Jen: Today we are excited to welcome debut author, Lisa White to Romancing the Book. Lisa, please share a short bio and links to where you can be found online.
Lisa: I was born in Kingsport, Tennessee and raised in Bristol, Virginia. After graduating from the University of Virginia with a degree in Italian language and literature, I obtained my law degree from the University of Richmond School of Law. When not practicing law, I enjoy gardening, spending time with friends and family, and, of course, writing romance novels. I am a member of the Romance Writers of America and the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators. THE LAWS OF LOVE is my first novel. I currently live in Southwest Virginia with my husband and two children where I am frantically writing romance every chance I get.
You can visit my website at www.lisawhiteauthor.com and like me on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/pages/Lisa-White-Author/345773668818384?ref=hl
Jen: Please tell us about your newest release and where the idea came from.
Lisa: THE LAWS OF LOVE is set in a small, Virginia town where fly-fishing is the favorite pastime and Hampton Steel is essentially the only employer. Workaholic Associate General Counsel Livi Miller believes she has reached the top rung of Hampton Steel’s corporate ladder. With her alcoholic boss retiring soon, Livi is the presumptive heir to Hampton Steel’s general counsel position. However, in the midst of proving herself promotion-worthy, Livi’s high school sweetheart, Jake Cooper, returns from Iraq and causes long-lost butterflies to alight in Livi’s emotionally charged stomach. The resulting loss of her promotion to slimy newcomer Edward Winston combines with her rekindled feelings for Jake to place Livi on track to choose between her career and her heart.
If she chooses Hampton Steel, she saves her hometown. If she chooses Jake, she saves her butterflies as well as herself.
Believe it or not, THE LAWS OF LOVE originated from a quote I have hanging in my kitchen: “Having it all does not necessarily mean having it all at once…” How true is that? Before I married, I was a lot like Livi – working all the time and never finding or taking time for love. Fortunately true love prevailed. My husband came along and I was able to balance out my professional and personal lives – well, at least sort of. But so many women struggle with that balance every day – I still do! That fact intrigued me and thus Livi was born. She struggles between love and work every day and the choice she must make in the end will either save her or her hometown.
Jen: Are you a plotter or pantser?
Lisa: Definitely a plotter. I am so uptight – every “i” dotted, every “t” crossed – if I didn’t know where my story was going, I’d probably need serious medication before I could sit down to write. But that’s not to say I stick to my outlines word for word, plot point by plot point. I usually know what story I want to write and how I want it to end and have scenes laid out to get from point A to point B – but as I write from A to B, new scenes always pop up and new characters always jump in so I end up revising my outlines as I go. I usually end the story as I initially envisioned it for the most part – but the path getting to the end constantly evolves – and that’s what makes writing fun!
Jen: Describe your writing in 3 words.
Lisa: My writing for me? Addictive. Unexpected. Satisfying.
My writing for the reader? I hope it is addictive, unexpected and satisfying.
Jen: Do you have a writing routine?
Lisa: Yes! I think anyone who takes writing seriously must have a routine or you will never write the book you want to write. At a RWA conference a few years ago, one speaker advised writing every day and I have found that piece of advice one of the best I have ever received. Because I work all day and have a husband and two kids to deal with after hours, my writing time is after everyone else goes to sleep – usually between 9:00 p.m. and midnight. I try to treat my writing like another job and stick to this schedule Monday through Friday (most of the time!) – although I have been known to hide with my computer all weekend if I am really into a scene I am working on – that happens a lot with sex scenes. But for me, writing is like an addiction that must be fed daily or you lose your muse.
Jen: What’s the most interesting comment you’ve received about your book?
Lisa: Interesting comment? This question was an easy one. One reviewer of The Laws of Love had a problem with one of my sex scenes. She said climaxing with your clothes on was unbelievable. Now keep in mind that when this happened to Livi, she had not been with a man in a very long time and she had been pining for Jake for years – and at the time, he was all over her on the bed and touching all the right spots as far as she was concerned. This review bothered me because it was really the first negative thing I had heard but I value everyone’s opinion and questioned whether the reviewer was right. So, of course, Uptight Me had to research further and I polled my fellow authors at Crimson Romance. Some of them had read the book and had found the scene entirely believable. The consensus was that climaxing is 100% possible with your clothes on. It was an interesting discussion among the authors and we all probably need to sign Confidentiality Agreements to prevent our comments from going public and exposing our past sex lives – but needless to say, I felt better and enjoyed the debate that sprang up because of this reviewer’s comment.
Jen: What’s next for you?
Lisa: I recently completed my second novel, DISCOVERY, the first in my Council of Powers trilogy. DISCOVERY is a young adult romance where two teenagers discover hidden powers and the love that makes these powers great. Because Crimson Romance only publishes adult romances, I am now going through the query process all over again with DISCOVERY. While I market THE LAWS OF LOVE and submit DISCOVERY, I have started writing the second novel in the Council of Powers trilogy as well as another adult romance centered on a May-December relationship with a little legal intrigue thrown in for fun. In other words, I have books at every stage of the publishing process simultaneously! – but all I really want to do is sit and write and see where my characters take me. The writing process is the most fun for me.