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Rowan Faine compulsively overeats to compensate for the big changes that have taken place in her life. Forced to cope with the death of her parents in a car accident, inheriting her rebellious younger sister to raise, and being constantly bombarded with free food at Knight & Daye, the Downtown Dallas law firm where she’s a secretary, Rowan gains 35 pounds. Her perpetually beautiful and skinny best friend, Madelyn Morrison, shares the secret that keeps her thin and healthy: Diary of a Dieting Madhouse.
Even though Rowan deals daily with the erratic nature of the attorneys she works for, in an atmosphere where class distinctions, while subtle, still thrive even in this enlightened time, she is caught off balance by a new, lateral hire attorney, the proud and haughty Grey Faris. Grey and Rowan instantly clash, particularly when she overhears him call her “fat.” His best friend, Rex Selkirk, is also a client, and falls in love with Madelyn, against Grey’s better judgment. Rowan, who begins to lose weight and shape up, soon becomes convinced that her prejudices against Grey are well-founded. But her outgoing, playful nature and impertinence have attracted his attention, and, in spite of himself, his admiration.
Diary of a Dieting Madhouse is a love story filled with humor and great characters, a powerfuly moving subplot, a smart and sexy heroine, and an exciting new diet.
TR: Paige, good morning! So happy to have you drop by 🙂
PS: Good morning, Thomas – thanks for having me…
TR: My pleasure…how old were you when you wrote your first piece?
PS: 16, I think. Who remembers?
TR: Indeed – that can be tough. Well, can you tell me what it was? Maybe what genre?
PS: It was a novel named “Apache” about an Indian princess. Genre? Romantic suspense, probably.
TR: Good combination 🙂 What made you write it?
PS: I lived in a small town. I must have been bored.
TR: Creating your own world, eh? Fair enough. So, what have you written since then?
PS: I did not write another word (fiction) until I reached middle age (or what some people would consider middle age). Since I’m going to live to be 125, it wasn’t middle age for me! I’ve written 10-15 short stories, three novels and a couple of diet books.
TR: Well, you didn’t mess around, once you got cranked up, did you? Tell, us, what was the inspiration for “Diary of a Dieting Madhouse”?
PS: I combined two things I love the most: Pride & Prejudice and vegetarianism (stemming from my affinity since early childhood for animals).
TR: That’s a intriguing combination…tell us a little about it, and where it’s available.
PS: “Diary of a Dieting Madhouse” takes place in a law firm and tells the story from the secretary’s point of view. Rowan Faine goes on a plant-based diet, loses weight and wins the heart of a rich, haughty attorney. I hope readers find it funny, heart-rending and life-affirming. Some of the themes can be a little heavy, but I hope they are presented in an interesting and non-judgmental way. I wanted Rowan to be an “every woman,” someone most people can identify with. It’s available on Amazon, Barnes & Noble and Smashwords.
TR: The kind of person readers will root for – got it 🙂 Now, is there a particular place or setting where you get your writing ideas?
PS: I was born, reared and still live in Texas and have had a love/hate relationship with the place all my life. I hate the cowboy/cattle culture, the “bubba” Bible Belt mentality and the hokey accent (which I have). On the other hand, most of my relatives and all of my friends live here, and it makes me feel warm and safe because of the familiarity. As every writer knows, conflict is what makes fiction, and my struggle with the state of Texas has generated the majority of my writing output.
TR: So ironically, Texas is your bane, and the reason for your success. Interesting. Okay, so you’re an indie writer. What made you choose independent publishing?
PS: I’m impatient, and the traditional route just takes too long. I don’t have enough time to wait to be discovered. I need it right now!
TR: Heh heh heh…got it! If you had to choose the most important element in an author’s platform, what would it be?
PS: It sounds like a horrible cliché, but indie authors must write great books. If we don’t, we are always going to be considered second class writers.
TR: Well, that’s true though. I think indies have a lot more to prove, since their acceptance will come from the reading public and not a publisher. So, what mistakes have you made in regards to publishing and marketing your work, and what will you do differently in the future?
PS: I didn’t start soon enough (before the book was published), and I try to do too much. Next time, I’m starting to promote before I even start writing the book. I’ll probably continue to overload myself, though.
TR: Not an uncommon mistake, that, so don’t feel too bad. Okay, do you have an idea for your next book?
PS: I am outlining the new book. It’s called, surprise surprise, “A Small Town in Texas.” One of the characters from “Diary,” Madelyn Morrison (the heroine’s best friend), is the protagonist. She returns to her hometown when her brother, who went missing as a young boy, is reported to have returned. It’s a mystery/romantic suspense and will be much darker than “Diary.”
TR: I like the sounds of that…not a series, but a spinoff. Much luck with that, Paige. It was a pleasure having you on. All the best 🙂
PS: Thanks, Thomas…I enjoyed it 🙂
Okay, everyone. Sounds like another good read, just sitting out there, ready for your Kindle or bookshelf. What are you waiting for?
Tune in tomorrow, when I talk with Donna Galanti and “A Human Element”…