Wednesday, April 4, 2012

CAROLYN BROWN—DUMPING THE SMUG



Having New York Times bestseller, Carolyn Brown, visiting today is like having a friend over for coffee and a chat. I love the world Carolyn creates for each of her stories. Her storytelling is a joy to read because she makes her people so realnot perfect because that would be boring. You meet her character types when you stop in the local cafe for lunch, the cashier at the grocery store, the teller at the bank, the hunk who loads your hay. All real and chocked full of life's attitudes.

Her topic is one I think all writers and readers can  relate toa lesson in becoming smug. C'mon, admit it, we've all had our smug moments, haven't we?



Good morning, Sia! I’ve got a cup of coffee and I want to thank you so much for inviting me back to your blog site to promote One Hot Cowboy Wedding which hit the shelves just this week. It’s the fourth in the Spikes and Spurs series which hit the ground running last June with a New York Times and USA Today bestseller, Love Drunk Cowboy. It’s Ace and Jasmine’s story and there are three more to follow it so keep the country music playing and your boots shined.

Those next three plus my debut women’s fiction book are what I want to discuss with the readers today because they’ve taught me an important lesson about getting too comfortable and sure of myself.

Smug!

That’s the only word for the way I was feeling right after the first of the year! I was Superwoman. I had finished all but one deadline ahead of time. My new woman’s fiction had even been rewritten and I’d spent a few minutes with my fabulous editor and the Sourcebooks staff coming up with ideas for a knock-your-socks-off title.

Yep, smug! Bright shiny, diamond studded smug!

And then the phone call came…

My editor had read my cowboy holiday book and it didn’t have enough Christmas in it. Could I get the third book in the new three book deal ready right quick and could it please have snow and Christmas trees and lots of holiday cheer in it? We’d slip it into the first slot where the former Christmas book was and push the other two up to slots two and three.

Yes, ma’am. No problem.

Smug had tarnished a little.

And…

Oh, my! There was an AND! The original Christmas book would now need some major rewriting because it needed what little Christmas stuff was in it played down and turned into a straight rodeo romance. And there was a chapter that had too much back story so could we please do something with that?

Yes, ma’am. No problem.

Smug lost a few diamonds.

And…

The woman’s fiction book still has too much romance so it will have to have some tweaking and we’re pushing the publication date up to January, 2013.

Yes, ma’am. No problem. But dear hearts, even though it’s been my dream to write women’s fiction in like, forever, it’s not easy to change horses in the middle of the stream. I’ve written more than sixty romance books and it’s wired into my brain to give everyone an HEA. But still it was yes, ma’am, no problem. I could do this if I wanted to fulfill my in like forever dream.

Smug was getting really dull.

And…

The book that used to be in the second slot that had been moved to the third slot would have to have some reworking because of the time sequence. Secondary characters would change and believe me, the readers would KNOW if things weren’t right.

Yes, ma’am. I can do that.

Smug was thrown into the scrap metal heap.

I have tunnel vision so I focused on the first job at hand, then the second and the third. Now it’s down to one project and I’m so glad for my publisher’s and editor’s insight because what has come out of that phone call is not one but four books that are stronger and hopefully more enticing to my readers.

Smug has been erased (by a black permanent marker) from my dictionary. And my readers can look forward to Mistletoe Cowboy, Creed Riley’s story in October; Just a Cowboy, Gemma’s story in December; the woman’s fiction in January and sometime in the spring Dewar’s story (title hasn’t been decided).

I’ll be around all day to answer questions and I do believe there are a couple of books to be given away so if you want your name in the hat for them, please comment. Spikes and Spurs now has seven books in the series…


  • what makes you continue to come back and read books about rough old sexy cowboys and sassy women? 
  • What would you like to see in the future? More Spikes and Spurs, or are you ready for a new series?



ONE HOT COWBOY WEDDING  IN STORES APRIL 2012

                     

A marriage made in Vegas...


Hunky cowboy Ace Riley wasn't planning on settling down, but his family had other plans for him...The only way to save his hide, and his playboy lifestyle, is to discreetly marry his best friend, Jasmine King.

Can't possibly last…


Feisty city–girl Jasmine as just helping out her friend—that is, until their first kiss stirs up a whole mess of trouble, and suddenly discretion is thrown to the wind.  EXCERPT

One hot cowboy, one riled up woman...
And they'll be married for a year, like it or not!





Carolyn Brown is a New York Times and USA Today bestselling author with more than forty books published, and credits her eclectic family for her humor and writing ideas. She writes bestselling single title cowboy and country music mass market romances. Born in Texas and raised in southern Oklahoma, Carolyn and her husband now make their home in the town of Davis, Oklahoma, where she continues to write more cowboy romances! For more information, please visit www.CarolynLBrown.com.

29 comments:

~Sia McKye~ said...

I'm so glad you're visiting Carolyn!

I hear you on smug. I think all of us have felt it at some time or another. Any time I've felt it I always end up spitting crow feathers and let me tell you, eating crow isn't my favorite meal.

I'm really enjoying Spikes and Spurs. Not sure what I'd like to see from you as far as a new series goes.

welcome to my world of poetry said...

Thanks for hosting Carolyn, it was a great post to read.

Yvonne.

Carolyn Brown said...

Most Texans can eat anything, including crow, with a little barbecue on it, but on my smug day I was completely out of barbecue sauce! LOL! Thanks again for inviting me to stop by today!

Carolyn Brown said...

World of Poetry, thank you for joining us today. As we say in Texas, that smug day plumb broke me from suckin' eggs!

Clarissa Draper said...

I went through that myself but when I do, there is always something to bring me down a notch. I think it's important for writers to avoid the smug because we can't improve as writers if we fell we're perfect already. Great post!

Carolyn Brown said...

Clarissa, you said it! Improvement means kicking smug to the curb and rolling up our sleeves to make a better book.

Hart Johnson said...

Oh, man! You mean once I get a few books under my belt it doesn't get easier? My second that I turned into my editor had to have major revisions, so I know this feeling. I just thought... you know... I'd outgrow it!

Glad you ended up with 4 better books, though!

Susan Flett Swiderski said...

I must say, I wasn't familiar with any of these books before, but they sound absolutely yummy. I'll definitely check 'em out. Thanks!

Carolyn Brown said...

Hart, easy isn't in a writer's vocabulary. Congratulations on your sales and keep revising. It's tough but it'll work to your advantage.

Carolyn Brown said...

Susan, I love that word "yummy". Thank you for stopping by!

Jayci said...

Smug would be easy to become when you are as successful as Mrs Carolyn Brown! But as always you figured out a way to satisfy all of your readers! I keep coming back to read your books because I love love love your humor! Can't wait to read One Hot Cowboy Wedding!

Carolyn Brown said...

Jayci, thank you...glad I can give you a giggle once in a while!

~Sia McKye~ said...

Carolyn, I'm sitting here and enjoying another good cuppa coffee after a migraine. ugh on migraines even with meds that kill them dead, I tend to be fuzzy brained with pasta coordination. lol! I guess that makes me fuzzy pasta which is yuck on all levels.

So do you have ideas about a new series? Being a writer, I'm sure ideas are constantly worming their way into your creative brain.

btw, hows the wrist doing, these days?

Carolyn Brown said...

Hey, Sia!
I have those blasted migraines, too and the rude critters don't ever wait for an appropriate time to hit, do they? Hope you are feeling better all soon.
You are right about a new idea for a very different trilogy. I'll wait to put out details until Deb makes a decision but let's just say it's pretty different and concerns a beer, bait and ammo shop run by sassy women.
Wrist is doing well, thank you for asking...crazy thing still aches when it rains, though. I'm just grateful I can type and my index finger can still keep the grandkids in line. One severe shake of the finger added to my eyebrows drawing down to my chin and they straighten right up!

~Sia McKye~ said...

Oooh, sounds like capable women in a man's world. I can see lots of fun in this one!

You made me laugh with the eyebrow and finger. I learned the use of an expressive eyebrow from my dad. His was had quite a few *conversations* with this wild child and my siblings. lol!

Maryann Miller said...

Thanks for the introduction to Carolyn, and this great topic. At the end of that last phone call, I might have sat down and cried. LOL

Sounds like you handled it all well, Carolyn, which is the hallmark of a pro. We say, "Yes ma'am or yes sir" a lot then maybe go off somewhere and scream.

Carolyn Brown said...

Maryann, it never occurred to me to cry...well, dang it! I missed my chance for sympathy and a better chance to have a hissy fit!

Charmaine Clancy said...

Sounds like a fun read!
Wagging Tales

Carol Kilgore said...

"Yes, ma'am." At heart we are SUCH an un-smug lot.

~Sia McKye~ said...

Carol, that's because we know as soon as smug shows up, so does the means to smash it into smithereens, lol!

Clancy, Carolyn's books really are fun to read. It's not just the humor but the turn of phrase and the ability to capture a town's attitude and built such laugh out loud secondary characters to people the town. Some you just want to go have ice cream with on a Friday or go over for Sunday dinner and wild fiddle music afterward.

I hope you get a chance to check them out. :-)

Carolyn Brown said...

Charmaine: thank you!
Carol:I was feeling really, really smug until that phone call. After that...not so much! LOL
Sia: What a wonderful testimony to my small town settings! Jasmine and Ace would love to have you come by Chicken Fried any day of the week!

~Sia McKye~ said...

I liked both of them in Darn Good Cowboy Christmas. I'm looking forward to visiting a spell with them at Chicken Fried.

Btw, I love the cover for Mistletoe Cowboy. Music is pretty cool on your site too, always loved Last Dance.

Carolyn Brown said...

Sia, I love country music as you know but also love the music here on your sight. My bit of the old Irish surfaces when I hear it! My grandfather's grandmother was Miss Martha Cummins straight from Ireland, I'm told.

Carolyn Brown said...

Sia is letting me put all the names of those who left comments into my cowboy boot and draw a couple out for free books! So in they go and now to shake the boot really good...and the first name that comes out is Susan Flett Swiderski. Now shake the boot again and we get...Jayci! If you two will email me your snail mail addresses to ccbrown66@att.net I will send them on to Danielle, my fabulous publisher who will send you each a copy of One Hot Cowboy Wedding. Congratulations and Happy Reading!

Tonya Kappes said...

OH, gosh Carolyn! Smug is such a great word to use with writers. Writing is the only job that I've ever had that can go from smug to ugg in a few seconds.

Looking forward to reading it in October and congrats on your new release!

Julie said...

What a wonderful interview, informative and also fun to read. Thanks for hosting Carolyn, Sia!

And thank you for stopping by my blog, I'm so glad to find yours as a result. Looking forward to following. I love the music you have playing!

Stephen Tremp said...

Its great to meet Carolyn and good luck with One Hot Cowboy Wedding!

Susan Flett Swiderski said...

Woo HOO! Awesome. That is one sweet cowboy boot you have there, Caroline. Thank you so much. I'll email you right away. Color me happy. Thanks, Sia.

~Sia McKye~ said...

Congratulations, Susan and Jayci!

Susan, enjoy. I haven't even had a chance to read this one yet.