Tuesday, July 24, 2012

The Next Best Thing Challenge: SECRETS AND SECOND CHANCES

I was tagged by my friend JM Stewart to do The Next Best Thing Challenge.  Thank you, Joanne!  This was fun!

Here's the idea:
  • Answer the 10 questions below
  • Spread the fun and tag 5 awesome people to participate!
Instead of the highlighting the work-in-progress I've been showing in Six Sentence Sunday, I'm going to show something a little different for this challenge - my work-in-progress SECRETS AND SECOND CHANCES.  This is the story I've been working through with my critique group. 

1. What is the title of your book / WIP?

SECRETS AND SECOND CHANCES  (Updated January 2013: I've changed the working title on this WIP to A Cowboy's Second Chance)

2. Where did the idea of this book come from?

Is it weird that I don't know the answer to this question?  I'd already written a story, SILVER LININGS, set in this same small town of Morning Lake, and I guess the characters there begged for another story.  My hero Devin came to me first, and he brought everything (and everyone) along with him.  My heroine Claire's cancer scare, even, was a result of exploring what my hero's worst nightmare might be.  In my very early musings Devin's previous career was a rodeo clown, but he quickly told me that wasn't true - he was a bull rider. 

Devin must learn to forgive himself and Claire
must share her secret before it is too late and
they lose their chance at happily-ever-after.

Image: © Michael Studard | Dreamstime.com

3. What genre would your book fall under?

Contemporary Romance

4. Which actors would you choose to play your characters in a movie rendition?

Wow - what a difficult question!  Luckily, I'm finished the first draft of this book.  If I wasn't, I'd probably start writing the characters the way I think the actors would play them and that would be very strange.

To find actors for my book, I'm pretending that people don't age, or if they do age, they do so precisely as I need them too.  So, don't get too creeped out by the discrepancies in ages.  Let's just pretend that they are the "perfect" age for the characters.  ;)

Also - rather than posting photos of these wonderful actors, I've posted links, which will hopefully work the way I've planned, to image searches. 

Devin Trent:
  • Charater: sexy widower and former bullrider
  • Actor: Cameron Mathison
  • My Thoughts: I'm not actually sure what he is like as an actor, but he looks like Devin. 
Claire Best
  • Character: cute photographer and cancer fundraiser
  • Actor: Anne Hathaway
  • My Thoughts: I think with a shorter hair cut, Anne Hathaway could be a great Claire. 
Helen Trent
  • Character: Devin's mom, who has decided to practice her matchmaking skills
  • Actor: Sally Field
  • My Thoughts: She'd need to have a bit more grey than the pictures I've seen of her, but she has the right attitude. 
Livy Trent
  • Character: Devin's first wife.  Although she has died before this story starts, Livy has a BIG role in the story's development... so I decided she needed an actor too.
  • Actor: Catherine Zeta Jones
  • My Thoughts: Catherine Zeta Jones is probably a little too mature for Livy... but she is a woman men drool over. 
  • Character: Local troubled teenager
  • Actor: Taylor Lautner
  • My Thoughts: A perfect JJ
  • Character: Love interest for JJ
  • Actor: Alexis Bledel
  • My Thoughts: Okay, okay - so she is a bit too mature to be Melody now, but I'll pretend I can manipulate the aging process. ;)
  • Character: Claire's boss and Livy's former lover
  • Actor: Christian Bale
  • My Thoughts: A perfect Peter
  • Character: Livy's mom, who is usually a classy but depressed alcoholic 
  • Actor: Helen Mirren
  • My Thoughts: Okay, again, Helen may be a bit too mature for Livy's mom, but I can see her as Shirley.

5. What is the one sentence synopsis of your book?

Widower and former bull-rider, Devin Trent, is forced to deal with his painful past when he falls in love with Claire Best, who must face the possibility of her own uncertain future after discovering she may have cancer.

6. Is your book published or represented?

Unpublished and unrepresented.  I haven't pursued publication or representation yet.  Soon...

7. How long did it take you to write it?

The timeline on this story's creation is a bit convoluted.  I completed the outline and approximately one-third of the story in 2005.  Then, I moved on to complete several other stories before feeling compelled to return.  I dusted the story off when my critique group started in the spring of 2011 and now have a finished draft.  I've been through a few revisions so far, and have at least one last big edit ahead before I start sending the story out to the world. ;)

8. What other books in your genre would you compare it to?

I see this story as comparable to Harlequin's SuperRomance stories.

9. Which authors inspired you to write this book?

I was inspired to write this book by my local writing group, the Alberta Romance Writers' Association and the wonderful, supportive writers I met there. 

10. Tell us anything else that might pique our interest in your book.

Devin, the hero of this tale, is a cowboy with a lovable matchmaking mom, Helen.  When Devin and Claire attend a local small town rodeo, Helen launches her big plan to get them together.

Claire, the heroine, is fiercely independent, and must discover that loving someone and trusting them with her secrets takes more strength than continuing alone.

There is a strong sense of community in SECRETS AND SECOND CHANCES, most notably shown through JJ's storyline.  Devin takes JJ under his wing to teach him a few things about responsibilities and hard work, and is surprised when he learns a few lessons from "the kid."

Lastly, although the story has serious topics like cancer and grief, my critique group has told me they've laughed as they read. 

And now, the five talented authors I'm tagging to share the fun.


Jessica E. Subject said...

Sounds like a wonderful book! I wish you all the best with it, Lorraine!

Kate Meader said...

This sounds like a great story, Lorraine. Thanks for tagging me - hopefully I'll find time this week to throw my hat into the ring!

patonlorraine said...

Thanks, Jessica! :)

patonlorraine said...

Thank you, Kate! And you are welcome!

Karen de Lange said...

Wow, this sounds great! So flattered you've tagged me; you've set a high bar to jump over. Thank you.