other generous writers told me “Dianna, you can do it” when I was writing my first book.   Those words made a huge difference to me, and I believe they make a difference to every person pursuing a dream, whether that passion is physics, astronomy, gardening, sewing, parenting or filmmaking.  For this reason, I’m always glad when I can tell someone, “Keep going, you can do it!”

Art contests meant a lot to me when I was in middle school and high school, and they’re one of the things that let me know that art was something I should pursue.  With each contest, I pushed myself to do the best work I could do, and when I finaled or won, it validated my work and encouraged me to keep going.   Writing contests did the same for me when I started creating fiction.  Winning a coveted Rita® Award for my first book was something I’ll never forget, and it made such a difference to know others loved what I was doing.

Blood TrinityThat’s why I decided to sponsor an art contest.  I’d had the idea for a few years, and then readers fell in love with Feenix, the adorable pet gargoyle in Blood Trinity (the first Belador novel released in October 2010) and started asking for a picture of him.  I sat down to sketch him and the light bulb came on.   What better way to encourage other artists than to offer a contest where artists created images of Feenix!

So if you’re an artist, or know one, give the gift of encouragement to that person or to yourself.  There’s no cost to enter and it’s open to several mediums of art.  Drawing, painting, sculpting, sewing stuffed animals, or computer graphics—all have a place in the contest.

Prizes include cash, iPads™, money for school art departments, books for libraries, and more.

Tell an artist about the My Feenix™ Art Contest and encourage that person to enter!  The next best thing to pursuing your own gift with passion, is giving back—and helping someone else to do the same.

Details about the contest are at www.MyFeenix.com

To read an excerpt of Blood Trinity, click here.

About Dianna Love


New York Times best seller Dianna Love always liked to do things big…and still does. After spending years creating unusual marketing projects for Fortune 500 companies, she’s now released her energetic muse on writing high-octane romantic thrillers and urban fantasy with the release of BLOOD TRINITY, first book in the Belador series by Dianna and Sherrilyn Kenyon. Dianna’s first book sold & won a prestigious RITA® Award (as Dianna Love Snell). Her next book hit the NYT best seller list. She speaks to readers and writers at national and international events throughout the year. For more info go to www.AuthorDiannaLove.com or visit her on Facebook at the Dianna Love Fan Page.

Listen to internet radio with COS Radio on Blog Talk Radio



Dianna will give away a copy of BLOOD TRINITY and one of the new, limited edition ALTERANT t-shirts to one commenter to this blog!

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  1. Diana, you have the talent to encourage others , AND for writing ! You are always giving encouragement to your readers and go out of your way . I still hope to get to meet you when you get back to the Boston area 🙂  

  2. Loved the excerpt.  I’d like to win a copy.  Unfortunately I have absolutely no art talents but I’m glad you encourage those that do. 

  3.  Hi Kim – Glad you enjoyed the excerpt!  We’re having a great time with this series. 🙂  And I bet you’re wrong about having no talent. You just aren’t seeing it through the eyes of others.   I knew someone who could do the most amazing things in her garden. No matter how much I love my yard and plants I never had her touch for artistic placement.  thanks for stopping by!

  4. Dianna what a great article!   I love your comments about encouragement–can’t wait to share your article with my daughter who believes she’s untalented when she has this HUGE gift.  Maybe if she hears it from someone else…  🙂  Can’t wait for Book 2–Blood Trinity knocked my socks off– and Feenix sounds like the ugliest adorable pet I’ve ever imagined! 🙂  Jan Snyder

  5.  Hi Kym – thank you for the kind words. 🙂 I love talking to writers and readers. I haven’t been in Boston in a while and miss it – have friends all up in that area. I hope to meet you on future trip, too.  If you’re in Boston, you must know about Hank Phillippi Ryan who is not only an award winning mystery author, but she just one another Emmy as a tv journalist (think that makes something like 23) – she’s super.  Check her out. thanks for stopping by!

  6.  Thank you Fresh Fiction (waving at Sara!) and Reader’s Entertainment (waving at Sheila!) for inviting me to participate in this program. 🙂 I’ll check back later to say hello to anyone else who stops by.

  7.  I love that you are doing such a contest!  I just finished conversing with Caridad Pineiro about my own Talent and she encouraged me and gave me ideas on how I could go further with it.  My heart just expanded with love for her for doing that.  Someday I hope to realize my own dream of having a makeup business, apply makeup for others for special occasions.  It’s amazing what a little encouragement can do for a person. 😀

  8. Both my sons are wonderful artists and they didn’t inherit that talent from their parents.  I am blessed with the gift of gab.  🙂

  9. Thanks for such a great interview. I love to find things out about people I like to follow. (That sounds stockerish).  When people do wonderful things for people, it just makes my heart soar and smile.  You do that. You are so involved!  Let me just say thank you for all you do for artists, readers and us stockers! 

  10. Thanks Barbara for posting this on our facebook page. I always adore finding new things about about Dianna!

    Dianna, loved your post, if I had to pick what your topic was all about I’d pick “love”. The love and encouragement of others is passed on generation to generation and different friends and family. It’s like the compassion for your child who has no self-confidence and his mommy tells him he can be a rock star. Your mom sounded like a very wise and loving woman, thank you for sharing with us today *big hugs*

  11. I’m stuck at gate but will post once I’m in air and can open laptop. I appreciate everyone coming out to visit today. 🙂

  12.  Hi Jan – Oh, I do hope you get your daughter to see her talent.  I could draw very realistic portraits by the time I reached middle school and didn’t think anything of it. I assumed ‘everyone’ could do it if I could.  So glad you’re enjoying the Belador series.  We’re really looking forward to getting ALTERANT on the shelves Sept 27th. 🙂 thanks for coming by today!

  13. Hi Dianna!  I think my talent is a positive, upbeat attitude!  I’m definetly a “glass half full” kind of person. And now you’ve got me wondering if I have any way of entering your contest by creating Feenix out of something!  I just finished Blood Trinity, and really loved his part of the storyline. Gotta put my thinking cap on, cause I sure don’t have the usual artistic talent for drawing.  Thanks!

  14.  Oops – Hi Robin – the reply I typed to “Kim” was to you.  I’m traveling today so it’s a little crazy when I get a chance to be online so please excuse the blonde moment. 😉  Thanks so much for coming by and posting – you do have a talent, you just have to broaden your definition of it. 🙂

  15.  Hi Barbara – I’ve seen Andrew’s work, which is wonderful so you are right to brag on them, but you have a talent for talking to readers, writers and people in all parts of publishing and film industry.  I’ve never seen anyone who can get anyone to do an interview and make them happy you took the time to ask even if it’s their tenth one of the day.  They always perk up for you.  So don’t discount your ability.  You’ve done an amazing job of bring readers and authors together (and for anyone who doesn’t know – this is Barbara Vey of Beyond Her Book blog on Publisher’s Weekly).  thanks for stopping by!

  16.  Hi Toni – I’m with you on feeling great when I see people share with others and encourage someone to pursue a dream.  I’m glad you enjoyed the interview – thanks goes to the wonderful ladies who put this together.  Thank you for stopping by today!

  17.  Hi Chelsea – Barbara is the best for keeping us all on track. 🙂  I got tossed offline twice today and didn’t get to the friends page.  Ah, you made me smile by saying you think the topic was about love. I have to agree.  If we spread the love more and encourage others to do things that make their heart sing we all gain by it.  My mom was as selfless as they come and her family meant everything to her.  I don’t think Moms know how much influence they have on us because as kids we just don’t give feedback often.  The fact that mother’s continue to encourage and nurture without knowing how much it means makes them even more amazing.  thanks for stopping by!

  18.  Hi Leanne – I have always wanted to watch a make up artist work.  I think that’s a fascinating art and would enjoy watching a face come to life under their skilled hands.  So glad that Caridad encouraged you and I know at some point you’re going to share the love by encouraging someone else. 🙂 Good luck with that endeavor!  thanks for coming by today!

  19.  Hi Jan – It’s funny, but i was just saying to someone today that I love the “glass half full” way of life.  To think that way will constantly offer opportunities.  I’m thrilled you enjoyed Blood Trinity and would love for you to enter the contest. I created it with 3 categories – flat art, computer art and 3D art – so that as many different types of artists as possible could enter. I’m not judging, but I would love to see stuffed animals in the final rounds because I think sewing is a wonderful art.  Good luck to you if you do! thanks for stopping by to visit today!

  20.  Hi Cathy – Thanks for visiting. You have always been supportive of me and many other authors. For those who don’t know, this is Catherine Mann, USA Today best selling author of great Air Force hero stories and has a new Elite Force series that kicks off with Cover Me in July.   


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