I’m thrilled to have author Amy Patrick here today, talking about her writing! Keep reading to find out all about her book, and enter to win your own copy…
Welcome, Amy! Congrats on your new release 🙂
How long have you been writing?
I started trying to write a novel during my first year out of college, but stalled out a few chapters into it. I had no idea how to write a novel! Unfortunately, I took only journalism courses and NO creative writing in school. I know—what was I thinking, right? I guess I just never thought a fiction writer was something I could be. But the writing bug wouldn’t leave me alone. I started several more novels over the years. Finally, after leaving my full-time TV news career, I started learning the craft of novel-writing. I finished my first novel in 2010 and started pursuing publication then. I started writing on a more-or-less full-time basis about a year ago.
Is CHANNEL 20 SOMETHING your first book, or have you written anything else?
CHANNEL 20 SOMETHING was actually my 3rd book, though it’s the first to be published. The first one I wrote was a Young Adult fantasy (with lots of romance). It was a finalist for the RWA Golden Heart award in 2013. My Young Adult murder mystery (with lots of romance) FOUR BULLETS, is now out on submission to publishers. It was a Golden Heart finalist this year! Since finishing CHANNEL 20 SOMETHING, I’ve also written two more books in the 20 SOMETHING series. Book 2, STILL YOURS, is Mara’s story and takes place in Providence and Newport, Rhode Island. Book 3, Kenley’s story, STILL ME, takes place in Atlanta where Kenley lands a job at the network.
Congrats on the Golden Hearts! What an accomplishment!
When do you like to write, and where do you write?
I wish I was one of those super-focused people who can write anywhere anytime, but I’m the world’s worst multi-tasker. I can edit at home, but for first drafts, I banish myself to the library. There’s a particular chair in a particular corner—in the far back, facing a boring wall. No internet access. No temptation. I sit down and the words flow. They know they’re supposed to turn on when I get to my hidey-hole.
Hmm. I may have to try that…
Do you have any advice for someone who wants to write a book and become published?
I’ve seen the statistic that 90% of people want to write a book and only 10% actually do. I think lack of know-how stops most people. So my advicewould be to join a great writer’s group like RWA (Romance Writers of America) and a local chapter. It’s such a great resource for information on good writing as well as for support. Having writer friends to trade work with made an incredible difference for me. I also enjoyed writing more and had more success when I got a firm grasp on story structure. I loved the book Save the Cat by Blake Snyder for that. It’s very accessible and clear, besides being funny and enjoyable. When I read it, a lightbulb went off for me.
I *just* bought that book! It’s next on my writing “to read” list. 🙂
What’s one crazy fact about you that most people who meet you probably wouldn’t guess was true?
I used to be a professional singer. I’ve sung in several bands and did background vocals on a smooth jazz album. I also sang the theme song for SAS Airlines years ago. “Welcome aboard… to the skies… of S-A-S… where you’ll find… happiness.”
Thank you so much for having me here today. I’ve had a great time, and it’s an honor to be featured on your blog!
Thanks for coming, Amy!
Amy is a two-time Golden Heart finalist (2013 and 2014) who writes Young Adult fiction as Amy DeLuca and New Adult romance as Amy Patrick. She lives in Rhode Island with her husband and two sons and actually craves the heat and humidity of Mississippi, where she grew up. She’s been a professional singer and news anchor and currently narrates audio books as well as working as a station host for a Boston TV station.
by Amy Patrick
Publication date: August 12th 2014
Genres: Contemporary, New Adult, Romance
From award-winning author and two-time GOLDEN HEART® finalist Amy Patrick comes a New Adult contemporary series about twenty-somethings entering the world of TV broadcasting, where what happens behind the scenes is the real news.
22-year-old Heidi Haynes is almost one year into her “real life”. She has her first reporting job, her first apartment, and a comfortable relationship with her college sweetheart. But for some reason she’s not as eager to talk about walking down the aisle as he is.
Heidi secretly longs for big cities, big-market breaking news, and real independence from her way-too-close-by helicopter parents. Problem is, the last time she left the security of home for new places and new people, things didn’t go so well. Disastrously, in fact, and she came running back to a local college and a “safe” boyfriend.
Aric Serrano is definitely not safe.
He’s six-feet-four-inches of missing-Hemsworth-brother-hotness and plans to stay in small-market-Southern-Hell just long enough to grab a cup of coffee and put together a kick-ass “escape tape”. He’ll serve his one-year contract, then he’s taking off for a higher rung on the TV sports ladder—alone—the way he likes it. Then he meets his new co-anchor.
Heidi would be so much more comfortable if she could simply ignore Aric. He’s just her type—the type she’s so careful to avoid these days. But that becomes impossible when she’s forced to work closely with him on the weekend newscast. Now the attraction between them is growing even faster than the ratings, and what happens behind the scenes is the real news.
I opened the door to the parking lot and was relieved at first to see the rain had slowed to a drizzle. Then I saw my car and groaned.
My Mini was sitting in a huge puddle that had definitely not been there when I’d arrived for work today. I would have to wade through it to get in. At least I was still wearing my rain boots. I crunched across the gravel lot, sinking into the ground with each soggy step.
When I reached my car, the full scope of my dilemma became clear. The newly-formed lake surrounding it was so deep, if I opened the driver’s side door, the water was going to flood inside. I walked around to the passenger side to see if perhaps the level was lower there. Nope. Even worse.
What was I going to do? Daddy could’ve easily towed my car out with his pickup truck, but he’d been asleep for a couple hours by now. “Well, shoot,” I muttered.
“Language, language, please.”
The teasing voice behind me drew shivers from my rain-damp skin. I turned to see Aric’s large form approaching, framed by the security light behind him. Was the warmth suffusing my body relief, or something else? I swiveled my head to scan the parking lot. His Tahoe was there. I’d been so focused on the sight of my poor drowning car I hadn’t noticed his still parked across the lot.
When he reached me, he pulled off his rain jacket and wrapped it around my shoulders, drawing the hood up over my hair. It was so warm. The scent I’d noticed the first night we met surrounded me, threatening to make me light-headed.
“Thanks,” I breathed, looking up into his face. His cheeks were becoming coated in a light mist. My fingers, warm inside his jacket, twitched with the urge to reach up and brush the moisture away from his smooth skin. “I didn’t know you were still here.”
Aric pulled the sides of the jacket closed around me. “I waited for you. I wanted to make sure you got back okay.” His smile set my insides to a low simmer. “So, it looks like what we have here,” he said, “is the little engine that couldn’t.”
I glanced over at my water-logged car. “Poor Minnie Mae. Do you think the water’s getting inside?”
“Minnie Mae? You gave your car a grandma name.” He chuckled. “I think as long as the doors stay closed, the seal will keep it out of there. But—you won’t be taking… uh… Minnie Mae home tonight.”
Standing with his hands on his hips, Aric surveyed the situation, then glanced back at my face. Raindrops decorated the crown of his head, illuminated with the reflected shine of the building’s exterior lights. His eyes narrowed, and his lips twisted in a calculating expression.
“You know, I’d like to offer you a ride, but I did promise not to extend any more unwanted invitations.” His voice trailed off in a questioning note as he studied my face.
I gave him a rueful grin, putting on an overly-polite voice. “Would you mind giving me a ride home? I would really appreciate it.”
He furrowed his brow, shaking his head dubiously. “Well… if you’re sure you want it, and it’s entirely your idea… I’d hate to pressure you.”
I rolled my eyes. “Aric… will you, pretty please with Cool Whip and rainbow sprinkles on top, give me a ride home? You will have my undying gratitude.”
Aric put a hand to his chin, as if he was giving the matter deep consideration. “I like Cool Whip.” He grinned at me. “And undying gratitude. Let’s go.”