Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Hollywood Swinging by Chicki Brown

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Newlywed author Shontae Nichols Burke is trying to adjust to
her life in Hollywood as the wife of actor Devon Burke, one of the film industry’s brightest upcoming stars. She’s left her home and her friends and moved to Los Angeles.

They both have blossoming careers.  She’s attending movie premieres and living a life she only dreamed of. 

Unknown to Shontae, someone else also believes Devon Burke is the love of her life. When this disturbed woman insinuates herself into their lives, Shontae learns that all Hollywood drama isn’t scripted and finds herself in a fight for her marriage that’s worthy of the big screen.

Devon came up behind her, wrapped one arm around her tiny waist and lifted her hair from her neck with a tender hand just like he’d done to me countless times. 
“You don’t know how much I missed you,’ he murmured into the soft spot just below her earlobe.
“I don’t believe you,” she teased, with her back arched and her breasts straining against the thin fabric of her top.  Her curvaceous rear undulated against him in a slow wave.My hands curled into tight fists, and I blinked a few times to be certain the scene before me was really
happening. What could be more devastating than a newlywed seeing her husband in an erotic situation with another woman? Another incredibly beautiful, younger woman. He seemed to be completely absorbed, as if nothing else in the world mattered. My breath hitched, and I froze.
“Oh, you don’t?” he said, his sexy baritone rough with desire. 
“I guess I’ll just have to show you then.”
 With parted lips and half closed eyes, Devon looked spellbound. He ran his long, strong fingers down the indentation in her back before letting his hands slither over her hips and down her taut thighs. In one swift motion his hands were under her flimsy top. 
“I’ve been away for two months. The whole time I was gone all I could think about was coming home and making love to you.” She giggled and I gagged when he yanked the top up uncovering her perfect breasts. 
“Fake!” my mind screamed. I squeezed my lips together to keep from making a sound when Devon forcefully pulled her back into his crotch. My tooth broke the skin of my lower lip, and I licked away the metallic taste of blood. Her arms spread out to the side with her fingers splayed on the wall. Devon trailed slow kisses down her spine, dropped to his knees and eased her pants down leaving her standing in a tiny black thong. His breathing was labored and the muscles in his back and powerful thighs strained with tension. Thankfully I was in the shadows where neither of them could see the abject horror on my face. 

Feeling like a voyeur, I forced down the sick churning in the pit of my stomach as Devon unzipped his pants and let them fall to the floor. A lump formed in my throat when I recalled how that morning I’d watched him put on the black silk boxers I’d bought him for our honeymoon. I’d shamelessly wished I could take them off him, but knew he was expected at work at six and didn't have time for any pre-dawn fun and games.
“And cut!” A voice rang out from the shadows near me. I rocketed back to reality, thankful for the momentary reprieve. My lungs suddenly refilled with air as if someone had removed the hand they’d had clamped over my nose and mouth.

INTERVIEW from Chicki Brown

N.L. Earnshaw: What will readers like about your book?

Chicki Brown: I think they will relate to Shontae. She is an average woman who marries an up-and-coming movie star. Without giving away too much, the story is about the joys and heartaches she experiences in her new Hollywood lifestyle.

N.L. Earnshaw: Why did you self publish?

Chicki Brown: After writing for ten years, signing with two different agents and still not getting a bite from a New York publisher, I decided to go it alone. For several years I had been reading author Joe Konrath’s blog, and followed with fascination what he called his “Kindle experiment.” His results astounded me, and I figured if he could pay his mortgage with his Kindle royalties, I could at least buy some shoes with mine!

E-publishing is the future and the future is now. All of the numbers for the last quarter of 2010 and the first quarter of 2011 show the amazing increase in e-book sales. Rather than sit around and allow this author-positive change in the industry to pass me by, I decided to jump in. So far, it’s been great ride, and it gets better every month.

N.L. Earnshaw: What is your writing process?

Chicki Brown: I am a plotter. My books always start with an idea, so I begin by making general notes on plot points the story might contain. As I go through this process, the characters begin to gel in my mind. My next step is to find photos of people that resemble my idea of the major players, what they drive, where they live, etc. and create a collage, which I post in my office. Seeing them makes it so much easier to write physical descriptions.

Although I work with a general outline, I give the characters free rein to take the story where they want it to go.

Since I belong to a critique group, I submit each finished chapter for their comments while I move on to writing the next chapter. When I get their critiques back, I immediately revise keeping their suggestions in mind.

N.L. Earnshaw: How long does it take you to write your first draft?

Chicki Brown: Usually three to four months because I typically write single title, long contemporary books that average around 400 pages. The editing and revision process takes another two to three months.

N.L. Earnshaw: What inspired you to write this particular story?

Chicki Brown: I think every female in this country has, at one time or another, imagined herself married to a movie star, most likely a particular movie star.

To be honest, I’ve often wondered what it might be like to be married to a big screen wonder. In reality, I know that the average Hollywood marriage is challenging to say the least and has the life span of a fruit fly. Hollywood Swinging is about a Tinseltown couple that is madly in
love and find themselves faced with an external threat, which begins to take a toll on their happy marriage. The story tells how they defeat this threat and get their happily ever after.

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  1. Wow! Tense scene, Chickie. You roped me right into it. I was filled with righteous indignation for the heroine that her new hubby would be cheating. Yup, ya' got me.

  2. That's exactly the reaction I was going for! Thanks for stopping by, June.

  3. Chicki, it's so interesting that you decided to self-publish. I've read several authors blogs that have made that same decision. You are right. In today's world, there are so many opportunities, and if you're willing to take the chance the world is wide open :-)