copied with permission

from the blog of SUSAN HENDERSON

Today, over 300 bloggers, including bestsellers, Emmy winners, moviemakers, 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.

 Patry Francis Blog Day on LitParkPatry Francis Blog Day on LitPark

As a little surprise for Patry,a gift before the big day, here’s something she hasn’t seen this yet – it’sfrom her husband, Ted, who included in his letter this photo he’d taken of Patry at Skinner StatePark, 25 years after their first date there.

One of the happiest days of my life was the day I met my wife, PatryFrancis for the very first time. I had just moved to Northampton, MA after graduating from Penn State University and had stopped to eat lunch at a restaurant where she was working. It was love at first sight. She was the most beautiful woman I had ever set my eyes on and it took me about two months to get the courage to ask her out on a date. Little did I know at the time how she would transform my life from a shy, insecure, college grad into a happy and proud father and minister; a better and holier person. She has so many qualities I have tried to emulate and she continues to inspire me with her enthusiasm for life and her ability to enkindle others with her actions, as well as,words.

 Patry Francis Blog Day on LitPark


She taught me the meaning of compassion and has the ability to makeeveryone around her feel important no matter whom they are or what they do,especially the poor and least among us. She has been given a gift to see situations from the heart which she uses to help others bring out the best in themselves and no one is turned away who asks for advice or help.

She exemplified the meaning of sacrifice as she forfeited many years of her writing career to help support our family. Working the difficult and physically demanding job as a banquet waitress and raising our four childrenleft her little opportunity to spend doing what she loved most, writing. She also put off her endeavor to get back into serious writing while I attended the seminary for five years. She never once complained always putting everyoneelse’s needs before hers, including mine.

In short, words can’t describe how lucky and blessed I am to havePatry as my spouse. She is a woman filled with love, peace, and goodness and every day I marvel and am amazed what an awe-inspiring twenty five years it has been to be with her. Of all the gifts I have been given in life, wonderful parents and sisters, four beautiful and talented children, the miracle of three special grandchildren (one more on the way), none have been greater than theday God introduced me to my beautiful wife.

Finally, I would like to thank Susan Henderson, Laura Benedict,Jessica Keener, Karen Dionne, Tish Cohen, Alice Tasman (the Best Literary Agentin New York) and *all of you* who are trying to help make Patry’s book asuccess. Yet again, we have been blessed to be part of such an inspiringcommunity of talented writers and to witness the goodness and love that all ofyou have shown to Patry as she journeys through her difficult situation with cancer.

Before I talk about this book, I’d like to tell you a story about howthis 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 storyof 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 thedetails are different. Every one of us is well acquainted with the struggle ofgetting a story on paper, of honing it and believing in it enough to send itout, only to receive rejection, or worse, silence for our efforts.

Imagine, after many years, you beat the odds. You finish that book. Youfind 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 thedark. Even her blog postabout 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 thebook?” 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 ofus 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 justbig-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, butlet me reserve some enormous thanks for the people who traded hundreds ofemails with me to put this together: Karen Dionne ofBackspace, Jessica Keenerof 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 workso 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.

Here are the publisher‘swords: Answering the question of what is more powerful—family or friendship? this debut novelunforgettably shows how far one woman would go to protect either.

They couldn’t be more different, but they form a friendship that willalter 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 onlyone 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 justhow to keep her readers guessing.

And now, here are Patry’s words, which I lifted off her blog: “Though my novel deals withmurder, betrayal, and the even more lethal crimes of the heart, the realsubjects 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 buttonlitpark aurelio o'brien eve cancer survivor sticker

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

Patti AbbottMario AcevedoSusan AdrianSamina AliChrista AllanAnne-MarieJoelle AnthonyJorge ArguetaVicki Arkoff -MAD Magazine, Nickelodeon, MW Book Review Melanie AvilaTricia AresBackspaceBackstoryTerry BainGail Baker – The Debutante BallAnjali BanerjeeLauren Baratz-LogstedElizabeth BartasiusCarolyn Burns BassBrett BattlesLaura BenedictPinckney BenedictJanet BerlinerWilliam BernhardtAlexander BesherBevMarcie BeyatteBrenda BirchRoberto BonazziBookfindsRaven BowerLaura BowersBeatrice BowlesTara BradfordGayle BrandeisStacy BrazalovichSusan Breen – Gotham WritersWorkshopsHeather BrewerEve Bridburg – Zachary Shuster HarmsworthSassy BritHeatheraynne BrooksDebra BroughonJosie BrownPat BrownRuth BrownKen BruenRachel Kramer BusselAldo CalcagnoAustin S. CamachoBill CameronLorenzo CarcaterraVincent CarrellaKaren DeGroot CarterRosemary CarstensCynthia Clark – Futures Mysterious Anthology MagazineJon ClinchKamela CodyOline H. Cogdill- Sun-SentinalTish CohenEileen Cruz ColemanMyfanwy CollinsDan Conaway – Writers HouseLaurie Connors – PenguinEileen CookRichard CooperDavid CorbettAuria CortesBill Crider – Pop Culture MagazineKim CristofoliAnn Mare CumminsSheila CurranKristie CutterJordan DaneJosephine DamianDaryl DarkoA.J. DavisKelli DavisAlyssa DayAlma Hromic DeckertJim DeFeliceMike DellossoKatrina DenzaBella DePauloKaren DionneFelicia DonovanJulie Doughty -DuttonGerry DoyleTerri DuLongFiroozeh DumasChristine EldrinJ.T. Ellison – Killer YearSheila Clover English – Circle of Seven ProductionsKate Epstein – the Epstein Literary Agency Kathryn EsplinRachel Fershleiser at SMITH Magazine
Michael A. FitzGerald
Natasha FondrenJamie FordConnie May FowlerHeather FowlerTherese FowlerJenifer FoxThaisa FrankMichelle GableGary GachLeighton GageNeil GaimanColin GalbraithJayson GallawayJane Ganahl – Red RoomErika-Marie S.GeissLinda GerberShane GerickeTess GerritsenKarin GillespieAnne GlamoreKathi KamenGoldmarkJewelle GomezSusan Helene GottfriedDeborah GrabienElizabeth GrahamCaroline GrantRobin GranthamBob Gray – Shelf AwarenessNancy O. GreeneRobert GrudinLisa GuidariniDavid HabbinJim Hanas
Lynette Hart
Melanie HarveyMichael HaskinsMelanie Lynn HauserBill HayesMaria Dahvana HeadleySusan HendersonHeidi the HickGeorgia HesseBillie HintonVicki HinzeLori HopeKhaled HosseiniEileen Hutton – Brilliance AudioGina HyamsInternational Thriller WritersDavid IsaakSusan ItoLisa JacksonArachne JerichoAllison JohnsonJen Jordan – CrimespreeJungle Red WritersLesley KagenPolly KahlJessica KeenerCharles KellyLisa KennyBeth KephartJackie KesslerMerle KesslerKristy Kiernan – Southern AuthorsBlogA.S. KingJeff Kleinman – Folio LiteraryManagementSandra KringKyraR.D. LabanRebecca Laffar-Smith – Writers RoundaboutClair LambDaphne LarkinLarramieJudy Merrill LarsonCaroline LeavittLeahVirginia LeeLeslie LevineMary LewisRichard LewisLianeSharon LinneaJulie Anne LongCJ LyonsJonathan MaberryAmy MacKinnon – The Writers GroupTim MaleenyRic MarionNancy MartinAdrienne MayorL.C. McCabeDamian McNichollEllen MeisterMelbaChrista MillerKyle MinorJacquelyn MitchardP. A. MoedTerri MolinaPat MontandonDavid MontgomeryAlexis MooreJoe Moore – InkspotAmanda MorganSarie MorrellMurderatiAmy NathanNathalieNational PostTia NevittNicoleCarolyn NorthAurelio O’BrienMartha O’ConnorAndrea OkrentowichLori OlivaAimee PaloozaPamelaMichael PalmerStephen ParrishMarie PeckMarcia Peterson – WOW! Women onWritingJason PinterAnthony S. PolicastroDouglas PrestonPublishers MarketplaceTerese RaminJody RealeMartha ReedJanet Reid -FinePrint Literary ManagementKamilla ReidLance ReynaldMichelle RichmondMaria RobinsonJohn RobisonJames RollinsM.J. Rose – Buzz, Balls & HypeRenee RosenJordan RosenfeldRussell RowlandAnneli RufusHank RyanMarcus SakeyHarris Salat -Visual ThesaurusRachel SarahMaria Schneider – Writer’s DigestMagazineNina SchuylerDani ShapiroRochelle ShapiroCharles ShaughnessyJessie ShollRobert SiegelClea SimonLynn SinclairJen SingerShelley SingerSisters in CrimeRobin SlickBPM Smith – Word & BassBridget SmithClaudia SmithKim SmithStephie SmithAlexandra SokoloffChar SolomonJames SpringEmilie StaatKim StaglianoMaryanne StahlBella StanderKelli StanleyMarta StephensBronwyn StormJennifer TaltyJudith TannenbaumMindy TarquiniAlice Tasman – the Jean Naggar Literary Agency
CharlesR. Temple
David ThayerThe OutfitTheresaJoyce TremelDanielle TrussoniLouise UreN. L. VallerBarbara Vey -Publishers WeeklyBev VincentBrenda WallaceTherese Walsh – Writer UnboxedJohn Warner – Tow BooksGary WassnerBrenda WebsterSarah WeinmanKimberly M. WetherellDan Wickett – Emerging WritersNetworkJennifer WeinerLaura WellnerSusan WiggsLiz WolfeCheryl WyattStephen WylderIrvin YalomBelle YangDawn YunMichele ZackheimVictoria ZackheimErnie ZelinskiCrystal Zevon






  1. Hi, Christa. Just stopping by to visit with all of the bloggers posting for Patry today. It just seems like the right thing to do. Your blog is lovely. I’ll stop back another time when I can read through your posts. Be blissed.

  2. Pingback: laura char

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