Tuesday, April 7, 2015

On Tour: The Marrying Type by Laura Chapman, an Excerpt, a Guest Post, and a Giveaway!

The Marrying Type

The Marrying Type

The Marrying Type by Laura Chapman
Print and e-book, 275 pages
Published February 20th 2015 by Marching Ink LLC

Laura Chapman will be on tour April 6 - May 4
with her novel The Marrying Type.

Always the wedding planner, never a bride, Elliot Lynch is famous for orchestrating the splashiest weddings in Charleston, South Carolina. When her father’s sloppy management practices leave them on the brink of bankruptcy, Elliot will do whatever it takes to save the family business. When asked to appear on “The Marrying Type,” a reality TV show about the people behind the scenes as couples exchange I dos, she says yes to the invasion of privacy (and the hefty paycheck that comes with it).

With a camera crew capturing every detail of her life, Elliot faces her most challenging contract yet: planning a wedding where her ex is involved in every part of the process. Add in a lazy assistant, liquor-loving bridesmaid, and rival planner encroaching on her turf, and Elliot’s wedding season goes from high-end to high-stress.

Forced to confront her past, Elliot must live out her troubled present on national TV if she has any hope of saving her future.

My thoughts about The Marrying Type ~~

I love reading Laura's books because she has such a great, off-the-wall sense of humor that I get and enjoy so much. I love reading stories with great storylines and wonderful characters but will also make me laugh. Sometimes we just need to laugh.

And so, I am reading along, enjoying the story and the chararcters and then Laura throws in this line.
'But this would be the first time in her recollection that a bridesmaid couldn't zip up her dress becasue she's had a last-minute boob job. At first the woman had tried to deny it, but the swelling and scars had given her away.'
That was a line I was not expecting and it made me LOL. Don't you just love it?

Elliot decides to sign up for a wedding reality show in order to help get the family business out of financial trouble. She knew it wasn't going to be easy but she sure didn't expect to run into her ex. Yikes! Somehow they'll get through it, or will they?

The Marrying Type was such a fun read and I just fell in love with Elliott and all the situations that she, and her friends and co-workers, found themselves in, i.e. a bachelorette party, a strip club, jail. WHAT??? Yep, it's loads of fun!

And I have to throw this in, maybe just to tick off Elliott. Each chapter has a wedding quote at the beginning. Love the wedding quotes! Sorry. Not sorry. Ha.
'Why does your nose wrinkle up whenever Adam mentions your quote of the day?'
Seriously though, this is a great, fun story that was such a pleasure to read. I loved being in Elliot's world for a few days.


Guest Post

Welcome to the The Book Bag today. Laura. The last time you were here, you answered my 'Voices' question and I loved your answer! You can read about Laura's voices here.

Today I have a more serious question to ask you. Since I am not a writer and I know I would not have the discipline to make myself sit down and crank out words everyday, I am always interested in how authors make it happen. Tell me about your writing 'routine'. How do you make it happen?

I often feel like a fraud when I tell people about my writing routine. Despite my best of intentions, I stray from my writing schedule almost as often as I ignore my daily meal plan and exercise routine. I can make any of those things last for a week or three, but when it comes to a long-term commitment, it’s not happening.

In a perfect world, here’s what a day of writing would look like:

I wake at 5:15 fully refreshed from a decent night’s sleep. After making quick pit stops in the bathroom and kitchen, I sit down at my desk and open my laptop by 5:30. I salute my framed photo of Brad Richards (a birthday present from my brother, given as an inside joke), put in my headphones, turn on the personalized playlist for my writing project, set the egg timer for 25 minutes and go to work. The words flow out of me like I’m Mozart writing a concerto for oboe and strings. The time goes off, and I’m surprised by how quickly time has passed and delighted by what I’ve written. I take a quick break to refill my coffee and sit down for another 25-minute writing session. I repeat this once more and drink a couple of glasses of water before I call it quits for the morning to have breakfast and prepare for work. I’ve written 1,500 to 2,000 words, and I’m feeling pretty good about that progress.

With my laptop in tow, I go to work, where I jot down a few notes throughout the day in a notebook on my desk. During lunch, I write another 500 words while I munch on some tuna lettuce cups and carrot sticks. This brings my daily word count to more than 2,000 words. Later that night, after I’ve gone to the gym, re-hydrated, and eaten a well balanced meal of black beans, quinoa, and steamed vegetables, I write 1,000 to 1,500 more words and go to bed. Not a bad day.

What a day of writing actually looks like:

The alarm clock rings at 5:15, and I hit snooze. My cat, Bingley, has been chewing on my hair since about 4:30, and he may have stuck his nose in my ear at some point. By 5:25, I can’t stand his meowing any longer, so I stumble out of bed to hit the bathroom. In there, I check my emails and Facebook, and end up getting distracted by a BuzzFeed quiz that answers once and for all “What Type of Man Are You Meant For?” (My answer: “Tall, Dark, and Handsome,” obvi , and you can take the quiz here.)

I pour myself a cup of coffee and eat a couple of gummy vitamins. Those taste pretty good, so I contemplate eating another serving, even though the bottle says you should really only have two in a day. I go to my desk where I decide I should probably refill my coffee mug, because it’s going to be a four-cup kind of day. I raise my coffee mug to Brad Richards and open my laptop. I start the book’s writing playlist, but decide I’d rather listen to something by Beyonce. After playing “XO” three times with an encore performance of “Flawless” I set the egg time for 25 minutes. I spend five minutes staring at the screen re-reading what I wrote the day before (or was it the day before that?). Shaking my head at the general grossness of the last paragraph, I delete it and agonize about whether or not to replace it with something better or just cut my losses and move on. Going with option 2, I write a little more, wrinkling my nose at how little it makes sense. I check the egg timer to see how much time I have left: 22 minutes. I spend a few more minutes in agony, and I get into a groove.

Then the alarm rings. Crap. I really had a nice thing going there. Well, nice might be a little generous, but it didn’t suck. I contemplate continuing to write without the timer, but notice that Bingley has gone back to bed. Oh, hell no. There’s no way he gets to sleep after ruining my last hour of rest. I get out of the chair and poke him a few times before deciding I could use a quick snuggle. Realizing I’m going to be late for work, I hack out a few more words bringing my total word count somewhere around 750. I forget to take my laptop to work, and it’s probably for the best. The break room is busy during lunch, and I find myself getting into a conversation with my co-workers about our favorite orders at Chipotle.

I get home from work and decide I’ll skip my workout to write, but first I’m going to take a short break. I grab whatever is in the fridge or pick up a burrito on my way home and flop out on the couch. I want to really get my creative juices going, and re-watching an episode of “The Mindy Project” is just the ticket. Only, one episode becomes two then three. Next thing I know it’s after 9, and I really should do some writing. I work until bedtime and reach about 500 words for the day. I’m not even sure if they’re any good, but at least they’re done.

Now, this isn’t an everyday sort of thing. Sometimes I am able to get my act together and be pretty disciplined with my pre- and post-work writing sessions. They’re my most productive days, but they’re the exception not the rule. I’m still experimenting with ways to make the most of my writing production. But no matter what, I set out to make time for writing every day. Some days are more successful than others, but ultimately I spend a little bit of time every day thinking about my book, and that’s how I write.

Thanks for the insight into your world, Laura. I loved it!

And Go Big Red!!

Excerpt

Finding the bride curled up next to a toilet changed Elliot’s priorities. A rogue florist and brawling mothers paled next to a sobbing bride. Even having Libby bail last-minute meant nothing compared to this disaster.
Elliot kept her tone soft and light when she approached the bride. “Honey, let’s get you off the floor.”
The bride answered with a muffled sob. She didn’t budge. Elliot said a little prayer for strength, hoping her proximity to a chapel outweighed her distance from a toilet in God’s eyes. Elliot ignored the urge to gag—and her fear of ruining a pair of black slacks—to gingerly kneel beside the young woman.
She barely had time to prepare for the impact as the bride flung herself into Elliot’s arms. They sat in silence for several minutes, rocking back and forth. Elliot held the hysterical woman while she searched for any clues of what might have set off the bride. Unfortunately, her vantage point didn’t offer much.
The bride’s sobs turned into hiccups. Accepting a tissue, she blew her nose and murmured, “I'm late.”
“We have plenty of time.” Using one of the wipes from her wedding emergency kit, Elliot blotted the woman’s tear-streaked face to survey the damage. “We’ll call in the makeup artist and hairstylist to touch you up. You’ll be gorgeous and camera ready with plenty of time to spare.”
“No,” the bride said firmly. “I’m late.”
Elliot nearly repeated her words of comfort when she spotted an open pregnancy test on the counter. Paired with the bride’s sudden and mysterious stomach bug, and the constant stream of tears, she made the connection.
Oh, God. “You're pregnant.”
The bride sniffed. “Maybe. Probably. I haven't checked the test yet.” Her hiccups picked up. “My mother’s going to kill me. She says pregnant brides are tacky.”
She burst into a fresh set of tears. Murmuring comforting words, Elliot craned her neck to read the test results. A smiley face. Did that mean pregnant or not pregnant? She sighed. Of course it meant pregnant.
“Do you want to talk to your fiancĂ©?”
The bride shook her head, sniffing and fighting back hiccups. “It’s bad luck to see him before the wedding.”
Elliot counted to ten before speaking. “A woman makes her own luck.”
“Telling him would only make him nervous,” the bride said.
“Maybe I can pretend this is a honeymoon baby . . .”
Elliot knew she should try to talk sense into the woman. The groom was smart enough to do math. Their parents and everyone else would be able to crunch the numbers, too. But facts wouldn’t save the bride’s wedding, or make her feel any better. A fresh coat of waterproof mascara and some hairspray might.
It only took Elliot five more minutes to comfort her client. Still puffy eyed, the bride pulled herself together for another hair and makeup session to repair the damage. Leaving the cosmetologists to their work, Elliot closed the bathroom door and leaned against the frame to draw a breath.
“Crap.”
Much as she would have liked to hide behind a pew in the chapel, Elliot pushed away from the door. She had a wedding to run.
Rounding the corner, she found the TV show’s camera crew following the ongoing battle between the mothers of the bride and groom. She said a silent prayer of thanks they’d missed her situation with the bride. Unless they’d picked it up on her microphone, which was possible.
“Crap. Crap.”
If the bride wanted to convince her family and friends she’d conceived a baby on her honeymoon and not before the wedding, having the truth broadcast on The Marrying Type would undoubtedly blow her cover.
Elliot still couldn’t wrap her brain around how quickly the show had come together. What surprised her most was how fast the network released advertisements for the show. They weren’t even done filming the first episode, but ads were running every hour.
Elliot snagged Claire, her assistant, as the young woman walked by. She needed an update on the florist, who was more than an hour late.
“I haven't heard anything,” Claire said, her attention focused on the fight brewing across the room.
“Get them on the phone. We wanted the bouquets an hour ago.”
“But . . .” Claire gazed longingly toward the more exciting issue at hand.
“I'll handle the moms.” Elliot played with the pearl pendant on her necklace while she considered her various crises. “Call the florist. And grab the bride a bottle of water and some crackers from my emergency stash.”
“Want me to take her some champagne?”
“No champagne.” Claire raised an eyebrow at her terse response. Elliot cleared her throat and plastered a smile on her face.
“She’s sensitive to alcohol. One drink, and she’ll be stumbling down the aisle. We need a sober bride for the ceremony.”

Be sure to visit CLP Blog Tours for all the other tour stops!


About the author

laura chapman

Laura Chapman is the author of The Marrying Type, Hard Hats and Doormats and the Autumn and Tuck series, which appear in Merry & Bright and A Kind of Mad Courage. A native Nebraskan, she loves football, Netflix marathons, and her cats, Jane and Bingley. Until she fulfills her dream of landing a British husband or becoming a Disney princess, you can find her in a bar penning her next novel.

Connect with Laura

Website | Blog | Twitter | Facebook | Instagram

Find the Book!

Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Goodreads




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12 comments:

  1. GBR, Susan! Thanks for being on the tour and for the lovely review. XO

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    1. You are very welcome, Laura! Thanks for stopping by and chatting with us. I love it when authors do that.

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  2. Great review! Your writing routine is so honest and funny. You truly have a gift! Thanks for the opportunity.

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    Replies
    1. Thank you. It's good to have a sense of humor about these things, you know? :)

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  3. Replies
    1. You are welcome, Samantha! Thanks for stopping by.

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  4. Great post and Laura, I love your "ideal" day. Only someone like Snow White could pull that off and we'd have to hate her for it. Even your "real" day sounds good. Approximately 1000 words a day is nothing to frown about, especially with a full-time job and a love of television :)

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    Replies
    1. Thanks, Meredith! I know you can appreciate how challenging it is to get writing done on top of everything else, but at the end of the day whether it's 100 words or 10,000 words, any writing is better than none.

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  5. Thanks for this lovely giveaway and great post. saubleb(at)gmail(dot)com

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    Replies
    1. Thanks for participating in the tour. Good luck!

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  6. oooooo- I love that I have all these authors stopping by The Book Bag. Thanks Laura, Samantha, and Meredith! Shouldn't you all be working on your next great book, hmm? JK! Thanks for being here!

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