Thursday, June 23, 2016

THE GOODBYE YEAR, by author, KAIRA ROUDA

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Proclaimed to be Desperate Housewives meets Beverly Hills 90210, The Goodbye Year is the must read novel of the spring by USA Today bestselling author Kaira Rouda. 

Melanie is a perfectionist mother who is in disbelief that she only has one year left to live vicariously through her son, Dane. She sees his high school graduation and the end of her parenting as a type of death. 

Sarah is just realizing that her graduating daughter, Ashley, has been serving as a stand-in for her traveling husband. The thought of her only daughter leaving is slowly chipping away at Sarah’s perfect fa├žade. Will and his wife are fine, so long as he follows her directions and keeps his affair with Lauren, who also has a graduating daughter, a secret. 

Told from the parent and kid’s perspectives, The Goodbye Year delves into hot topic issues, such as peer pressure and empty nesting. It is a breathtaking depiction of the all too real struggle that parents and children face when transitioning into life post-high school.

Some Q & A with Kaira~


1.   Tell us a little bit about yourself, and how you started writing.

I knew from elementary school on that I would be a writer. It's what I dreamed of becoming as early as I could envision a profession. It still makes me smile to think about it. Later, in middle school and high school, I lost confidence in my writing and didn't write for publication until after college. I was an English major without a byline. That changed once I graduated and started working in the real world first for newspapers and then magazines, and then advertising agencies. But I wanted to write novels. So I did. On the sly, at night after the kids (4 in five years) arrived, and somehow kept the dream alive. Ironically, my first book published was in 2009, a business book for women entrepreneurs titled REAL YOU INCORPORATED: 8 Essentials for Women Entrepreneurs. I had never dreamed of writing a nonfiction book, but when I was asked, it made sense. It became a great summary of all I had learned in my working life up to that point. It's still popular and I'm proud of that as it was one of the first business books for women without a pink cover. (I'm not kidding.)
My first novel, Here, Home, Hope was published in 2011 and marked the beginning of the next chapter in my life. We moved from Ohio to California, my husband and I sold the business we created, and it was time to take the chance. 

2.    What are some things you enjoy when not writing?

I am so blessed to live in Laguna Beach, California, the inspirational setting for my contemporary romance series of the same name! Here, almost everyday is perfect. So I try to be outside as much as possible, walking, hiking, just enjoying the sunshine. I’m a fan of yoga, and of spending as much time as possible with friends and family.

3.    Do you have a ‘day job’ as well?

No. This is my full-time job. After a long career in marketing, journalism and entrepreneurism, I’m enjoying my second act.

4.    Where do you get your ideas?

Ideas are everywhere. When something touches my heart, good or bad, it usually appears somehow in a story.

5.    What are you working on now?

Since I write both contemporary women’s fiction and romance, I most always have a WIP. On the women’s fiction side, I’m about to begin a re-write of a book I’m really excited about, and in the world of romance, I’m so excited that Amazon has offered me a Kindle World. Kaira Rouda’s Laguna Beach launches on July 7th with an amazing group of talented authors writing stories in the Laguna Beach world. It’s exciting! If you aren’t familiar with Kindle Worlds, here’s a link: https://kindleworlds.amazon.com

6.    Is anything in your book based on real life experiences?

I wrote THE GOODBYE YEAR during my son’s senior year in high school. He is my youngest, so his goodbye year had the added stress of my approaching empty nest. Yes, there are some real life experiences in the novel, twisted and fictionalized, of course. Here’s a piece I wrote for Woman’s Day about it! http://www.womansday.com/relationships/family-friends/a54482/empty-nesters/

7.    Do you have a favorite chapter or scene?

I have a favorite character in The Goodbye Year. His name is Dane.

8.    Do you have any advice for aspiring writers?

 1. Write what you know, in your heart.
 2. Don’t write for money, fame or other people. Write because it is  what you must do.
3. Read, read, read. And then, read some more.

9.    What are the downfalls of your writing career? The best parts?

There aren’t any downfalls in my opinion. I’m enjoying the career of my dreams. The best part is the people – especially the other authors I’ve met either online or in person. They are, without question, the most supportive amazing group of women I’ve had the opportunity to meet and spend time with. The other best part is when I see somebody smiling as they read one of my books. Or when I read a positive review. That is the best feeling.

Is there anything you’d like to say to your readers and fans?

THANK YOU. For reading my words, for supporting me and my stories. Without readers, it would be a really lonely profession. I learn so much more about my characters when I have the chance to interact with readers. Basically, thank you so much.

Kaira Rouda is a USA Today bestselling, multiple award-winning author of contemporary women's fiction and sexy modern romance novels that sparkle with humor and heart.
Her women's fiction titles include THE GOODBYE YEAR, HERE, HOME, HOPE, ALL THE DIFFERENCE and IN THE MIRROR. Her bestselling short story is titled, A MOTHER'S DAY. Her sexy contemporary romance series include the LAGUNA BEACH Series, the INDIGO ISLAND Series and a new MALIBU Series launching in 2016.
Nonfiction titles, REAL YOU INCORPORATED: 8 Essentials for Women Entrepreneurs, and REAL YOU FOR AUTHORS: 8 Essentials for Women Writers (available for free download on her website) continue to inspire. 

Kaira's work has won numerous awards including the Indie Excellence Award, USA Book Awards, the Reader's Choice Awards and honorable mention in the Writer's Digest International Book Awards. She lives in Southern California with her husband and four almost-grown kids, and is at work on her next novel. 
Connect with her on Twitter @KairaRouda, 
Facebook at Kaira Rouda Books 
and on her website, http://www.KairaRouda.com.

Kaira Rouda
USA TODAY Bestselling Author
Stories that sparkle with humor and heart 

2 comments:

  1. Thanks so much for having me here, Jill!

    ReplyDelete
  2. Thanks so much, Kaira, for taking the time to share about your book and writing life!

    ReplyDelete