Author Interview & Giveaway: Brooke Moss

I was lucky enough to score an interview with Brooke Moss. She’s the first on this blog and I am really, really grateful for the opportunity. Brooke Moss penned the contemporary romance titled, The “What If” Guy, which came out this past August. You can check out my review here. I’d also like to thank Danielle Barclay (Brooke’s rep) for making this happen!

Without further ado, here’s what I came up with and what she has to say:


1.       So, we know that your “Small Town”, Washington inspired the setting for The “What If” Guy, is there actually a “guy” that inspired Henry?


           First off, thanks for having me here on Joyous Reads today. I’m a fan of the blog. And second, I have to say, what an excellent question! As a matter of fact, Henry Tobler is a mixture of a few different “what if” guys I have in my past. And there are a few details that the love of my life, my nerdy husband, inspired. So Henry is a most excellent mix of a handful of men that are very swoon worthy.

2.       Do you have a writing ritual?

           I do. I can only write if I am playing the playlist that I design for each story I am working on. I usually play it on a loop for inspiration. And I am an avid cocoa drinker, so I always have my cup of cocoa near. And sometimes I wear my mother’s old, green cardigan because I am crazy enough to think it brings me good “writing luck”.

3.       What drives Brooke Moss?

           If someone says I will fail, I will work twice as hard until I succeed and prove you wrong. I refuse to be told that I can’t do something. So I suppose it is a fear of failure that drives me.

4.       What do you like the most about writing your book? And the least?

           Let’s start with the least: I loathe that I am completely addicted to backstory. I have SUCH a hard time editing down my backstories. Ugh. It’s an addiction. And most: I love the fact that I can have emotional content AND humor. Who says there can’t be laughs during a funeral scene? In my family, we laugh through our tears, and that’s what my characters do as well.

5.       Is there a book that made an absolute impact on you? Career-wise and life-wise?

           I have read and reread the story of Silas Marner at least twenty times. I never get sick of it. And I would have to say that I have been inspired (career wise) by all of Kristan Higgins’ books. She is amazingly talented. Able to create stories that have poignant messages, sexiness, and humor, all in one! If I become half as talented as Kristan Higgins, I will consider myself a successful author.
  
6.       Finally, talk to us about the Fairfield series. How many will be there? And whose story will it be?


       I hope to write more books in the Fairfield series, starting with Layla Deberaux’s story, but right now, I have a trilogy, and two WIP’s I am focusing on. The trilogy comes out from Entangled Publishing next summer, and I am super excited about it! Think: My Best Friend’s Wedding with a dark twist. Fun, huh?

       Thanks for having me here today, Joy! I hope everyone enjoys The What If Guy! Find me elsewhere on the web, at my websiteblogTwitterGoodreads, and Facebook.

Fondly,
Brooke Moss

I had fun reading her funny and heartfelt novel. It’s about a single mom who was at the lowest point of her life and who had no choice but to go back to her small town to take care of the “town drunk” (which happens to be her father).  Along with the onslaught of bad and humiliating memories and her day-to-day struggles of starting anew,  her first love and heartbreak also came back into her life.

Here’s a little snippet of the The “What If” Guy:

Seattle, Washington

 “Why are you doing this?”
 The desperate, sad look in Henry’s eyes made my heart ache. His brown hair fell across his forehead in rain-soaked waves, and his eyelashes gathered in dampened clumps. Henry’s eyes, the same shade of gray as the weeping clouds above us, searched my face for answers I was too ashamed to give.
  
“What we have is real, Autumn.” He pulled me against his chest. I felt his heart pounding through the wet fabric of his soft, flannel shirt, and we trembled in unison, standing on the front steps of Henry’s apartment building. “Why do you want to break up? Don’t you love me?”
“Don’t do this,” I said weakly. My eyes filled with hot tears that threatened to undermine my brave façade. When he grazed his fingers across my cheekbone, swiping away a tear, I instinctively turned my face into his hand, breathing in the warm, outdoorsy aroma of Henry.
 My Henry. 
He kissed my cheeks, my temples, my shivering lips. My resolve started to crumble. Strength. I needed to show strength. I needed to walk away before I ruined his life, before I hurt him any more than I already had.
“Tell me that you don’t love me,” he whispered into my drenched hair, tangling his fingers in my curls. “Tell me, and I’ll let you go.”
 I choked on a sob. I did love Henry. The past two months had been the best
months of my life. Not once had I dreamt of meeting someone who made me feel safe, peaceful, beautiful, and deliriously happy, the way Henry Tobler made me feel. I wanted to be with him—and no one else—forever.   
 “Of course I love you,” I said.
“Then why are you doing this?” His voice cracked. 
I shivered in Henry’s arms, not only from the cold, but also from the burden I bore. Pulling back, I raised my eyes to meet his. “I….I’m pregnant.” My words were barely audible over the sound of the pounding rain and passing traffic.
 His face morphed from shock to anger, then settled on absolute sadness. We hadn’t slept together yet.
“It was from before,” I explained lamely, feeling dirty as the words came out my mouth. Henry’s shoulders drooped. He released me and a shadow fell across his eyes. That said it all. His girlfriend was pregnant with someone else’s child. Henry deserved better than me. I had to get out of here. I backed away, down the cement steps and onto the sidewalk. I rubbed my chest, my heart breaking just beneath the surface.
“I’m sorry,” I said, words quavering. “I’m so sorry.”
I turned and ran. Away from love. 


Seriously, this book had me laughing and crying at the same time. You can order Brooke’s book here:


Get your copy of The What if Guy at: Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Diesel | Books On Board | Powell’s | BAM


Incidentally, Entangled Publishing also offered an e-copy of this book for a giveaway! How awesome is that? I, however, will giveaway two paperback copies of The “What If” Guy. Enter below!

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  • Ooh! My Best Fiend's Wedding was my favourite movie growing up- Cameron Diaz, Julia Roberts and that cute, hunky guy whose name I forgot. Actually, I sooo wanted Julia to be with him even though I knew what she was doing was wrong. Cameron was just too smiley for my taste. Anyway, I'm definitely keeping my eye out for your upcoming title. I wish you all the best with it!

    Oh! And I think it's incredibly sweet that you wear your mum's old green cardie for good luck and, although I imagine it can be quite difficult challenging yourself to prove people wrong, I believe that you gain a lot of satisfaction from it. Good on you!

    Sarah:)

    sarahDOTsetarATgmailDOTcom

  • I keep seeing this book. Maybe I should take a hint.

    Valerie
    StuckInBooks.com

  • Thanks, everyone!! I hope you all enjoy the book!

    –Brooke

  • Great interview! I found it very sweet how she sometimes wears her mother's old green cardigan for good writing luck. It definitely must work for her, because the “What if Guy” sounds great!

  • I'm so glad to hear I'm not the only one addicted to back story. My second draft usually cut out the first three chapters of my first draft since I somehow always feel it's necessary to tell my readers “everything” about my characters up front. 🙂

    BTW-I love this book!

  • I'm also driven by the fear of failure. Sometimes I wish it wasn't so, but it's a very strong motivator! I wish I could write to a playlist. It seems like a great way to dive back into a story. But for some lame-ass reason, I can only write to the sounds of the rainforest. 🙂

  • Great excerpt and Henry sounds a real sweetie. Isn't it wonderful to be able to take all the bits you want from a whole load of guys and make someone new!

  • please enter my name into the giveaway, thanks
    julie