Thursday, June 18, 2020

Kimberly Belle gives herself (and us) a pep talk...plus a book giveaway

Photo by Brandon Wattson
We're pleased to have Kimberly Belle back at CLC today to celebrate the recent publication of her latest novel, Stranger in the Lake. Melissa has read three of Kimberly's novels so far and has been blown away each time. She's excited to check out Stranger soon. Kimberly is sharing a letter she wrote to herself from 10 years ago and it's full of great tips for any aspiring novelist. Thanks to Emi Battaglia Public Relations and Park Row, we have TWO print copies to give away!


We noticed that Kimberly was here on June 18th of last year, as well. We may have to rename June 18th to Kimberly Belle Day at CLC!

Kimberly Belle is the USA Today and internationally bestselling author of six novels, including her latest domestic suspense, Stranger in the Lake. Her third novel, The Marriage Lie, was a semifinalist in the 2017 Goodreads Choice Awards for Best Mystery & Thriller, and a #1 e-book bestseller in the UK and Italy. She’s sold rights to her books in a dozen languages as well as film and television options. A graduate of Agnes Scott College, Belle divides her time between Atlanta and Amsterdam.

Visit Kimberly online:
Website * Facebook * Twitter * Instagram


Synopsis:
Charlotte didn’t know her greatest risk was saying, “I do.”

When Charlotte married the wealthy widower Paul, it caused a ripple of gossip in their small lakeside town. They have a charmed life together, despite the cruel whispers about her humble past and his first marriage. But everything starts to unravel when she discovers a young woman’s body floating in the exact same spot where Paul’s first wife tragically drowned.

At first, it seems like a horrific coincidence, but the stranger in the lake is no stranger. Charlotte saw Paul talking to her the day before, even though Paul tells the police he’s never met the woman. His lie exposes cracks in their fragile new marriage, cracks Charlotte is determined to keep from breaking them in two.

As Charlotte uncovers dark mysteries about the man she married, she doesn’t know what to trust—her heart, which knows Paul to be a good man, or her growing suspicion that there’s something he’s hiding in the water.
(Courtesy of Amazon.)


Dear Old Me,

That sure sounds strange, doesn’t it, especially considering that I’m the one who’s older—ten whole years, though let’s agree not to discuss our actual age. Invest in some good skin cream and stay out of the sun, that’s all I’m saying on that subject.

Instead, let’s talk about you: the starry-eyed baby writer.

First of that, that story you’re working on? Put it in the drawer. Go ahead, do it now. Yes, right now. I’ll wait. File it away on your hard drive and don’t look at it for…well, ever again. I know, I know, all those hours and words down the drain, but it’ll be fine, I promise. A few years from now, you’ll be relieved those words never saw the light of day. Think of this one as your practice book and move on.

Your next story, though, that’s where things get fun. That one will get you an agent, a publisher, a career. It won’t happen next year or even the year after, but I promise you it’s coming. And so don’t be dismayed when you get to The End on that book, and then realize you have to start over. When you know that the premise is good, but the technique could use some work. But ripping that story apart at the seams won’t be in vain. Stitching it back together is good practice for what’s coming, and in the process, you will find your voice.

Speaking of voice, don’t be afraid of yours. Go to conferences, talk to other authors, ask their advice and insights. Even the most successful authors have once stood in your shoes, and most of them are happy to take you under their wing. Be one of them when you become my age, and support the baby authors. You’ll make some fabulous friends this way, and besides: it’s good for the karma.

Right now, the road to publication feels endless. It feels filled with potholes and roadblocks, and you think you will never get there, but you are wrong. Things will go slow, and then they will happen all at once. By the time you become me you will have six books on the shelves, and you’ll be under contract for two more. You will get to put that coveted “bestseller” next to your name, and Hollywood will have come calling multiple times. Seriously, Kimberly, I can’t wait until you get here. The view is pretty spectacular.

In the meantime—and I know it’s hard—but try to be patient. Enjoy this part of the ride, when you are writing only for yourself. Hold on to the way writing makes you feel, the way your skin goes hot when you write the most perfect sentence, the way your lungs fill with tingly air. The second you sign that first publishing contract, you become a brand, and that art you love so much becomes a business. A fulfilling, challenging, rewarding, crazy-fun business, but a business nonetheless, one with deadlines and a whole new set of pressure. But I promise you, you will love every minute.

Until then, keep plugging away at your craft. Keep writing and learning and having fun. This is the best job in the world, and we are so darn blessed to have it.

Xoxo,
Kimberly

Ps. Oh, and you might want to brace, because 2020 is a real zinger.

Thanks to Kimberly for visiting with us and to Emi Battaglia PR and Park Row 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 June 23rd at midnight EST.

22 comments:

Linda May said...

When I'm waiting for a bus at the bus stop I can start a conversation with a stranger very easily. Love the cover of this book and I love to win it. Thanks for your great generosity.

Donna Shaw said...

The strangers I find easiest to talk to are carrying or reading a book. This is a book that I am excited to read and share with my reading friends. I gave THE MARRIAGE LIE 5* and have no doubt this book will be another winner. Thank you.

Michelle L said...

I chat, briefly, with random people while on my daily walks around the lake.

rubynreba said...

I was waiting in line and started talking to a stranger. Turns out she was a mother to our neighbor. Small world!

traveler said...

When I walk in the neighborhood each day I meet neighbors whom I do not know and then speak to daily.

Emily Catan said...

I am an introvert and normally don't strike up a conversation with strangers easily.. However, once I get comfortable, there will be some interesting chats..

Carla S. said...

I often strike up conversations with random strangers in stores. So fun!

Nancy said...

My most memorable conversation with a random stranger happened many years ago at a marathon in San Antonio. It was my first marathon and I finished running the 26.2 miles running slowly in a little less than 6 hours. I crossed the finish line and expected to get a finisher's medal. They didn't have any left and send me to talk with the race director. He was talking to another man and I waited, barely able to stand , for their conversation to finish. I asked about my finisher's medal and the race director said there were not any left. The other man took off his own finisher's medal and insisted I accept it. I didn't want to do so, but finally accepted it since he insisted. I will always remember that conversation and the kindness of a complete stranger.

Mary C said...

I was at the bookstore to pick up some books for my nephew's birthday gift. I ended up having a discussion with a woman about the books my nephew enjoys and recommendations for her son.

diannekc said...

I frequently talk to people while at the bookstore. Great place to talk to people.

Mary Preston said...

I live in a country town and I just love it when a man tips his hat to me. Happened again yesterday.

KaraMiddleton said...

I don't say anything but hello to random strangers.😁

Nancy Payette said...

I offered to help carry some packages to a lady's car yesterday because she needed help.

Jeanne said...

Walking my dog has led to interesting conversations with neighbors I had never met previously.

Linda Kish said...

I can talk to strangers easily because you are normally talking about inconsequential things. It's talking to people that I know that's a problem because I don't like to let people in and close to me. There's a huge difference between the two.

bn100 said...

not much to say

Bonnie K. said...

I'm an introvert; so, I don't usually start a conversation. I do say hello and smile if I make eye contact with anyone. A recent one was of a couple walking by, and the mother had her baby in a snuggly. I asked how old the baby was and congratulated them on being new parents.

Techeditor said...

I am from Michigan and never thought anything of it, but after moving to California for 20 years, then moving back to Michigan, I noticed how very friendly people here are. My first winter back in Michigan I had to relearn to drive. One day I took a turn too quickly and slid off the road. No fewer than five strangers pulled over their cars and offered to help me.

Donamae Kutska said...

Waiting in line at a store sometimes I talk to strangers. Thanks for the chance

Peggy Russo said...

I enjoy striking up a conversation with strangers while shopping. Most recently I chatted with a nice woman who was shopping with her darling granddaughter. They were both so sweet and obviously adored each other. It was so refreshing.

Murphy said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
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