Please help me welcome Heather Wardell to the blog today! I'm pleased to be part of the Everybody's Got a Story Tour!
How long have you been writing? How many published books do you have, and what genres?
I wrote the first draft of my first book in 2005. It became the first one I released, "Life, Love, and a Polar Bear Tattoo", which is a free download from my web site at http://www.heatherwardell.com/polarbear.shtml. I now have thirteen novels available, with another one on the way in December, and all are women's fiction.
Do you write in multiple genres or just one? If just one, do you ever consider straying outside your genre?
I occasionally have ideas that go outside my genre but they never catch my attention enough to make me go ahead and write them. I have a huge list of ideas within women's fiction so at this point I don't need to branch out.
Are you a plotter or do you write from the seat of your pants?
I am definitely a plotter. I don't plan out every last detail but I don't feel comfortable writing unless I know how the book is going to end and know the key elements along the way.
What is a typical writing day like for you?
I usually spend my morning working on a new book (either planning it or writing its first draft) and the first half of the afternoon on editing a different book. After that, I do administrative stuff and exercise and clean the house and all that sort of thing.
Who do you love to read? Favorite authors, favorite books?
Marian Keyes, Sophie Kinsella (especially "Remember Me" - fabulous book), and I can reread Bridget Jones's Diary over and over.
Tell us a little about your latest release.
"Everybody's Got a Story" is the story of Alexa, who was viciously assaulted by her boyfriend two years ago, and how she moves on after his trial to live her own life. It is definitely darker than a lot of my other books, even though I do not focus on the details of the assault because it's in Alexa's past and my book is concerned with her future. I love it, though, because I think Alexa is such a strong character and she works so hard to regain control of herself and her world.
What is something that you absolutely can't live without? (Other than family members)
Whole-milk latte from Starbucks. Writing fuel!
What are some of your other hobbies outside of writing?
I play drums with a concert band, crochet as often as I can, run, and take care of my cat Trinity and my tropical fish.
What is a talent you wish you had, but don't?
Drawing. I can barely draw a stick figure and I'd love to be able to create gorgeous pictures.
Weather: Hot or cold?
Cold, especially if I can have a latte. :)
Favorite place to read?
Anywhere I'll be left alone. The bathtub is an excellent choice.
A salad with only a little lettuce but with tons of fresh fruit and vegetables, topped with chicken. (Sounds boring but it's delicious - especially if someone else makes it for me!)
If you could travel anywhere and do anything, no limits or money holding you back, where would you go?
Paris. I was there once about 15 years ago and I would love to stay for several months and really get into the place.
Blurb: Both personally and professionally, Alexa knows all too well the power of words. Two years after her boyfriend Christophe's vicious attack, she's still trying to see herself as more than simply 'his victim', still trying to figure out her own story.
After his trial, she moves from New York City to Toronto in an attempt to start over, but his words cling to her and even in a new country she can't see how to move into relationships with the new people in her life while hiding the secret of Christophe's worst offense.
She can't hide that secret from her coworker Jake, though, because the news buff has recognized her from the coverage of the assault and trial and knows every word she can't bring herself to say about her ordeal.
With Jake's help, can Alexa reclaim her story and her life?
Review Rating: 4 LIGHTNING BOLTS
Review: Everybody's Got a Story is a very fitting title for this book. Love when a title really connects the story together. This one has an intense subject matter, but the way Wardell handled it with ease made for an emotionally satisfying read.
Alexa has a past that she's trying to overcome. it's not easy in the town she was living in, so she moves to start over. To get away from al the fingers pointing, the whispers, the people wondering what she'll do next, what she thinks, how she'll move forward. She just wants time to get past it all. A fresh start sounds like the perfect idea.
But you can't run from your past that easily. A co-worker notices her and recognizes her, but he doesn't want to dredge up her past. I was stoked to find out that the co worker is Jake, a man I read about in one of Wardell's previous novels and really wanted more of him. Jake has had his own past that he can't seem to get away from so it makes it hard for Alexa to want to be around him at first.
Alexa is one strong character. She went through hell and it had been publicly in the spotlight as the man who committed the act against her just went through a trial and was convicted. Everybody's Got a Story is her journey of moving forward, learning to live and love again.
This is only my second book by the author, but I've got many more of hers on the Kindle and I need to read them! I enjoy the journey her characters go through.
Growing up, I was an avid (rabid?) reader. I am a natural speed reader, regularly clocked at about 1200 wpm (I read Harry Potter 5 in just under three hours), and always have several books on the go, nearly all in e-book form on my Kindle.
I have always made up stories in my head, but never considered becoming a writer. Instead, I intended to be a high school music teacher. I was sidetracked by my enjoyment of my psychology courses in university, and ended up with a psychology degree with a concentration in computer science.
This took me to a major Canadian bank as a software developer. I stayed there for just over four years, and then went back to school to become an elementary school teacher. After four years teaching elementary school computer science, I took up the National Novel Writing Month challenge and attempted to write a novel in a month.
I succeeded, and the first draft of "Life, Love, and a Polar Bear Tattoo" was the result. I realized I love writing. I left teaching, and I haven't looked back since!
In my non-writing time, I read, run, swim, crochet, take care of my 55 gallon aquarium and my cat Trinity, and play drums and clarinet. Generally not all at once.
Connect with Heather!
Buy the Book!
§ Amazon.com (Kindle)
§ Barnes and Noble (for their nook reader)
§ Kobo (ePub format)
§ Smashwords.com (variety of formats)
§ Sony (for their ebook readers)
If you prefer print, you can get "Everybody's Got a Story" at: