Please welcome Lauren Layne to The Authorteers! She's here to tell us about her books and what else she has in store.
CRUSHED is a NA spin on The Ugly Duckling—frumpy, feisty Chloe steals the heart of the new bad boy in town.
2. Where does your inspiration come from?
I love putting a fresh twist on an old tale. I love the classics. Beauty and the Beast, forbidden romance, Mr. Darcy heroes … Generally I decide on the TYPE of story I want to tell, and then find a way to make it my own, or tell it in a way it hasn’t been done before. I also find that I’ll settle on a particular “mood” for a story before I come up with characters or plot. I’ll decide how I want to feel as I’m writing the book, or how I want the reader to feel, and I sort of build a story around that. If I’m in the mood to smile, I’ll put together quick-witted characters with plenty of banter. If I’m in the mood for gut-wrenching, I’ll toss in some unrequited love. If I want sexy, I’ll create a plot with room for lots of sexy-times :)
3. What does a romance novel need to be a great romance?
For me it’s all about about the double punch of the Dark Moment, followed by the Win Him/Her Back Moment. Nothing beats that sinking feeling in your stomach when the hero or heroine walks away, and the anticipation of the moment when they’ll fight to get each other back! I really thing romance is all about longing. Whether you prefer romantic comedies, dark and angsty drama, or the super sexy stuff, it’s all about that gut-level WANT of someone else. Not necessarily sexual want (although also, that!), but the want to be *with* the other person.
4. When you start writing a series, is it difficult to finish without wanting to write just one more book?
Hmm, it really depends. I’ve had some series that I’ve been loathe to let go of; where I want to tell just one more story, or visit the characters one last time. And then there are other series that I feel okay saying good-bye to. Not because I’m sick of the characters, but because my writing-gut knows that I’ve done all I can do with that “world.” Plus, I’m hyper aware of wanting to end on a high note. I think we’ve *all* read those series where we think, “eh, it really should have ended after ___.” I’d much rather close a series out with readers wanting a little bit more, rather than risk ruining a good thing by taking it one book too far.
5. What is your favorite tip that you give to fellow writers/authors?
That writing is HARD. I know that doesn’t sound particularly inspirational, but I think it’s an important thing to note. So often I talk to newish writers who are discouraged because they’ve been writing for X amount of time, but it doesn’t seem to be getting any easier. And then assume that because it’s not coming easy, that maybe they’re not cut out for it. No no no! I promise you, writing is hard for *everyone* at one point or another. What makes you a writer, instead of a wannabe writer is that you write anyway—in spite of the hard. Don’t even *think* about giving up!
6. What is your absolute favorite part of being an author?
Working for myself. Even if I were to quit writing (not gonna happen), I’d start my own business or something, because I don’t think I could ever go back to working for someone else again. I really, really like being my own boss. I like deciding how I work, when I work, and what I work on. I work way more hours now than I ever did in my “regular job,” but they’re hours that I set, which makes all the difference!
7. What are you working on right now?
Ha, I’m actually in the middle of three manuscripts at the moment! One is the third in my New York’s Finest series (about yummy NYPD cops!). One is the first in my Oxford series (think really awesome suits and lots of big-city banter), and the other is a suuuuuuuper secret project I can’t mention yet, but it’s completely different for me.
Thank you for sharing, Lauren!
About the Author
Lauren's latest release is Crushed:
Lauren Layne’s latest novel about the healing power of redemption tells the story of a crush gone wickedly wrong, proving that what you want isn’t always what you need.
Growing up in New York, Michael St. Claire never expected to spend his twenties wearing cowboy boots. But that was before he learned about his real father, a total stranger with a family in Cedar Grove, Texas. Once in the Lone Star State, Michael meets Kristin Bellamy, who is exquisitely refined and everything Michael always thought he wanted in a woman. The only problem is that Kristin is dating Michael’s new half brother, Devon.
Kristin’s mouthy, curvy sister Chloe has always been in love with Devon Patterson. So when Michael offers to help Chloe break up Devon and Kristin, Chloe agrees to a deal that seems too good to be true. Before long, Chloe finally gets her man, only to make a startling discovery: She no longer wants the guy she had to fight for—she wants the one who stood by her side.
After all he and Chloe have been through, Michael swears he’s damaged goods. Can Chloe convince him that love is worth the risk?