Today we’re celebrating the February release of A Minute on the Lips.
So, Cheryl, where did you get the idea for this novel?
When I first decided to get serious about writing, I started entering writing contests. Winning felt like confirmation that I was doing the right thing! One of my favorite entries was the first chapter of a mystery. I had just moved and I was exploring a small town about an hour away from home, lost as I frequently am and driving in circles, when I noticed a group of people standing outside a small diner on the town square. From there I added a sheriff, the hero who gets under her skin, and some fun characters. The judge told me I should finish the book, so I did!
Tell us briefly about "The Call!"
To get A Minute on the Lips ready for the Heartwarming line, my editor, Dana, and I went through lots of revisions and conversation, so when she called to offer to publish it, I was just thrilled. It's a story that I love and I was happy to find the right place for it.
In looking at the cover, if you could add a caption or captions, what would they say?
I'm not good at this! How about: "First one to let go has to rake these leaves."
How long did it take you to write?
With revisions, I think it was about a year. The first draft is always quick, but the revisions take some time.
What is your favorite scene?
There's a scene where the hero meets the heroine's love for sock knitting and her grumpy cat Mojo at the same time. I like that one.
Who was your favorite character and why?
I always love the hero. Mark's the handsome charmer who teases a smile when you want to frown. I'm a sucker for that guy!
If you could pick fictional characters to play the hero and heroine, who would they be?
Well…in my head, Jeremy Renner is Mark so that's easy enough. And maybe Sandra Bullock for the heroine? Basically, I love Sandra Bullock. If this heroine doesn't work for her, I'll write a new one!
Tell us one thing you learned during research.
One of the funniest searches I did was for Thai restaurants in Atlanta. There are more than you think!
What music would match the mood of this novel?
Music is big in a small town like Tall Pines. There's a scene where the hero and heroine listen to a band playing in the town square and the song is "Stand By Me."
This is your fifth book. Exactly what does that mean to you?
Every one happened in a new and amazing way. This one's satisfying because it's a story that I've loved from the beginning and had to find just the right place to fit. I think Heartwarming and A Minute on the Lips were made for each other.
What do you plan to work on next?
I'm working on the next Heartwarming title, a story about exes who are reunited by a cute dog and the ladies at Shady Pines.
What are you reading for pleasure right now?
I'm in the middle of The Rosie Project and am really enjoying it.