Fresh FIction Box Not To Miss
Toni Blake | Exclusive Excerpt: THE LOVE WE KEEP
Author Guest / January 24, 2020

Suzanne was fed up. Ready to throw in the towel and give up on the Neanderthal on her couch. The only prob­lem with that plan? It didn’t get him off her couch or out of her cottage, or get her out of the position of car­ing for him. So giving up was not an option—not be­cause she was determined or noble but simply because she was stuck. So as the early darkness of winter fell over Summer Island, she did two things. First, she texted Dahlia, irate. Look, I don’t know where you are or why you’re not answering Zack, but he’s had a major mental setback. I accept that you’re not here, physically—but I need you to be present with him, Dahlia. He’s officially despondent now, and I’m not sure what to do. Please call him as soon as you see this. Second, she made a delicious dinner. Remembering that Dahlia had once mentioned Zack loved her meat­balls, Suzanne got out the recipe, which Dahlia had given her along with others, and started squishing ground beef into a mixture of bread crumbs, minced onion, Parme­san cheese, an egg, and some spices. She took her time, since he clearly needed…

Terri Reed | Creating Characters Led to Personal Growth + Giveaway!
Author Guest / January 24, 2020

Thank you, Fresh Fiction, for hosting me on your blog. While coming up with a topic for this blog, I asked myself what is it about books that captivate me. The answer is Characters. So often when I think about books I’ve read and loved, I remember the characters. When I first started writing I had no clue what I was doing. I didn’t understand craft, but I knew I had stories to tell. My mother-in-law encouraged me to ‘just’ start writing. I did, but my characters were flat. It took me many sets of revisions to the stories before I was really able to know and understand my characters. It was painstaking work, hence why it took me ten years to sell my first full-length novel to Harlequin. Now, nearly three decades since writing that first story, I finally feel like I have a grasp on characterization. But it required many classes and workshops, learning from authors whose work I admired and wanted to emulate. As authors, we want our characters to be likable, relatable, sympathetic and fictional people the reader can root for from page one to the end. I embarked all those years ago on a quest…

Nicci French | 20 Questions: LOSING YOU
Author Guest / January 24, 2020

1) What’s the name of your latest release?  Losing You.   2) What is it about?  A teenage girl goes missing and her mother has one short and terrifying day to find her. 3) What word best describes your heroine?  Unstoppable. 4) What makes your hero irresistible?  There is no hero. The heroine has to save her daughter by herself. That’s what makes her irresistible: she is like a tigress. 5) Who are the people your main characters turn to when they need help?  Nina turns to the police but the police don’t believe her. One of the themes that repeats in our novels is that people have to save themselves… 6) What do you love about the setting of your book?  Sandling Island is inspired by an island near where we live in South East England. It’s swept by the wind off the north Sea, it’s linked to the mainland by a causeway that is covered by the tide once a day and it produces the best oysters in the world. 7) Are you a plotter (follow an outline) or a pantster (write by the seat of your pants)? Every book is a bit different. But this book is…