Valentine's day is a day everyone thinks of as romantic. If you're in a relationship, you usually at least get a card, maybe some chocolate or flowers, and a hug or kiss. My husband and I tend to celebrate the week before Valentine's because it's when we originally started dating, but we still at least wish each other happy on the day itself. And my kids are all into giving and receiving cards and candy.
But what if you get a gift and don't know what to think about it? Has that ever happened to you? Did you ever have a secret--or not-so-secret admirer? Get a surprise bouquet? My character, Chris, in Writing Home, has that happen to her. I thought you might enjoy reliving this fun scene where she first gets flowers--and freaks out a little bit.
Chris glanced up from her computer screen as Danielle’s voice pulled her from the struggle of rearranging all of one doctor’s appointments on a week he suddenly decided he needed a vacation. On the other side of the plexiglass, brightly colored flowers stared back at her. She tentatively pushed the window open and tried to see around the bouquet.
“Can I help you?”
A delivery guy held the floral arrangement out. “Christiana Jones?”
No way. Flowers for her? After she’d sat here all morning accepting deliveries for the other girls, fighting off jealousy, trying to not think about the fact that she didn’t have a Valentine of her own . . . again? “Yes . . . ”
“These are for you.” The guy tipped his hat. “Happy Valentine’s Day.”
“Thanks.” She set the vase down in front of her, hands trembling. Who? Who on earth could have sent these? She stilled as Gregory ran through her mind. Or Garrett.
Since joining a book club, I've noticed how nice it is when authors have discussion questions posted SOMEWHERE, either in the back of the book, or on their website. So, for any of you who choose my novel to use as a book club read, here are some questions you can use to discuss afterwards. You're not limited to these, obviously. And I'd love to hear any you can come up with, too.
Have you ever been reading along and wished you could see exactly how a house or plot of land looked that the character lives in. Well, today is your lucky day.
In going through the edits for Writing Home, my editor couldn't picture exactly how everything looked the way I had described it. To make both our lives easier, I sketched out a rough (seriously, super rough with no measuring whatsoever) floor plan of the land Jordan's family lives on (see above) as well as his cabin (see below).
Writing Home releases TOMORROW! Now that you've had a few sneak peeks behind the characters and story, I though you'd like a peek at the first chapter. I've added it below.
In the next few weeks, I'm going to be visiting quite a few other blogs, too, talking more about this book and the different things that inspired it. I hope you love this story as much as I do. Because, so far, it might be one of my favorites.
And if you want to make sure and get your copy, it's here!
Let's talk best friends. Because, to be honest, Christiana and Jordan wouldn't have much of a story in Writing Home, if not for Tina.
Tina and Chris grew up down the street from each other in their Nashville suburb, and were almost inseparable until Chris left to go to Huntsville for college. Now, Tina is still at home, and wishes Chris were, too.
When Chris asks for a pen pal, Tina immediately thinks of her cousin Jordan, who she used to write in middle and high school. And maybe for a few other reasons, too, but she's not disclosing those yet.
Jordan White, the other main character of my book, Writing Home, lives in Louisiana. Just outside of Shreveport on his family's land, to be exact. He inherited his grandfather's cabin, just down the yard and across the driveway from his parents' house.
Growing up in that part of the world, it's natural for him to love all things outdoors--hiking, fishing, hunting, football. And since they have several acres of wooded area, as well as a pond, he's pretty happy to stay right where he is.
As we gear up to welcome my newest book into the world in a week and a half (not that I'm counting or anything), I wanted to give you a sneak peek at the characters and some other behind-the-scenes tid-bits.
Here's Christiana Jones. She grew up hearing stories of Huntsville from her dad, who went to college there. It became her dream, so she went to school there and stayed. But for some reason, it doesn't feel like home to her. Maybe that's why she hasn't unpacked all of the boxes in her apartment despite having been there almost three years.
She's working at a pediatric clinic as one of the receptionists, and is good at her job, but it no longer brings satisfaction.
This year was different. I set out with a plan and a hope, and I finished my Nanowrimo story by the 21st--the earliest I've ever "Won" Nanowrimo. My personal goal was 60,000 words (normal Nanowrimo goals are 50,000, but I'm an overachiever), and I ended at 58,118. Not my personal best, but not the worst, either. Especially since I know my story will grow and evolve during edits over the next year or two.
So, what's next?
This is a place for me to tell you about what I'm writing, talk about the process or where some of my ideas came from, or even have other authors come in and talk about their books.
Authors I Love to Read (in no particular order)