Free Fall Release Date

free fall moon

Genevieve and I are thrilled to announce the firm release date for Free Fall: July 31, 2018. It’s up for preorder at AmazoniBooksB&N, and Kobo (Google Play coming soon!), plus you can add it your Goodreads shelves and check out the book’s Pinterest board. In addition to the e-book, it will be in print on approximately release day.

Free Fall is the funniest book in the Fly Me to the Moon series, but it’s also angsty and deeply emotional. It’s focused on the marriage of convenience between two very unlike people: a laconic astronaut and a vivacious sorority girl who find themselves with a baby on the way and the first American space walk mission to survive. There’s drama with the space suit design, bridge parties with astronaut wives, a hard-fought squash game, and furniture. Lots of furniture.

Genevieve and I started writing it almost two years ago and then, well, the world fell apart. It took us a long time to get back to a manuscript that felt, tonally, alien. But please keep in mind that we named Vivy Muller in October 2016.

I love this book, and I’m so excited for it to be out in the world. We also have a surprise–it’ll drop around the same time as Free Fall’s release–which I’m psyched about. Stay tuned!

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Rogue Hearts Release Day!

rh win

It’s release day for Rogue Hearts, a collection of six resistance romances by Suleikha Snyder, Stacey Agdern, Kelly Maher, Amy Jo Cousins, Tamsen Parker, and myself.

My story is about a woman running for the state legislature and falling for her campaign advisor. It’s set in Montana and it’s packed with cross-x debate references. Elements of it have been floating around in my head since I was working on Party Lines many years ago; I just had to wait for the right moment to tell it.

My three Rogue novellas work together as a group. “Kissing and Other Forms of Sedition” is about choosing hope over fear, “The Fourth Estate” is about persisting when you’re exhausted, and “Run” is about taking risks for the right reasons. I’m thrilled to share this final piece in my Rogue puzzle with you.

You can get Rogue Hearts at AmazonB&NiBooksGoogle Play, and Kobo, add it to your Goodreads shelves, and check out my story’s board on Pinterest. But click fast because while it’s 99 cents now, that price will go up to $3.99 next week.

Cover + Blurb + Preorder for Rogue Hearts!

You want to see something pretty? Like maybe the just-revealed cover for Rogue Hearts?

rogue hearts cover

My story is called “Run.”

Public defender Maddie Clark doesn’t want to be a candidate for the state senate—but she’s running. Her high school nemesis turned campaign advisor Adam Kadlick shouldn’t be back home managing campaigns—but he is. They definitely should avoid falling for each other—but they won’t.

I’ve wanted to write a woman seeking political office for years. I considering making one of the presidential candidates in Party Lines a woman, but I worried that it would be distracting, that I would want the entire book to be about her. I promised myself I’d write about a female candidate someday, and my final Rogue series story seemed like the right time.

As you probably expect from me, Maddie and Adam’s story is bantery and deeply nerdy. If you’ve felt like romance suffers from a decided lack of Cross-X debate references, this one’s for you. It’s 19K, or short novella length, and the Pinterest board is here.

“Run,” like “The Fourth Estate,” ended up lower heat, but hey, it includes a diatribe on the Fourth Amendment, so that balances things out (?). And if you liked the Montana setting of “Free,” you’ll enjoy this too.

You can preorder Rogue Hearts for 99 cents at Amazon, B&N, iBooks, Google Play, and Kobo and you can add it to your Goodreads shelves. The price will go up to $3.99 after release week. If you’re a reviewer and are interested in an ARC, you can request one here.

The Blank Page

I am jealous of readers because they get to see my work wholly divorced from its writing. A project will always be tied up with its history for me. Did I write quickly and painlessly? Was the writing a struggle? Did I “save” the project in revision?

When I reflect on my books, I prefer the hard ones. Because I am a slow and ponderous writer, and thus I tend to wander down many wrong paths, I haven’t had too many books go “well.” Those that have… I don’t trust. They’re some strange witchcraft; they don’t feel like mine.

But a reader doesn’t know any of that. There isn’t any noise around the book. It must be quiet.

Lately, I’ve struggled to write because there’s so much noise, I can’t hear myself. I have writer friends who can listen to the market, to their readers, and to industry trends and still have something outward to say. I’ve been trying to do that, to write books that might be for a more general audience rather than only for my little niche, to listen to the outward stuff and modulate my voice in terms of it. But I simply can’t.

I’ve been trying to tune out those outside noises–not because they’re unimportant, but because I can’t hear myself or see my work. I’m snow-blind.

A Little V-Day Extra

If you subscribe to my newsletter, I had a tiny extra epilogue this morning with Graham and Cadence from Rogue Desire. You can read it here, but if you’re not signed up, what’s stopping you?

If you’re dying for more extra content from me, I have two deleted scenes from Rogue Affair, an extended epilogue for Private Politics, and a bonus chapter from a book I’ll probably never write.

I’m going to try to disappear into my writing cave for a bit, but if you celebrate Valentine’s Day, I hope it’s an epic one.

Romance on Television: Friday Night Lights

There’s a long-running truism about romance on TV: writers shouldn’t have the will-they-or-won’t-they couple get together because doing so ruins shows. It’s known as the Moonlighting Rule, and many smart critics have dismantled it (see here). But in my opinion, the best evidence that contravenes the Moonlighting Rule is the show with the most effective and most intimate portrait of an American marriage: Friday Night Lights.

Of the series I’ve talked about so far, Mozart in the Jungle and Grey’s Anatomy, this is no doubt the hardest sell because it’s all about football and small-town Texas.

Okay, yes, I could hear the record scratch noise there. For years, I refused to watch Friday Night Lights too, but when I finally gave in, immediately before the fifth and final season aired, what I found was a sprawling and novelistic portrait of a community and the violent sport that serves as its organizing principle.

It’s fundamentally an optimistic show, though it also believes that to understand someone, you have to know where they come from. For romance fans, it not only has many compelling stories of young love, but the main draw is the mature and complex marriage between the coach and his wife.

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Romance on Television: Grey’s Anatomy

I didn’t intend for this to be a series, but after writing about Mozart in the Jungle, I have more things to say about the long-form romances that play out on TV. This fascinating profile of Ellen Pompeo from The Hollywood Reporter gave me thinky thoughts about Grey’s Anatomy.

In the piece, Pompeo makes an unapologetic case for why she’s the highest-paid actress in primetime–and of course it’s the kind of argument I’ve never heard an actor have to make. She’s remarkably clear eyed about her career and thoughtful about what it means to make art long-term and still keep your work exciting and meaningful.

The profile reminded me of my rewatch of the first three seasons of Grey’s Anatomy a few months ago. I continue to find it odd that Grey’s is often omitted from conversations about peak TV. It’s not included in Alan Sepinwall’s (admittedly still interesting) The Revolution Was Televised, for example. While Shonda Rhimes herself often gets shout outs as a powerful showrunner (see here), it’s often as if she’s interesting in spite of the television she makes not because of it.

My own history with Grey’s is complicated. I started watching during the second season, quit a few episodes into the fourth, and then got reeled in again during season six/early season seven.

I’m not watching it right now, and I definitely don’t think it’s a perfect show. But when it’s good, Grey’s can be so good. It can also fail and falter and be preachy and reductive and go to some wacky bad places. The romantic drama in the first 2.5 seasons, however, was top notch, and I want to talk about what I think the show does well.

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