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Ruby Tuesday – Liz Talley

Hello everyone! Welcome to October’s first Ruby Tuesday!

*On the first Tuesday of each month, we will spotlight a Ruby by interviewing her about her books/life or both. If there are any new releases or events going on for a Ruby during the rest of the month, they will post about it on Tuesdays as well.*

Join me in welcoming Ruby Slippered Sisterhood author, Liz Talley!

Hi Liz! Can you tell us about your new book coming up?

Absolutely! Room to Breathe features two point of view characters – a mother and a daughter. Daphne is an almost 40 year old children’s author who is two years’ divorced and ready to get her sea legs in the dating world. Ellery is a twenty-two year old recent college grad who, well, faces some disappointments for the first time in her golden life. She missed out on the perfect fashion internship and must slink home for a “gap” year working retail and assisting her mother. And, there are complications which include, of course, men. There’s a too-young-for-Daphne hot contractor, a sexy bartender Ellery can’t resist, a self-involved fiancé, and a seasoned but handsome vineyard owner. I’ll offer up my selling logline for the project as a summation –

Whether the glass is half-full or half-empty, these gals still have wine!

 

This book would fall into the Women’s Fiction genre, a departure from your small-town romances. Why the change?

I needed to to stretch myself and try something new. The timing was right for me. I had started my career with Superromance, which were layered, emotional reads, so I knew I could dig deeper than my light-hearted romantic comedies. After writing Come Home to Me, my 2018 flirtation with Women’s Fiction, and receiving some strong critical feedback, I felt I was on track to write a bigger, more female-focused book. There are several authors who’ve made the same move, namely authors like Kristan Higgins, Sonali Dev, Barbara Samuels, and listening to them and seeing their success really inspired me to stand on my tiptoes and reach for something more.

Did you find it difficult to steer away from romance being the central focus of the plot?

Not really. It seems like it would be more difficult, but barring the sexual tension, relationships can be boiled down to the essentials – what each person wants and what each person can’t have…at least for most the book. For many women’s fiction books, the story is about the journey of the woman, but I focused more on the relationship, the push and pull of a mother trying to let her daughter go, and a daughter learning that she has to stop leaning on her parents to fix her world. It’s about growing up – for both women. 

Do you think the trend will keep shifting more toward Women’s Fiction?

I’m not sure. I think it’s pretty saturated at this particular moment. I foresee some shifts toward lighter, humorous women’s fiction. In April I have another book releasing called The Wedding War. In this one, a somewhat campy but still emotional story, I lessened the angst and increased the high concept factor. I’m not going to lie. I’m SO in love with that book. It was pure joy to write, and my homage to Steel Magnolias. Spring can’t come fast enough!

What do you think about the term “Women’s Fiction”? There is no “Men’s Fiction” out there.

I think that’s because for so long men dominated the world of fiction. All fiction was aimed at men, except for the sentimental paperbacks reserved for housewives <rolls eyes> But I think there are plenty of guys who like women’s fiction. Women’s fiction puts a woman/women in the spotlight and the story belongs to her, not that men and other characters aren’t important. But, yeah, she gets to hog the spotlight. I have no problem with the term. I’m not big on labels anyway. My book is fiction. I don’t care who reads it. I care about the story.

Thanks so much for answering our questions, Liz! And now for the blurb and how to buy your fabulous new book!

Well, the absolutely best news is that if you are an Amazon Prime member, you can get Room to Breathe a month early and FREE! This book is part of Amazon’s First Reads program (which I’m insanely thrilled about). If you don’t do Prime, you can grab it on November 1st. Since it’s an Amazon Montlake imprint, it’s in Kindle Unlimited, but you can still get it from other major retailers like Barnes and Noble and Target. It just might not be on the shelf. I hope you all get a chance to meet Daphne and Ellery. Thanks for hosting me, Heather.

Do you read Women’s Fiction? Why or why not?

 

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