Sunday, February 21, 2010

In the Author Spotlight: Rebecca J. Clark

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!


Beth Trissel said...

Hi Cate! Becky! I enjoyed your lovely interview and reading more about this accomplished author and her tantalizing work. I bet this story sells really well, Becky. And I wish you many more publications.

JASaare said...

The more I read about Borrowed Stiletto's, the more I want to read it! ;-)

Wishing you much success, Rebecca!


Rebecca J. Clark said...

Hey Beth--So nice to see a fellow Pixie. Thanks for stopping by. I hope your words come true about my sales. :)

Jaime--Always great to see you, too. Can't wait to read your book, too.

Cari Quinn said...

Great interview, Cate and Becky! :)I didn't know Laurie was your sister and I've been a fan of Charlene's great blog posts for years. Small world.

Can't wait to read Borrowed Stilettos! :)

Kaylea Cross said...

Hi Becky! Congrats on this first release, and I hope you have many more in store for us.

Rebecca J. Clark said...

Hey Cari--Yes, Laurie is my sister. I like to say, she may be prettier and skinnier, but I'll always be younger.

And yes, I knew Charli when she wasn't a way-cool multi-pubbed author. But she's always been way cool. :)

Laurie London said...

Egads, how does one respond to that? Funny how each of our memories about growing up are so different.

All I know is that I wouldn't have gotten back into writing if it weren't for your example and your guidance. And I wouldn't be a soon to be published author without your honest, but kind critiques. As I've said many times before, "I'd be lost without you, Beck."

I love Audrey's story in Borrowed Stilettos. So when are you going to write my story--oops, I mean Ava's? :-)

Rebecca J. Clark said...

Thanks, Kaylea. I hope I have many more in store, too. :)

Laurie--Ava's story is in the works. It's a challenge to writes because she's not the most likable character in the world at first. She's shallow and materialistic. I don't want readers to dislike her. When I finish this story, you'll be one of the first to know (because I'll be forcing you to read it).

Margaret Tanner said...

Hi Rebecca,
Wonderful interview.
Sounds like a great story, love the stilletos on the cover. Many years ago I had a pair of red stilletos, too. wore them everywherebut I am paying for it now with bunions and fallen arches.


Charlene Teglia said...

Hi Becky! Ha, the path to publication is a twisted one but here you are with THAT story!

Susan Gourley/Kelley said...

I buy most of my books from a brick and mortar store but not all. Your book sounds so interesting. I have three friends who are twins and I love hearing about some of their high school adventures.

Author Roast and Toast said...

Blog looks great Cate!! Good stuff!

Becky your story sounds right up my alley.
I wish you many sales and a wonderful journey!

Cate Masters said...

Sorry to be late to the party! Such a crazy day. So nice to see everyone!
And thanks for noticing the new look, Mary! :)

Rebecca J. Clark said...

Margaret, I don't know that I've ever worn stilettos. :) I borrowed my younger sister's to wear to a booksigning last weekend. I could only stand, not walk in them.

Hey Charli--Thanks for stopping by. And thanks for giving me the original push to write the book.

Susan--I buy about half my books online, but it's more fun to shop in a "real" store, eh?

Hi Mary! Thanks so much for posting. It's always nice to *see* you.

Cate--Thanks for having me. You did a great job with the interview and your blog is just beautiful.

Shawna Thomas said...

I can't wait to read Borrowed Stilettos! Congratulations, Rebecca! I know it's going to be a great success!

Rebecca J. Clark said...

Thanks for stopping by, Lynne. And thanks for the vote of confidence! It's all pretty exciting.

Linda Poitevin said...

Congratulations on your first book, Becky! I hope you sell tons and bask in every moment! :)

Cate, LOVE the new look!


Cate Masters said...

Thanks Linda!

Rebecca J. Clark said...

Hey Linda,
I think I just *saw* you on another blog. :) Thanks for stopping by.

Cate--thanks so much for having me here. I had a great time.

And now for the winner of my stiletto bookmark/thong: J.A.Saare. Woo hoo. I'll tweet you and let you know.