Friday, February 06, 2015

Erie, PA...a city of romance!!

Carry Her Heart, April 2015
Amazon revealed its list of the 20 most romance buying cities in the US this week and Erie was on it!!  Now, I don't want to claim all the credit...but I write romance and most of my books have been set in Erie.  Coincidence???

I've written romances (the full list is here) from comedy to drama, with mystery and a women's fiction element set here in Erie. More than 2.6 million copies of those books have sold worldwide. 

So why do I set so many in or around Erie?  What makes Erie so special?  

I put together some of my favorite reasons:

1. I guess the first answer that comes to mind is Lake Erie.  We have Presque Isle peninsula and some of the best sunsets in the world right here!  And at the mouth of the peninsula, there's TREC!
Holly, Ethel and Ella

2. There's also the fact that we're a city with a small town attitude.  I love that I can walk in my neighborhood and have people who call out hellos or wave.  There's a certain house on our walk where the couple is known to run out with dog bones for Ethel and Ella.  Needless to say they walk very slowly past it every day.  They are optimistic dogs!

3. The arts! Warner Theater, Erie Broadway Series, the Erie Playhouse, the Erie Art Museum, Lake Erie Ballet, the Erie Philharmonic...

4. Sports! Now, I am not known as a sports nut, but I happen to live with a bunch of nuts (some even love sports)!  So I know we have Erie Otters, Seawolves, Explosion and Bayhawks.  And in Erie, there's a huge following for college and high school sports.

Under the sports heading, I want to give a shout-out to Erie Otter player, Darren Raddysh.  We have a young fan in our family and Darren has gone out of his way to kind to him.  He might not have been born in Erie, but he is an example of the kind of people who call Erie home...people who as far as I'm concerned are why Erie is so special. 


5.  How about our growing bay front?? It now houses our Convention Center, our Blasco Library (I'll be talking there with Susan Gable on Valentine's Day at 11 am) and the Brig Niagara and the Maritime Museum

6. Waldemeer.  For years my kids, along with generations of school children, have had school picnics there.  Area businesses hold company picnic there. It's a park that you can walk through without paying for a ticket.  But you can buy ride-a-ramas or individual ride tickets.  And seriously, the view of the peninsula and lake from the top of the ferris wheel are some of the best in town!

7. Peach, Millcreek Mall, indoor water parks, lots of hotels and restaurants.

8. Wineries...lots of local wineries!  Lake Erie Wineries.  

9. Recently a lot of breweries, too!  They've just started a Lake Erie Ale Trail!

10. And while not Erie proper, I need to mention the cities and towns around Erie.  When I say I set a book in Erie, sometimes it's actually in a neighboring town or a fictional town just over Erie's border.  We have so much history and beautiful farmland her in Western PA.  There's a growing 'local' movement that I'm so happy to support!  Places like Smith Farms just outside town are a great place to buy eggs, meat and produce.  
Just One Thing's German translation

There are many more reasons I love Erie.  I've set books here for more than a decade now.  And I'm thrilled that copies have gone to more than twenty five countries now, including my newest German release of Just One Thing (which is set just outside Erie between Waterford and Union City) that just came out February 3rd!

We Love Erie on twitter  suggested using the hashtag #LoveInErie.  I think that just about says it all!  There's a lot of love in Erie, and a lot to love about Erie. 


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