Tomorrow’s the big day!

My Summer Roommate will be available online in less than 24 hours. Yay! I’m super excited because this one was a real joy to write. I love Chloe and Chris and I hope you’ll love them, too.

To give you a taste for their story, here’s an excerpt from the novel. Chris is smitten with Chloe almost from the beginning, but she’s convinced they’d never work together. In this scene, Chris suggests they go on a date for the first time, and Chloe fights him with all her might.

The excerpt is told from Chloe’s point of view.

****

I bring him a frozen gel pack. I want to hand it to him, but he’s leaning back, his eyes closed, so I put it slowly on his knee.

“Thanks.” He sighs, and then opens his eyes. He’s half asleep, probably still tipsy, but grinning.

“Thanks,” he repeats. It’s only when he continues that I realize he’s not talking about the compress. “We should do this again soon.”

“People are going on vacations. There won’t be many parties for the next month or two.”

“Just us, then,” he says, and his eyes sparkle.

Risking that I might sound an idiot, I ask, “Are you asking me out? On a date?”

“You sound surprised.”

“Just hesitant,” I say. “I’m not looking for a relationship, Chris. I don’t want you to think that I am.”

Quite unexpectedly, he laughs. “How serious and grown up she sounds.”

I swat his arm. “Jerk. I am serious, because I don’t want you to expect something that’s not going to happen.”

“Why’s that?”

“Why’s what?”

“Why is it not going to happen?”

“’Cause,” I say, as if it should be obvious. Because really, it should be, right? In exactly six weeks, I’ll be moving to Atlanta. I don’t know where Chris is heading to college because I haven’t managed to ask him yet. Isn’t that enough of a reason in itself? You can’t have a relationship with someone when you don’t even know where they’ll be in two months time.

“’Cause? That’s your argument? For a future psychologist, that’s a lame-ass explanation.”

He’s enjoying this. Way too much.

“’Cause I only date terrible people. Bad, bad boys. You’re too nice for me,” I say, joking.

He makes a face, not buying it for one second.

“You want a reason? Here’s a good one—I don’t want anything to happen between us.”

“Why not?”

“I have my very personal reasons which I am not inclined to share with you at this moment.”

“At a later moment perhaps, then?” He keeps looking at me with this half-smile on his face that drives me nuts because I have the impression that he’s playing with me, that he can foresee my every word and that he can prepare his response in advance. I don’t like being two steps behind. Usually, I’m the one to have everything under control. He’s unbalanced me with this.

“At no moment at all. I just don’t want it, and that should suffice, Christopher Quinn.”

“How can you be sure you won’t change your mind?”

For god’s sake, can’t he take a hint?

Maybe you’re not convincing enough? Because … you don’t want to be?

“Because I’m actively working on not changing my mind,” I say in order to drown out my evil inner voices.

“What if I’m actively working on swaying it?”

“Ugh! Stop it,” I say, but I can’t help but laugh. God, I think I like arguing with him. That’s very worrisome. Very, very worrisome.

It gets worrisomer when he leans towards me and asks very quietly and calmly, “Why?”

With his green eyes staring at me, his deep voice cutting right through to the core, and him being so close, I feel goose bumps form on my forearms but I ignore them, annoyed. He will not win. He cannot win.

But the worst thing is that his question is now resounding in my head, and I forgot what the correct answer was. Why was it, again?

“Do you really want me to spell out all the reasons?”

“One’s enough, if it’s a good one.” He grins.

“And you’re the one who decides if it’s good enough, right?”

“Of course. Because the way I see it, it would have to be pretty damn good. I like you. You like me, don’t try denying it.”

I lift my hands in a ‘wouldn’t dream of it’ fashion, because really, there is no point in denying it after I’ve flirted with him, danced with him, and laughed with him until I had tears in my eyes. I do like him.

“We have a good time together. I’ve made you lunch four times this week. We’re both single.”

“True. And the lunch almost swayed me. Almost.”

“Ahh,” he moans, letting his head fall back onto the pillows. “You’re hopeless, and I’m hopelessly falling for you.”

For a moment, I feel my heart stop. But then I realize he’s joking. Which is good. Just great.

“You’ve known me for what, two weeks?” I say to support my claims. “You barely know me.”

“I don’t have to know you for twenty years to know you, Chloe.”

I make a frustrated sound and get up from the couch.

****

Sooooo. Any thoughts? 🙂

 

Research

A lot of writers, agents and editors, or just people in general, will tell you to write about the things that you know, that you’re familiar with. Obviously, that has its merits, but it can be very limiting in terms of the subject matter you can use in your writing.

I don’t write science fiction or historical fiction or any other genre that would require a very specific and in-depth knowledge. I write contemporary stories about ordinary people, focusing on what they feel and how they behave. Still, for every book or story I ever wrote, I had to do some research. Mostly, that included details about a certain place, event or person, maybe some history, a few cooking techniques etc. This usually means that I do the research as I go along, while I write and when I come upon the topic that needs researching. I never do the research in advance.Google maps

Most often, I can do my research on the internet. On occasion I read a book or watch a film (an enjoyable type of research, I tell ya!). Google maps come in handy, too – in fact, I’m using it a lot lately since I’m writing a story that takes place in Paris. The most unusual topic I researched was how a car burns when doused with gas and lit on fire. Then there were mental illnesses, how to protect a vineyard against frost, and snowboarding.

Research is very rewarding in itself. I’ve learned all sorts of things (mostly useless, but fun) since I’ve started writing. For me, it’s very enjoyable because I like to learn and discover new stuff. So lately, I’ve been wanting to write about something that would require a lot of research. I don’t have any ideas yet, but I’d really like to enter a new world, an environment I don’t know anything about. I think it would be fun.

How much research do you do? Do you research before you start writing? Or do you write about the things you’re already familiar with?

Free copy of Letting Go & $100 GC for Amazon

letting-go-teenHere’s your chance to win a free copy of Letting Go. Comment on my guest post on the Long and Short Review website to win an ebook copy, and enter the rafflecopter to win a $100 GC for Amazon or Barnes&Noble.

Read about Harper and Isabelle and how Chloe helped them realize they had feelings for each other. In just a few weeks, you’ll be able to read how Chloe is a far less successful matchmaker when it comes to her own love life. In My Summer Roommate, it’s Harper who gives her love advice. Shocking, isn’t it?

Two 5* reviews have already come in for My Summer Roommate. I’m so grateful for my readers! I love you all.

New title

So, the edits are done, the final details are being sorted out while I wait for the publication of my second novel. At the very last minute, the novel got a new title. Both, the editors and I agreed this one fits the story better, so A Pretty Big Love became My Summer Roommate!

You can still sign up to help me promote it here. It would make me very, very happy. 🙂

 

More details will follow as we near the publication date, so do come back to see the cover, giveaways, interviews etc.