Blog Roll – My Writing Process

I’ve been tagged by Samantha Stroh Bailey, author of the fabulously fun novel, Finding Lucas, co-founder of the equally fun and fabulous BookBuzz author/reader mix and mingle, and one of my closest friends and confidants to participate in the Blog Roll – Writing Process. In the post below, I have answered questions regarding my writing process and at the end of the post, I have tagged three authors to answer the questions too and tag three more authors and so on and so on and so on.

Question: What am I working on?

I currently have two works-in-progress. The first is almost ready for submission to my publisher and is about a thirty-nine year old woman who is struggling with the impending end of her thirties having not reached life milestones like marriage and children typically reached at an earlier age. I hope my publisher, Booktrope, will release this novel in late 2014. The second is a sequel to my third novel, Blogger Girl. It is twenty-nine pages and counting!

Question: How does my work differ from others of its genre?

My books are inspired by real life and the characters I create are, sorry to possibly overuse this word but “real.” They do not have dream jobs, closets full of designer clothes, regular invitations to hot restaurant openings and parties, and boyfriends with perfectly chiseled bodies. But they are not typically underdogs either. They have a lot going for them. They are intelligent, attractive, down-to-earth women who struggle with (here comes that word again) “real” problems. They do not always act with the best judgment and are often misguided. They feel emotions that women typically do not like to admit experiencing, like insecurity, jealousy, bitterness etc. and, yes, sometimes they drink too much. Some readers have complained that my characters can be whiny and insecure at times but others (most people) applaud them for letting their “flaw flag” fly. Show me a woman who has never whined or experienced insecurity and I’ll flash you my boobs. Seriously! I dare you.

Question: Why do I write what I do?

I write real women’s fiction with humor because it comes naturally to me, probably because I’m a real woman who happens to be quite funny. I’ve made many mistakes myself and I want to speak for women like me to let them know they are not alone. Life can be very challenging sometimes, but even in the most trying of times, someone will make a joke, spill something, trip on the sidewalk etc. Laughter lightens even the darkest moods, even if only temporarily.

Question: How does my writing process work?

I work a full time job and I must make an effort to carve out time each week for writing. Whenever I do not have plans after work, I go straight to my favorite writing place—The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf—where I write for a couple of hours. Additionally, I use most of my lunch hours to do some light writing, like blog posts. I also try to spend at least one afternoon of every weekend writing. So far, this routine has enabled me to release approximately one novel a year.

Question: And the other part of this question, how does my writing process not work?

What doesn’t work is comparing myself to authors who write more quickly and release multiple books a year. Some of these authors do not work full time jobs, but some of them do and yet manage to write more quickly. That is them and this is me and it’s okay. I try to keep my life as balanced as possible, which means having a social life, an on-again/off-again love life (the “off” part is not by choice), working out, and simply zoning out in front of the television. Messing with the balance I strive so hard to maintain does not work for me.

Who’s next?

I am tagging the following wonderful authors below:

Mary Rowan, author of Leaving the Beach, a gritty story about illusion, reality, and the odd ways that music can blur the lines between the two.

Patricia Mann, author of compelling and thought provoking Is This All There Is. Quote from one reader, “This book, quite simply, was stunning.”

Sheryn MacMunn –bestselling author of Finding Out, a story of love found and lost, true friendship, and how the human spirit endures.

These television shows would make great chick lit books!

We, and by “we,” I mean my author/blogger friends and I, often discuss what books we could totally see turned into movies. I even cast all of my books as if the screenplay adoption is imminent. But I’ve never heard anyone discuss what movies/television shows they think would make really good books. Since there is a first time for everything and I like to be a trend-setter, I’ve decided to dedicate this blog post to those television shows I think would make really good chick lit and, in some cases, young adult books:

Veronica Mars – I watched this series when it was in first-run and I loved it. To me, it’s a cross between Nancy Drew and Buffy the Vampire Slayer. Blonde, petite, and adorable, Veronica is intelligent, has a snarky personality, a wicked sense of humor, and doesn’t take shit from anyone. Her father is the former sheriff of Neptune, California and currently a private investigator. Veronica assists him on his cases and has her own clientele too—most often her fellow classmates. She also has a group of adorable male admirers and the love triangles are very well done. (Team Logan!) I would love to read a book (or series of books) with Veronica at the helm. I also think she’s a great role model for young women as she is wise beyond her years, strong-willed, not prone to peer pressure and just all around the coolest high school chick ever.

Drop Dead Diva –Aspiring model Deb dies in a car crash, but rather than stay in heaven she presses the “return” button and returns to earth just in time to inhabit the body of recently deceased Jane, a plus-sized attorney in a law firm where Deb’s ex-fiancé Grayson is a partner. Of course, Grayson has no idea that Jane is really Deb and Jane is forced to witness Grayson grieve Deb’s death and eventually move on. In my opinion, this series would make the ultimate chick lit book with a touch of paranormal. There is humor, romance, fashion, and even law-changing legal cases thrown in for good measure.

The New Girl – After breaking up with her long-term boyfriend, quirky and “simply adorkable” late twenty-something Jess moves into a loft with three bachelors. Typical comedic moments ensue, along with relationship drama. Combine a cute, if not somewhat awkward and self-deprecating young woman with three handsome, single men under one roof and you have a recipe for a great chick lit book. I gave up on the television show when Jess’s quirkiness became a bit over-the-top, but I would absolutely be up for a stand-alone novel based on the television series.

The Mindy Project - The series follows thirty-something obstetrician/gynecologist Mindy as she tries to balance her personal and professional life, surrounded by quirky co-workers in a small medical practice in New York City. This series, in my opinion, embodies all that is beloved in chick lit—a multi-faceted main female character who, although professionally successful, struggles to get her personal life in order; hilarious dating disasters; an enigmatic and sexy hero who is always just slightly out of reach; well fleshed out secondary characters; and a seemingly revolving door of possible love interests to keep things interesting. I am addicted to watching this show on the small screen, but would love to read it on my Kindle too!

I certainly enjoy other television shows, but I don’t necessarily think they would transfer as well into a novel as well as the aforementioned. For example, I think a character-driven show would make for a better chick lit book than a plot-driven series where the story changes every week without much character development. I also limited my choices to those categorized as comedy, since humor is a key element in chick lit, and romance, since chick lit lovers in general love a happily ever after.

How do you feel about my choices? What television shows would you like to see made into books?

Guest Post/Giveaway – A.R. Rivera author of BETWEEN OCTOBERS out NOW!

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I’m excited to invite A.R. Rivera, author of Between Octobers, to my blog today discussing “The Art of Falling” – I think I have found my soul sister of klutziness :) Without further ado: I don’t think of myself as a clumsy person. But I must admit that I seem to possess a real knack […]

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pastel is the new black…in men’s clothing?

Why?

I love dressing in bright colors. In fact, I’ve been stopped on several occasions by men thanking me for bringing some color into New York City, where many of the most fashionable women sport black and grey most of the time. I like to stand out a little and so when others scan the racks […]

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Blogosphere Blogosphere Make Me a Match, Find Me a Find, Catch Me a Catch

In almost all of the chick lit/romantic comedy novels I write, there is a central romance and after some missteps, my main character gets the guy—maybe not the guy she wanted on page one, but the guy she eventually falls in love with, and the guy who is ultimately her best match. The closing scenes […]

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NATIONAL BEST FRIENDS DAY GIVEAWAY – 10 FREE EBOOKS UP FOR GRABS!

My friends supporting me and my books!

Did you know that June 8th is National Best Friends Day? My friends, especially my best friends, make me laugh, lend me an ear when I need to talk, accept me for who I am, trust me with their secrets, and generally make my world a better place to live. So, in honor of best […]

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Redefining 40

A friend’s Facebook status recently complained about the unflattering lighting in a department store making the experience of bathing suit shopping even worse than normal. I agreed wholeheartedly with this status. However, the status also included the statement that “women over 40 have enough problems.” This touched a nerve for me as a woman over […]

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Throwback Thursday Blog – Costa Rica – Pura Vida!

I am off to Barbados next week on my first “beach” vacation since 2011 and I cannot wait. I don’t want thinking about the edits of my novel to get in the way of my time in the sun, cocktails on the beach, feasting on fresh fish, and frolicking with friends and so I’ve been […]

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AUTHOR INTERVIEW FRIDAY – MEREDITH SCHORR

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Originally posted on The Writing Life – Eleanor Parker Sapia:
I am pleased to welcome my good friend, fellow blogger and writer, Meredith Schorr, the author of the chick lit novels, Just Friends With Benefits, State of Jane and Blogger Girl. We met as bloggers in 2008 and instantly clicked because at that time we…

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A Kind of Mad Courage

CourageJacketWeb

I have a very special relationship with my mother – anyone who has followed my blog knows this, as not only have I dedicated a post to her recently, she was once a guest blogger. The mother/child relationship is such a special one, which is why I am so pleased to share this special anthology […]

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