Hiya, Delighted Readers!
We have a treat for you today. First-time visitor on the blog, Author, Lisa Becker, is dropping by and sharing a bit about herself and her latest release. Lisa has a great personal road to romance and has delighted the romance reading world with some fun on-line romance stories. Now she’s turning her eye to second chances and the sports world with Links.
Since this is virtual world, we’re kicked back under a shade tree enjoying a breeze while looking out at the lake for this visit.
Can I tempt you with some iced tea (and this is the Midwest so you have to actually add your sugar if you want it sweet, by the way)? Based on the warm sunshine, I’d love a tall glass of sparking water with a twist of lime, my go-to non-alcoholic drink of choice.
How has your summer been going? Do any notable sun and fun activities?
Summer is a busy time for the Beckers between summer camp, book launches and soccer tournaments. However, we also try to find time to play basketball on the street with the neighbors, make popsicles, hang out at concerts in our local park and enjoy the beach.
Do you use any real life fun activities in your books like maybe a date for your characters?
I don’t recall any specific fun activity that has inspired an event in Links. But the characters and their general experiences are definitely influenced by my personal life. My first novel, Click: An Online Love Story, about a young woman’s search for love online in Los Angeles was loosely inspired by my own online dating (mis)adventures. I met my husband online nearly 17 years ago when online dating was in its infancy.
Just so we can get to know you a little, what are five things (though I know there is waay more) you would like to share about yourself?
1. I’ve never had a cup of coffee in my life…ever!
2. I make the most amazing jalapeno artichoke dip, but won’t share the recipe with anyone; it’s my secret.
3. I’ve always wanted to learn to professionally decorate cakes.
4. I’ve been a vegetarian for more than five years after having watched a compelling documentary, “Forks Over Knives.”
5. Does anyone else find it odd that everything about me I’ve shared is somehow related to food?
After publishing a few books now, what is something/s you have learned as a writer after that first time?
I quickly learned when you put your work out there for review and consideration, you have to be open to criticism. While most of the responses to my first novel were positive, there were some negative reviews that initially left me crushed. One must grow a thick skin and recognize everyone is entitled to their opinions and thoughts. Copious amounts of chocolate help too.
Is there something you do or need to have to get your writing mojo going?
I like to write with the TV on in the background. When I first started writing, I was obsessed with Law & Order reruns and then NCIS. Now I’m hooked on reruns of Burn Notice. I guess there’s a part of me that likes to see justice served.
Links is about two people who knew each other as teenagers and it wasn’t pretty for your heroine, Charlotte, though she pulled the Ugly Duckling into the swan makeover by adulthood. What led you to choose this ‘reunion’ element for your romance plot?
As I was looking to write a new love story, I thought about the types of love we encounter and recalled the unrequited high school crush, which was as much a part of the teen years as football games, acne, proms and final exams. I’m not too ashamed to admit I had such a fierce crush on a boy, I willingly sat with him in the bathroom at parties while he puked up wine coolers, just so I could spend time with him. Thankfully, that soul-crushing time in my life is over, but I couldn’t help but wonder what would happen if I came upon that secret crush as a confident, successful woman.
I love for the sports element that you picked golf as Garrett’s professional career since most usually go for the team sports in their romance stories (though nothing at all against those). What led you to choose golf for him?
I wanted Garrett to have a sports career that was ultimately dependent on him – his drive and his passion, where success or failure was in his hands.
What was a scene of Links that you simply adore, but it might be understated to a reader?
The opening scene where Garrett doesn’t recognize Charlotte is a favorite for me — in particular when he uses the humiliating nickname he had for her in high school. It was inspired by real life events. I wore glasses from age eight. When I was fifteen, I was lucky enough to get contact lenses. One day, in my 30’s, I bumped into the son of family friends who I had known and spent time with all through childhood, my teen years and early 20’s. He was surprised I wasn’t wearing big glasses and even repeated his observation a second time during our conversation. Over the course of the decade since I had seen him, I had become an educated, accomplished and — dare I say interesting — person, yet all he remembered about me or even thought to discuss was a pair of oversized frames.
And of course we must know, do you have a future writing project you want to tell us about?
I’ve just wrapped up a contemporary romance called Starfish, which examines the unlikely relationship between a regular girl and a touring guitarist in a band. When it comes to romance, you just can’t pass up the idea of falling in love with a rock star.
Wow, that breeze has died down and it’s sweltering out here. I’ll let you get back to some A/C and your writing. Thanks for hanging out with us, Lisa!
Thanks for having me. I love to hear from readers, so feel free to connect with me here:
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Links Book Launch/Spotlight Information
In high school, Charlotte Windham was a typical student going through an awkward phase — glasses and all. She harbored a crush on Garrett Stephens, the teen heartthrob everyone can’t help but fall for during that unfortunate ugly duckling phase of one’s teen years. Flash forward fifteen years later, and Charlotte and Garrett have a second chance encounter at a Los Angeles restaurant. However, this time around, Charlotte has leveled the playing field. She’s a bestselling novelist and no longer “Glasses,” the humiliating nickname Garrett called her in high school. In short, she’s a catch now and, thanks to corrective eye surgery, it’s not just her eyes that see better…so does her heart! Garrett hasn’t fared poorly either, transforming from teen heartbreaker to adult lothario. A now successful professional golfer, he’s recently suffered a major setback in the form of a possible career-ending injury. With the upper hand, can Charlotte forgive Garrett for his past ways, and for his more recent Don Juan lifestyle? Will she even want to? And, can Garrett change his ways for a second chance with Charlotte, who may just be the perfect fit for him?
About Lisa Becker
Lisa Becker is a romance writer whose previous novels include Click: An Online Love Story, Double Click and Right Click. The books, about a young woman’s search for love online in Los Angeles, have been called, “a fast read that will keep you entertained,” “a fun, quick read for fans of Sex and the City,” and “hard to put down.” The first in the series was optioned for a major motion picture.
Lisa’s writings about online dating have been featured in Cupid’s Pulse, GalTime.com, Single Edition, The Perfect Soulmate, Chick Lit Central and numerous other book blogs and websites.
As Lisa’s grandmother used to say, “For every chair, there’s a rush.” Lisa is now happily married to a man she met online and lives in Manhattan Beach with him and their two daughters. So, if it happened for her, there’s hope for anyone!
I stand but hesitate when I see Tamika’s disapproving look. Fi notices as well. “It’s okay, T. I got this,” she says, motioning for me to follow her back. When we get to her small office, she closes the door and gestures for me to sit on a red vinyl chair, circa 1972. She stands in front of me, leaning against the desk, and crosses her arms in front of her chest. “Spill!”
“Where should I start?”
“At the beginning.” She walks around to her chair behind the desk and pulls out a yellow legal pad.
For the next half hour, I go over my encounter with Garrett, from the moment we bumped into each other and he didn’t recognize me, to the embarrassment of being called ‘Glasses.’
Fi takes notes furiously on her pad and grins, nods, and cringes at all the appropriate times. When I finish, she puts her pen down and asks, “Do you want the ‘best friend experience’ or the ‘brilliant legal mind experience’?”
I can’t help but laugh. “Are they mutually exclusive?”
“They are,” she says nodding.
“Okay. I want the best friend experience.”
She rushes around from behind the desk, wraps her arms around me soothingly. “I’m so sorry, hon. That sounds just awful. Let’s go get margaritas tomorrow and drown our sorrows in tequila and lime wedges.”
“Thanks, Fi. You’re the best.”
“Anytime,” she says, rubbing my back. She pulls away and walks around to the back of her desk. She sits down and puts the legal pad to the side. I can’t help but notice the writing scrawled across it.
“Just for kicks, what would you have said if I had asked for the ‘brilliant legal mind experience’?”
“You sure you want to know?” Her lips pull into a grim line. Honestly, I’m not sure I do want to know, but curiosity gets the better of me.
“Lay it on me,” I say.
“You need to get laid. Not the kind of bland, missionary style sex you had with Alex. You need hot heat, sweating up the sheets, crazy animal sex.”
I bust out laughing. “That’s your brilliant legal advice. Crazy animal sex?”
“Yes. That’s my brilliant legal advice,” she says with complete seriousness. “Listen, hon, it’s been a year since that insecure jerk Keane dumped you. I have no doubt it’s been even longer since you’ve, well, you know.” She wags her eyebrows up and down. “Before that, you only seriously dated Travis the cheater and Alex who, let’s face it, despite being completely gonzo for you, was a cold fish and a bore. It’s time to stop comparing every man to this fantasy of Garrett Stephens and just do it with him to get it out of your system. He asked you out for Saturday night. Go! Enjoy!”
“I don’t compare every man to Garrett,” I snap at her.
“Don’t you?” she asks, looking down at me sternly.
“I’m offended you even suggested that.” She looks at me, her sharp eyes boring into me, like she can read my every thought and knows I’m full of it. I imagine this is how she bears down on witnesses on the stand. I don’t like being on the receiving end of that look.
“Even if that’s true,” I start and she nods her head, “and I’m not conceding it is.” I point my finger at her. “Even if he did mean to ask me out, there’s no way it’s a good idea. He’s a total player. It would only be one night of fun and I don’t think I could get over that kind of hurt.”
“Then you need to get over it now. Sorry for the tough love, hon, but you need to move past the fantasy of this man and find someone passionate and amazing who is deserving to love you for all of the great things you have to offer including your messed-up childhood and your incredible success today.”
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