Instead, Marci lives alone in 480 square feet of converted motel space next to a punk rock band, hundreds of miles from her friends and family. She works in a temporary accounting assignment that has somehow stretched from two weeks into nine months. And the only bright spot in her life, not to mention the only sex she’s had in two years, is an illicit affair with her married boss, Doug. Thirty is not at all what it is cracked up to be.
Then the reappearance of a cocktail napkin she hasn’t seen in a decade opens a long-forgotten door, and Marci’s life gets complicated, fast. The lines between right and wrong, fantasy and reality, heartache and happiness are all about to get very blurry, as Marci faces the most difficult choices of her life.
#1 – Do You See Writing as a Career?
Definitely. Sometimes. J For me, writing is a vocation: more a calling than a career, and I have answered that calling in a variety of ways, my whole life. Sometimes it pays the bills, sometimes it just feeds my soul. Either way, I don’t have any choice. I have to write.
#2 – What was the Hardest Part of Your Writing Process?
The hardest part for me is, and probably always will be, time management. Writing takes focus, discipline and dedication, especially when you get stuck at a tough spot in the story or you’re doing the not-so-glamorous parts like revising. It means you have to choose to give up other things in your life that might provide more immediate gratification, in order to do the work. Also, you have to be able to steer yourself away from the internet once in a while – taking your brain from passively receiving information to creating something new. It’s a different kind of energy, definitely a challenge.
#3 – Did you have any One Person Who Helped You Out with Your Writing Outside of Your Family?
Yes. I had several friends and family members who served as moral support and beta readers. Among them, however, my good friend Ryan stands apart. We were English majors together at UGA and studied at Oxford University in England one summer as well. We have the kind of long-standing friendship and mutual respect that allows for total honesty. Ryan happens to be a guy, and a lawyer – very analytical! – not exactly the target audience for a contemporary romance. I actually think that makes him a better critique partner in some ways. He sees things from a different perspective and helps bring texture to my writing. I owe him a lot. Of course I get lots of great feedback from my girlfriends, too!
#4 – What is next for your writing?
Right now, I am finishing up the third novel in The Marriage Pact series, for release in November 2013. After that, I have several projects in the hopper: including a mystery/adventure series for women and a nine-part YA paranormal series (ambitious much?). There are some other romantic comedies taking shape in my head, too, and a non-fiction project I’ll be working on with a friend of mine. Add blogging and raising kids to that list and I think I have my work cut out for me!
#5 – Do you have an addiction to reading as well as writing? If so, what are you currently reading?
Definitely. I’m very ADHD in my reading habits and I always have several books open, plus an audio book I listen to in the car or while exercising. I read across genres, anything good. Right now I am reading The Blind Assassin by Margaret Atwood, Nineteen Minutes by Jodi Picoult, Then Came You by Jennifer Weiner, and listening to A Clash of Kings (Book #2 in the Fire and Ice Series) by George R.R. Martin. For writing instruction, I’m also reading 179 Ways to Save a Novel, and of course I re-read my own books to continue revising and to make sure each one is consistent with the last.
DESCRIBE Your Book in 1 Tweet:
Age 30 has arrived. Will their old promise bring a happy ending, or end their friendship forever? THE MARRIAGE PACT by @MJPullen
This or That?
#1 - iPd or Mp3?
Both. I’m a music addict so I have to have something on every platform.
#2 – Chocolate or Vanilla?
Chocolate. Preferably soft-serve in an old-school cake cone if you have it.
#3 – Mashed Potatoes or French Fries?
Fries. With mustard.
#4 – Comedy or Drama?
Both. In my view, it’s hard to separate them. Comedy is hollow without drama, and drama without an element of laughter is too intense: like staring directly at the sun. Even the most decadent sweets need salt to bring out their true flavors.
#5 – Danielle Steel or Nicholas Sparks?
Can I say Jodi Picoult, Jennifer Weiner or Helen Fielding instead? I guess my writing is more like Nicholas Sparks than Danielle Steel.
#6 – Fantasy or Reality?
There’s a difference? Oops.
#7 – Call or Text?
I prefer calls, but I have to admit I probably text more often.
#8 – Public School or Home School?
For our family, public school. I admire the patience and dedication it takes to home school; I just don’t have it. My kids would revolt.
#9 – Coffee or Hot Chocolate?
So. Much. COFFEE.
#10 – eBook or Paperback?
Paperback in the bathtub, eBook almost everywhere else.