This is for Cara's Carnival, even though I'm a day late and a dollar short--what else is new? The most influential author, book, or moment in my writing career...?
The thing that influenced me the most I would have to say was the evening I heard from an editor at Red Sage Publishing, telling me (and I quote):
I'd like to tell you that I thought Scandalous Behavior was extremely appealing. I love the "good girl gone bad" feel to Tess's story, and I thought Kevin was a great hero. In general, I think your writing style has a great deal of passion, and the sex scenes are great!
That was a fantastic moment in my writing career. I was absolutely floored that an editor liked something I wrote. I was even more shocked that she felt it was worthy of revisions...to this day, I will open up that email and re'read it, just to give myself a boost. Whenever I'm feeling low, or thinking to myself, I'll never get that second book published, that email brightens my mood and makes me realize that, while one editor might think my writing sucks, another loves it.
In the end, I just keep plugging away and hoping that someday, I'll see my books sitting on the stands at the grocery store and at the top it'll say, "New York Times Best Selling Author" Hey, if you're going to dream, might as well dream big!