Title: Forgive Me
Genre: Contemporary Women’s Fiction
Synopsis: In this fast-paced sequel to the debut novel, Dream Girl Awakened, five characters come to grips with their pasts amidst broken friendships, infidelity, grief, and loss.
Aruba Dixon has hit rock bottom. After two years of marriage, her second husband has died of Lou Gehrig’s disease, and she finds herself wanting to end it all. A botched suicide attempt makes her parents reach out to her ex-husband, James, for assistance. Up until that late-night phone call, James is living the golden life of success and wealth, but now everything is about to spin out of control… Meanwhile, Tawatha Gibson is grateful for the chance to be free again. After serving five years in prison, she is released on a technicality. Though shunned from those she loves most, Tawatha clings to the dream that she will be given another chance to start anew. But when her daughter, Aunjanue, learns about her release from prison, she’s not sure she can celebrate her mother’s freedom, let alone forgive her.
Then there’s Victoria Faulk, who struggles with forgiving and forgetting. After a messy divorce, she wrestles with feelings of inadequacy and doubt. When her new beau, Emory Wilkerson, proposes in front of family and friends, she knows she’ll never be happy until she forgives the one person who hurt her—her old “friend,” Aruba Dixon.
As the events unfold around the lives of these women, they face the challenge of letting go of the past and building new bonds. Will they come full circle and learn to move on, or will their past mistakes follow them forever?
Author: Stacy Campbell
CH: Welcome, Stacy. Thank you for joining me and allowing my readers to get to know you and your writing.
CH: Please tell us in one sentence, why we should read your book?
SC: Readers should read Forgive Me to understand the beauty of letting go of grudges and forgiving others.
CH: What is different and exciting that you bring to your readers through your type of writing?
SC: My type of writing is different because I write about things people say could never happen to them, but may in fact, can. I like to explore themes of relationships, love, and why it’s important to stay connected to those we love. Also, there’s something about the concept of the grass being greener on the other side that intrigues me. I’ve seen so many friendships and relationships crumble due to this myth. I say, “Water your own grass!”
CH: How long have you been writing? How did you start writing?
SC: I’ve been writing since I was younger; I began to take the craft seriously about twelve years ago by entering contests, workshops, and applying for grants. I realized, although I love literary fiction, lots of subjects fascinate me and I can tell a tale more than one way.
CH: When you are coming up with a new idea for a book, do you look at the market for trends? Or do you just write your own story?
SC: I write my own stories, or what I call heart stories. I tackle things that I know or things I’m willing to research. Trend following is too tricky and too unpredictable. There is only one, The Help. There is only one, The Fault In Our Stars. There is only one, Addicted. (Let’s face it, Zane cracked the erotica market years ago.) By the time an author jumps on the trend bandwagon, a new wave of themes hits the bestseller lists and writers are stuck with imitations. There is nothing new under the sun, but the way an author spins the tale, their heart story, makes the difference.
CH: That’s a great way to look at trends. So, what inspired you to write Forgive Me?
SC: Forgive Me is the sequel to my first novel, Dream Girl Awakened. Readers contacted me about the story and wanted to know what happened to the three main characters. Forgive Me takes place five years later and looks at the lives of the key players from book one.
CH: Did you find anything challenging while writing this book?
SC: I wanted to make sure the characters grew. That was a challenge for me because one character is still stuck on stupid. (Yes, they’re my children, so I can talk about them.) I also wanted to paint a realistic portrait of the fall-out of infidelity. Once I started the story, it came together for me.
CH: Did you have to do any special research to write this book?
SC: I researched my local prison system and talked to lots of my educator friends, who helped me with field trip protocol, teaching, etc.
CH: What genre are you most comfortable writing?
SC: Contemporary Women’s Fiction.
CH: Who was your favorite character to write?
SC: Victoria Faulk. I hated her the most when I started writing book one, but had so much compassion for her by the end of both books. She was truly a victim of circumstance.
CH: Take us through your writing process. When you get an idea, do you map out the book beforehand, or do you allow the characters to write their own story?
SC: I wrote the first two books freestyle because the stories flowed quickly. I have discovered a great tool called the Ten Scene Plotting Tool. It was created by James V. Smith and the twelve beat script plot. The chart is designed to eliminate writer’s block and give the writer a big picture look at the story so ideas will flow. It is available at http://www.kkitts.net/downloads/files/TenScenePlot.pdf. I can attest that this helped me with book three tremendously. So, I am more open to plotting and outlining now.
CH: Do you have plans for a new book?
SC: Yes. Wouldn’t Change A Thing, my third novel, will be released in the summer of 2015. On the morning of her engagement party, Atlanta architect Antoinette Williamson awakens to her family’s secret of mental illness on the front page of the Atlanta Journal and Constitution. The story explores mental illness in the African-American community and how far one family member goes to protect her niece.
CH: Do you have a website?
CH: Where are your books sold?
SC: They are available at Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and Kobo.com. You can also order the books directly from me through PayPal.
CH: Any Closing Remarks?
SC: Thanks so much for having me on your blog. I appreciate the support and look forward to hearing from readers and writers. Also, I hope aspiring authors know that anything is possible and to never give up on their writing dreams.
CH: Thank you, Stacy, and thank you for sharing your book with my audience and your writing journey. I wish you much success for your writing career.
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