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Perfect on Paper by Patty Froese. Review and author interview

Anne Stanborough, a well known mystery writer, inherits her maiden aunt's book store, Perfect on Paper. The lawyer handling her aunt's estate is none other than the handsome Jake Harrison, but despite his attraction to the beautiful author, his painful divorce has made him wary of a marriage between two driven professionals. Anne can't let go of the career she's worked her entire life towards, and he isn't willing to make a second mistake in marriage. It looks like they should call the whole thing off until Anne discovers that her late maiden aunt might not have been so "maiden" after all… A love story from the past tugs this couple back together again, but will it be enough to prove that a love founded in God really can overcome anything?

Every so often an author comes along whose work I’m not familiar with. This is the first I’ve read from Ms. Froese and it about blew my socks off. (Well if I’d been wearing socks it would have.) Drawn in from the get go by the intriguing black and white cover and beautiful writing style, the lifelike characters keep the reader’s attention glued to the pages.
With settings so real you are almost walking the streets and smelling the coffee, the mystery surrounding Anne’s late aunt just serve to pull you in further.
This book is most definitely a keeper and I look forward to reading more of Ms. Froese’s work.

How did you come up with your premise? Is there a story behind your book? How did the story evolve?
The premise just occurred to me one day. I wish I recall the eureka moment, but I wrote this book several years ago  and then took it through several editing sessions. Long story short--here it is!

Are there any fun tid-bits about this story you can share with us?
This book follows a mystery about Anne's late, "maiden" aunt. As it turns out, she wasn't so maiden after all, and as Anne and Jake dig up the old story... I used a lot of old family stories in this book... Some of the old tales are made up, and some are absolutely true from my family history. It's a nice little tangle of fact and fiction.

How did you decide on the setting?
The setting is actually quite personal... I was a starving artist in the middle of Toronto, Canada's largest city. So when my heroine moves from downtown New York City to the itty bitty town of Charity Falls, the culture shock she experiences is very close to my own when I came out to my current small town.

When will it be released?
This book came out April 2012.

Where were you born?
I was born in Canada. Born and raised.

If you could live anywhere in the world, where would it be?
England... but with money. I've always dreamed of an English garden, a little cottage and a trusty umbrella.         (You definitely need one of those LOL. It’s rained solidly for months now.)

What is the funniest thing that ever happened to you or you witnessed that made you laugh so hard you couldn’t catch your breath?
You know, I have those times when I laugh and laugh, and for the life of me I can't remember what triggers it! Normally it's just something small that strikes me as absolutely hilarious and I giggle over it for days.

What music groups/artists blast from your CD player while you write?
I'm one of those people who needs absolutely silence. I'm happiest when I can hear a pin drop, whether I'm writing or just puttering.  I married an African man who could live with music blaring 24 hours a day. We found our balance--he has a headset! LOL

What got you interested in writing?
I've always loved to write, ever since I was little. So it's my blood. I can't remember ever not writing.

What advice would you give a new writer just starting out?
My advice would be to keep at it. It's hard work, but if you enjoy the process, you'll keep getting better and better and you'll end up published. You just have to want it enough.

Do you ever suffer from writer’s block? If so, what do you do about it?
I just leave the writing for a day or two and focus on things like my neglected housework or taking my four-year-old boy out for the day. By the time I get back to it again, I'm good to go.

When you write do you start with a plot outline, a character sketch, how do you begin? How do you stay on course?
I'm a big planner. I always start with a complete chapter outline so I know exactly how things are going to go. That doesn't mean I won't go back and change the outline, but I don't start unless I have one.

Are you working on anything at the present you’d like to share with us?
Oh, I'm always working on something! Right now, I'm writing a Christmas workplace romance about an overworked assistant and charming boss...

When did you first consider yourself a writer?
I've always considered myself a writer, but when I got my first book accepted, I could call myself a novelist. That was huge!

Describe your writing space.
I write at a little oak roll top desk in the middle of our two bedroom apartment. I can't go hole myself away somewhere, or my little guy will burn the house down. I write and supervise at the same time.

What was the hardest part of writing your book?
Chapter twelve. That's the hardest part about any book. You're over the excitement of "This is going to be the most fantastic book ever! I love this!" and aren't quite close enough to the end to feel like you're really achieving something. Chapter Twelve is the hard part.

What do you like to do when you’re not writing?
When I'm not parenting or taking care of the home, I'm writing. I'm one of those obsessive people who really doesn't stop. When I don't have a book to work on, I feel a little empty. Healthy? Probably not. But true. ;)

Where do you get your inspiration from?
Everywhere! Youtube clips, people I know, conversations, watching people in Walmart...

What did you want to be when you grew up?
I've always wanted to be a writer, but there was a point when I wanted to be a nurse as well.

What genre would you like to explore that you haven’t tried to write in yet? Will you? What would you never see yourself writing?
I've love to try my hand at a mystery.
I'd never write erotica.

Do you really, really want a dog?

Do you hate how you look in pictures?
I hate that I don't look eighteen anymore. Aging is inevitable, but tell my subconscious that!

Do you have any strange handwriting habits, like capitalizing all your “r”s or dotting your “I”s with heart (or anything like that)?
My handwriting is barely legible. If I could find the I's, I'd dot them...

What were you doing at midnight last night?
Waking up when my son came to find me.

Have you ever eaten a crayon?
No, but I have eaten weeds growing in the sidewalk cracks. (Grade 2)

What do you want to know about the future?
Nothing. I worry too much as it is!

What is your heritage?
My father's family is Russian Mennonite, and my mother's family is French Canadian.

Have you ever cried during a movie?

Do you sleep with the light on?
Oh,  yes!

Are you a morning person or a night person?


June Foster said…
I've read this book and I will second the motion.

Love these creative questions.
Great interview and well-deserved praise for this fine book!
Petie McCarty said…
Love the interview, Patty, and congrats on a great review!
Unknown said…
Interesting to find out more about you Patty and what a wonderful, enthusiastic review - you should be proud!

Angela Britnell
Great interview, informative, encouraging and fun to read. You have a great blog, keep up the great work.

CBM Christian Book Marketing

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