Kiwi author Serena Clarke has dropped by CABR to discuss ALL OVER THE PLACE.
Set in London, Paris, New Zealand and a few other places, this adventure story is filled with mystery and romance. A winning combination 🙂
Serena is giving away one an eBook copy of her Crimson Romance book, so read on to find the answer to the giveaway question.
SC: Hi Sasha – thanks so much for having me to visit with you today!
CABR: I love your enthusiasm Serena. It’s always fun to chat with someone who’s happy 🙂
Tell us about ALL OVER THE PLACE, in 120 characters or less (a la Twitter).
Sexy cool or sexy smart? The place you’re meant to be, the person you’re meant to be with. #adventure #friends #truelove
This book seems chuck full of adventure and mystery. Did you start with an idea or did the story come to you fully-formed?
Have you seen that shampoo ad from the 80s, where Heather Locklear told two friends, and they told two friends, and so on, and so on…? Maybe you saw the Wayne’s World version!
Anyway, that’s what ideas are like. I started with a couple of what ifs, and one thing lead to another, and another, and another. (Maybe I should have mentioned Heather in the acknowledgements! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mcskckuosxQ )
Did you have to conduct “research” in Paris and London? 🙂
I live pretty much on the opposite side of the world, in New Zealand, so I didn’t get to do a specific research trip.
But I’ve been lucky enough to live in London, and I’ve visited Paris a couple of times, so I had some experience to draw on. And for extra details, the internet was a huge help.
I’m back in Europe later this year, so I’ll be collecting lots of ideas then! And of course my own back yard is a pretty gorgeous place to set a book too. 😀
Which scene did you struggle to write and why? Please include an excerpt from it.
On a warm summer evening, Livi shares a kiss with someone (I won’t reveal who!) under the Eiffel Tower, and it seems like things might suddenly change direction. I wanted it to be as sweet and magical as the picture in my mind.
His warm breath mingled with hers as he gave an audible sigh, and she laughed in the kiss, all caution gone. The satchel slipped around between them as he leaned down, but she pushed it aside and pressed against him. As she stood on tiptoe to meld further into his kiss, the crowd seemed to be clapping only for them. In that moment, the city’s magic was as real as the grass under her feet and the tingle of sunburn on her bare arms.
What’s your schedule for 2013?
Finish my next book, and find a home for it! I’m also really lucky to be attending the Romantic Novelists’ Association summer party and AGM in London, which will be huge fun. As well as wonderful books, the RNA members are famous for their gorgeous shoes – so I have an excuse to go shopping!
Fruits or chocolate?
Can I cheat? Chocolate dipped strawberries. I love fruit, but writers can’t live without chocolate!
Of course you can, you are talking about chocolate and strawberries after all 😉
Dogs or cats?
Cats – I’m too allergic to dogs! If I could have a dog, it would be an Irish Wolfhound, a Rhodesian Ridgeback, or a rescue greyhound.
Exploring amazing cities – London, Paris, New York, Prague, San Francisco, Melbourne, Stockholm… I dream of a romantic dinner under fairy lights on a New York rooftop, overlooking Central Park. I know I’m not the only one!
If you could meet anyone from history, living or dead, who would it be and why?
I ran through so many people thinking about this question! Wouldn’t it be incredible to actually ask Jesus all the big questions? In the past, I’ve said Nora Ephron – When Harry Met Sally, Sleepless in Seattle, Julie and Julia – I’m so sad there won’t be any more movies from her.
And there are lots of other writers of course. But one person I’d really like to meet is the incomparable Bill Murray – he’s such a legend. I’d tell him thank you for not making another Ghostbusters movie – some things should be left alone!
SC: Thanks for a great interview Sasha – that was a lot of fun!
*grins* Thank YOU Serena for such an honest and fun set of responses 🙂
a Rafflecopter giveaway
Synopsis of ALL OVER THE PLACE (contemporary romantic fiction with a chick lit feel):
Livi Callaway has fled back to London after a reality TV disaster in New Zealand. Safely anonymous in the big city, she’s determined to stay under the radar from now on. But her attempts to build a new life are complicated by unexpected visitors from her old one, and new dangers and temptations lie in wait.
Late one night, she meets a mysteriously sexy American on the Underground – and the events that follow take her from Pooh Bear to the golden lights of Paris, via a trail of rock stars dead and alive. A family in disarray, a determined Swede, a crazed Australian and a childhood friend (who might yet be more than that) have her all over the place as she tries to discover the American’s secret – while keeping her own.
With help – and occasional hindrance – from her friends, what she eventually finds is something unexpected…sometimes, running away can lead you to exactly what you didn’t know you needed.
BUY Links include these major eBook retailers:
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Author’s bio: Serena Clarke grew up in a family of itchy-footed readers and dreamers – not concentrating, reading the atlas and Narnia books, and planning to escape somewhere magical as soon as she could.
When she was 16, she went from New Zealand to live in Sweden for a year. It was the beginning of many travels and adventures – and quite a few disasters!
She didn’t know it at the time, but eventually she’d be grateful for all the downs as well as the ups. As writers say in the face of adversity: “I can use that.” She’s now living back in New Zealand, where she writes stories reflecting her determined belief in magic, possibility and second chances – and happy endings!
Find Serena here – she’d love to hear from you!