Thursday, April 30, 2020

We can't help falling for Kristy Woodson Harvey...plus a book giveaway

Today we welcome Kristy Woodson Harvey back to CLC to celebrate the publication week of her latest novel, Feels Like Falling. In honor of our upcoming ten-year blogiversary, we've been asking authors to write letters to themselves either ten years ago or ten years into the future. Kristy wrote one to her past self and it's lovely. Thanks to Gallery, we have one copy of Feels Like Falling for a lucky reader!

Kristy is a Phi Beta Kappa, summa cum laude graduate of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill’s school of journalism and holds a master’s in English from East Carolina University, with a concentration in multicultural and transnational literature. Her writing has appeared in numerous publications and websites, including Southern Living, Traditional Home, Parade, USA Today, Domino, Our State and O. Henry. She has been seen in Women’s Health, The Washington Post, US News and World Report, The Huffington Post, USA Today’s Happy Every After, Marie Claire’s The Fix, Woman’s World, Readers’ Digest and North Carolina Bookwatch, among others. She lives in North Carolina with her husband and seven-year-old son where she is working on her next novel. Visit Kristy at her website, and on FacebookTwitter, and Instagram.

Synopsis:
It’s summertime on the North Carolina coast and the livin’ is easy.

Unless, that is, you’ve just lost your mother to cancer, your sister to her extremist husband, and your husband to his executive assistant. Meet Gray Howard. Right when Gray could use a serious infusion of good karma in her life, she inadvertently gets a stranger, Diana Harrington, fired from her job at the local pharmacy.

Diana Harrington’s summer isn’t off to the greatest start either: Hours before losing her job, she broke up with her boyfriend and moved out of their shared house with only a worn-out Impala for a bed. Lucky for her, Gray has an empty guest house and a very guilty conscience.

With Gray’s kindness, Diana’s tide begins to turn. But when her first love returns, every secret from her past seems to resurface all at once. And, as Gray begins to blaze a new trail, she discovers, with Diana’s help, that what she envisioned as her perfect life may not be what she wants at all.
(Courtesy of Amazon.)

Hello Chick Lit Central Readers. So, I have to say, writing a letter to yourself feels kind of strange. But it was also cathartic, especially now, and it felt fortuitous that ten years ago was the first time I sat down at my computer to attempt to write a novel. So, thank you for the opportunity to give some advice to my younger self. (My older self needs it, as well!) And I hope that maybe it will help someone else out there too.
Xo,
Kristy Woodson Harvey

To my twenty-four-year-old self,

Right now, you are getting ready to embark upon the most amazing, transformational decade of your life. You sort of feel it coming, but don’t exactly trust it yet. The hobby you have picked up in the evenings after work, the story that you are toying with, the one that keeps getting longer and longer, it’s a start for you, the beginning of something really amazing that you never would have expected. Not during journalism school, not while you were getting your Master’s and imagining yourself teaching at a college, and certainly not now, while you’re spending your days setting up 401ks and making life insurance recommendations.

Let’s just say, a passion for writing novels is not the only surprise you’re going to get in the next few years. Your beautiful baby boy will be even better and, in so many ways you can’t understand yet, open you up enough to let you write a story that really needs to be told, one that will lead you to people and places that will transform the rest of your own story. It will make you brave, too, which is something you’ve never really felt, even though you’ve acted it.

The process of writing query letters, of getting rejections, of finding an agent and then an editor, of putting yourself out there in the biggest way that you ever have, will make you braver still. It’s going to be fun and magical and scary all at once, and you’ll forget that you were very recently a girl who hated public speaking and who was terrified of airplanes, two things that have now become mainstays of your life. You’ll forget how you never ever thought that this would happen to you, that this was a thing that happened to other people, to ones with connections and New York City addresses.

Ten years from now you’ll look back and marvel at how it all came together, at how the day you rode over the Beaufort, NC bridge for the first time and proclaimed (ridiculously) that you would live there one day, the Universe was listening. (Yup. You’re actually going to live there. Crazy, right?) Or how when you wrote on that assignment your junior year of college that you would write a novel and have it published before you turned thirty, some great, wide, unknown force started working on that very thing. Or how when you saw that boy walk into the restaurant that night and told your friends you were going to marry him that you really would. (But you already know that, of course.)

That, and a million other pieces came together to put you where you are now and where you’ll be when, instead of stressing about your impending twenty-fifth birthday and how far you have to go, you’ll be a few months from celebrating your thirty-fifth birthday and so grateful that you’re where you are. You’re going on an awesome trip, by the way. (And your thirtieth birthday party was pretty epic, so you’re wrong in thinking that when you turn thirty your life will be less fun. It’s actually even more fun, if you can even grasp that.)

You’re going to go through some really hard things over the next decade. An illness that will change nearly every aspect of your life, losing some people that you really love, losing your beloved home in the hurricane of the century, and launching your sixth novel during the middle of a pandemic that has rocked the world.

But each of these challenges will teach you something about yourself, about your life, about how truly adaptable you can be (which you already know) and about how strong you are (which you don’t know).

So, I guess, what I want to say to you is that, I know it all feels impossible now, but it isn’t. It really, truly isn’t. One of your favorite quotes ten years from now will be this: Those who are certain of the outcome can afford to wait and wait without anxiety. So try to do that now. You don’t have to answer every question today. You don’t have to have it all figured out at once. And you don’t have to be in such a rush. You’re getting there. You’ll get there. Try to remember, along the way, to take a deep breath every once in a while, to take a day to relax every now and then and to enjoy the journey. You’ll look back on these as some of the most carefree days of your life. And, I hate to tell you: Your metabolism will never be this fast or your skin this good ever again… Live it up while you can!

Love,
My thirty-four year old self

Thanks to Kristy for the inspiring message and to Gallery for sharing her book with our readers.

How to win: Use Rafflecopter to enter the giveaway. If you have any questions, feel free to contact us. If you have trouble using Rafflecopter on our blog, enter the giveaway here


a Rafflecopter giveaway


Giveaway ends May 5th at midnight EST.

20 comments:

Joanne McGrath said...

We recently lost our beloved dog Toby. Black lab, 11 years and 5 months old.

Kim V. said...

We've been pretty lucky.

LoriF said...

Thank you for the chance and enjoyed your interview.

Nancy Payette said...

I hired a mover which was a nightmare. They had good reviews & claimed to have 19 years worth of experience. They show up with no truck or equipment. Would have cancelled but it had to be done that day (set date weeks in advance). I have to hurry to rent a truck. They carelessly broke a table that meant a lot to me & then bugged me for extra payment because they needed more time. On top of that, I think they stole some of my stuff. Unbelievable!

Michelle L said...

Actually, aside from the quarantine, things have been going well.

JeanneK said...

I absolutely love this author and would be so thrilled to win her book. Thank you for the opportunity.

Linda May said...

Love the cover and the book sounds terrific. Thanks for your great generosity.

Margie Shaw said...

Thank you for the chance at winning a physical copy of this book. I have all of Kristy’s other books and would love to add this one to my home library as well.

bn100 said...

n/a

Donamae Kutska said...

My rent check got lost in the mail and I sent another and was charged $13 late chargešŸ˜³

Mary Preston said...

Grocery shopping has been a bit hit and miss lately.

Jeanne said...

Thanks for the opportunity to win this book. It sounds fantastic!

diannekc said...

so far, so good. No big problems lately, hopes it stays that way.

Linda Kish said...

The guy that did the service on my A/C system wanted me to pay about $1500 for some minor repairs. I said no.

dstoutholcomb said...

I've sick with three different lunch infections since Jan--none are Covid-19. Asthma.

Kristy said...

Thank you so, so much for posting my letter and for the wonderful review and giveaway! Cant wait to see who wins!! xo Kristy

Rita Wray said...

I've had some plumbing problems.

Peggy Russo said...

I had knee replacement surgery last September. In late December the knee cap somehow dislocated and I ended up with damaged ligaments. I needed another surgery in late February (I delayed it because my son was getting married in early February). I just got out of the brace I was wearing for 9 weeks. Still healing and not feeling strong just yet. PT has been tough since I haven't left my house in 7 weeks. Thankfully my therapist uses a wonderful app that has my exercises loaded onto it and I can see how they're done and follow along on my own at home.

Grandma Cootie said...

Discovered a health issue that is so far minor but requiring many visits and change of medications.

Gretchen said...

The worst is that our fridge and washer konked out at the same time, both about 5 years old :( Minor though in comparison to what could be.