I am thrilled to have on the blog today the adorable and sweet Samantha Stroh Bailey; her charming debut novel Finding Lucas was released last April, becoming a word-of-mouth sensation.
She's giving away an e-copy of Finding Lucas to one lucky reader; as always, just leave a comment with your email and you're entered to win! Entries open until Friday, August 2.
And now, on to the
1) Tell us about Finding Lucas, and what inspired you to write it.
I always get my plot ideas late at night just as I'm falling asleep. So, one night, I was lying in bed and thinking about my "friends with benefits" from high school and early university. I hadn't seen or spoken to Jack in almost ten years, and I wondered where he was and how he was doing. I'd never thought of him as the one who got away, like Jamie does in Finding Lucas. But, Jack had been a big part of my life as I navigated my late teens and early twenties, and I wanted to know that he was happy. Suddenly, I realized so many people must wonder "what if" about their exes. With Facebook and Twitter, it's much easier to find them. And Finding Lucas was born.
Can you ever really go back to the past?
After five long years of living with Derek, her former bad-boy-turned-metrosexual boyfriend, Jamie Ross finally reaches her breaking point. She's had enough of his sneering disdain for her second hand wardrobe, unusual family and low-paying job as the associate producer of Chicago's sleaziest daytime talk show. When her new boss plans a segment on reuniting lost loves, Jamie remembers Lucas, her first love and the boy she'd lost ten years earlier. Spurred on by her gang of quirky friends, Jamie goes on a hilarious, disastrous and life changing hunt to track Lucas down. But are some loves best left behind?
2) What one piece of writing advice resonated most with you?
Keep writing. I've been writing for thirty years, and though it does take me a long time to finish a manuscript (I have two young kids and own a freelance writing/editing business), I never stop writing. I'm not always happy with what I write, but I keep going until I am.
3) If you had to design a menu around Finding Lucas, what three dishes would be featured?
Steak, for sure. Both Jamie and I share a love of meat, and I think a huge T-bone, medium rare, with a Caesar salad, topped with crunchy croutons and shaved parmesan is a must!
Jamie's mom, Leah, and stepmom, Katie, are both in the field of holistic wellness. So, a dish featuring quinoa, sprouts and a ton of veggies would definitely be on the menu.
Because Jamie works for a sleazy daytime talk show, another dish would have to be fast food. Unhealthy, full of grease and fat, this "dish" would represent the stories Jamie produces on "Tell It Like It Is."
4) Always feared, always entertaining: share your favorite cringe-worthy teenage memory.
This is totally cringe-worthy. Well, in high school, I wasn't the most attractive of teens. I had glasses, braces and no boobs (thankfully, those came a bit later and then promptly disappeared after I had kids). There was this guy who all of the girls were in love with. I thought I was being subtle when I stared at him in the halls, even timing the seconds between stares on my watch. Yeah, well, I wasn't as subtle as I thought. One day in the school cafeteria, filled with hundreds of students, the object of my affection stood up and yelled, "Would somebody tell that ugly girl to stop looking at me?" Before you wince too much, I did get my revenge. Years later, I saw him in a bar, and having no clue who I was, he asked for my number. I gave him the wrong one.
5) If you could have any superpower, what would it be?
This is an easy one. I'm only five feet tall. Well, okay, barely five feet tall. So, I would love the superhero power to stretch to five ten whenever I felt like it. I could finally see over people's heads in movie theaters, wear pants that I don't have to hem with duct tape (duct tape has so many uses), and people wouldn't pat me on the head anymore.
Thanks, Sam! Isn't she great? Don't forget to enter to win a copy; this one's such fun!!
You can find Samantha on her Blog, Twitter @perfectpen, Facebook, Goodreads, and her Business Website, Perfect Pen Communications. Finding Lucas is available on Amazon US, Amazon UK, and Kobo.