Paperback Writer is pleased to announce our visiting author. Laina Turner Molaski is the author of Stilettos and Scoundrels. She shares with us how she writes, her struggles on the road to being published and her best part of the book. Join us below for the interview and be sure to purchase your copy of the book.
About Stilettos and Scoundrels
Presley Thurman, a sassy, thirty-something red-head, was looking to reinvent herself. She didn’t allow the fact she was recently fired to bother her – she was ready to pursue her lifelong dream of becoming a writer. Presley was a lover of shopping and Starbucks, and even though she sometimes had bad taste in men, she always had great taste in clothes.
Not looking back on corporate America, Presley decided to follow her dream. With her feisty nature and a spirit to not “sweat the small stuff,” she was ready to tackle any challenge (even if she had no idea how she would pay the bills). When her friend Trevor offered her a job with his online magazine to interview public figures, she jumped at the chance.
However, the new job turned into something unexpected when the U.S. Senator she was slated to write about was murdered – in her home town! Presley was excited – she hadn’t seen so much buzz since the spring sample sale at Saks. She was ready for this adventure, even if it didn’t seem to fit neatly into her life. She couldn’t pass up the opportunity to be in the middle of the buzz.
Presley was determined (not to mention curious) to find the killer and write her story. After all, she couldn’t afford her shoe habit without a job and she was certainly not one to shy away from danger. The only thing standing in her way was an old high school fling, Cooper Sands, head of the Senator’s security. He was not actually standing in her way, but because of his good looks, he was the biggest distraction and one she was having the hardest time overcoming. Cooper felt it was too dangerous for Presley to look for a killer and tried to distract her with reliving the past; which Presley found more dangerous than any killer. While she attempted to resist Cooper’s good looks and charm, Presley was able to discover the Senator’s wife, Helen, had been having an affair… with her best friend’s boyfriend! Did Helen kill the Senator? Or was it the Senator’s love of gambling that got him killed? And what was Cooper’s secret tie to the mob boss Garrison Palazzo?
Presley’s betting her favorite pair of Manolo’s she will find the killer… but will time run out!
Welcome to Paperback Writer
Q: Will you share with us how you came up with the idea for this book?
I have had the name of the main character, Presley Thurman, for years. I was just waiting for the right idea to use her for. I personally enjoy reading lighthearted books with some intrigue and romance thrown in. The kinds that aren’t too unrealistic to allow yourself to pretend could happen. As I thought about what kind of fantasy life I might want I came up with some of the ideas for this book.
Q: Do you plan your stories first with an outline or does it come to you as write it?
I always have to outline to put my initial raw ideas into some sort of format. After organizing the initial ideas I write on each outline point, even if I don’t want to, in order to force myself to churn out material and more ideas. After I have done this process once I can go back and flesh out the ideas and a story starts to appear.
Q: Do you know the end of the story at the beginning?
I think I do but so far each time it has changed because of something I made a charter do in the middle. But that makes it fun for me as I watch the characters evolve.
Q: Do you have a process for developing your characters?
I take the easy way out and take pieces from real people and mix them up. I am always jotting down aspects of strangers I want to use at a later date.
Q: It is said that authors write themselves into their characters. Is there any part of you in your characters and what they would be?
I would admit there is a little of me in Presley, my main character. We both love coffee and shopping.
Q: What is your most favorite part about this book?
The fact I actually finished it. Seriously though, the characters. I enjoyed watching them develop from what I thought they would be at first to whom they actually ended up being.
When in the process of writing your book did you begin to look for a publisher?
As soon as I committed to myself I was actually going to finish this book and see it to fruition I started looking. I went to conferences, solicited agents, tried to get as much information as I could and make as many connections as I could.
Q: What struggles have you had on the road to being published?
I kept being told by agents that they liked my book but the market was flooded and I should go the self publishing route. I finally said ok and started my own publishing company, Five Seas Ink, and now have a few other authors whose books I am publishing.
Q: What has been the best part about being published?
That I can say I finished it (and now a few others). It is a great sense of accomplishment.
Q: What do you want readers to remember and carry with them after reading your novel?
I want them to be entertained. I am hoping they can read my book and relax at least for a little bit in their busy lives.
Q: Do you have plans to write another book?
I am currently working on the sequel to Stilettos & Scoundrels to be out later this year.
Q: Would you care to share with us how the virtual book tour experience with Pump Up Your Book Promotion has been for you?
It has been very good. I feel they have partnered with me along the process and I have met many fabulous people.
Q: Where can readers find a copy of your book?
On my website at www.lainaturner.com.store or on Amazon. It is available in paperback and Kindle.
Q: Do you have a website for readers to go to? Sure. They can visit me at http://www.lainaturner.com
Thank you, Laina, for sharing your book and characters with us today. It has been a pleasure and I hope you have a successful virtual book tour.