Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Jeanette & Rhonda - A Virtual Luncheon Interview - Part 1


Participants:   Susan J. Reinhardt, Christian Writer/Reader
                          Connection (You are here!)
                      Jeanette Levellie, Audience of One
                      Rhonda Schrock,
                         The Natives Are Getting Restless




Butterflies waltz in my stomach as I wait in front of the Olive Garden. This may be a "virtual lunch," but I'm nervous in a happy way. Jeanette Levellie and Rhonda Schrock are my favorite humor writers on the Internet.


Oh, there are two women getting out of a car. Classy redhead and cute brunette--gotta be them. Rhonda and Jen spot me and make a beeline for lots of hugs.

After the usual girly squeals, Rhonda grins at me. "It's such a pleasure to finally 'meet' you. I'm glad you suggested this get-together in cyberspace." She sniffs at the delectable aromas coming from the restaurant. "I can smell the breadsticks and taste the chicken scampi already. I hope they have the coffee on because nothing goes with girl talk like a fresh cup of java."

Jen's holding a package and looks like she's about to burst. "I brought you a gift, and you have to open it right now before we go inside. I can't wait."

I tear through the wrapping paper, eager to see what treasure awaits me. "Oh, what a sweetie you are, Jen." Pushing back the tissue paper, I see a lavender sweatshirt, but not just any sweatshirt--a Snoopy sweatshirt! "I love it. Snoopy is my favorite Peanuts' character."

Jen is jumping up and down. "Snoopy is sitting on top of his doghouse, writing. I special ordered it with 'Susie' printed on the side of the doghouse. Yippee, Dippee, and let's go eat!"

The three of us enter the Olive Garden, and the hostess seats us at a table next to a window. The Tuscan decor, with its gold walls, wrought iron fixtures, and colorful plates, hold special memories for me. My husband and I had our first date at the Olive Garden.

After the server takes our orders, I laugh. "Okay, now that we're all here, I want to know how you guys managed to snag a column in your local newspapers."

...to be continued.


Questions for the Reader: Do you wish you could get together with Blogger friends, but they live too far away? How do you solve that problem? Phone calls? Personal emails?

40 comments:

Terri Tiffany said...

I love this! You picked two of my favorite people I want to meet! I've met quite a few of my blogger friends and have never been disappointed but there are a zillion more I want to meet. Hopefully I will you someday too!

Diane said...

Wonderful surprise to meet them this way. Hope all is well with you and things are moving along with your book! :O)

Britt Mitchell said...

This was a cute post, Susan. I email when needed, comment on blogs when I can. Perhaps, one of these days, I can actually got to a conference and meet some of you wonderful people.

Ot maybe before that. Only God knows!

(I'm hungry for Italian now.)

Dolores Ayotte said...

Susan,
You managed to accomplish a special dream of mine. I have met some wonderful people through cyberspace and how I would love to meet them face to face one day.

I love that you did this. It gives me hope.

Jeanette Levellie said...

Suze:

You are the clever one, to concoct this cyber lunch for us! I hate that it's not real, but someday at the Marriage Supper of the Lamb, we'll have all the shrimp scampi we like, sans calories. Yippee Dippee!!!

Thanks for having us, dear friend,
Jen

Susan J. Reinhardt said...

Hi Terri -

I hope you'll stayed tuned for the continuing saga. These ladies had a lot to say.

I know what you mean. If you're ever in PA, give me a yell. :)

Blessings,
Susan

Susan J. Reinhardt said...

Hi Diane -

I figured if I couldn't meet them in person we'd do a virtual lunch/interview. :)

Blessings,
Susan

Susan J. Reinhardt said...

Hi Britt -

Ha! Wait until we get to the dessert.

Blessings,
Susan :)

Susan J. Reinhardt said...

Hi Dolores -

I hope all of you understand this was a VIRTUAL MEETING in cyberspace. While I have met a number of blogging friends in person, I haven't had the privilege of meeting these two ladies.

I thought everyone would enjoy a different type of interview.

Blessings,
Susan :)

Susan J. Reinhardt said...

Hi Jen -

We had fun, didn't we? I'll take the Marriage Supper of the Lamb any day - with or without calories!

Blessings,
Susan :)

Jessica Nelson said...

Oooooh! How fun!!! So this didn't really happen? I thought it did until Terri said it didn't. LOL

I love, love meeting blogger friends. There's always a wonderful connection. Hope you have a great day, Susan!

Jan Cline said...

Wonderful idea Susan, if feel as if I were there. I think we should have a nationwide blogger fest just so we an all meet. Hmmmm....now there's an idea...

Heather Sunseri said...

How fun! And yes, I would love to meet more of my blogging friends! Conferences are great for this, and I thoroughly enjoyed ACFW this year for that very reason! I also was blessed to meet Karen Lange this year for coffee. I also indulge in personal emails with several friends when necessary or when we just feel like shouting hello to each other.

quietspirit said...

Susan:
I met Jeanette in November of 2008 at a writing conference. You suggested I make friends with her on Facebook. She was the one who recognized me. We met again in November 2009. She is a great lady.
I like the way you wrote this.

Jeanette Levellie said...

Thanks, Quiet. It takes one to know one! I admire you, too.

Love,
Jen

Rhonda Schrock said...

Thank you so much for hosting lunch, Susan! :) Pretty sure a real one would take us much, much longer!

Now, pass the breadsticks, please.

P.S. - I've met Jeanette in person. It was a birthday gift to myself, believe me.

Patti Lacy said...

Jeanette is much, much more amazing, funny, and beautiful than her on-line presence.

I know! You don't believe me!

I am blessed to call her not just a bloggite, but a soulmate writer who would hop in her car RIGHT NOW and drive here if I really needed her.

Rhonda, I know you are lovely, too:)
You three, Susan!
Patti

Karen Lange said...

What a wonderful idea! Can't wait to hear more. Glad you went to Olive Garden; I can smell the breadsticks now...

Susan J. Reinhardt said...

Hi Jess -

We had a blast doing this Virtual Lunch/Interview. You should see all the emails we exchanged!

Blessings,
Susan :)

Susan J. Reinhardt said...

Hi Jan -

I think there was a blogger meet-up in California. Maybe ACFW will bring the conference to the East Coast someday. I might be able to attend if they did.

Blessings,
Susan :)

Susan J. Reinhardt said...

Hi Heather -

LOL! If I had time, I'd be corresponding with the immediate world. I have a personal email update list with 150 people, plus I keep in touch with several close blogger friends.

Blessings,
Susan :)

Susan J. Reinhardt said...

Hi Quiet Spirit -

I didn't realize that you and Jen connected through me. We're hoping to meet in person next summer. :)

Blessings,
Susan

Susan J. Reinhardt said...

Hi Jen -

I'm getting a bit jealous that you've met some of these ladies already. :)

Blessings,
Susan

Susan J. Reinhardt said...

Hi Rhonda -

We would probably have to sit through lunch and dinner.

Blessings,
Susan :)

Susan J. Reinhardt said...

Hi Patti -

Jen and I email and talk on the phone, so I know she's a special person. :)

Blessings,
Susan

Susan J. Reinhardt said...

Hi Karen -

There's lots more to come. These gals opened their hearts and shared so much. This was one LONG virtual lunch. :)

Blessings,
Susan

Jeanette Levellie said...

Okay, this is the plan:

As soon as the trumpet sounds and we sail outta here for Jesus' House, meet at my mansion for Italian. No time limits on yakking!!!

I love you all. This made my day.

Stephen Tremp said...

I have yet to meet one of my blogger friends in person or over the phone. Only online. Maybe I'll meet some at future book signings.

Dolores Ayotte said...

Susan...Oops! I missed the word virtual. Well, it just goes to show how authentic it sounded because it felt so real.

Susan Panzica - EternityCafe said...

Susan,
What a wonderful idea!! Just love it. I too so enjoy both Jen and Rhonda. And I'm thankful that we're close enough and have been able to meet for real! Your're a blessing!
Much love,
Susan

Rhonda Schrock said...

See you there, girls!

Susan J. Reinhardt said...

Hi Jen -

Sounds good to me! I can't imagine heaven without yummy food.

Blessings,
Susan :)

Susan J. Reinhardt said...

Hi Stephen -

If you and your wife are ever out this way, give me a shout. Maybe we can all go out for coffee/tea.

Blessings,
Susan :)

Susan J. Reinhardt said...

Hi Dolores -

That's high praise for a fiction writer. You made my day. :)

Blessings,
Susan

Susan J. Reinhardt said...

Hi Susan -

I'm glad we can get together from time to time. We actually reversed the order, meeting first and then visiting each other's blogs. :)

Blessings,
Susan

Susan J. Reinhardt said...

Hi Rhonda -

You betcha! (We're very informal around here.)

Blessings,
Susan :)

Dixie Phillips said...

Susan,
Loved your blog. I love making new friends - especially those that are in their "WRITE" mind. ;-)

Susan J. Reinhardt said...

Hi Dixie -

You're always welcome here. I hope you'll join in the conversation often.

Blessings,
Susan :)

Jean Fischer said...

What a neat idea, Susan, a virtual lunch! Let's make a plan to meet for breakfast next week. My treat.

Blessings.
Jean

Susan J. Reinhardt said...

Hi Jean -

Cool. Let's talk about it. I'd love a whole mess of eggs, bacon, and home fries. :)

Blessings,
Susan