Change the Word: What was your inspiration for writing Clutch?
Lisa Becker: When I was writing the Click Trilogy, (Click: An Online Love Story, Double Click, Right Click) I was obsessed with NCIS reruns and would have the show on in the background as I wrote. There was an episode when one of the characters mentioned that men were like purses – something useless to hang on a woman’s arm. I started thinking about how men are like handbags and the idea grew from there.
CTW: What was the biggest challenge you faced during the writing process and how did you overcome it?
LB: The book actually started out as a screenplay that was optioned by a production company housed at one of the major movie studios summer 2014. Unfortunately, it fell out of development. I was eager to have this fun story with some of my favorite characters told, so I turned it into a short novel earlier this year. The biggest challenge was taking the dialogue-heavy screenplay and figuring out a way to bring the characters to life through a standard book-writing narrative.
LB: Because of the quirky nature of the story and the humor involved, I imagine a fun and jazzy score similar to “When Harry Met Sally.” But since I’m not familiar with specific songs that will work, I’ll instead offer some suggestions based on song titles only. I think the book would start with “Love is a Battlefield” and continue on to “I Will Survive.” The happily ever after, when Caroline finds her clutch, would culminate with “It Had to be You.”
CTW: How do you go about developing your characters prior to writing the story?
LB: Unlike my previous series, which was loosely based on how I met my husband online and had characters based on friends of mine, this book is entirely fictitious. Because this started as a movie, I needed to be sure there was a specific story arc, so that the characters and their journey had to be mapped out in advance. Although, I do feel like Caroline and Mike are now my friends and would love to hand out with them in real life.
CTW: If you could go on a picnic with three fictional characters, who would you invite and why?
LB: I’m going to pick three characters from books that I’ve written – all of whom I’ve had a major crush on at one point or another while I was writing – Ethan and Mark from the Click Trilogy and Mike from clutch: a novel. I would love the opportunity to hang out with these men in real life and get to know them better. Just hope my husband wouldn’t mind. ;)
CTW: What does your writing routine include?
LB: I sit in my home office at a HP desktop computer with a really big screen. My eyes grow tired pretty easily in my old age. ;) And, I like to write with the television on in the background. When I first started writing, I was obsessed with Law & Order reruns. As mentioned, now, I can’t seem to get enough of NCIS. I guess there’s a part of me that likes to see justice served.
CTW: What does a typical weekend look like for you?
LB: I have two daughters, ages 8 and 10, who both play soccer. Our weekends are usually consumers with soccer games, watching movies, playing board games and eating at some of our family kid-friendly restaurants. I’m fortunate that we live nearby the beach, so we try to go down to the water when the weather permits. My husband and I also try to have date nights either as a couple or with other friends as much as possible.
CTW: What is the greatest lesson you have learned since writing your first book?
LB: Writing a book is easy compared to marketing one, and my background is in public relations and marketing for a major global agency. It doesn’t matter how great of a story you’ve written if you can’t spread the word and find an audience for it. So, I’m especially appreciative to blogs like yours for helping me with that process.
CTW: With Thanksgiving upon us, what are you most thankful for this year?
LB: I’m truly thankful for my family. My husband is a wonderful person and my best friend. And I’m grateful for my two girls who bring so much love and laughter into my life. I have two healthy, supportive and generous parents who also spent their adult lives caring for me and teaching me to be a good person. Without them, I absolutely would not be the person that I am today.
CTW: What can readers expect next from you?
LB: In addition to promoting the new book, I’m looking into making connections within the motion picture industry to try and get a movie version made. As mentioned, the book started out as a screenplay that was under option at a major studio, but fell out of development. I’m eager to see if there’s interest from someone else on bringing this fun and quirky story to the big screen. So if you happen to be a well-to-do movie producer looking to make a new romantic comedy, please get in touch!
About the Book
clutch: a novel is the laugh-out-loud, chick lit romance chronicling the dating misadventures of Caroline Johnson, a single purse designer who compares her unsuccessful romantic relationships to styles of handbags – the “Hobo” starving artist, the “Diaper Bag” single dad, the “Briefcase” intense businessman, etc. With her best friend, bar owner Mike by her side, the overly-accommodating Caroline drinks a lot of Chardonnay, puts her heart on the line, endures her share of unworthy suitors and finds the courage to discover the “Clutch” or someone she wants to hold onto.
Find it on Amazon
About the Author
In addition to clutch: a novel, Lisa Becker is the author of the Click Trilogy, a contemporary romance series comprised of Click: An Online Love Story, Double Click and Right Click. She’s written bylined articles about dating and relationships for “Cupid’s Pulse,” “The Perfect Soulmate,” “GalTime,” “Single Edition,” “Healthy B Daily” and “Chick Lit Central” among others. She lives in Manhattan Beach, California with her husband and two daughters. To learn more, visit www.lisawbecker.com.
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