Saturday, November 10, 2018

Where it all Began.

Sometimes I start a book with a heroine or a theme or a cute hook, but the spark for, What Were You Thinking, Paige Taylor? came from an old building! I kept thinking about three wooden Victorian buildings and how much fun it would be to have three women all running different businesses and becoming firm friends along the way. The idea didn’t go any further until one day I was listening to the Sheila E song, The Belle of St. Mark and somehow it latched itself to my old buildings idea.

Once I had my premise it was so much fun to think about who owned the stores and how they could find a little happiness! In book one we meet Paige Taylor who has runaway from her old life in New York to run a bookstore in one of the three Victorian buildings, known by the locals as The Belles of St. Clair.

What Were You Thinking, Paige Taylor? 

After her carefully ordered world imploded, Paige Taylor cracks up. On her tenth self-help book, it seemed like a good idea at the time to reinvent herself—move from Manhattan to the tiny beachside town of St. Clair—and take over the local bookstore.
But instead of discovering her spiritual Nirvana, she’s neck-deep in a floundering business, the locals treat her like a plague victim, and her mom’s suddenly decided to visit—with no end in sight—and keeps coming home with one surprise after the next.
Added to that pot of crazy, the one guy who sets her pulse racing has sworn off women forever. He’s got a Samsonite filled with baggage, but damn he looks good hauling it down the street. And giving her those sexy half-smiles. And tempting her to take him for a test ride.

Soon Paige discovers that reinventing herself takes more than just a change of address and a pithy quote on Instagram. She needs to face the truth about her life, and that’s something she can’t do alone.


“Paige.” His low voice sent a ripple of something illicit through her body. It was the first time he’d said her name. She had a bad, bad feeling she’d be replaying it over and over again in her mind. A flash of indecision raced across his face before he fixed her with a steady gaze. “Do you really want to fit into this community?”
Stars spread out across the horizon and her skin prickled. She loved this place, she just wasn’t sure how to make it love her back.
An image of what would happen if she failed flashed across her mind. Back in New York working for another horrible boss, dating another Patrick. Or, worse, in Boston with a family who saw her only for what she could do for them.
 “I do.” She tried not to admire the way the moonlight and shadows danced across his face. “I just don’t know how. Sam has a ‘Born in St. Clair’ stamp on the back of her neck, and can bake like an angel, while Laney’s the happiest person in the world who gives flowers to everyone. Hell, I even caught her giving a bouquet to a dog the other day.”
That earned her a small smile, and he took a deep breath, as if in two minds about what he was going to say.
“Let me welcome you to the community patrol team. It’s a vital part of this town and everyone will know you’re committed to being here.”
“Community patrol? As in staking out bad guys and eating donuts?”
“You might have us confused with movie cops.” His mouth twitched. If she didn’t know better, she’d swear he was smiling. “We’re the eyes and ears for the sheriff’s department and help out where we can.”
She studied his face not sure what to make of the offer. Everything Sam told her explained why he’d been withdrawn and reserved around her.
So where does this fit in?
“Is this part of the St. Clair Rejuvenation Committee to help out-of-towners who don’t know what they’re doing?”
“Yes, it’s clearly stated in sub-section thirty-nine A. We even throw in a flashlight,” he said in a dry voice before fixing her with a frank stare. “It’s been brought to my attention I might’ve judged you too harshly. Ironic since I spend half my time teaching Kira not to judge people.”
His words slid over her. She got the feeling he didn’t open up very often. Or admit when he was wrong.
“You really think it will help?”
“Okay.” She nodded, not quite sure if she was saying yes to improving her business or to spending time with him. Or, perhaps it was both. Either way it was a gift horse.
Whose mouth I’m not going to look at it.
“It sounds great. Thank you.”
“No problem. I’ll pick you up at nine o’clock on Tuesday night. Oh, and by the way.” His voice was a low drawl that prickled her skin, as his eyes glanced down at the spiky heels. “Try and wear sensible shoes.”

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