About Me

My photo
United Kingdom
A pick 'n' mix genre author. "I'm not greedy. I just like variety."

Wednesday, 16 January 2013

Feature: Going After the Heart by Kristen Beairsto

First off, a big thank you to Elizabeth for graciously allowing me to spend time here today!  When I first sat down and started writing Going After the Heart, I used the writing as a therapeutic instrument to get over a horrible dream.  Before I knew it, however, the story turned into so much more than that.

The idea for Going After the Heart came from a nightmare I had featuring myself and my husband.  Waking up feeling awful as some dreams have the power to do, I thought I'd write down a couple of humorous aspects of the dream to help me get over it.  Feeling better, I thought I'd eventually use the notes as scenes in a future story about something else entirely.  Then I started thinking about the kind of people these situations would happen to.  As their personalities took shape, the moments leading up to the situations started to take form.  And just like that, I had a plot to flush out and characters to torture! = D

Have you ever had something start out as one thing and morph into something else completely?

~ * ~

Going After the Heart 

Blurb:

Lizzy Bergstrum thought she finally reached a point in her life when she could honestly say she had it all.  A thriving writing career.  A wonderful daughter.  And a marriage to the love of her life.  But looks can apparently be deceiving because her husband just walked out on her and their eight year old daughter hates her.

Gavin Bergstrum can’t handle the direction his life has taken.  Not only did he get laid off from his job, but his wife seems to barely remember he exists.  Convinced he’s tried his best to change things, he begins to wrestle with the possibility of divorce.  But he can’t think straight in the same house as Lizzy.  Hating to leave his daughter, but needing time to think and come to terms with what he feels he needs to do, Gavin decides to return to his small home town in Oregon and stay at his family ranch with his father and brothers.

In shock, Lizzy gives Gavin his space.  But as time passes and he doesn’t say a word about their marriage, Lizzy decides it’s past time she takes matters into her own hands.  Without a word, she follows Gavin to Oregon.

Now facing a daughter who blames her for everything, an irritated husband, and a small town that feeds on the drama, Lizzy finds herself trying to figure out how to convince Gavin to give her another chance, teach her daughter it takes two to make a successful marriage, and overcome her own insecurities – all without compromising who she is.

~ * ~

Excerpt:

“Here’s the keys to the cabin.  The round one is to the front and back doors and the square one is for the shed.”  Ray’s voice sounded clear and even behind him.

Turning, Gavin watched his father hand Lizzy a small set of keys.

“I had Clare clean it up for you.  Like I said on the phone, it’s not the newest place in the world, but it’s still in pretty good shape considering its age."

Lizzy gave his father a small smile as she took the keys from him.  “I’m sure it’s great.”

Her gaze moved to him and resentment swelled watching her smile fade.  Although, what did he expect, she hadn’t smiled at him for months prior to him leaving.  Why would she start now?

But the indiscernible look settling on Lizzy’s features startled him.  After ten years of marriage and five years together before getting married, Gavin would have bet big money he knew every single one of his wife’s expressions.  But this one, he realized dumbfounded, he didn’t recognize.

Her gaze dropped down to Sky.  “Come on, Sky, we’ve got to go up to the cabin to settle in.”

Beside him, Gavin felt Sky’s shoulders tense.

“No!”  She shouted the word venomously.  “I don’t want to go with you,” she spat before turning pleading blue eyes up at him. “Dad, can’t I stay here with you and Papa?  I don’t want to go with her.”

Apparently he missed the memo about today being Surprise Day, Gavin realized, as he could only stare at his daughter for a moment, never having seen this side of her before.

“I tell you what, little missy, no little girl is welcome in my house that sasses her mama the way you just did.  No matter what injustice you think she’s handed you, a child never speaks to their parent that way.”  Ray delivered his little speech with an even look and matching tone.

Sky’s cheeks turned bright red.  Gavin frowned down at her.  “Your grandfather’s right, you know better than to talk to your mom that way.”

Looking up to his wife, he arched a brow.  Apparently the statute of limitations for surprises for the day hadn’t been reached yet, he thought silently in disbelief when Lizzy didn’t scold, or even comment on, Sky’s behavior.

Rather than say anything, Lizzy looked away and her back stiffened so much he thought her spine would snap.

What the hell is going on?  His bewilderment bothered him.

Seeing Lizzy wouldn’t say anything, Gavin looked back down at Sky. “Honey, since I didn’t know you were coming, I don’t have anywhere set up for you to sleep.  I’m sleeping on a cot in one of the extra rooms.  I’ll try to look at setting something up tomorrow so you can stay a few nights with me.  How does that sound?”

A stubborn look Gavin recognized all too easily surfaced on Sky’s face, but she remained silent, temporarily mollified and nodded.  Turning away from him, Sky made her way back to the car and climbed in without so much as a single glance in her mother’s direction.

Gavin returned his gaze back to Lizzy, but she completely ignored him as she turned to climb back in the car.

That, at least, he’d grown used to.


~ * ~

Competition time!

Kristen is kindly giving a copy of "Going After the Heart" to one lucky commenter. Yep, all you have to do is leave a comment, and don't forget to add your email address.

Competition will end 23rd January at midnight - 6pm est time - and the winner will be picked with the help of Random.org. Good luck!

~ * ~

Bio:

In between her to-be-read pile and trying to bring the characters in her head alive, Kristen spends as much time as she can with family and friends.  Much to her husband’s dismay, she enjoys collecting purses, shoes, and jewelry.  During those rare times she’s not working at her day job, rushing her daughters somewhere, watching movies with her husband, and trying to meet a deadline, she can usually be found energetically cheering for one of her favorite New York sports teams.

As with just about every other writer on the planet, Kristen grew up an avid reader.  She started with young adult before she technically hit the age range and moved on to sci-fi classics by Isaac Asimov and Ray Bradbury.  At fifteen, her best friend gave her a book she just had to read!  The book was Honest Illusions by Nora Roberts.  Always a sucker for a happy ending, she was a goner and fell in love with the romance genre.  Having started writing novel length stories at the age of eleven, Kristen’s stories all took a romantic turn from that point on.

You can connect with Kristen through her website: www.KristenBeairsto.com

6 comments:

  1. Very nice excerpt.

    bn100candg(at)hotmail(dot)com

    ReplyDelete
  2. Great excerpt! Sounds like a great book :)

    ReplyDelete
  3. Thanks for stopping by and sharing an excerpt with us, Kristen. It does sound like a fab book. :-)

    ReplyDelete