Cate: I’m pleased to welcome Rebecca J. Clark to the Author Spotlight. Rebecca, will you please share a short bio with us?
Rebecca: I’ve wanted to be a novelist since I was about 11 years old and read my first romance. I actually completed my first novel, a YA romance, when I was just 14. It was full of clichés but my friends enjoyed it. When I’m not writing, I work as a personal fitness trainer and group exercise instructor. I’ve been married for almost 23 years, have two usually great teenagers and a menagerie of pets.
Cate: Tell us about BORROWED STILETTOS and where it's available.
Rebecca: Borrowed Stilettos is a sexy romantic comedy about mistaken identity gone awry. You can buy it through my publisher, The Wild Rose Press, or Amazon and Barnes and Noble.
Cate: Please tantalize us with a story blurb or excerpt.
Rebecca: Zach’s warm breath mingled with hers as he leaned in to kiss her. Their lips touched, and she swayed on her Manolo-something shoes. He angled his head and teased the closed seam of her lips with his tongue. Her head hummed and excitement rippled across her skin. She gripped his arms, ready to kiss him back, when he pulled away.
His eyes narrowed, creating a furrow between his brows. He knows something’s different!
He cocked his head. “Hmm,” he said, then reached for her hand and guided her down the stairs, like the embrace had never happened.
How could he be so calm, when her entire being quivered like children on the first day of school? Of course, he’d kissed her sister before, so to him this was no big deal. But Audrey had never kissed him. To her, this was momentous.
When they reached the foyer, he dipped his head and whispered in her ear, “You look perfect, by the way.”
She couldn’t help smiling, despite her anxiety. When was the last time anyone had thought she looked perfect?
He cleared his throat as they approached the women. “Mother, Theresa—“
Mother Theresa? Was impersonating one’s sister a sin?
Cate: Love it! What inspired you to write about the theme?
Rebecca: A long time ago, I shared with a writer friend (now the multi-published Charlene Teglia) that back in high school, boys would pretend to be interested in me in order to meet my beautiful and popular sister (HQN author Laurie London). Charli said, “You have to put that in a book somehow.” So I did. My heroine, Audrey, grew up in the shadow of her beautiful twin, Ava. She learns through the course of the book that she has just as much to offer. Is this story autobiographical? Uh, no. Audrey and I both have beautiful sisters, and both of us lost boyfriends to them, but that’s where the similarities end.
Cate: How do you develop your plots and characters?
Rebecca: I wish I had a normal system to share with you, but my writing process is a disjointed, jumbled mess. Sometimes I start with a plot idea or situation, or even a title. I figure out the basics of my characters, what I think their GMCs are, then I start writing. I write a really, really ugly first draft all the way to the end or until I figure out what I’m doing, then I start rewriting. I’ll go through several drafts before I’ll let my CPs see it. I wish I was more of a plotter—it would probably be way less headache inducing, but I’m a seat-of-the-pants girl.
Cate: Do you feel as if the characters live with you as you write? Do they haunt your dreams?
Rebecca: If I don’t feel as if my characters are with me day and night, if they don’t haunt my almost every thought and really start to get on my nerves like long-term houseguests, then I probably don’t know them well enough.
Cate: What's next for you?
Rebecca: I’m the type of writer who always has more than one project going at a time. I probably should focus on just one—maybe I’d actually finish something. :) I’m currently working on a story I hope to submit to Superromance; a romantic suspense novella for The Wild Rose Press; a follow-up to Borrowed Stilettos; and various revisions on manuscripts I’ve written in years past.
Cate: Describe your writing in three words.
Rebecca: I’ll borrow some words from my website: “Sassy. Sexy. Steamy.” I use that in a tagline in my email signature (“Sassy and Sexy and Steamy…Oh, my!”) and one of my non-writer friends thought I was referring to myself. LOL. I wish.
Cate: Any other published works?
Rebecca: Borrowed Stilettos is my first published novel.
Cate: What’s the most challenging aspect of writing? Most rewarding?
Rebecca: The most challenging aspect of writing for me is the promo. I still hear my grandmother’s words in my head: “Proper young ladies shouldn’t talk about themselves.” I’m also quite introverted by nature, so promo does not come easy for me. The most rewarding? Typing “The End” on the final draft is pretty darn cool, but most rewarding has to be from a Facebook friend who sent me a note the other day saying that after she read my book, she and her hubby had sex for the first time in four months. Wow. That was unexpected and kinda cool. Did I mention my book is rather, um, steamy?
Cate: LOL! What’s the most interesting comment you have received about your books?
Rebecca: See answer from above.
Cate: Who are some of your favorite authors and books? What are you reading now?
Rebecca: Like with my writing, I never am reading just one book at a time. Right now on my nightstand are After Hours by Lynne Roberts (on my iTouch—but the formatting is wonky; I might need to wait until I get my ereader to finish it); 4-Day Diet by Dr. Ian Smith (love that Celebrity Fit Club); Prima Donna by Megan Chance.
As for my favorite author? I couldn’t name just one. I’ve been reading a lot of Wild Rose Press authors lately, because that’s my publisher, so I’m partial to them. And I have to give a shout-out to my sister, Laurie London, who’s first book comes out next year with HQN. I wish I could say I didn’t like her writing, because it would make me feel superior, but that would be lying. Just as in high school, I continue to live vicariously through her coolness. LOL
Cate: Where can readers find you on the web?
Cate: Is there anything you’d like to ask our readers?
Rebecca: Do you buy more books from online stores (like Amazon) or from brick and mortar stores? Why?
Cate: Readers, Rebecca is giving away a stiletto bookmark/book thong the day after this post goes live.
Rebecca: Trust me—it’s really cool.
Cate: Thanks again for being my guest, Rebecca. Best of luck with Borrowed Stilettos!