Time To Lose The NEW ADULT Training Wheels

1 training wheels

I got started in writing due to Janet Dailey.  She was my hero and, to a large degree, my mentor.

But this isn’t about her but rather what she did to romance and what part of history applies to New Adult!  Read on…

I can only dream of having the longevity and talent needed to drive my 3 million romance and women’s fiction book sales to even remotely come close to her 100 million plus in sales.  I don’t think she is given enough credit for all she did to completely change the publishing industry.  Janet was known for adhering to the conventions of romance fiction — one man, one woman, happy ending.  But her books broke the mold because they featured independent women who weren’t simpering virgins waiting for their rich prince to sweep them off their feet, plus they were set in America rather than in the old-world Europe of traditional romances.  Janet was the first American writer published by the Toronto-based Harlequin publishing empire and her new bold changes became the foundation of the industry to this day.

Why do I bring this up?  All genres go through an evolution not unlike the romance genre did starting in the 1980s.  Romance was still always the major plot, but suddenly the characters had real lives with a back story and careers.   The romance (i.e. the man) wasn’t all that defined them.

My husband and I just attended the #TexasWriter’sLeague annual Editors and Agent’s Conference where we paid super close attention to the speakers, discussions and meetings that surrounded the New Adult genre.  I noticed that there is still a lot of confusion about exactly what the NA market is and what the audience wants.  The one thing that is clear is that it is evolving, just as romance did, into something more substantial than just bad boy meets good girl, which has been the norm up to now.

After the Saturday sessions ended and before we got back to working on book #2 in the SCANDALS New Adult Series, KILLER DATE, we set out to see where the evolution in the genre is today. Surprisingly, we found numerous blogs, surveys and discussions about new adult literature and how it is finally moving from books focused on New Adult angst to solid stories where the protagonists are in their new adult sweet spot, age 19 to 25 who have more than just boy troubles.  Why deal with just that one element of the complications of transition that most new adults are going through?

Now we’re talking…don’t just saddle the poor new adult characters with relationship baggage.  Let them actually deal with college, family, jobs, roommates, housing and finances.  Let them struggle, but ultimately survive and succeed in the story.  How “new adults”, born between 1989 and 1996, will propel a story set in 2014 forward is what makes a story great and if told and written well, will deliver a best seller.

Of considerable note I came across the blogging of Lauren Sarner at the #Huffington Post and her 2013 blog on new adult books.  I loved it and it summarized very well all the blogs and reviews and face-to-face discussions I’ve had for long time.  She wrote that “New Adult is a new genre whose target audience is people like me–young twenty-something’s, overwhelmingly of the female variety.  A New Adult book is basically a Young Adult book with sex and cursing thrown in.  A typical plot line features two brooding, damaged souls with damaged pasts (typical examples include characters whose entire families have tragically died, characters who have grown up in abusive homes, characters suffering from manic depression or panic attacks) who meet, sparks fly, and drama ensues. The books are often titled something like “Damaged” or “Broken” or “Smashed with a Sledgehammer”

She notes she may have made that last one up, but she was sure it exists somewhere.

Lauren continued.  “New Adult is a label that is condescending to readers and authors alike.  It implies that the books act as training wheels between Young Adult and Adult.  For the New Adult books that are particularly childish, the label implies that they are a step above Young Adult–which is insulting to the Young Adult books that are far superior.  For the New Adult books that are particularly sophisticated, the label implies that they are not worthy of being considered “adult.”  It’s a lose-lose situation for everyone.”

She closed with a challenge for me, as a writer of three series currently…a YA Time Travel Mystery, New Adult Suspense and Romantic Suspense, and it should be for all writers of the NA genre. Lauren explained, “Books are supposed to expand your world; expose you to people, places, emotions, and ideas you might not otherwise experience.  Suggesting that you need training wheels for such a thing is like suggesting that a child needs training wheels to walk.  You’ve just got to do it.  Good fiction is supposed to hold the mirror up to reality, regardless of the genre–and reality does not have training wheels.”

 

So my challenge is not how to write a NA novel that is actually an entertaining book where the characters can be brooding or damaged, but there is more going on in their lives than wondering the if boy is going to call.  That was my goal when I created the New Adult SCANDALS series.  Book #1, DUES DATES, has the usual female and male relationship issue, but her life didn’t start and end with him.  They both have baggage, but there’s a real world going on around them that they also have to deal with that adds complications, drama and humor.  A new adult’s life is not just about male/female relationships, but about their relationships with everyone around them.

Now my challenge is crafting the blurb and discussions about DUE DATES to attract the New Adult reader with the typical relationship of brooding, damaged souls, but then capture them with the complications of being a new adult in a complicated world.

That’s why the title of the blog is  …and yes it is a total rip off of the intellectual capital of Lauren #Sarner at the #Huffington Post.  It’s time for the NA genre to move to the next level that deals with young people that are not just defined by romantic relationships, but have dreams and problems and friends and lots of other things impacting their lives.

So I’m proud to be ahead of the curve with of our two training wheel-free NA novels.

Our current New Adult series, SCANDALS, book #1 DUE DATES was released a few months ago.  Find DUE DATES at http://www.amazon.com/DUE-DATES-SCANDALS-Kathy-Clark-ebook/dp/B00GQC1S3O/

DUE DATES AMAZON

An inheritance brought her more than she ever could have imagined…

Killeen Ames has it all…beauty, brains, a college softball scholarship and a rich and handsome boyfriend who has helped to stretch her college funds and fill her social calendar. He is the only boy she ever allowed past second base and now he’s her baby daddy. However, being a father was not in his short-range plans. He graduates, then he splits, leaving Killeen to decide what she wants to do about the pregnancy…and to worry about how she’s going to keep her scholarship. With no marketable skills, no job, no home and medical bills for her and the baby on the horizon, she knows she must move forward. A knock at the door of her boyfriend’s apartment changes the game forever when an attorney gives her the news of an inheritance from an unknown dead relative and another due date looming.

After traveling to Austin, Killeen walks into the meeting and is surprised to find out that the relative was actually her birth father, and he had been a popular music star who recently died of an overdose. Even more shocking are the four strangers who share the same absentee dad. He has left them a highly successful private investigation agency, Scandals. The catch is…they have to make the commitment to work there.

Their introduction to the P.I. business almost gets them killed when a bomb goes off in the warehouse that sends Killeen to the hospital. She has kept the secret of her pregnancy from everyone, including Christopher, the totally irresistible manager of Scandals. Their hot night of wild sex in the office was a one-time thing…right? She chalks up her attraction to him as just raging hormones. They have no chance of a future together. He’s gorgeous, intelligent and successful. He would never want anyone with so much baggage.

Christopher has a secret of his own. He’s been investigation the possibility that, despite popular opinion, their father’s death hadn’t been an accidental overdose. He thinks it was murder.

Even though the five siblings still haven’t accepted the fact that they have a father who made no attempt to be a part of their lives, they join together to discover the truth about his death. The search throws Killeen and Christopher together and their passion grows hotter. As her feelings for him slowly become more serious, she knows she must tell him about the baby.

After a fun day in the sun, an event happens that outs Killeen’s secret. Christopher, as expected, doesn’t take the news well. But they must continue to work together to track down a killer, especially since the killer has now focused on them.

Someone doesn’t want them to stay and take over the business. In fact, someone wants them all dead and now the decision on whether or not to be a part of the agency seems very unimportant compared to the job of trying to stop from being killed.

They set up a trap that goes terribly wrong. Suddenly, Killeen must make a big decision. Who should she save? Her baby? Christopher? Her new brothers and sisters? Their lives are in her hands.

Due Dates is the first book in the Scandals New Adult series of romantic suspense. Each book of the series will focus on one of the offspring of Roger Elliott, a famous musician who left them with a legacy they weren’t expecting. Killer Date, the second book in this series will be released in Summer, 2014 and will tell Reno’s story.

 

Life’s What Happens is a 1969-1970 story told in flashback, where the super bowl of angst plays out and life in college when failing a course could land you in a war on the other side of the planet, brooding, sparks and romance flew in between classes, relationships, graduation, career planning and finding draft loopholes that would soon be shut.  Find Life’s What Happens on all the usual book seller sites including Amazon at http://www.amazon.com/LIFES-WHAT-HAPPENS-Kathy-Clark-ebook/dp/B00A14STPS/

Life's What Happens Amazon

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New Adult Romantic Suspense Book Series Is New To Austin, Texas (Press Release) – Dec. 2, 2013 – AUSTIN, Texas —

New York Times Best Selling Author Kathy Clark’s 3rd series is a NEW ADULT Romantic Suspense called SCANDALS. Book #1, titled BABY DADDY, follows the lives of five 18 to 26 year old men and women who soon learn their lives are not what they thought.

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

WEB TILE BABY DADDY

 Baby Daddy is a first person story told from the point of view of Killeen Ames.  “Originally I thought the first person would be restrictive but the opposite turned out to be true,” author Kathy Clark stated at the book’s release party in late November.  “This was a chance to really understand the nature of the character and her needs for support during a very difficult time in her life.”

The eBook and Paperback is available everywhere through all the usual book sellers like Amazon,Barnes and Noble, GOOGLE Play, and a dozen others.  The book is about a 19 year old college student and an unexpected inheritance that brought her more than she ever could have imagine

Killeen Ames has it all…beauty, brains, a college softball scholarship and a rich and handsome boyfriend who has helped to stretch her college funds and fill her social calendar.  He is the only boy she ever allowed past second base and now he’s her baby daddy.  However, being a father was not in his short-range plans.  He graduates, then he splits, leaving Killeen to decide what she wants to do about the pregnancy…and to worry about how she’s going to keep her scholarship.  With no marketable skills, no job, no home and medical bills for her and the baby on the horizon, she knows she must move forward.  A knock at the door of her boyfriend’s apartment changes the game forever when an attorney gives her the news of an inheritance from an unknown dead relative.

After traveling to Austin, Killeen walks into the meeting and is surprised to find out that the relative was actually her birth father, and he had been a popular music star who recently died of an overdose.  Even more shocking are the four strangers who share the same absentee dad.  He has left them a highly successful private investigation agency, Scandals.  The catch is…they have to make the commitment to work there.

Their introduction to the P.I. business almost gets them killed when a bomb goes off in the warehouse that sends Killeen to the hospital.  She has kept the secret of her pregnancy from everyone, including Christopher, the totally irresistible manager of Scandals.  Their hot night of wild sex in the office was a one-time thing…right?  She chalks up her attraction to him as just raging hormones.  They have no chance of a future together.  He’s gorgeous, intelligent and successful.  He would never want anyone with so much baggage.

Christopher has a secret of his own.  He’s been investigation the possibility that, despite popular opinion, their father’s death hadn’t been an accidental overdose.  He thinks it was murder.

Even though the five siblings still haven’t accepted the fact that they have a father who made no attempt to be a part of their lives, they join together to discover the truth about his death.  The search throws Killeen and Christopher together and their passion grows hotter.  As her feelings for him slowly become more serious, she knows she must tell him about the baby.

After a fun day in the sun, an event happens that outs Killeen’s secret.  Christopher, as expected, doesn’t take the news well.  But they must continue to work together to track down a killer, especially since the killer has now focused on them.

Someone doesn’t want them to stay and take over the business.  In fact, someone wants them all dead and now the decision on whether or not to be a part of the agency seems very unimportant compared to the job of trying to stop from being killed.

They set up a trap that goes terribly wrong.  Suddenly, Killeen must make a big decision.  Who should she save?  Her baby?  Christopher?  Her new brothers and sisters?  Their lives are in her hands.

Kathy said “Baby Daddy is the first book in the Scandals New Adult series of romantic suspense and each book of the series will focus on one of the offspring of Roger Elliott, a famous musician who left them with a legacy they weren’t expecting.  This book is about Killeen Ames who must deal with an unexpected pregnancy, an absentee baby daddy, an irresistible attraction to a hot new guy and four new half-brothers and sisters.  Tramp Stamp, the second book in this series will be released in winter of 2014 and will tell Reno’s story. This will be a fun book to research and write because of the skills and personality Reno brings with him from an upbringing in Las Vegas.”

ABOUT KATHY CLARK, aka Bob Kat

Kathy Clark’s 23 women’s fiction (romance) novels have sold over 3 million copies in more than 10 languages and have been on the New York Times’ bestsellers’ list and won her numerous awards.

In September 2012 she broke away from the romance genre and launched a new suspense series,Denver After Dark that is centered on three brothers, one a cop, one a firefighter and one a paramedic. The first book, After Midnight was named as the Best Indie Suspense of 2013 and won a prestigious Readers’ Favorite Suspense Award in 2013.  Book #2 in this series, Cries in the Night was released in October, 2013.  Graveyard Shift, Book #3, will be released in September, 2014.

Also in 2012 Kathy teamed up with her husband Bob Wernly to write a Young Adult Time Travel Mystery/Romance series called CUL8R (See You Later) under the pen name of Bob Kat.  Book #1OMG (Oh My God), when they go back to 1966 to save a girl’s life,was released in October, 2012 and was named as the Best Indie Young Adult Suspense of 2013 and was a Beverly Hills Book Awards finalist.  Book #2 BRB (Be Right Back), when they travel back to 1980, recently won a Readers’ Favorite Young Adult Award in 2013.  Book #3 BION (Believe It Or Not), when they go back to 1927 and join a circus to save a boy, was released in July, 2013.  All three books in this series have received rave reviews and 4 and 5 star ratings.  Book #4 RIP (Rest in Peace), a ghost story set at the famous Stanley Hotel will be released in January, 2014.  Also, under the Bob Kat pen name, Kathy and Bob wrote a fictionalized version of his fraternity days at Kent State University in 1970 that mixes the drama of senior year with the first military draft lottery, the Vietnam war and the Kent State shootings.  This novel was named as a finalist in the Best Indie Mainstream Book of 2013 Awards.

Kathy is currently a member of Mystery Writers of America, Sisters in Crime, Romance Writers of America and Rocky Mountain Fiction Writers, and was on the board of directors of national RWA and Colorado Romance Writers for several years.  Her books and screenplays have won numerous awards, including top honors from Romantic Times, Colorado Romance Writer of the Year, two RITAs and several film festival screenwriting competitions.

Add Your Voice to the Reviews for the New Adult Suspense series Scandals

SCANDALS BABY DADDY 10282013

The NEW ADULT genre has been added to with the release of BABY DADDY, book #1 in Kathy Clark’s NEW ADULT romantic suspense series, SCANDALS.

BABY DADDY is the first book in the series and is told from Killeen Ames’ point of view.  Killeen has it all…beauty, brains, a college scholarship and a rich and handsome boyfriend…until she finds out she is pregnant.  The boyfriend disappears and the scholarship is in jeopardy.  When an attorney arrives at her door with an offer she can’t refuse, she has nothing to lose.

She travels to Austin and is surprised to find that her birth father was a popular music star who is now dead.  He has left her a generous inheritance that includes a highly successful P.I. agency, Scandals…and four half-brothers and sisters.

The catch is, they must work together at the agency.  Are they willing to leave their old jobs, schools and lives for a father’s dream…a father they never knew?  Killeen’s decision is further complicated when she and Christopher, the totally irresistible manager of Scandals, share a hot night of passion.  She knows they have no future.  He is not her baby daddy and would never want to be. 

New evidence indicates that their father had been murdered, and they must focus on finding the killer…who also wants them dead.  When Killeen is faced with the decision to save her baby, her lover or her new brothers and sisters…who will she choose?

You get a sense of Killeen’s starting point on her journey with the opening of the book.

He left me with two broken DVD cases, a pair of worn-out Nikes and a plus sign on my pee stick.

I was sitting on the floor, leaning against the couch with my legs stretched forward under the coffee table.  Sunlight filtered through the crack where the drapes didn’t quite meet, which told me it was morning… the morning after the worst night of my life.

A banner saying “Congratulations Graduate” strung between the light fixture and the curtain rod.  A dozen maroon and gold balloons that had been bouncing on the ceiling last night now lay sadly on the floor, no longer buoyant.  I knew exactly how they felt…deflated and totally used.  Their short, happy lives were over.  Just like mine.

Bottles, beer cans, red Solo cups and other trash covered every surface imaginable.  Somebody was going to have to clean all this shit up.  That somebody was not going to be me.

Fuck Brandon!  I thought we were going to be together forever.  Well, apparently, he had a different definition of forever than I did.  Last night was supposed to have been really special.  His graduation party and our pregnancy.  I’m just glad I was smart enough not to announce it at the party.  No, I waited until everyone had left to tell him.  I wasn’t sure what his reaction would be, but I hadn’t thought he would have a meltdown.

I knew it would be a surprise.  It had been for me.  A baby was the absolute last thing I needed in my life right now.  Brandon was the only guy I’d ever gone past second base with in my life.  Imagine that!  I was an eighteen-year-old virgin two years ago when we met.  That’s like finding a unicorn in a used car lot.

 

Find BABY DADDY on line at several retailers…

Amazon – http://www.amazon.com/BABY-DADDY-SCANDALS-Kathy-Clark-ebook/dp/B00GQC1S3O/

Barnes & Noble –  http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/baby-daddy-kathy-clark-aka-bob-kat/1117448913?ean=2940149013364&itm=1&usri=2940149013364

Kobo – http://store.kobobooks.com/en-us/Search/Query?query=9780988343672&fcmedia=Book

All Romance – https://www.omnilit.com/product-babydaddy-1360180-149.html

And while you’re at it please add your voice to the reviews, currently at 4.7 stars.   

Good Romantic Suspense Novel with Likable Heroine 

Great fun, irresistible story…

“He never could resist a girl with a tramp stamp.”

Good Suspense Novel with Erotic Flair

Great Romantic Suspense!

Nail Biting

Scandalously Good

Scandalously Sexy

Well written, like I was really there

Entertaining read

Masterfully written

Solid

This is good!

Intense, suspenseful and passionate, the perfect combination!

scandals tile

Hello readers of suspense, romantic suspense and New Adult fiction fans…

The New Adult genre name in fiction really covers the age from 19 to 26.  Blogs, book blurbs and redefining what it means to grow up has been taking over the books and the news about the books over the past year or two..

Kathy Clark’s 30th book, BABY DADDY fits the New Adult genre checklist perfectly.

Here’s the blurb followed by the comparison of the book to the new adult genre checklist that readers, bloggers and editors often apply.

SCANDALS BABY DADDY 10282013

THE BLURB

An inheritance brought her more than she ever could have imagined.

Killeen Ames had it all…beauty, brains, a college scholarship, a rich and handsome boyfriend.  Then she found out she was pregnant and the boyfriend disappeared and the scholarship is in jeopardy.  A stranger arrives at her door with the news that a father she had never known had died and she was his heir.

But not his only heir.  She and four half-siblings meet for the first time and learn the shocking details of a popular music star who had been their father and Scandals, the private investigation agency he has left them.

Killeen’s decision is further complicated when she meets the totally irresistible manager of Scandals.  Her attraction to him is immediate and volatile, but she knows they have no future.  She has a secret she can’t share.

Someone doesn’t want them to stay and take over the business.  In fact, someone wants them all dead.  Their lives depend on whether or not they can figure out who he is and how to stop him before he succeeds.

 

In spite of the fact that the five protagonists range from age 19 to 26, their lives are turned up side down with a knock on their door and meeting a few weeks later about a man they didn’t even know existed

All the essential New Adult story elements are there:  

College life – Some are, one was and one hasn’t been

Moving out of your parents’ house and living alone for the first time – One did, three had and one moved out on a regualr basis

First jobs – One serious and four never seriously

Deciding who you want to be, career-wise, and in general. Identity issues. Existential issues. – One’s hit their career ceiling, one’s on a path to no where and the others are in transition yet they are all tied together by their mother”s past.

First serious relationships, finding love – The opening line of the book foreshadows one character’s future but does not force a conclusion.  “He left me with two broken DVD cases, a pair of worn-out Nikes and a plus sign on my pee stick.”

Sex – It’s less important that it be a “first time” as it is in YA. But the character should still be figuring stuff out. Since our readers can watch R rated movies, we can also be a little more explicit here without as much controversy. – No comment.

* Experimentation – Sex, drugs, alcohol. Of course, not all new adults engage in experimentation, but the phrase, “I experimented with “x” in college,” is a phrase for a reason. – No comment

*  A struggle to “find yourself” – While struggling to stay alive and figure out what’s true from their past they work toward figuring out who they are

Change – Moving out, going to college, finding a job…it’s a lot of transition. – Everyone has the same opportunity but is starting from a very different starting point in their life.  Yet their lines are intertwined.

* Money challenges –  Sometimes having too many options can be overwhelming.

 

BABY DADDY is coming of age with people you want to know better.

 

 

NEW ADULT Book Release SCANDALS Series; BABY DADDY

NEW ADULT SERIES Releasing November 20th…SCANDALS Series Book #1 – BABY DADDY
 SCANDALS BABY DADDY 10282013
An excerpt…where Christopher and Killeen visit one of Christopher’s ex girlfriends trying to solve a murder. 
 
“Would you all want something to drink?” she offered.  “Water, coffee, soft drinks?”
“Not for me, thanks,” I said and a similar response came from Christopher.
“So how have you been?” the pretty doctor asked Christopher.
“Outside of Roger’s death…pretty good.”
“I still can’t get over that.  I thought he had given all that up.”
“Well, that’s why we’re here.  We don’t think it was an accident.”  Christopher leaned for back in his chair, but I could see he was watching her reactions.  “You might not have heard, but our building got bombed a few days ago.  I’m thinking the killer is close.”
“Bombed?”
“Our offices…kaboom,” Christopher spread his hands apart in an exploding pattern.  “One of Roger’s other kids, Liberty, was in the hospital for three days…almost killed her.”
“I had no idea.  Wow!  Any idea who might have done this?”
“We have a few suspects.”
Janet interrupted.  “Is that why you’re here?  On business?”  She smiled and crossed her legs and letting her skirt slide up her thighs.  “I was hoping it was because you missed me.”
I suddenly felt like they had forgotten I was in the room.  And it kind of pissed me off.
“I thought you were engaged.”
She held up her left hand so he…and I…could clearly see there was no ring on that finger.  “I realized he wasn’t the one.  So, I’m back on the market.”
Subtle.  Real subtle.  She was definitely not going to get my business.
“Good to know,” Christopher said.  “But today, I need to find your father.  Do you have any idea where he is?”
Janet’s body language changed as she crossed her arms across her chest as if she had suddenly felt a chill.  “You mean the man who screwed my mother, then walked away?”
That sounded familiar.  Completely against my will, I had a hint of empathy for her.
“Have you talked to him recently?”
“Recently?”  Janet thought for a moment before speaking.  “The Thanksgiving after the election Stephanie and I still hadn’t heard from him, so we hired Murray to track him down and see if he wanted to come home…you know extend him an olive branch kind of thing.”
“You hired Murray the frog!” Christopher exclaimed.
“He creeps me out too, but he fits in with the homeless scene,” Janet said with a little half-shrug.  “Anyway, Murray came back the week after Thanksgiving with a present from our dad but no contact information.”
“A present…?”
“It was a beaten-up old shoebox with dog shit wrapped in newspapers.  That’s the last we’ve heard from or about him.”
I could see that in spite of her tough-girl attitude, she had tears in her eyes.  I tried to lighten the mood.  “And I thought my Thanksgivings were weird.”
Neither Christopher nor Janet so much as glanced my way.
“So, no idea where he might be?”
Janet shook her head.  “Anywhere where there’s free food or a bar, I’d guess.  If we could do it over again…we wouldn’t.  When Steph and I were growing up we fantasized about who our father could be.  We were better off not knowing.”
After a prolonged awkward moment of silence Christopher spoke, “He’s an asshole.”  Christopher stood.  “Well, it’s been great seeing you again Janet…say hi to your equally gorgeous sister for me, would you?  We need to double date some time, maybe tear it up on Sixth?”
“I’d love that…you have my number.”
Fuck, even I had her number, I thought with a snort.  I must have actually snorted because both of them turned to look at me.
She held her arms out, and he gave her a hug.  A professional yet personal lip-on-lip kiss happened, and I could see Janet’s arms pull him closer to her.
“It was nice to meet you Janet,” I spoke up in order to shorten Christopher’s time in her grip.
Janet looked over and smiled as she released him.  “Yes…of course. It was great to meet you, Kiley.”
“It’s Killeen,” I corrected her with an equally insincere smile.
“Thanks, Janet.  I’ll let you know what we find out…bye.”  Christopher waved as we headed out the door.
  Once in the car, I couldn’t get the body language and familiarity between Christopher and Janet out of mind.  It wasn’t any of my business, but I just had to ask as Christopher sped along the interstate heading back to the office.  “How long did you and Janet date?  I mean, was it serious?”
Christopher’s eyes darted toward me, then back on the road as he cleared his throat.  “Date?  We went out a couple of times…”
“After the case was over?”
He hesitated.  “Technically, no.  I know…I know…conflict of interest.  She was hot…I was young.  Okay?”
What else could I say without seeming like I was jealous?  Which, I was surprised to realize, I was.
“Today was the first time I’ve seen her in years…she still looks the same, though.”
“So, are you going to call her?”  Oh God, had I said that out loud?  I need to re-adjust my filters.
The car quickly sped up as we exited the interstate and Christopher took the U-turn lane to reverse direction on the interstate.  He looked in the mirror and exhaled deeply.
THE BLURB
An inheritance brought her more than she ever could have imagined…
Killeen Ames had it all…beauty, brains, a college scholarship, a rich and handsome boyfriend.  Then she found out she was pregnant and the boyfriend disappeared and the scholarship is in jeopardy.  A stranger arrives at her door with the news that a father she had never known had died and she was his heir.
But not his only heir.  She and four half-siblings meet for the first time and learn the shocking details of a popular music star who had been their father and Scandals, the private investigation agency he has left them.
Killeen’s decision is further complicated when she meets the totally irresistible manager of Scandals.  Her attraction to him is immediate and volatile, but she knows they have no future.  She has a secret she can’t share.
Someone doesn’t want them to stay and take over the business.  In fact, someone wants them all dead.  Their lives depend on whether or not they can figure out who he is and how to stop him before he succeeds.
THE AUTHOR
Kathy Clark has 23 women’s fiction/romance novels with sales over 3 million copies in more than 10 languages and have been on the New York Times’ bestsellers’ list and won her numerous awards.
In September 2012 she went Indie and launched a new suspense series, Denver After Dark.  Book #1, After Midnight.  Voted The Best Indie Suspense of 2013 and won a prestigious Readers’ Favorite Suspense Award in 2013, book #2, Cries in the Night followed in October, 2013.
Also in 2012 Kathy teamed up with her husband Bob Wernly to write a Young Adult Time Travel Mystery/Romance series called CUL8R (See You Later) under the pen name of Bob Kat.  Book #1 OMG (Oh My God), when they go back to 1966 to save a girl’s life, was released in October, 2012 and was named as the Best Indie Young Adult Suspense of 2013 and was a Beverly Hills Book Awards finalist.  Book #2 BRB (Be Right Back), when they travel back to 1980, recently won a Readers’ Favorite Young Adult Award in 2013.  Book #3 BION (Believe It Or Not), when they go back to 1927 and join a circus to save a boy, was released in July, 2013.  They also teamed and wrote a fictionalized version of Bob’s fraternity days at Kent State University in 1970.  The mixture drama of senior year, military draft lottery to supply the Vietnam war and the Kent State shootings.  This novel was named as a finalist in the Best Indie Mainstream Book of 2013 Awards.
Their New Adult series Scandals, kicks off the book #1, Baby Daddy in November, 2013.

BABY DADDY Looking For Eyes

Yes, it is time to start seeking out readers of suspense, romantic suspense and new adult romance who would like a free book in exchange for a review posted to Amazon in support of our 11/18/2013 release.

Tonight we’re putting the final touches on the first book in the New Adult [NA] fiction series SCANDALS.  Book #1, titled BABY DADDY.  The planned cover is below:

SCANDALS BABY DADDY 10282013 

We have a list of people who have agreed to read the “galley proof” and provide reviews on other novels in the past and we will be reaching out and emailing them directly when it is ready to go to see if they interest this time.

However we are also extending that same offer to all those who are connected with us on Facebook, Google+ and Twitter.  The galley proof serves as some advance publicity but more importantly it is a means for us to acquire reviews on Amazon and Goodreads after the planned release date of November 18th.  We can provide the galley proof in mobi, epub or PDF formats.

Now…a little about the series and book #1, BABY DADDY.  The New Adult genre has been gaining visibility and its own set of rules over the past two to three years and it is in recognition that readers don’t move from reading teen books to adult books overnight or over a long weekend.  The 18 to 26 year old population has a unique perspective on life and relationships can be complicated and twisted by life at college and on the job.  This book is written in first person and is told from the point of view of one of the main female characters, Killeen Ames.  Other books in the series will be written from other points of view but I’m sure you’ll find Killeen engaging, independent, smart, gutsy and funny. 

 

So what exactly could you be getting into?

BABY DADDY is a full blown suspense with an underlying romance.  One day when SCANDALS hits the big screen it likely will be R Rated…maybe PG-17.  17 year olds aren’t yet “New Adults” but everyone is moving faster right?

Here’s the summary that will be on the back of the book.  We have posted the first paragraph of the first chapter for your further consideration.  In another blog post later this week the entire first chapter will be in the blog  When you feel compelled to grab the book and help with an early and honest review you will can get your galley proof by emailing Kathy@nightwriter93.com.

 

Killeen Ames had it all…beauty, brains, a college scholarship, a rich and handsome boyfriend.  She found out she is pregnant…now the boyfriend has disappeared and the scholarship is in jeopardy.  An attorney arrives at her door with an offer she can’t refuse.

She walks into the meeting and is surprised to find out that her real father had been a popular music star who is now dead.  Even more shocking is the four strangers who share the same absentee dad.  He has left them a highly successful private investigation agency, Scandals.  The catch is…they have to make the commitment to work there. 

It’s a difficult choice for them to make…leave their old jobs, schools and lives and run the agency.  Killeen’s decision is further complicated when she meets the totally irresistible manager of Scandals.  Her attraction to him is immediate and volatile, but she knows they have no future.  She has a secret she can’t share. 

But there is a darker side to their dilemma.  Someone is determined that they not get their inheritance.  In fact, someone wants them all dead.  Should they run back to their safe lives or should they stay and try to stop a killer…before he kills them? 

 

Here’s the first few paragraphs…

CHAPTER ONE

“He left me with two empty DVD cases, a pair of worn-out Nikes and a plus sign on my pee stick.”  I laid my head back on the couch and stared up at the ceiling.  I haven’t had a drink for weeks since I found out.  This whole thing would be a pretty interesting country and western song if it wasn’t about me…oh yeah wait what the fuck was I thinking…it is about me!  He peed all over me and made a positive impression on my pee stick.  Too wordy to be the song title…maybe the refrain?  God!  This really sucks.  He sure didn’t take the news very well last night.  I rubbed my eyes but the view didn’t change.  Neither did I.  This can’t be happening to me!

Brandon was the only guy I’ve ever gone past second base with in my life.  He told me he always used protection.  Did the protection fail or was I just lazy and didn’t bother to check if he lied to me in the heat of the moment?  Why would he lie to me about that anyway?  I can’t believe I trusted him with my entire future.  That bastard!

I stared at the outside door that lead to the parking lot.  I can still hear Brandon yell at me as he threw the door open after everyone had left the party.  The door knob hole is still in the wall.  “That baby is your problem Killeen, not mine.  I paid the apartment up through the end of July so leave it clean…I want my security deposit back.”  What an ass!  Last night was no time to be mean to me, it’s not like it was my fault.  I didn’t do this by myself asshole!  I picked the small terracotta donkey statue we bought in Mexico last summer out from under the party debris in front of me on the coffee table and threw it full speed at the steel door.  Strike three! Reminded me of my first base throw whenever a runner took too big a lead trying to steal second base.  Two seasons zero steals.  That puppy really shattered so I looked around for anything else available at arm’s length.  All the beer bottles had beer left in them and I still have to live here for a few weeks so I set the bottle back down on the table.

Clean the apartment?  He didn’t lift a fucking finger yesterday as I vacuumed and dusted every square inch of his shit apartment.  I had put every one of the congratulations banners up for his graduation party. Every one!  Now that I think about it I think I cleaned his apartment more often that he did.  I fought back the tears again.  Last night was to be really special for us.  His graduation party and our pregnancy.  I’m just glad I was smart enough to not announce it at the party.  His reaction made me think I hardly knew him after two years of dating.  I even spent Christmas and New Year’s Eve at his family’s house with him last year.  I mean that was pretty serious stuff isn’t it?  I started to cry again and the sleeves of my tee shirt were growing damper with each minute that passed.

 

Don;t be fooled…this isn’t girl book…it is more like these two books only dealing with 19 to 26 year old college and post college kids with some seriously disrupted family histories.

AFTER MIDNIGHT REVISEDCRIES IN THE NIGHT 09012013

Almost Time for BABY DADDY! It can be FREE you know…

Hello fellow Authors, Readers and Fans,

I’m getting close to the end of the writing process for my newest book, #30 in my career and it is titled BABY DADDY.  It will be book #1 in my New Adult Romantic Suspense Series, SCANDALS.  It is a first person book which has been a lot of fun to write and a welcome change.  And if you were at the Texas Writers’ League panel a week or so ago this also had the benefit of Bob.  But I digress.  I thought it would be a little limiting, the first person not Bob that is, but I found what you lose in the scope of a scene you more than make up for in the depth of the character throughout the story.

Being a new adult genre there are several touchstones that the story must have.  I don’t want to spoil the experience but trust me it does touch several of them in such plot points and story lines like college life, sex, music, the consequences of making one decision over another, moving out of your parents’ house for the first time, for some of the main characters their first serious first jobs, deciding who you want to be “when you grow up”, a person’s first serious relationships, and even some major money decisions.

How do you pack all this it one story?  Simple.  You’ve got to set up the series in book one and while book one’s main character is all about one Killeen Ames, the others have a voice that must be heard.

So here’s the back cover blurb and the current working cover.  All comments are welcome and I’m starting to look for willing volunteers who are interested in receiving an ARC in another few weeks in exchange for a pre-release review.  Drop me your email address at Kathy@nightwriter93.com. The ARC is FREE of course.

The story takes place in Austin in current day.

THE BACK COVER

Killeen Ames had it all…beauty, brains, a college scholarship, a rich and handsome boyfriend.  She found out she is pregnant…now the boyfriend has disappeared and the scholarship is in jeopardy.  An attorney arrives at her door with an offer she can’t refuse.

She walks into the meeting and is surprised to find out that her real father had been a popular music star who is now dead.  Even more shocking is the four strangers who share the same absentee dad.  He has left them a highly successful private investigation agency, Scandals.  The catch is…they have to make the commitment to work there.

It’s a difficult choice for them to make…leave their old jobs, schools and lives and run the agency.  Killeen’s decision is further complicated when she meets the totally irresistible manager of Scandals.  Her attraction to him is immediate and volatile, but she knows they have no future.  She has a secret she can’t share.

But there is a darker side to their dilemma.  Someone is determined that they not get their inheritance.  In fact, someone wants them all dead.  Should they run back to their safe lives or should they stay and try to stop a killer…before he kills them?

And here’s the cover…

SCANDALS BABY DADDY 10282013

Thanks in advance for your input!  It is invaluable!