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  • Writer's pictureCassandra Giovanni

Novel Beginnings: Love Exactly

Novel Beginnings is a series that is all about the novel way my books begin! I'm talking about my all-time bestseller, Love Exactly today!

What inspired the novel?

I know it's probably wholly cliche, and you've heard authors say it again and again, but a dream inspired this book. Unlike other books that I can recall what was happening in the dream, I couldn't tell you that for this one. Aside from the dream, the core reason I wrote the book to help deal with some darker parts of my past. I'd been in an abusive relationship as a teenager, and the things that happened were still a burden for me as an adult. It helped me to realize that as crappy as that stuff was, it made me stronger.

What's the plot?

Emma is a failed writer whose too afraid to take the plunge with being a novelist. She is also dealing with an overwhelming feeling of failure because she can't afford to move out of her parents' house. A lot of Emma's issues with moving forward in her life have to deal with the emotional abuse she encountered as a teen. There's this wall that she can't seem to push passed to take risks and be who she should be.

In comes Evan, who has a different perspective. He's taken risks, and those have made him a successful rockstar. That also means that he's been painted in a particular light. He's known as the tattooed bad-boy who leaves a trail of broken hearts wherever he goes. The truth is that he's had many people take advantage of him, and he has trouble letting people in. Honestly, he's the bad boy with a heart of gold. They both help each other deal with the things in their pasts that are holding them back.

What was my path to publication?

This book I self-published with a lot of prep. I did all the things: blog tours, release blitzes, and emails. The only thing I didn't do was paid-advertising in a traditional sense. On day one, 600 copies sold, and those numbers stayed solid, drifting down slowly, for a few months. I was able to help with the down payment on our first house with the book's success. I have no idea what combination made it that successful. I can say for a fact that even with more promo, I've never been able to replicate its overnight success.

Why should you read it?

  • Sweet rocker romance

  • Character growth

  • Swoonworthy tattooed golden-bad boy

  • Maroon 5 fan

Oh, and my husband is on the cover. Fun story, all the tats, except for two, are photoshopped. This year he decided to cover up a tattoo on the back of his arm, which ended up being a full sleeve. I realized after that he had gotten almost the exact designs I put on the cover.

And if you enjoy, a review would mean the world to me!

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