My latest novel, Champagne for Breakfast is to be released on February 14.
This is an exciting moment for me. You see, the first draft of this novel was penned when I was seventeen. Through the years it has gone through many incarnations, culminating in the novel it is today.
When I was seventeen, I had the vision of my hero. Philippe was to be a handsome, worldly and successful architect. With his salt and pepper hair, dashing good looks and intelligence, he was the epitome of my ideal man.
Natasha, my heroine, was the beautiful and successful ideal of myself. She was what I had wanted to be. After all, I was tall, skinny and attractive and had pursued a fashion modeling career. However, in a world smitten with blonde Cheryl Tiegs lookalikes, I was not successful.
And, yes, my novel was set in the 1970’s because that was my era at the time. Now, it is considered “Historical.”
The novel begins in Cleveland, Ohio because that is my hometown. Though its reputation has improved, it has been one of the most underrated cities in the country and in a perpetual “comeback.”
I also incorporated New York City because it is a place that I was familiar with. From birth to the age of eighteen, I had traveled to New Jersey and Queens, New York to visit my mother’s siblings.
New York City was a magical place. There was a harried excitement from the moment we walked out of the train station. The skyscrapers looming overhead, the glamorous store windows, shiny limousines parked outside of exclusive restaurants, speeding taxis with blasting horns and the subway with its graffiti. I loved walking the streets and observing humanity. There was the lushness of Central Park, a sadness at the Central Park Zoo, and the ornate yet aged elegance of Radio City Music Hall where we viewed movies and watched stage shows featuring the Rockettes. Lunch at the Automat and, later, at Governor’s Cafeteria were special. Attending the famous World’s Fair was also a fond memory. How could I not incorporate this city into my novel?
As the years progressed, my novel grew in breadth and scope. I added Paris and Chartres, France … My favorite two destinations in the world. I have never felt more at home and alive than in these two cities.
Yes, there are so many reasons for the existence of this novel. I will gladly share them with you …