September 8, 2011
Today I'd like to welcome Carly Phillips to my little corner on the worldwide web. I'm honored to have Carly on the Blog today as she is one of the authors who got me hooked on contemporary romance. Early on when I started reading English romance novels I discovered her (probably by randomly clicking on author websites) and needless to say (almost) her entire backlist is perched on my shelves, some still waiting to be read. Her Lucky Charm Trilogy are among one of my favorite contemporary series and I have no doubt her Serendipity series will soon follow the same path!

As part of her Blog-Tour in honor of her newest release SERENDIPITY (release date: September 6th) she agreed to be interviewed by yours truly. Let me tell you, her answers were what saved this interview. As I am one of the worst interviewers in the blogosphere (hence why I have so little of them on the Blog LOL), I shed blood, sweat and tears coming up with original, interesting and fun questions...Thanks Carly, for taking the time to get through them ;)

Carly Phillips Bio:

Carly Phillips is the New York Times Bestselling author of over 30 romance novels with contemporary characters and plotlines that today’s readers identify with and enjoy. Carly is a stay at home mom of 2 daughters (now almost old enough to read her books!), one soft coated wheaten terrier and a brand new Havanese puppy. She’s a Twitter and Internet junkie and is always around to interact with her readers. More information on Carly can be found at her website.

Around the web you can also find Carly at:
Twitter | Facebook | Blog |

Carly, the author
What does an average writing day look like for you?
Well ... how about an ideal writing day? Every day is different - I have kids, 2 dogs, if I plan a day of writing, someone will get sick. So an ideal writing day is sitting down around 9 - writing for 2 hours - going out, doing some errands, home by around 1 PM and watching Soaps while I continue to work until I have to carpool or do other things. As I said, that is ideal. Actually I write in fits and spurts when I have time, when I can, depending on if the work is flowing ... or not.

Lately I've been seeing a lot of (sub)genre-hopping as I call it. You write contemporary romance, which I enthusiastically applaud, but have you ever considered writing in another genre or subgenre? If so, what would you consider writing and why?
I am a true believer in writers doing what they do best. I am doing what I love, and I hope that shows to the reader. I read in other genres (paranormal, erotica, etc.), but that is my enjoyment, my reach into other worlds that gets me away from the contemporary writer I am. Right now I don’t want to write another genre. There are too many others who do it well – paranormal requires a world building that is so foreign to me, I’d rather get lost as a reader than write it and try to keep track. Historical means I’d have to research (blech!) and true suspense would mean my brain would have to work differently! So, I’m a happy contemporary romance writer and a very happy all-genre romance reader.

Fans, readers can also be very vocal when they don't like something. I don't always agree with how fellow readers express their dissatisfaction. How do you deal with that as an author?
Diplomatically, everyone is entitled to their opinion. That said, if you're unhappy, think about if you were the person on the receiving end of the email or blog or post - and know someone put their heart and soul into the story - you don't have to like it - but you don't have to be rude to the creator either. But yes, everyone is entitled to express their opinion. I just wish they'd do it nicely ;)

As an author you must receive a lot of fanmail. Tell us about your most memorable fanletter/email you've ever received?
I LOVE hearing from readers. My favorite emails are the ones that say something like, I never liked to read and then I picked up one of your books and now I can’t stop. Wow. That’s so humbling and makes me happy. A woman wrote because her grandmother had passed away and she found a postcard note I’d sent her among her possessions – and she thanked me for making an older woman happy by replying. Those things are priceless!

Carly, the person
As an avid romance reader I adore love stories (well duh! LOL) and I'm always asking people about theirs. So what's the story with you and your significant other? How did you meet? Was it love at first sight? How long have you been together?
Great question! We met in college - we both went to Brandeis University in MA. My 19 year old goes there now! Love at first sight? Not sure ... he had to work for it, LOL. We've been together since our sophomore year - 26 years, ack! Married 22. I wouldn't change a thing!
Describe who Carly Phillips is using just 5 words?
Mother (of 2 daughters and 2 dogs), wife, daughter, friend, writer/author - waah! I want more room. LOL.

When you have the time to read, what kind of books do you love to read? Have you read any books recently, preferably romance of course, you would like to recommend to us?
I used to read only contemporary but thankfully ventured out of my comfort zone recently and found some fabulous authors! I can never name them all or not forget one ...
Contemporary – Jill Shalvis, Toni Blake, my Plotmonkey pals Janelle Denison, Leslie Kelly, Julie Leto, Lauren Dane
Paranormal – Nalini Singh (Psy series), Larissa Ione, Sydney Croft
HOT – Lauren Dane, Lainey Reese wrote an all time fav of mine, A Table for Three … So many more …

I know you love your soaps. Do you know my romance addiction started with watching soaps, Another World to be precise? What is your favorite soap and what are the reasons I should watch it if I can?
My go to staple has always been ABC - All My Children, One Life to Live, and General Hospital. As I am sure you know, ABC has recently devastated me by canceling All My Children and One Life to Life - I'd recommend watching those now through the end because unlike other soaps, this is you can't miss a day or you miss everything race to the end. But knowing they're ending, if you have to pick one, watch GENERAL HOSPITAL because we need to get viewers and save the last ABC soap. And it's just a fantastic show. Best romantic pairing? Jason and Sam.

You have a free day, no obligations, no work, no appointments, your free to do whatever you please. What do you do on such a day?
Believe it or not? Same thing. Just let me sleep in, read a lot, hang on the Internet, have lunch with a family member or friend ... watch my Soaps, order in dinner and chill! I'm not fussy or hard to please!

New York Times bestselling author Carly Phillips presents the first in a delightful new series about a quaint upstate New York town where love, fate and fortune are intertwined …

Faith Harrington was the classic girl of privilege–until her father was convicted of running a Ponzi scheme and then her marriage crashed and burned.

Now Faith is back in her hometown, hoping for a fresh start. But her father’s betrayal has rocked Serendipity – and not everyone is ready to welcome her with open arms. Then she runs into her teenage crush — the dark, brooding Ethan Barron. Ethan, no stranger to scandal himself, never imagined he’d own the mansion on the hill, much less ever again come face to face with Faith–the princess he once kissed senseless. The chance meeting reignites the electric charge between them.

Still, when Ethan hires her to redecorate what was once her childhood home, Faith is sure that getting involved with the town’s notorious bad boy will only lead to trouble. But her heart has other ideas. And so do the townspeople of Serendipity …

Buy links: BookDepository | Amazon | Barnes & Noble |

Tell us a bit about your upcoming release, Serendipity?
Serendipity is the name of both the series for Berkley and the first book set in a fictional small town in upstate New York. At the center of the town is the landmark Harrington Mansion, the epitome of wealth and privilege. The series opens with SERENDIPITY, which introduces readers to the estranged Barron brothers, brought together by a teenage sister they didn't know they had and family drama they haven't yet put to rest. These books tap deeper into emotions than my more recent books while keeping the trademark sensuality and light moments my readers expect. Book one, Serendipity 9/11 is the story of Ethan Barron, the "bad boy" oldest brother. Ethan returns home after ten years and finds himself tempted by the girl who was too good for him in high school, but now their social status are reversed, as he now owns the Harrington mansion - in which she grew up. At heart, Serendipity is the story of a man who is looking for redemption and a woman in search of a place to belong.

I'm so excited about this series and I hope readers really respond to the town and the characters, all of whom I already love. The Serendipity series will continue with the other two brothers, Nash Barron in Destiny 1/12 and Dare Barron in Karma 6/12. I hope to then continue to write about the town and people in Serendipity in three book arcs, and continue to spin on to other characters in the town readers have already met within the pages.

Thank you for taking the time to answer my questions and I look forward to reading Serendipity!
Thank you, Pearl!


Carly has generously offered a Limited Edition signed Romance Trading card of Serendipity and Destiny to one of the commenters on this Blogpost.

In addition to that and because I'm so excited about this new Carly Phillips series, I'm offering a second commenter a copy of SERENDIPITY (ordered and shipped via the BookDepository).

What you need to know about the giveaway:
- Giveaway is open internationally (worldwide)
- You can enter by answering one or both questions beneath
- Giveaway ends Wednesday September 14th 2011 and the winners will be announced on Thursday September 15th
- Make sure you leave a way to contact you if it is not included in your profile. Please note that if your are picked as a winner and I have no way of contacting you, I will draw another winner

Do you like to read contemporary romance? Why? Why not?
Give me an awesome contemporary romance author or book reccommendation. An author or book that really blew you away!


daydrmzzz said...

I normally tend to read a lot of Paranormal so a great contemporary is a treat for me. I just recently read Anything You Want by Erin Nicholas and I LOVED it!! & HIGHLY recommend it :) Thanks for the chance to win this book I was actually looking at it yesterday at the store :)

LadyVampire2u said...

I will read some contemporary romances. I am picky which ones since I am more of a paranormal reader. But I have had this book on my wishlist for a while now. I love the blurb and really am interested to see what happens to Faith. Thanks for the giveaway!

LadyVampire2u AT gmail DOT com

Aurian said...

Thanks for the interview ladies, I enjoyed reading it. I do read some contemporary romance between my paranormals and historicals. I recently discovered Robin Kaye and her Domestic Gods series, really liked that. If a book can make me laugh and cry, it's a keeper. Another go-to contemporary author will always be Nora Roberts.

Andrea said...

Hi Pearl, I LOVE your blog and this post. My fav genre is Contemp. I also love my cowboys too :) I try to add in some historical, and a little PNR occassionaly.
I loved Lisa Kleypas Travis Series.
I am re-listening to Sugar Daddy right now!
@andrea_desherb (twitter)
andrea_desherbinin at yahoo dot come

Blanche said...

Great interview!:)

I love contemporaries and read lots of them. Just finished Don't Mess With Texas by Christie Craig, very cute and I can't wait for the second book!!

Leontine said...

Fantastic interview, Pearl and loved reading the answers of Carly Phillips :) I really need to dig in my memory for a good contemp. rec...which might be dated *eek*

Ppffff. Okay scoured my shelfs but I'm too out of the genre to even have a rec for you *shakes head at self*

But as usual, you have pointed me to a new contemp. romance! I really like the small town setting so going to add Serendipity to the wishlist!

Dottie Legatos said...

I recently started reading Kristan Higgins' contemporary romance novels. She is GREAT!!! Her books are sensitive & humorous. Two of the most important reasons for me to get carried away from the hum-drum of everyday life. One of the best of her books is "Just One of the Guys". If you haven't read any of Kristan's books, please give her a try!

Connie said...

My first love is historical romance novels, but quickly following that are contemporary romance and chick lit. In addition, I love non-fiction and biographies as well. Hmm....I guess there really isn't a book out there that I wouldn't love to read! Congratulations to Carly on the release of her new novel, "Serendipity." I would so love to win a copy of it to read!

Melissa said...

I mostly read paranormal novels but like to switch it up once a week with a contemporary romance!Besides Carly, I love to read anything by Lori Foster!
Thanks for the great interview!

Anonymous said...

I love contemporaries, especially Carly Phillips' books. Her books always puts a smile on my face. I have started reading more and more parnormal romances but always turn back to contemporaries.

sue p. said...

Love contemporary because it's now, but mix it up with historical. Some fav contemporary authors, besides Carly are Jennifer Cruisie, Lucy Monroe, Kristan Higgins, SEP, Susan Mallery, Sherryl Woods.

Jane said...

I would recommend readers to check out Susan Andersen, Cathie Linz and Susan Donovan.

janie1215 AT excite DOT com

marybelle said...

I do read some contemporary romance, but I think I will always prefer my romance to be Historical. I love the etiquette involved.


Z said...

I like all kinds of stories but probably comtempory is one sub genre that I don't own alot of. I did bring all my Carly books with me to RomCon where she was kind enough to sign them. And Carley was on my team for the Robyn Carr jepardy game, our team almost won. Congratulations on a new book.

Karra said...

I love reading anything in the romance genre, whether it be paranormal or contemporary. It depends on the mood I'm in, I guess.

One author that I adore in the contemporary genre is Inez Kelley, and her book Sweet as Sin is absolutely amazing. It is an emotional roller-coaster backing a great story. I highly recommend.

I can't wait to read Serendipity and wish Carly Phillips all the best. :)


Karen C said...

You've really gotten some wonderful suggestions for authors/books!

My all time favorite romance author is Nora Roberts. You can't go wrong with anything she produces and I would highly recommend The Bride Quartet series; you will love it.

Thanks for the chance to win Serendipity.


Sonali said...

Awesome Interview. I love reading contemporary romances because it provides a great escape and guarantees a happy-ever-after. Why the contemporary sub-genre because there are certain aspects of the characters or aspects in the plot line that as a reader i can relate to which in turn makes it more realistic.

Jennifer Cruise is a particular favorite of mine because her books are witty and at times humorous. I always have a smile on my when reading one of her works.

Thank you for the fabulous giveaway.


JenM said...

I always enjoy a good contemporary and I haven't tried any of Carly's so I will definitely check them out. I enjoy both big city and small town stories. Two of my favorite small town series are Robyn Carr's Virgin River series and Meg Benjamin's Konigsburg TX series. I also really enjoy Jane Graves' books.
Jen at delux dot com

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39, married to my real life romance hero, addicted to TV shows, reading romance novels and Twitter. I'm a chronic (e)book hoarder and my absolute favorite genres within romance fiction are contemporary romance and romantic suspense, but I don't shy away from historical, paranormal or erotic romance either. Even the occasional (urban) fantasy romance, futuristic and sci fi romance may make it to my Mount TBR. This is my corner of the world wide web where I let you know what books I'm hoarding, reading and reviewing.
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Pearl has read 10 books toward her goal of 50 books.

On My TBR Shelf

  • Unforgivable - Laura Griffin
  • Snapped - Laura Griffin
  • Darkness at Dawn - Elizabeth Jennings
  • Sizzle and Burn - Alexis Grant
  • No Mercy - Lori Armstrong
  • Animal Magnetism - Jill Shalvis
  • Crazy for Love - Victoria Dahl
  • Kink - Saskia Walker/Sasha White
  • So Sensitive - Anne Rainey
  • Dark Taste of Rapture - Gena Showalter
  • The Darkest Secret - Gena Showalter
  • Vampire in Atlantis - Alyssa Day
  • Vampire Dragon - Annette Blair
  • Captive Spirit - Anna Windsor
  • Chosen by Blood - Virna DePaul
  • Rebel - Zoe Archer
  • Stranger - Zoe Archer
  • A Taste of Desire - Beverley Kendall
  • Mistress by Midnight - Maggie Robinson
  • To Desire a Devil - Elizabeth Hoyt
  • To Tame a Dangerous Lord - Nicole Jordan

Digital TBR Next

  • Driven - Jayne Rylon (reread)
  • Shifting Gears - Jayne Rylon
  • Beg Me - Shiloh Walker
  • Tempt Me - Shiloh Walker
  • Jazz Baby - Lorelie Brown
  • Playboy Prankster - Pamela Britton
  • Just Like That - Erin Nicholas
  • Sweet Inspiration - Penny Watson
  • Breathe - Donna Alward
  • My Gigolo - Molly Burkhart
  • Scent of Persuason - Nikki Duncan

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