Over the next few weeks, as I attempt to subdue the anxious flutter in my stomach every time I think of attending the RWA conference and the RITA® Awards ceremony in San Diego in July, I'll be sharing some of the Behind the Scenes information of my Rita-nominated book, Not a Fairy Tale.
Before I start writing any book, I tend to spend a good deal of time sketching out my characters' back stories. Most of this never makes it into the novel, but knowing my characters inside out helps me to write them with more depth.
Much of Nina's career is alluded to in Not a Fairy Tale, but to get a better idea of the kind of roles she played before she met Dom, and why she wants to re-invent herself, here's a run down of Nina's life before the book starts.
Nina Alexander's Career
Straight after school, Nina headed to Hollywood where she struggled through menial jobs to pay for acting classes, and lived in a tiny apartment with creaking pipes and damp walls. Her lucky break came with a sitcom about two sisters along the lines of What I Like about You which starred Jennie Garth and Amanda Bynes as sisters.
By the time the show folded four seasons later, Nina had bought herself a condo in West Hollywood (where she still lives) and her career was established. This was followed by a succession of romantic comedies - think Mila Kunis in Friends with Benefits or Natalie Portman in No Strings Attached... or Pirate's Revenge, the movie Nina filmed in Westerwald and the Carribean during my previous book, To Catch a Star.
But Nina wants to be more than a Romcom star. She wants to be seen as something more than the ditsy love interest. She even manages a few more serious roles - as Meryl Streep's daughter in an ensemble film, and the role that brings her close to winning the famous Oscar statuette at the beginning of Not a Fairy Tale, a role perhaps like Anna Kendrick's Oscar-nominated performance in Up in the Air.
In spite of these roles, the scripts she is usually sent are more of the same. More ditsy romantic roles, or second billing to the movie's real stars. And then along comes a role that isn't just different from what she's done before, it's personal - the lead role of Sonia Fairchild in a movie version of Revelations, the trilogy that got Nina through the toughest time of her life and helped her re-invent herself the first time. Sonia is a kickass woman who single-handedly saves the world - like Katniss Everdeen in The Hunger Games or Lara Croft in Tomb Raider.
Nina wants this role more than any other. She's a determined woman, willing to do anything to win this role, even suffer through weeks of training with a stunt coordinator so she can do the stunts herself.
But when push comes to shove, is Nina really willing to do anything to become Sonia? And with her special training and the new contacts she makes through Dom, will she be able to keep both the role and a future with Dom? Read Not a Fairy Tale to find out....
Find out more about this book here.
"It was sweet, sexy, fun and had just the right amount of angst thrown in to stir things up." - Book Binge