Today I’m excited to share an excerpt from Surviving the Rachel by Aven Ellis, a contemporary romance novel released by Soul Mate Publishing, in addition to a fun little Q & A!
Publication Date: December 19, 2014
Life after college graduation is not at all what twenty-one-year-old Bree Logan expected. Unable to find a professional communications job, dumped by the guy who was THE ONE, and stuck with a pricey city apartment she can’t afford, Bree ends up moving back home with her parents in the suburbs and working as a cocktail server at a posh Chicago hotel.
In a desperate attempt to get a fresh start, Bree goes to a hip salon and requests that the first available stylist chop off her long dark hair. Alarmed when the stylist suggests “The Rachel,” after the famous haircut from the show Friends, Bree is hesitant, but decides to go for it when she is assured it will be a “fresh, modern adaptation” of the infamous 90’s cut. Unfortunately for Bree, it turns out to be exactly the same cut, but with horrific heavy bangs added to it. Hideous doesn’t even begin to describe it.
Bree is convinced nothing will ever go right when she meets neighbor Jack Chelten, a twenty-five-year-old German translator. Not that Bree is looking to date anyone, but there’s something quirky and intriguing about his freckle-splashed face and blue eyes. And suddenly Bree finds herself seeking out different opportunities and challenges . . . as well as the boy next door.
In her new adult life, Bree learns that sometimes you have to go through crises to get to where you need to be. And if you can survive The Rachel, you can survive anything, right?
A Little Q & A Fun with the Author
In 5 words, please describe your ‘Romance Writing Style’
Quirky. Sweet. Thoughtful. Swoonworthy.
Do your leading men come from any place in particular? Dreams? Movie stars? Your partner? Past partners?
My leading men come from people I’ve seen on TV, articles I’ve read in magazines, or interesting men I’ve come across in social media. Never from my real life. That’s the fun of writing-creating something unique from my life!
Do you have any writing rituals?
I always think of my next chapter in my head, how it is going to go from beginning to end before I write it. If I’m writing on the weekend, I must write with a cup of coffee, with a spoonful of cream.
Do you write every day?
I have a day job and other hobbies so no, I do not. Hasn’t hurt me at all, however.
If we snuck a peek in your purse right now, what would we find?
Five chubby lip pencils (I’m addicted to them), powder, perfume, wallet, receipts.
Do you like reality TV programs?
I used to be addicted to The Bachelor, but I’m sitting out on this current one. (Sorry, Chris didn’t interest me.) I do love MasterChef and Top Chef. If it has food, I’m IN.
What do you typically have for breakfast?
A pumpkin pie smoothie. Every day. Without fail.
What was the last DVD you purchased?
A work out DVD. But I did get a Downton Abbey DVD for Christmas so I’m pumped about that.
What color are your eyes?
And I have really big pupils. Like Wilma Flintstone.
Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp?
I always have a positive message for women in all of my books-that’s so important to who I am as a writer. In Surviving the Rachel, the message is that sometimes you have to go through a lot of challenges, and through tough times, but you will find your way out-and perhaps to the place you were meant to be most of all.
About the Author – Aven Ellis
Aven Ellis has been writing fiction since she was sixteen. She studied communications at a large Midwestern university, and after graduation, Aven worked as a reporter for a community newspaper, followed by a stint at a public relations agency.
But writing about city council meetings and restaurant franchises was not as much fun as writing for young women trying to figure out their careers and potential boyfriends. So Aven got herself a job in television that allowed her to write at night. Connectivity is Aven’s debut novel; Waiting For Prince Harry and Chronicles of a Lincoln Park Fashionista followed next. Surviving the Rachel will be published in 2015.
Aven lives in Dallas with her family. When she is not writing, Aven enjoys shopping, cooking, hockey, connecting with friends on social media, and watching any show that features Gordon Ramsay.
Excerpt – Surviving the Rachel
Now it’s just me and Jack.
“Firefly,” he says, breaking the silence.
“What?” I laugh.
“Right there, hold on a second,” Jack says, pointing near the pond. “There!”
And I see it. A firefly lights up the darkness for a brief second, a flash of yellow in the dark sky.
“I condemned many fireflies to a sad death in a Cool Whip container in my childhood,” I admit, laughing.
“Did you poke holes on the top?” he teases.
“Of course! I didn’t try to suffocate them on purpose.”
“I was not,” I giggle.
“Challenge for you,” Jack says. “Can you still catch one?”
“Absolutely I can.”
“Oh, okay, you’re on. First one to catch five wins,” I say, throwing down my own challenge.
“I’ve so got this,” he declares.
So we both get up and begin catching fireflies. We’re laughing and teasing each other and before I know it, I have bested Jack.
“That’s five,” I declare happily, snatching the fifth firefly. I open up my palm to reveal it to him, and then I release it to the night sky.
And in a way, I feel released, too. I’m releasing the negativity about the job search, and I’m starting new tomorrow with Jack’s help. I gaze at his profile, and I know this German-speaking boy next door has something—if not everything-to do with this newfound feeling I have.
He turns and catches me looking at him. We don’t say anything for a moment, and another firefly flashes light between us.
“I guess I should be heading home,” he says softly.
“So I’ll see you tomorrow for sushi?”
“Yes,” I say, smiling back at him. “And I’ll send you my resume right now.”
Jack nods. “Okay then. I’ll see you tomorrow. And thank you for tonight.”
“I should be thanking you,” I say softly.
He turns and begins walking across the grass. I cross my arms over my chest, his sweatshirt still keeping me warm. Jack suddenly stops and turns to me.
“’Hochzeit mit Hindernissen,’” Jack says.
I begin laughing. “What?”
“The German title for ‘The One with Monica and Chandler’s Wedding,’” Jack says, grinning at me. “That’s one of my favorite Friends episodes.”
Another firefly lights up in front of me as I watch him walk away. And then I realize that’s what Jack is to me.
He’s like a firefly who has lit up the darkness.
And I find myself drawn to his light.