Diane Nine

All posts tagged Diane Nine

Half-Year Rehash

Published June 22, 2020 by rochellewisoff

I’m certainly not the first to say it’s been quite a year thus far. Can you say understatement?

My adventure truly began in October of 2019…pardon the rerun…when my award-winning author friend, Kathleen M. Rodgers introduced me to her agent Diane Nine, president of Nine Speakers Entertainment Agency  

No matter what your political leanings, it’s a compelling book about a longstanding relationship between two women. I loved it from cover to cover.

I must read this book soon!

Kathleen M. Rodgers, one of the most generous people I know.

With fear and trembling I sent my manuscript of my latest novel with working title WHAT THE HEART WANTS and a book proposal to her. When we spoke November 4, Diane opened the conversation with what every author dreams of hearing from a potential agent, “I loved your manuscript or we wouldn’t be having this conversation.”  

So far the book has been turned down a few times but, knowing Diane loves it, assures me she’ll find the right home for Bear Starfire and Asher Gorovich. 

Here is short summary. (Yes, I’ve posted this before and might post it again. 😉 )

In 1879, Eastern Europe is a hotbed of Antisemitism. In the midst of a pogrom, a government sanctioned massacre against the Jews, sixteen-year old Asher Gorovich witnesses the slaughter of his father, the blacksmith in his Polish village. Life doesn’t improve for him as he endures more persecution and loss of other loved ones.

Meanwhile, in America, eleven-year-old Bear Starfire is torn from her family and forced to attend St. Salvinus Indian boarding school. There she is stripped of her culture and endures both emotional and physical cruelty at the hands of staff members.

When these two wounded hearts meet will they find more conflict or the answer to their prayers?

Bear Starfire on the Wings of the Wind

Enter the Quarantine. Yeah, as much as I’ve avoided writing about it, it is the proverbial elephant in the room (and all over the media). For those of you who remember elephant jokes, you can tell he’s there by the peanuts on his breath. 

As per Diane’s strong suggestion, I’ve worked on my Twitter presence. You can follow me @RochelleFields 😉 At any rate, that’s how I met Jimmy Leonard, a young man with a podcast entitled “World on Fire”. In April he emailed saying I fit the profile of someone with a passion and asked if I’d be willing to do an interview on Zoom. Although we did the interview on April 22, it didn’t go “live” until mid June. 

We spoke for at least 45 minutes. Please excuse my cluttered background. That’s my environment. Unfortunately, the above portion about meeting Diane and WHAT THE HEART WANTS didn’t make the final edit.

Disclaimer: I had no idea what his intro would be. Although, I think Mr. Leonard makes some good points and it is his podcast.

Keep in mind, we spoke in April. Our topics were my artwork, Friday Fictioneers and the novel I’m currently working on and am three-fourths of the way through. My interview begins about 11:36 into it. 





to learn more about ordering art or books.

Re his “off the wall” question, “If you could paint a portrait of any person, living or dead, who would it be?” This took me by surprise, because I’ve done quite a few portraits. For whatever reason, the first person who popped into my overloaded mind was Maya Angelou, a woman I greatly admire. What’s not to admire?

Nu? I had to put my paintbrush where my mouth was, right? Of course right! 

It’s a Writer’s Life

Published March 13, 2020 by rochellewisoff

At first meeting with Kathleen Rodgers, we found we had much in common. Both of us are military wives as well as authors. As life has a way of separating even the best of friends, our writing paths took us in different directions. So it has been such a pleasure to reconnect with her recently. Now we have an agent in common as well–Diane Nine, president of Nine Speakers

Kathleen and me. We connected at first meeting. We found we have a lot in common. (Height isn’t one of them.)

About three weeks ago, in conversation, she asked if I’d ever thought of painting an old typewriter. She thought it would make a great note card for authors. I found the prospect somewhat daunting but decided I had nothing to lose. I’m extremely pleased with the outcome. Even my husband had only “Wow” to say about it. 😀 


So intent on promoting the prints and note cards, Kathleen has posted this wonderful, if not head-swelling, article on her blog. CLICK HERE for her side of the story. 😀


Published November 18, 2019 by rochellewisoff

“Our life together
Is so precious together
We have grown, we have grown
Although our love still is special
Let’s take a chance and fly away somewhere

Starting over (over and over and over)”

~~John Lennon

 My writing journey began  about 15 years ago with my historical fiction Please Say Kaddish for Me. Once I finished the manuscript all I had to do was find a publisher and watch it rise to the New York Times Best Sellers list. Right?

Oh if only it had been that easy. The truth is I had so much to learn. Each time I went to a writing workshop or critique group, I realized changes needed to be made, whether it was too much passive voice, too many gerunds or word repetition.

After years of writing and rewriting, I pitched to a few agents until one fell in love with my novel. Contract signed, the wait began. Three years later W & B Publishers took on my novel and its sequels. Click here for more info on those books. 

Two years ago (maybe three?) I went to work on a new historical novel I titled What the Heart Wants. Once I felt the manuscript was complete I sent it to my beta readers who took me to task on typos and made wonderful suggestions.

Since I don’t feel self-publishing is a viable option for me, my next step was the daunting task of finding an agent to represent it. The group I belong to, Ozarks Writers League, brought in some agents to hear pitches at the September conference. Since I wasn’t able to attend, I sent a packet to one of them through a fellow OWL member. Thank you, Ronda.

I have to *kvell a bit here. The September conference is when awards are given for the annual writing contest. “What the Heart Wants” took first place in the Unpublished Manuscript category. As my British friends would say, “I’m chuffed to bits.”

By mid-October I’d not heard back from the agent. Mind you, I wasn’t stressing over it.

One morning I saw my friend, award winning author and fellow military wife Kathleen M. Rodgers on Facebook. It occurred to me we hadn’t chatted in ages so I asked in a PM if she had time for a call.

Kathleen and me a few years ago at an OWL conference. The bonding was immediate. 😀

As usually happens when authors chat we talked about our current works in progress. When I told her about mine, she thought it sounded like a worthy story and suggested I email her agent, Diane Nine. Kathleen said she’d email her as well to tell her to expect to hear from me.

Before I had a chance to write, Kathleen informed me Diane agreed to take a look at my work. Diane also requested a book proposal along with the manuscript. You think writing a novel is tough? Try writing a book proposal which includes short summary, full synopsis, chapter by chapter summary, author bio etc. etc. I’m not really *kvetching. It was a learning experience that I kind of enjoyed.

The Author-Illustrator in her natural habitat.

After spending nearly a week on the proposal and having it proofread, I sent it to Diane along with the manuscript on 19 October. A mere ten days later I received an email from her saying she enjoyed the manuscript and asked me to give her a call the following Monday. I nearly fell off my elliptical trainer. (That’s what I get for reading emails on my phone while working out. It’s simply not possible to jump up and down at the same time.)

Monday, 4 November, came complete with a tummy full of butterflies. But they all flew away when she answered the phone with, “I loved your manuscript or we wouldn’t be having this conversation.”

The conversation lasted close to two hours and left me with a silly grin on my face.

The contract is signed and the waiting begins. It feels just like starting over.

*kvell – Yiddish for “I’m bursting at the seams so I have to shout it to the world.” 

*kvetching – Yiddish for “Oy, this is so awful, you shouldn’t ask.” 


When I made the announcement on Facebook author, beta reader and friend, Lonnie Whitaker posted this:

“I was privileged to read an early draft and can report it is solid, engaging, and in many ways transcends genres. It’s historical, gritty, romantic, with a hint of mystery. No doubt we will see it in print soon. Congratulations, Rochelle.”


Short Summary –What the Heart Wants

For Asher, growing up as a Jew in Ukraine in the 1800’s, life is a minefield. Eastern Europe is a hotbed of violence and antisemitism. He blames God for the murder of his young bride and the slaughter of his father. All hope is gone.  

In America, the home of the free and the brave, Bear Starfire is torn from her family and carried off to boarding school. Her teachers are determined to beat the heathen out of her. The principal lures her into a “special friendship”.   

A few years later, having left Russia, Asher answers the call to “go west, young man” via covered wagon.  When a blizzard delays his journey, Missouri farmers provide refuge. Their adopted daughter, a tall, bronze beauty captures his heart.

Can these two wounded souls from radically different backgrounds find healing in each other’s arms?



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