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Thursday, August 9, 2018

New Release: Courting Carlyn by Melissa Chambers

Courting Carlyn by Melissa Chambers
Publication Date: August 6, 2018
Publisher: Entangled Teen
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Vaughn Yarborough is ready to trade the fame and glory of the international junior pro tennis circuit for college and a more settled life. First stop: spearhead a summer camp for underprivileged kids. The girl who’s agreed to run it with him has Vaughn more intrigued by the minute, but with the strict no-fraternizing rules, he’s got to figure out how not to fall for her.

When the boy Carlyn Sadowski has crushed on for years asks her to work with him for the summer, she has to pinch herself. When his world-famed coach offers her training for free, she can’t believe her luck. He could actually help her follow in her mother’s footsteps by playing college tennis. But when she finds out the catch is she’s got to convince Vaughn to go pro, Carlyn will have to decide between her dreams and the boy currently stealing her heart.

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If I Knew Then What I Know Now About Writing.

So often, I hear authors talk about how they read their mothers’ Harlequins as children and got addicted, or that they’ve been writing since they were little. This was not me! Here’s a secret – I read my first romance novel in 2011! Until then, I read some fiction like Patricia Cornwell, John Grisham and the random book here and there, but my bookshelf was filled with nonfiction (which I rarely read now, oddly). Since then, I’ve read/listened to roughly 300 fiction books, according to my Goodreads, so I’ve caught up, but you get the point.

So when I wrote that first book, I had NO CLUE about writing. I didn’t know there was a writing community or groups like RWA who supported and taught writers. It wasn’t until after I wrote and self-published that first book that I found out all this information and community existed. I promptly joined RWA and my local chapter, the Music City Romance Writers, and started learning. Boy, was I woken up. I hit “unpublish” on that book real quick-like and got to learnin’. I went to conferences, countless workshops in person and online, and entered contests and learned from the feedback I got. 

But here’s the thing. I’m not sorry I wrote that first book or published it. I loved writing that book. I had no idea I was wasn’t writing to the Blake Synder Save the Cat method or to scene/sequel structure. I just had fun writing. And isn’t that what it’s all about?

So when people tell me they’ve always wanted to write a novel (which they do ALL. THE. TIME.), I tell them to just write it. Enjoy it. Get it out. And THEN go do all the learnin’. Because the learnin’ will depress the heck out of you. It’s necessary, and of course, as they say, you need to know the rules before you break them, but if you aren’t enjoying writing, what’s the point?

So going back the original statement: If I Knew Then What I Know Now About Writing.

Honestly, I wouldn’t change a single thing.

Melissa Chambers writes contemporary novels for young, new, and actual adults. A Nashville native, she spends her days working in the music industry and her nights tapping away at her keyboard. While she’s slightly obsessed with alt rock, she leaves the guitar playing to her husband and kid. She never misses a chance to play a tennis match, listen to an audiobook, or eat a bowl of ice cream. (Rocky road, please!) She serves as president for the Music City Romance Writers and is the author of the Love Along Hwy 30A series and the Before Forever series (YA).

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