First of all, let me say, I do hate New York City. It’s a longstanding aversion that stems from four years of living there as an overworked (albeit overpaid) young lawyer in a claustrophobic apartment that was smaller than a bedroom in my parent’s house back home. I was a girl from the Midwest who never got used to the small grocery store aisles and hordes of people on the street and constant insistence on the part of its inhabitants that this packed metropolis was the center of the universe. (I know, I know…I can hear you proud New Yorkers out there objecting to this heresy!) I eventually moved away, back to my roots, and that was that. But I continued to hold a grudge. In fact, when I went back to Manhattan for a job interview many years later—what was I thinking?—I actually threw up in the middle of it on a very sweet Brit who needed corporate counsel in the U.S. Needless to say, I didn’t get the job.
So from my safe perch back in the Midwest, I’ve always liked to drop anti-NY jokes into my writing here and there, and one day I got the idea to write a story around it and Tempting the CEO was born. It didn’t have that title, of course. I think originally, the title might have been something like “New York, New York, A Hell of a Town…And I Mean Hell,” but that wasn’t sexy enough. And the story is sexy. Because once I started writing, I realized that what was wrong with my time in New York was that I had been ready for this fantastic romantic adventure (yes, they actually lie to you in Law School) and instead I got one boring conference room after another with long-winded full-of-themselves folks (like Blowhard Bob in the story) instead of cute guys. But the best part of being a writer is…I could fix that! Tempting the CEO was my way to rewrite the whole traumatic experience. What did I really want to happen after one of those exhausting days at the law firm when I wasn’t feeling at my best? Well, cue the Sexy CEO who makes me forget all my tension.
Writing that first romantic interlude between Jed and me (I mean Jed and Angelina, of course) was downright cathartic. The scene just flowed out of me. (And if you’re a writer, you know that doesn’t happen too often!). And when I’d written the hot part, I was left with the morning after and having some fun there and…well, you get the idea.
Once I was done with the story, I wasn’t sure what to do with it. I’d published books with a number of other publishers, but Entangled caught my eye because one of my favorite editors had gone there. She didn’t end up being my editor at Entangled, but I like to think she put in a good word for me in the submission process.
So anyway, after years of panning New York, I finally am getting something fun out of it! Hope you do too!