Sunday, November 11, 2012

SARAH PEKKANEN: NOVEMBER FEATURED AUTHOR!




I'm so excited to share November's featured author with you. Sarah Pekkanen is one of my absolute favorite authors because I love her novels, and also because she is so down to earth and real. So not pretentious and she really seems to care a lot about her readers. She always has a kind word for her Facebook friends, she is a fantastic writer, she takes the time to make the fan feel important!


She has written three novels, The Opposite of Me, Skipping a Beat, These Girls, and her next one, The Best of Us is coming out in the spring! In the meantime, Sarah fulfills our need for her written word with awesome little novels for just 99 cents, and sometimes she even gives them away to her fans for free! Later this month she'll have another e-story out called Beginning Again. I've fallen absolutely in love with her e-story characters, and I really look forward to these little sampling of her books. If you haven't checked them out, you really need to. Start with: All Is Bright and then read Love Accidentally and by the time you finish those two, Beginning Again will be out. (I can't believe there's NO cover for this one yet Sarah!! ACK!!!... Maybe they are still looking for the perfect faceless model? Haha)

Anyway, in honor of Sarah being the Booking with Manic FEATURED AUTHOR of the month, she has graciously offered to give away a set of her three novels here to one winner! SO EXCITED FOR YOU GUYS!!! 

I also got to ask her some questions that I thought you all might want to know, so here they are! Thanks so much Sarah, and we can't wait to read Beginning Again, and then The Best of Us!

1. I loved your first book, The Opposite of Me, and the sister dynamic. Do you have a sister, and if so, did you base the story on your relationship at all?

Sarah: Thank you! I actually don't have a sister, but I've always been intrigued by the messy, complicated, intense relationships my friends all seem to have with their sisters, which inspired me to write The Opposite of Me. When I was younger, I yearned for a sister, and imagined she'd be just like me - a little shy and dorky and into Nancy Drew books. Then one day I thought, "Wait - what if I had a sister, and she was nothing like me?"  That was when the idea for my first book began brewing.



2. Do you have a hidden manuscript? Anything you'll never share with your fans?



Sarah: I do have a manuscript in a drawer in my office that will never be published, but I'm okay with that - it will always have a special place in my heart because working on that novel taught me how to put together a book. It's my practice pancake - the books that followed were stronger, but I'll never regret writing this one (even though it took years. Years!)


3. You write some incredible short stories that are inexpensive and fun and available on all e-readers. The characters intertwine and like your full-length novels, we can't help but fall in love with them. You have a new one coming out -- what's it called and what's it about?


Sarah: Thank you so much! I love writing short e-stories partly because they're a real challenge: my characters cross over from story to story, so the stories need to enhance one another, but they also have to make sense on their own in case someone buys just one. They're only 99 cents, which is nice, because sometimes you want to sample an author's style before splurging on a whole book. My upcoming e-story is titled "Beginning Again" and it'll be out Nov. 27. It's actually quite long - about 1/5 the length of a novel - and it tells the story of a woman named Corrine Brown, who returns to her hometown for her little sister's wedding. Corrine is reeling from a very recent, very painful divorce, and she's being forced to begin a new kind of life. 


4. And your next full-length novel is coming out this spring? I know it's about a group of friends who get trapped in Jamaica due to a hurricane. Any more info you can share on it?

Sarah: The Best of Us will be out April 9, and it's a full-length novel. I'm so excited about it! I actually had the surreal experience of doing a final read through on the manuscript before it went to press last week while I was hunkered down in my basement, riding out Hurricane Sandy. Meanwhile, I was reading about my characters who were hunkered down in Jamaica, riding out a hurricane.


Here's the description:
An all-expense paid week at a luxury villa in Jamaica – it’s the invitation of a lifetime for a group of old college friends. All four women are desperate not just for a reunion, but for an escape: Tina is drowning under the demands of mothering four young children. Allie is shattered by the news that a genetic illness runs in her family. Savannah is carrying the secret of her husband’s infidelity. And finally, there’s Pauline, who spares no expense to throw her wealthy husband an unforgettable 35th birthday celebration, hoping it will gloss over the cracks already splitting apart their new marriage.


 Languid hours on a private beach, gourmet dinners, and late nights of drinking kick off an idyllic week for the women and their husbands. But as a powerful hurricane bears down on the island, turmoil swirls inside the villa, forcing each of the women to re-evaluate everything she knows about her friends – and herself.


5. Can you tell us if you have the next novel swimming in your head yet?

Sarah: I do - in fact, I've written about 50 pages of it! I have a book due every April 1, so I start writing a new one when my kids go back to school in September. It's a little tight to finish a whole book in six months, but that way I get to spend my summers with my kids, so it's worth the work crush in the fall and winter. 


6. With three boys, your schedule must be nuts -- how can you go from writer to mom? Are there times when you have to say, "OK, Mommy needs a minute, an idea for a scene just came to me, and I HAVE to go write it down?" How do you manage those kinds of things? Can you switch gears like that?

Sarah: It's tough, because i have a three-year-old whose concept of time is a little different from mine, so asking him for a minute doesn't always work - "But we need to play trains NOW, Mommy!" Still, in a weird sort of way I'm glad my writing life is so fractured. I've learned to squeeze in writing around the margins of our days - I rack up pages at soccer practice, at the orthodontist's office, and in the preschool pick-up line. I think it keeps me from feeling as if writing is too precious or important, which is good, because it also keeps it from being intimidating. When I know I've only got an hour on a certain day to write, there's less of a temptation to over-think it; I just dive in.


7. What is the absolute best thing about being a writer?

Sarah: Connecting with readers. They're so darn nice! I'm always touched and thrilled to hear them say they liked one of my books. And I'm tempted to say, "Really? My Mom didn't pay you to say that to me?"


Thank you so much Sarah! It's been fun getting to peek inside your life as a writer and a mother! So for all you readers out there, if you would like to win the set of Sarah's books: The Opposite of Me, Skipping a Beat and These Girls, this is what I'd like you to tell me...

Since Sarah's next book is about a group of four couples going on a luxury vacation, tell me this -- if you could go on a luxury vacation, would you rather go with -- 

Girlfriends?
Your husband/spouse/partner?
OR a group of couples friends?

Those are your three choices -- At this point in my life, I would choose a luxury vacation with just my spouse. We sooo need a getaway -- YOUR TURN, tell me your choice and you'll be entered to win! 

Also, check out below to see if you won either of the following books recently posted:

Love Anthony: Congrats to: Ludy2288
Charlotte Street: Kimmi with the Penguin logo

If you are either Ludy2288 or Kimmi with the Penguin logo, please email me at stephanieelliot@gmail.com to claim your book. Include your full name and mailing address so I can get your book to you! 

Thanks everyone, more books to come. Still dealing with some health issues with Luke and we have a neurology appointment coming up so please keep us in your thoughts! xo 

NEW TO BOOKING WITH MANIC?  

If you're new to Booking with Manic, thank you for stopping by! We love new readers! Some notes - If you're entering to win a book, please use an identifying name and it's usually a great idea to include an email, which I will never give out to anyone else. You can only enter once please. You'll need to check back here in about a week or so to see if you've won the book -- I will highlight the winner's name at the top of this post, or tell you where you can find the winner's name at the top of this post. Most books are supplied directly through publishers, publicists and the authors. Winners will receive books directly from the publisher or author within 3 weeks from the time you provide me with your address, unless I send you the book (sometimes I will). Sorry, but we can only ship to U.S. and Canada so if you're from another country, thank you for coming by to read and discover new authors, but we can't send you a book. Any questions on how I run the blog or suggestions on who you would like to see featured, please email me at stephanieelliot@gmail.com. Thank you for your support!
   

65 comments:

EKB said...

LOVE LOVE LOVE Sarah's books (and she is the sweetest person to her fans!!) I can't wait for her short story and new book in April- woohoo!!
I would totally take a vaca with girlfriends (sorry hubby) but I need a fricken break and some girl time.

Joelle said...

I'm not entering to win since I have all of Sarah's books so far...however, I will whip anyone who hasn't read Sarah's books yet with a wet noodle. ;) seriously...ya'll are missing out.

I wish I had some girlfriends to take a vacay with...especially a cruise because I LOVE me some cruises. Hmmm...I wonder if I could hire some gf's for a cruise. lol

Anonymous said...

Love Sarah's books and can't wait for her next novel. I'm very excited to learn she has some eBooks I haven't read. I will be checking those out soon.

I would love a luxury get-a-way with just my hubby. We are long overdue for kid free vacation!

Colbey J

Krystal said...

I would enjoy a trip with a few groups of couples!

kndyer

bluestarbrite Steph said...

I haven't read any of Sarah's books, so I'm excited to read these! If Joelle wins, I'll take her books since she has them, and also so she won't whip me with a wet noodle! j/k.

I think I would go on a couples trip. This way I could get the best of both worlds. I could hang out with the girls, but I could also spend time with my husband too. I went on one like this already and it was fabulous!

faithspage said...

Sarah's book are like a little pieces of perfect wrapped up into books.

"The Boss" would def be going on vacation with me, we always have such a great time together.

kyfaithw at aol dot com

Nanette said...

I would have to say a "girl's trip" at this point b/c it's been a while since I've done that and it's SO FUN! :)

Nan

susieqlaw said...

I would take a trip.with my girlfriends!

slm8803 said...

Since my hubby and I just got a vacation in Sept (FINALLY) I would definitely have to pick my girlfriends. :)

Bev V said...

I would prefer to go on a luxury vacation with just my spouse. Our 30th anniversary is next year, and we're thinking of an Alaskan cruise!

robinkrzyzak said...

a get away with my husband,after this week it has to only go up... our house builder quit & ran away with $$ from us.. so i need a get away :o(

Ally said...

Hmm I think a vacation with my husband is really needed!

Anonymous said...

I would choose a Carribean cruise with just my husband.

-Donna W.

Margie said...

I'd definitely choose my husband for a vacation cruise.
Margie T

Anonymous said...

I would want to go with my new crush :)
I definitely couldn't handle a couples trip after such a recent breakup and I have had plenty of girl time lately. I will start the novellas today!!

lucy872 said...

I would probably choose a couples trip. This way my hubby and I could be together, but when I want to just lay in the sun, he would be able to hang with his buddies and not get bored!

karenk said...

thanks for the chance to read sarah's novels :)

karenk
kmkuka at yahoo dot com

CAnative said...

Groups of couples would be fun.

Nicole

accidentalgypsy said...

I would definitely choose a vaca with my girlfriends. We all like doing the same things and there's always minimal drama! :)

Emma S. said...

Hmmm. this is a tough one. I'd choose to go with just my significant other. We've been together over 6 years, and have only taken 1 trip or getaway where it's just been us two.

Carly said...

Husband and I is my number one choice. But I would love to try traveling with other couples. We planned a vacation with my brother and his girlfriend for next summer but then they got engaged and decided to make the trip their honeymoon so we decided we better skip this one. =)

Carly H

Becki*** said...

Spouse. But he hates air travel so second choice would be girlfriends. Or my Mom and daughter!

Coleen said...

I would love to go on vacation with couples. there is only a few of our friends that are couples,that my husband and I would ever go on vacation with. I could go anywhere anytime with just my husband since we have no children!!!!

Denise said...

as a single girl, I'd have to go with girlfriends.

-Denise F.

Kimmi said...

I'd probably opt to go with my gal pals. My boyfriend and I fight when we travel together (which is why we rarely do).

Read Baby Read said...

Great interview! I love her books so very much. I would definitely choose my husband for a luxury vacation.

your invisible pixie said...

ooh! i would say probably with a group of my friends, because that would be fun!

Kimberly Pearlman said...

How fun, I just fell in love with her after that interview! :)

If I was going on a luxury vacation I would definitely want it to be a girlfriend vacation. I love my man, but I just know the bickering would still be there. LOL Me & my ladies know what's up & how to have a fabulous time with NO DRAMA!

Luvschocolate said...

I have some friends that are deserving of a vacation , so If I could take them all, I would.

Jessica said...

Definitely with my girlfriends!

Thanks!
-Jessica M
walkingcorpse11@hotmail.com

Jeffie T said...

Group of friends

Mary Jo Burke said...

Getaway with hubby. Last one was too long ago.

Tanya Quilts in CO said...

I would go with my hubby. We travel well toghether!

TaraUB said...

I'd love a luxury camping vacation with our friends that camp together on Memorial Day weekend.

Sharn3960 said...

Hmmm, tough question. I'd probably prefer going with another couple or two.

I love Sarah, she's fantastic - as you could see through the wonderful interview, so I'd love to win.

Thanks!
sharn3960 AT comcast.net

Lilian said...

YES! It always made me sad that the public library here in Hawaii only carries one book by her (and only one copy at that.)

I would love to go with my friends, so we can jump on hotel beds.

Lilian @ A Novel Toybox

hazyswife said...

I'd prefer to go on a luxry vacation with my husband - we've been married for 13, almost 14 years, and we could use the time to reconnect and be alone with one another.

email: hazyswife@comcast.net

Joani15 said...

OMG! I would go with my husband and son. I would love to sleep in a bed. My house on the Jersey Shore was destroyed by Hurricane Sandy and for the last 14 days we have been living in my sons one room attic loft an hour from my house. We are sleeping on chairs and a loveseat size couch and taking turns on the 1 bed. I would love to sleep for 1 night on a luxurious bed, and maybe just soak up some sun and drink some tropical drinks and forget my last two weeks and upcoming months of rebuilding. Unfortunately we lost everything in the house and I would have to buy some vacay clothes which would be fun. But, just reading books can be an escape for a time.

betsy_blixt said...

I would love to go with just the girls! It's usually a little easier (even if it's hard) to go on a vacation with your spouse. It's very hard to get a group of girls to be able to get away at the same time. Plus how often do you get girl time? Seems life always gets in the way.

ludy2288 said...

Since I just got out of a long term relationship, I would take the vaca with girlfriends for sure! AND hopefully meet some hot men to shamelessly flirt with on the trek :)

TinaB said...

I would love to go to Europe with my hubby!!!!
Brannanflooring@aol.com

Kelleyc said...

All of her books are on my "want to read" list, but I havent read any yet!

I would love a vacation with my hubby! It's been too long since we've had some alone time without the kiddos....!

Nova said...

Definitely with a group of girlfriends, which would include my oldest sis and my daughter and my best friend! Love Sarah Pekkanen and her writing!

sparkle40175(at)hotmail(dot)com

buttah said...

Hubs and I go on trips together all the time by ourselves, so I would LOVE to go with some of our great friends!!

equinn726 said...

I will definitely have to check out Sarah's eBooks! Because we just moved to a place where my husband and I know NO ONE, we've spent a lot of time together and while he's great, if I could go on a luxury vacation tomorrow, I'd take some of my girlfriends (I miss them tons!).

Trish Ryan said...

DEFINITELY a get away with my spouse. Now that we have a foster daughter, I feel like we need to install a shelf that breaks in the upstairs closet just to spend five minutes alone together!

SO excited that Sarah has a new book out. LOVE her!!!

Sherry said...

Girlfriends--need some me time that does not involve anyone who is needy

Kathy said...

I love Sarah Pekkanen!

Marla W. said...

OMG - literally! Sarah is one of my FAVORITE authors! I loved reading the interview - one of the things I love most about her is how well she connects with her readers (on top of the fact that her books are magnificent).

My choice on the vacation would be my hubs - we don't get very much time alone anymore and we've only been on TWO vacations in our 16+ year relationship (and one of those was a very short honeymoon)!!

Melissa said...

I would go with my husband! And I love all of Sarah's books!

Mel Rem

Bridget O'Neill said...

I would love a couples vacation! I feel like that would give me the best of both worlds-time with my girlfriends and time with my hubby!

Corgi Lover said...

Would love to go with my boyfiend. He is a great traveling partner!!

Susan @ The Book Bag said...

I love Sarah's books. I am super excited to hear she publishes every April, just in time for my birthday. I would love to take a getaway with my hubby. I think after 39 years together, it's about time. I told him last year on our anniversary that the 40th is a cruise year. Need to prepare him for a couple of years so he's agreeable to it. :^)

Nicole Frail said...

I would take my guy. We work opposite shifts and only get to spend one night a week together, so a trip like that would be pretty special.

jdstec said...

My husband and best friend, who happen to be the same person.

Lizett34 said...

I will have to choose my girlfriends! They are a very fun group and we always have a great time!

Margaret Literary Chanteuse said...

I will say my hubby. We eloped and didn't have a honeymoon so a luxurious trip would be fantastic!

Margaret(Literary Chanteuse)

A.C. said...

Would definitely pick my husband! I haven't seen him in a couple of months so I would love a getaway with him :)

DaphneSFL said...

A trip with my husband to Europe would be divine :)

Terri said...

Well, I'd need to be a part of a couple first, but I'd prefer a group of couples.

Terri M.

mom of two said...

girlfriends

mom of two said...

girlfriends

Juliet Farmer said...

my husband! he's also my bff. :)

Lesley Davis, esq said...

Def my hubby!

absolutahnie said...

boyfriend (husband if he ever gets his sh*t together and proposes...)

we just returned saturday from a week in aruba, it was awesome!