Today is day one of Travismas! I have been so excited to get this started, you have no idea. Let's not waste any time, shall we?
To celebrate 70,000 Facebook likes, we offered an exclusive giveaway to McGuire Monday subscribers (my monthly newsletter). They just had to subscribe (sign up on the side bar on the right side of this page!) and click on the Rafflecopter link to enter. The prize is an early copy of A Beautiful Wedding and a phone call from me to chat about the novella!
The winner is ... Melanie A Cannizzaro! Congratulations!
Also this week, my Twitter followers reached 40,000! To commemorate that milestone, I also offered my Twitter followers the same prize!
The winner is: Janelle Shio (@janelleshio)! Congratulations!
We will be in touch with you shortly to get mailing information and so you can let us know the best time to call. All you have to do is reply! You have until midnight CST to claim your prize.
I had so many tweeps enter with such great tweets, I couldn't pick just one! I told you, I love the holidays! The "extra" winners are ...
Alaina Bailey! (@thumpkin9)
Elizabeth Rialdi! (@ElizabethRialdi)
Stacy Bickford! (@stacy_bickford)
Congratulations! The last five, please email firstname.lastname@example.org with your shipping info and the best time/day to call. You can choose to get your call before you finish A Beautiful Wedding or after (you might have questions!). You have until midnight CST to claim your prize.
Ah ... feels good, doesn't it? If you didn't win this time, no worries! We still have four more days of Travismas, and the prizes get BIGGER and better each day!
For tomorrow's contest, all you have to do is tag 5 friends in a tweet followed by the hashtag #letmeintroduceyouto (@jamiemcguire), OR for Facebook only friends, tag 5 friends in a comment under the corresponding Facebook post on my wall. You can find that post here: https://www.facebook.com/Jamie.McGuire.Author/posts/434120650022631?notif_t=like
A random generator will choose 5 winners, and I'll announce those winners tomorrow evening. This is an INTL giveaway. Good luck!
I've discussed this before, but celebrating the upcoming release of A Beautiful Wedding wouldn't be a true celebration without telling you all how the story of Travis and Abby came to be:
It was a cold, winter night, and I was freezing to death in a dark alley behind the hospital where I slaved as a student during X-ray school. Just me and my laptop. Did I mention it was cold? And dark?
Okay, none of that is true. Well, part of it is. I was in the middle of editing my first novel, Providence in April 2009, and to be frank, I was really sick of looking at it. I wanted to do something different.
A few of my friends who'd read Providence were actually fans of Victorian smut novels, and Providence was YA. I won’t name names [ahem … LISA], but they asked for something steamier. Around that time I had also, by some form of punishment, run into the guy I had a huge, ginormous and painful crush on in college. I was standing in the hall of the hospital waiting for a patient to dress, and after not seeing or speaking to him for 11 years, he rounded the corner. We traded a few words. He seemed like he vaguely remembered me. I was once again heartbroken and humiliated (because as many times as I imagined running into him again, it was not with my hair pulled up into a messy bun, pasty, no makeup, and wearing baggy, standard issue navy blue scrubs).
A few days later, I started a novel titled Red Flag. It would star me and said college crush, and it would have a happy ending, damn it! I plugged in my ear buds, turned on C’mon, C’mon by the Von Bondies, and closed my eyes. Pretty quickly I envisioned a dank basement full of sweaty college guys who were trading money around two guys trading punches. I started typing.
Writing Providence, I struggled with the first paragraph for months. Beautiful Disaster, even after Atria’s purchase, is pretty much the same as the first draft. I changed very little. Atria offered a light copy edit because they didn’t want to change what so many fans already loved.
The book is fiction, but full of truth. For instance, my college crush (let’s call him CC. That’s easier) and I really met as Travis and Abby did in the book (in the cafeteria, not the fight). His friend really did try to embarrass him when he silently asked him who I was by yelling, “What? What? I didn’t hear you! Oh! That’s Jamie!” CC and I became close friends, and I rolled my eyes a lot at his conquests. My America, whose name is really Robin, told me over and over that He That Shall Not Be Named just respected me too much, cared about me too much, and he wasn’t ready to settle down, so I wouldn’t be on his radar for a while. Another truth in Beautiful Disaster is that my 19th birthday was thrown by a big group of my buddies, who were also football players, and the Tequila, unfortunately, is also taken from a real life account.
Believe it or not, America may be a weird name, but it is the name of a friend of a fellow student in X-ray school. Shepley is the name of a guy I went to college with, and so is Brazil (although he spelled it Brazeal). My college professors, Chaney, Ballard, and Campbell, are also in the book.
Another interesting bit of trivia? I hadn’t yet been to Las Vegas when I wrote Beautiful Disaster. I went for the first time in August of 2011 with my sister-in-law, and I’m happy to report we didn’t have Travis and Abby’s experience.
Not long after I finished Red Flag, I decided I didn’t like the title. I switched it to the first chapter, and after hearing Kelly Clarkson’s song “Beautiful Disaster”, I knew I’d found the perfect name.
Inspiration from half of the books I’ve written come from real life experiences. I’ve heard to “write what you know”, and that works for me.
While waiting for the release of A Beautiful Wedding 12/10, why not pre-order the novella that has been given 5 gleaming stars from every blogger who received it early, and save yourself the possible panicked moment when you realize it's release day and you haven't ordered it, yet! Click on A Beautiful Wedding's book page at the top of the screen to pre-order the hardback or the eBook. It will make me look good, and you'll have a worry-free December 10th!
Hope you enjoyed Day One of Travismas. It only gets better. =)