The Long Road to “Sworn to Remember”

Posted at May 14, 2019 8:57 pm

“Sworn to Remember” is being released tomorrow, May 15, 2019, which is about 16 years from when I first wrote a version of this book. Back then, it was titled “Weekend Diaries” and in 2003 it won the NJ Romance Writers Put Your Heart In a Book Contest. As a result, I signed with an agent and thought this book would launch my career as a romance novelist.

Unfortunately, it did not. My dream faded with each rejection and I moved on to write another manuscript and another. It wasn’t until 2013 that I signed my first contract with The Wild Rose Press and it was for the fifth manuscript that I wrote, entitled “Unchained Memories.” I went on to have “Dancing in the Sand” published, but I could never let go of “Weekend Diaries,” Samantha’s story.  So I went back, took it apart, turned it into a four-book series, and gave each of Sam’s girlfriends their own story. Oddly, book one of The Sworn Sisters Series wasn’t Sam’s story, but Nicki’s. After waiting for over 16 years, Sam still had to wait! 

Until now. So with breath held and fingers crossed, Sam’s story is entering the world in a few hours. Maybe 16 years is the charm. 


Praise for Sworn to Forget

Posted at Nov 11, 2018 2:36 pm

“Sworn to Forget” has garnered many five star reviews for which I am grateful. It’s humbling and validating to see that hard work has paid off and my readers are enjoying the fruits of that labor. I hope you will have to chance to pick up a copy on Kindle, Nook, iTunes or print through amazon. Here are a few snippets from reviewers.

“Two whirlwinds of emotions, passion, wounded pasts collide to make one heck of a hurricane.  How does everything in it’s wake survive? There are many painful moments that take time to get over. So much happens in this novel and it’s so intense and heart stopping…. Just when your heart may drop, it’s picked back up and squeezed with love and put back in and cradled and pumped back to life!.”   by Trully

“A book that takes the reader through every possible emotional roller coaster. You get the highs and lows of life. You get love, you get heart break, you get life long friendship, you get dark secrets; you get hidden demons….I was deeply challenged when reading this book. It is excellently written, and I recommend it to almost everyone.”   by N.N. Light

“I began reading, thinking this was going to be a chick read. It didn’t take but a few pages to become wrapped in a story woven with fine threads, and twists, that captivated me to the final page when tears flowed from my eyes, tears of joy for Nicki and Dex…and author Maria Imbalzano. I wait with anticipation for Sworn to Remember in Sworn Sisters Series Book 2.”  by Esquire




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“Sworn to Forget” will be released on July 18th!

Posted at Jul 11, 2018 12:58 pm

I can’t wait for my readers to meet Nicki Reading, a music exec and Dex Hanover, a CPA– who met on a cruise– in the first of a four-book series. To celebrate, I’m having a book launch party at Marsilio’s in Ewing on July 25th from 5-8PM.  If you’re in the area, please join me in helping to support the Trenton Literacy Movement while we celebrate.




From “In re Mackin” to “Sworn to Forget”

Posted at Apr 30, 2018 10:51 am

Thirty something years ago while in law school, I was invited to join and write for the Fordham International Law Journal (ILJ). I was never a good creative writer, but I learned to love legal writing–very linear and analytical.  The article I wrote for the ILJ was titled “In re Mackin: Is the Application of the Political Offense Exception an Extradition Issue for the Judicial or the Executive Branch?” It was approximately 30 pages which included 181 footnotes. Even I don’t want to re-read it, but if you’re so inclined, it can be found on the internet.

After graduating from law school, I practiced law first as an Estates and Trusts lawyer (taxes were my thing) then as a divorce lawyer dealing with issues of custody, child support, alimony, equitable distribution and a host of other problems. I enjoyed writing legal memorandums, briefs, and motions, but the creativity was in the arguments to the court, not the writing.

About twenty years ago, I decided to try my hand at creative writing. As fate would have it, a flier came across my desk for a seminar called “How to Write Your Book in 14 Days (A Lawyer’s Guide)”. I quickly signed up, thinking no one else would be there. I was wrong. The room was packed with would-be John Grishoms hoping to write that blockbuster manuscript, sell it, make a fortune and retire from law.

The seminar was exactly what I needed to get started – although to this day, I have not been able to write a book in fourteen days. It did, however, help me in plotting my stories and breaking them down from chapters to scenes to paragraphs. With that and countless writing seminars and conferences on point of view, character development, story arcs, conflict, the black moment, dialogue, etc. I have moved from legal writing to creative writing.

Being back at the law school for our reunion brought back fond memories of my days there, although I must confess it is much more fun to write romance than an article for the law journal. 






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SWORN SISTERS Contemporary Romance Series Coming Soon

Posted at Mar 21, 2018 1:58 pm

SWORN TO FORGET is the first novel in my Sworn Sisters series which will be released this summer – just in time for your beach getaway.

The Sworn Sisters Series is about four high school girlfriends, now in their early 30’s, as each of them deals with certain life events–divorce, broken engagement, adoption, heartbreak, affairs. A secret from the past comes to light which will affect their relationships with each other as well as with their love interests.


By all appearances, Nicki Reading is a star. PR director at a major music label, Nicki is sharp, successful, independent and confidently calls the shots. She dates whom she wants, when she wants, with no strings attached. But beneath that shine, loneliness flickers. Events from her past prove love leads only to pain. Commitment is not an option.

Until Dex Hanover, a classy, principled, and prosperous CPA, enters the picture. Undeterred by his unhappy childhood, he has an amazing capacity to be both caring and generous; giving his free time as a mentor for a child from the projects. Dex wears his paternal yearnings on his sleeve and he is at a point in his life where commitment is the only option.

Despite their opposing views, Nicki and Dex ignite each other. But will events from their pasts ruin their challenging relationship and prevent them from experiencing everlasting love?

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TRR’s Year End Splash Party

Posted at Nov 8, 2016 8:56 am

Last month I decided to join The Romance Reviews (TRR) Year End SplashParty.  It goes from November 1st through the 30th and there are hundreds of prizes for romance readers. I filled out the form to provide all the information they needed for my book “Dancing in the Sand”.  Then they asked for a question with  multiple choice answers relating to my book so participants in the game could win a prize. I came up with the question, included three possible answers along with the correct one and sent it off. I was then supposed to post on my blog or Facebook page telling readers the answer.

Easy, right? If I had done what I had intended, and wrote up the blurb that day, everything would have been fine. But work and other commitments detained me and before I knew it, it was November and I hadn’t posted anything. So, I sat down at my desk last weekend to get the job done.  The problem was, I had no recollection of my question.

I will tell you right now that Ava’s mother left her family to become a choreographer for a popular television dance show. But before I could tell you that, I had to email Carole at TRR and explain the error of my ways while apologizing for asking her to find my submission amongst the hundreds of others so she could remind me of my question. Thank you, Carole and to all you readers. I promise this lesson has been learned.   

The Romance Reviews


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TRR (The Romance Reviews)

Posted at Oct 10, 2016 3:03 pm

For a website that has fun contests, tons of romance reads, and your chance to become a reviewer, go to TRR.  For the entire month of November they will be giving away fabulous prizes and an opportunity to play fun games at their Year End Splash Party.  You can also win a copy of  “Unchained Memories.”  Stop by and enjoy the party.

The Romance Reviews

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Blog Tour Stops for “Dancing in the Sand”

Posted at Sep 3, 2015 7:58 am

Beginning today, and over the next two months, I will be stopping at 13 blogs answering various interview questions about my book, about writing, about life. Here is the schedule: 

September 3: Independent Authors
September 10: Unabridged Andra’s
September 17: The Blog of C.R. Moss
September 24: The Reading Addict
September 24: Christine Young
October 1: BooksChatter
October 8: Archaeolibrarian – I dig good books! 
October 15: LibriAmoriMiei
October 22: Writer Wonderland
October 29: Romance Novel Giveaways
November 5: Booklover Sue
November 12: Erin Cawood 
November 19: Long and Short Reviews

Please stop by and you will have the chance to win a $25 gift card.NBTM_TourBanner_DancingInTheSand

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Interview with Heroine from “Dancing in the Sand”

Posted at Aug 20, 2015 9:44 am

With six days to go until the release of “Dancing in the Sand,” I thought you might like to get to know a little about the heroine, Ava Woodward. Although busy working on a trial brief for an upcoming trial, she agreed to give us a few minutes of her time.

Q. I understand you were a dancer. What got you started in that field?

A. My mother was an incredible dancer and a dance teacher. Ever since I was a baby, she took me to the studio and set me up in a playpen where I could watch her teach. I loved the classes with the little ones. I couldn’t wait to start myself. When I turned five, I took my first ballet class and was hooked ever since.

Q. You and your roommate at NYU, Carrie Stanhope, planned to audition for a position with a major dance company.  What made you drop out?

A. (Sighs) Life. Reality. Sometimes we need to change our plan dependent upon the circumstances. I knew it would be a shot in the dark to be chosen out of hundreds of would-be dancers who’d be auditioning. I decided to be practical and go to law school. A career in law gives me security. I need that.

Q. What type of law do you practice?

A. I work for a firm here in New York City doing environmental litigation. We mainly represent non-profits fighting the natural gas drilling companies from fracking.

Q. That’s a lofty goal.

A. (Nods) I’d like to see the next generations survive without getting sick or dying from chemicals in their drinking water.

Q. I understand your dating, Brian Stanhope, your friend’s brother. How is that going?

A. (Smiles) Good. He’s an amazing guy. And very close with his sister as well as the rest of his family.

Q. How did you meet him?

A. I actually met him a long time ago at his parents’ house in Newport. Carrie had invited me to his graduation party weekend. We had a great time. Really connected. (Lowers lids) Unfortunately, he had a horseback riding accident that weekend, and he didn’t remember me due to a head injury. We lost touch. Until recently.

Q. Doesn’t he work for the family business, Stanhope Natural Gas?

A. He does.

Q. How does that affect your relationship since his company drills for natural gas?

A. We try to stay away from topics that  present philosophical differences. He has the right to make a living working in whatever field he chooses. He was destined to work for the family company since he was born. My career has no effect on him.

Q. Do you ever see yourself pitted against each other in the legal arena?

A. (Laughs) No. We’d never let that happen.

Q. Your friend, Carrie, dances with the New York Ballet Company. Any regrets?

A. (Swallows) She’s an amazing dancer and a fabulous performer. I’m so proud of her. She’s doing what she was meant to do. And so am I.

Q. Your mother is a choreographer for “So You Think You Can Dance.” Do you go to any of the performances?

A. My mother moved to L.A. thirteen years ago. I haven’t seen her since.

I’m sorry, but I really have to get back to work. If you need any other information, just read “Dancing in the Sand.” Thank you. 


New York City – The Setting for “Dancing in the Sand”

Posted at Aug 8, 2015 3:10 pm

There are eighteen days till my launch date and I’m thinking of New York City, which is it’s own character in the novel. I love New York. The electricity of millions of people walking the streets is so vibrant, you can feel it in your bones. Ever since I was a young girl and watched “That Girl” with Marlo Thomas, I wanted to be her–although I never aspired to be an actress. 

As soon as I graduated from college, I headed to the City and found a job as a paralegal on Park Avenue between 49th and 50th. I lived in a brownstone with a roommate on 85th and First and took advantage of the museums, ballet, theater and restaurants –at least to the extent my measly salary would allow. Back then, the Metropolitan Museum of Art didn’t charge a fee but suggested a donation.  If you didn’t have it, they would let you in anyway. Co-workers who had season tickets to the ballet always thought of me first if they couldn’t make it on any particular night, so I was the beneficiary of many performances. My girlfriend and I saw the second half of several plays because no one checks tickets after intermission. 

Ava Woodward, the heroine of “Dancing in the Sand”, attends NYU as a dance major in the beginning of the story. While I didn’t go to NYU, I frequented the area while at Fordham Law School (next to Lincoln Center) since I had friends who lived in the Village. 

The places Ava visits with Brian in the City, while not identifiable as a specific restaurant or theater, could be one of many places you may know. When they go to Brian’s sister’s dance performance, it’s at Lincoln Center.

I hope you’ll enjoy moving through New York City with Ava and Brian as much as I loved being there with them.

What’s your favorite place in NYC? 


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