Please tell us about your new book.
Something to Prove is the first book in my new series set in the small waterfront town of Magnolia Beach, Alabama. Here’s the blurb: Former wild child Helena Wheeler was happy to leave behind her hometown—and her sordid past—for Atlanta twelve years ago. But when her grandmother suffers an injury, Helena has no choice but to return, even if it means facing down all the people who have shunned her.
Ryan Tanner went from being a football legend in high school to Magnolia Beach’s young, hot bachelor mayor. As a teenager, he never wanted anything to do with a girl like Helena. But when she hires Ryan to do some construction in her grandmother’s house, he finds that she’s grown up into a different person—one he quite likes.
For Helena, confronting her past has its share of surprises—and falling for the resident golden boy was definitely not on her to-do list. But will her reformed ways be enough to get her back in the town’s good graces, or will her reputation keep Helena and Ryan apart for good?
What prompted or inspired you to tell this story?
I am a Southern girl, born and bred, and setting a book so close to home — both literally and figuratively — gave me the opportunity to wallow in my Southernness with great joy and abandon. There’s something about the South that is just inspiring on its own, so once I had the town in mind, the story just rose naturally out of it.
What’s your favorite place and time to write?
I’m either at my desk (boring, I know) or in the recliner in the living room (which is far more comfy, but leads to naps far too easily). I tend to do much of my writing in the middle part of the day, say 10am to 3pm, but when deadlines approach, I’ll get up at 4am and write for a while. Since I hate getting up at 4am, my brain tends to really produce at that time because it knows the sooner I get it finished, the sooner I can stop getting up at 4am. But that’s not something I can do on a regular basis, though, even if I’m super productive during those times.
What would you say are two of the most important things you’ve realized in your journey as a published writer?
First, that the book is the only thing we have any control over — not sales or reviews or anything that comes after publication — so just write the best book you can and make sure you love what you wrote. Secondly, keep a sense of humor and perspective about the whole process and the entire industry. Things happen; it’s your reaction to those things that might make or break your career (and your sanity).
Best piece of writing advice you’d want to share with writers just starting out?
Be brave. Write big and bravely. Editors can pull you back if you go too far, but they can’t take you out there. Don’t be afraid or hold back — that kills your voice and your story and gets you lost in the slush.
Tell us something personal that not many readers know about you.
I am ridiculously claustrophobic. I need space and air. I could never live in a city because crowded subway cars are not something I could handle on a regular basis.
What is your life motto?
“Whether or not it is clear to you, no doubt the universe is unfolding as it should.” — Max Ehrmann, “Desiderata”
What are you working on next?
More Magnolia Beach stories! I’ve got a novella coming out this fall called One Little Thing, and the second book in the series, Everything at Last, will be a January 2016 release.
Name five items sitting on your desk right now.
This is embarrassing, but there are five empty Diet Coke cans on my desk. (I really need to clean my office!) But we’ll count those as one thing. I also have my jelly bean jar, a hard copy of the manuscript for Everything at Last because I’m editing, peppermint lip balm, and for some reason that I’m sure makes sense to my child, the dog’s medicine.
Name 3 books you hope to read soon.
Andrea Laurence’s Feeding the Fire,
Heidi Rice’s 10 Ways to Sex Up a Blind Date
Julia Quinn’s A Night Like This.
I’m travelling a lot the next month, so I hope to get some time on the plane to read!
What’s your astrological sign?
I’m a Sagittarius — and an extremely typical one.
Are you superstitious?
Not terribly so, but I grew up performing on stage where there are lots of superstitions, and I have a few I just can’t shake. The biggest one is that carnations — especially red carnations — are bad luck. There was a very awkward moment when my now-husband brought me a big bouquet of red carnations after our first date.
Kimberly Lang is a USA Today bestselling author as well as a Southern belle with a troublemaking streak. A former ballet dancer and English teacher, she now does yoga and writes the kind of books she always loved to read. She’s married to her college sweetheart, is mom to the most amazing child on the planet, and shares her office space with a dog named Cupid.
Thank you, Kimberly for sharing today! Readers, do look for Something to Prove on bookshelves. To help her celebrate, I’ve got a nice tote full of summer goodies, books, and gift cards for one of you! For a chance to win, just leave a comment for Kimberly below. Contest ends on Monday with winner announced Tuesday.