Laura Heffernan is living proof that watching too much TV can pay off. When not watching total strangers participate in arranged marriages, drag racing queens, or cooking competitions, Laura enjoys travel, baking, board games, helping with writing contests, and seeking new experiences. She lives in the Northeast with her amazing husband and two furry little beasts.
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I still get a thrill when I think about having readers. It’s like, really? Me? I have readers?
Writing has always been my dream. I wrote my first short story when I was five years old, about a family’s Saturday morning. Although the plot lacks conflict, my mom still has that story somewhere. As I got older, I still loved reading and writing, but I got scared. Scared to share my writing with anyone, scared of rejection, scared that people would laugh at me when they found out I wanted to be a writer. I didn’t apply for my high school newspaper because I was worried about what other people would say/think (Four years later, I joined the Math team, though. Peer pressure is weird.) I wrote a few short stories, but I never did anything with them. I started a dozen novels that went nowhere (including a spectacularly awful Twilight rip-off that still makes me laugh). But, since everyone said it’s impossible to make a living as a writer, I got a college degree in criminal justice, then went on to graduate school. I swore I’d write a book “some day.”
Some day kept getting further and further away. Even when I found a freelance job that didn’t require me to put in 40 hours a week, I didn’t start writing. Then, in 2012, my friend Lauren told me about NaNoWriMo. She’d done it for years. I’d never known she was a writer. I’d never heard of NaNo, but I was intrigued. Unfortunately, I had a jam-packed November that year, traveling out of state every weekend. So I filed the information away and thought, “Maybe next year.”
That summer, I got married. My husband and I went away for a week-long honeymoon in September. NaNo had been in the back of my mind for a while, but while we were at a day spa I finally realized: I didn’t need Nano. I didn’t have to wait until November first. I could just commit to writing a book, make a promise to myself, and go. I’d write a book and not stop until I hit 50,000 words. When we got home, that’s exactly what I did, and I haven’t looked back. America’s Next Reality Star is the first manuscript I wrote, back in 2013, but now I’ve got more than half a dozen manuscripts in varying stage of completion.
Making that promise to myself, to stop putting things off, to finally write a book, was the best thing I ever did. Even through the ups and downs, I’m so proud of what I’ve accomplished, because I finally stopped worrying about what people would say or think and did what I’ve always wanted to do.
America’s Next Reality Star is the type of book I love, and I’m so happy to be able to share it with the world. Thank you for reading, and I hope you enjoy it.
SEEKING THE SMART ONE
Twenty-four-year-old Jen Reid had her life in good shape: an okay job, a tiny-cute Seattle apartment, and a great boyfriend almost ready to get serious. In a flash it all came apart. Single, unemployed, and holding an eviction notice, who has time to remember trying out for a reality show? Then the call comes, and Jen sees her chance to start over—by spending her summer on national TV.
Luckily The Fishbowl is all about puzzles and games, the kind of thing Jen would love even if she wasn’t desperate. The cast checks all the boxes: cheerful, quirky Birdie speaks in hashtags; vicious Ariana knows just how to pout for the cameras; and corn-fed “J-dawg” plays the cartoon villain of the house. Then there’s Justin, the green-eyed law student who always seems a breath away from kissing her. Is their attraction real, or a trick to get him closer to the $250,000 grand prize? Romance or showmance, suddenly Jen has a lot more to lose than a summer . . .
AMERICA'S NEXT REALITY STAR is forthcoming from Kensington/Lyrical Shine on March 7, 2017.
You can read an excerpt at Barnes and Noble's Website!
AMERICA’S NEXT REALITY STAR is also available for pre-order from the following sites:
Amazon | Barnes and Noble | Kobo | iTunes | Google Play