SYNOPSIS: Present Perfect by Alison G. Bailey
I’ve been unsure about many things in my life except for one thing, that I have always loved him. Every single minute of every single day that I have been on this earth, my heart has belonged to him. It has never been a question, never a doubt. The love had taken on many different forms over the years, but it had always been a constant.
Everyone has their definition of love. There have been countless songs sung about it. A gazillion books, articles, and poems written about it. There are experts on love who will tell you how to get it, keep it, and get over it.
We’re led to believe love is complicated. It’s not the love that’s complicated. It’s all the crap that we attach to it and put in front of it that makes it difficult. If you’re smart, you’ll realize this before it’s too late and simplify.
Amanda Kelly spent her entire life trying to control every aspect of it, while striving for perfection. Her obsession with being perfect, along with her feelings of worthlessness, consumed her. The one thing she thought was perfect in her life was the bond she shared with her best friend, Noah.
Everything was going according to her life plan until she woke up one day and realized she had fallen in love with him. The one thing she couldn’t control was the affect he had on her. Noah had the power to give her one hundred lifetimes of happiness, which also gave him the power to completely devastate her. He was the one thing in her life that was perfect, but she couldn't allow herself to have him.
Her life begins to unravel. Events take over and force her to let go of her dreams and desires. She needs to realize that a person cannot control the events in their life, only their reaction to them...but will it be too late for her to save her relationship with her best friend? Present Perfect is a story of how past events have present consequences and how perfect your present could be if you stopped fighting and just allowed it to happen.
Where Tweet is unsure of almost everything, Noah is sure of most everything, namely that he loves Tweet.Alison G. Bailey
Throughout the years, she continued writing and producing several one act plays, but then life got in the way and she hung up her pen for a while. On the advice of a friend, she started writing again. In January 2013, Alison sat down at her computer and began writing her first novel, Present Perfect.
Alison lives in Charleston, South Carolina with her husband, Jef, and their two furry children (dogs). She’s addicted to Diet Pepsi and anything with sugar.
First off, congratulations Alison on the launch of new adult contemporary romance Present Perfect!
Thank you. I really appreciate you being a part of the blog tour.
What inspired you to write Amanda’s (Tweet) & Noah’s story?
Tweet has a certain trait that I wanted to write about and show how it impacted her life. I can’t say what it is because it would give away too much.
Can you tell us a little bit about your main characters?
Tweet is an intelligent, clever, and funny young woman who strives for perfection and control of her life and her relationships. She grew up in the shadow of her older sister, Emily, who in Tweet’s eyes is perfect. As she gets older her insecurities grow. She knows intellectually that she should be more confident, but her feeling of worthlessness is such a part of her DNA she doesn’t know how to change. Her life starts to unravel and she’s forced to make a decision about how she chooses to live and who she keeps in her life.
Noah is Tweet’s best friend and soul mate. He is there for her no matter what. He’s strong, kind, loyal, and protective. Where Tweet is unsure of almost everything, Noah is sure of most everything, namely that he loves Tweet. He’s sweet and patient with her, but he’s not a pushover.
Did you have a particular audience in mind when you started writing?
Not really. I realize everything has to be placed in some sort of category. Present Perfect is considered a New Adult Romance. The story follows Tweet and Noah from the age of 6 up to 27. There is a romance aspect to the book, but there are other elements that I hope the reader can relate to no matter what age they are. The age of my beta readers ranged from the twenties to late sixties and I got great response from all ages.
What was your favorite part of the process? What was your least favorite part?
My favorite part was seeing how the story developed and changed from a couple of ideas, to random scenes written, then chapters, etc. My least favorite was the editing process. It’s tedious and never ending.
Did you find any characters more difficult to write about than others? Do you have favorites?
None of the characters were difficult to write. At times their decisions and actions were difficult. As far as favorites, I love them all, even the troublemakers. The character I like least is Noah’s girlfriend, Brooke.
Are there any books or authors that have influenced you in your writing? What are you reading right now?
I’m influenced to a certain degree by several authors, but Colleen Hoover, Tarryn Fisher, and Tara Sivec are big influences for me. Reading their stories is effortless. They read like plays. They have the talent to draw strong emotional reactions out of their readers. They can make you cry, laugh and want to throw your book, all in one chapter. I would like to be that type of writer. Right now I’m reading an ARC from a new author, C.R. DeStasi titled Worth It. It’s very good, very intense, and deals with a subject you don’t see dealt with very often.
How has your background in theater influenced your writing style and your story telling?
My theater background has a tremendous influence. Present Perfect is dialogue heavy and I consider the book divided up into scenes. I could take any chapter in the book and put it up on stage with very little adjusting. Well, maybe not the sex chapters. I’m not the most technically accurate writer. I mean, I think about sentence structure, it just doesn’t always dictate my writing. I feel my way through things and listen to my gut for the most part. The reader connecting with the characters and feeling the emotions is what’s most important to me.
What’s your writing process like?
Present Perfect was written out of order. I would get an idea for a scene or just dialogue and would type it into my notepad app. I knew certain events had to happen, so it was a matter of piecing all these elements together. I came up with a lot of the ideas while listening to music. Sometimes I would write while listening, but most of the time I would sit and listen while picturing the scene in my mind.
What are your “must haves” when writing?
Lots of Diet Pepsi and some sort of sweet, preferably of the chocolate persuasion.
Is there anything you wish someone would have told you before you started to write?
How emotional it would be. I knew it would be emotional, but not as intense as it was at times. I laughed a lot, but I also cried like a baby. There were days I was so upset you would have thought someone had shot my dog. The other thing is how much time you have to spend doing other things when you’re an indie. It’s promoting, learning the business side, and for me, doing more with social networking. I love Facebook and have been on it for a long time. I’m still learning Twitter and Instagram. You could spend an entire week doing the other stuff and your days would be full.
What new projects are on the horizon? Do you see yourself writing in different genres?
I have a second book in the works titled Past Imperfect. The prologue is included in Present Perfect. I haven’t thought beyond that. I didn’t even think about a second book until I was almost done with Present Perfect. I’m not a multi-tasker and I don’t have a ton of ideas all at once like some writers. I don’t know about writing in other genres, but never say never.
Thanks for visiting Alison!
I appreciate you having me.
One last set of questions, Alison (I bribed her to stay with a Diet Pepsi and promises of Godiva chocolates).
If you could be a character from a book who would it be and why?
I would be Olivia Kaspen from The Opportunist so I could kick Leah Smith's ass.
If you were stranded on an island with a book boyfriend, who would it be? It can't be any of your own characters.
I know you only want one, but I can't pick just one. It hurts, but I can narrow it down to Kellan Kyle, Christian Grey, and Dean Holder. Oh and Caleb Drake, Cade Walker, Tristan from Bad Things, Cage York, and Josh Bennett. The island is getting crowded. Lol. I swear this is the last boyfriend—Chase from Taking Chances.
Dogs or cats? Suddenly this seems like a strange question after the last one.
Thanks for playing Red’s Randomness. I don’t think we need to send a search party for Alison if she ever gets stranded. Something tells me she’ll be just fine!