Thursday, February 9, 2017

Welcome to Shooting Stars Reviews new segment!
A Day In The Life Of…
This will soon be a weekly issue on the blog with different interviews from different people in that category.

This week’s category is..

A Day In The Life Of..

An Author!

Our guest this time is an author who made me fall in love with cupcakes in her book Hyde and Seek. Then she proceeded to blow me away with, With Us, and she has a new book out called Little Black Dress that was written with a few other authors as well. 

She makes the sweet heroines so awesome they will make your teeth ache! 

See more for her awesome interview, her cute pets, and of course, she did not disappoint with not only a teaser, but TWO of them. That's right folks stay turned for those awesome teasers! But, before then let's get to the interview! 

Please welcome,

 Layla shares with us her Day in the Life of An Author and all the little details that go with it! 

And away we go.... 

My day starts promptly at six AM when I roll out of bed with perfect hair and makeup. After getting dressed in my finest clothes, I’m all gracious smiles and pleasant conversation as I get right to work without the help of coffee… Okay, that’s all a lie. A dirty, dirty lie.
My writing starts sometime in the afternoon. While it’s occasionally true that I’ve just rolled out of bed, my makeup is usually nonexistent and my hair is far from perfect. And my finest clothes include nerdy novelty tees and brightly colored leggings. Plopping down my writing chair(which is a comfy recliner because otherwise my butt goes numb) with my laptop, I chug an iced coffee and waste entirely too much time on YouTube and Facebook.
Eventually, however, I do get to work. And that always includes music. Putting my headphones and music on gets me in the mindset to write. Ninety-nine percent of the time, it’s hard rock. My favorites for writing are Nothing More, Highly Suspect, 10 Years, and Otherwise. I also change it up with some Maroon 5 and Mumford and Sons. Usually, I just put on a mix. But if I have an important scene I’m writing, there is almost always a song I want to listen to on repeat. Music is a huge inspiration for me.

I wish I could say I was the type of writer who outlined, wrote notes, and was organized. But I’m not. I always know the beginning and the end of the story. If I haven’t planned the end, I get blocked up until I do. But other than that, I just write the story as it comes to me. I sit down, crank the tunes, chug the coffee(and then ice water), and write. I mark with scene breaks, but I don’t separate into chapters. All the sorting and organizing comes during the dreaded editing stage.
Although I start in the afternoon, my writing time is usually split into little bursts when I can find time to focus. I’ve recently started doing writing sprints with some other authors. We’ll set a start and end time, and write like crazy. When the time is up, we report back. It makes it fun!

I’ve always had awful insomnia, which ends up being a blessing in my case because I often end up working late. If I’m really into what I’m writing, it can go into the middle of the night. I’ve written straight through until morning before, though I was basically a useless lump the next day. Staying up doesn’t always guarantee peace and quiet, though. At any given time, I have some assortment of dog and/or cat on me. They really don’t make it easy when they demand snuggles. But who could say no, right?

When my brain gets the dumb and is done doing the words, I know it’s time to stop. I save everything, check out my word count, and call it a night. And then I sit in bed, thinking about what I’ll write the next day. That often includes rolling over to make some obscure note about an idea or piece of dialogue. And then I wake up the next day, read it, and have no clue what it means.If I’m lucky, I figure it out and then start my writing day again.

Teaser #1 from Little Black Dress!

Little Black Dress-
“And you are?” he asked.
I began to give my nickname before remembering my plan. “Winifred.”
“Nice to meet you, Winifred. So you don’t work at Well Marketing?”
“No, I work at Smith, Lee, and Jones.”
“Hmm.” His lips thinned as he made a thoughtful expression. “I don’t think I’ve heard of them. Is it a law firm?”
“No, they contract with the government. It’s a pretty big deal, but very confidential, as you can imagine.”
He nodded, seeming to believe my insane lies. “That sounds interesting. What do you do there?”
“Mostly mergers. Acquisitions.” I fluttered my hand around. “Those kinds of things.”
Attentive eyes on mine, he took a drink of his wine, which I really regretted not taking. “Mergers and acquisitions?”
“Yes, I combine some things. And,” I paused realizing I had no clue what acquisitions actually meant, “acquisition others. The usual.”
“Sounds like a complex job.”
I nodded, keeping my face serious. “It really does take a specific kind of person to do what I do. And I don’t like to brag or anything, but I’m pretty much the best at it. There was this whole thing with an energy source… I don’t want to bore you with the details, but it was a big deal.”
“Wow.” He smiled, putting his hands in his dress slacks pockets. “That’s seriously impressive.”
“Thanks,” I said, feigning a blasé smile. “Are you from California?”
He nodded. “Lived here my whole life. What about you?”
“No, I’m originally from the Midwest.”
“What brought you out this way?”
“My dad’s in the jewelry business. I followed him out when he came here for work so I could help. The views were all so precious, I decided to stay.”
“Any brothers or sisters?”
I nodded. “A brother, Logan. He’s a teacher at a school for the gifted in New York. You?”
Giving a low whistle, he said, “Family of high achievers. No siblings for me.”
The man looked down at me, his hazel eyes shifting more to blueish than brown. His smile was open and friendly. I could’ve spent the whole night just talking to him, even if ninety percent of what I was saying was bullshit.
“Well, it was fun chatting with you. I’m going to go catch up with my friend.” I stuck my hand out. “It was nice to meet you…”
“Max,” he filled in as he took my hand. “And it was a pleasure to meet you, Winifred.”

Teaser #2 From With Us

“Go out with me.” Spoken like a command, there was no question in his tone.
Other than my love affair with Netflix and HBO Go, my romantic life was nonexistent. Actually, my social life in general leaned more toward blanketed hermit, not wild party girl.
A couple of brief interactions with a random guy wasn’t completely changing that, of course. Even if he was really, really ridiculously good-looking.
What do I have to lose? Even if he ends up being a total walnut, at least I can say I went out with a man who was supermodel hot. Maybe I can even sneak a couple pictures of him during the date for proof and memories and… reasons.
“Okay,” I agreed. When he opened his mouth, I continued. “But I have some stipulations.”
“Well, I don’t have my contracts or briefcase with me, but I’ll try to negotiate without them.” Placing his hands flat on the counter, he leaned in slightly. “What’re your conditions?”
I pushed his change closer. “No more crazy tipping. If we’re going to go out, I don’t want to feel like some sort of…” My words trailed off, but he just arched his eyebrow, forcing me to finish. “I dunno, pastry prostitute or something.”
His lips tipped up, though he was quick to hide it. “Deal. Next point?”
“We plan ahead of time, and I meet you at the restaurant.”
“Worried you’ll need to escape?”
I fought to keep a straight face. “Maybe you’re an awful driver. Or, I don’t know, listen exclusively to Justin Bieber or stock market updates or something.”
His full lips pursed as he hesitated before muttering, “I… honestly don’t know what the most offensive part of that was. I’m leaning toward Bieber.” He nodded. “Okay, deal. Anything else?”
I held up my hand, my thumb and forefinger a small distance apart. “Just one tiny thing.”
“I kind of have to know your name.”
His eyes widened before he grinned, his dimples becoming deeper. “Theo Amato,” he said, holding out his hand.
I met his hand with my own.
There was no zing. No zap. No electricity or currents travelling between us. A chorus of angels didn’t suddenly appear to sing Teddy Pendergrass while a fur covered bed magically appeared.
Instead, his palm was warm and dry, his skin slightly calloused. It was surprising and sexy.
And real.
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