Wednesday, September 16, 2015

Author Q&A: Laura Chapman

Today I'm interviewing Laura Chapman, author of First & Goal.

 1)      How did you come up with the idea for First and Goal?

I was invited to play in a fantasy football league with some of my former co-workers three years ago. Sometime between a friend helping me do a mock draft (during work hours, but don’t tell anyone) and participating in the actual draft that night, I thought it would be fun to write a fantasy football book from a chick lit voice. After a couple of seasons participating in fantasy leagues, I started piecing the story together and came up with the Queen of the League series.

Photo: Laura Chapman.  "Even my parents support my fantasy football habit. They picked up this Clay Matthews shirt for me in Green Bay."

2)      What was your favorite scene to write?

Without being too spoilery, during a couple of consecutive scenes, Harper learns more about the football culture in Nebraska. As a native Nebraskan, alumna of the University of Nebraska, and a lifelong Husker fan, I had a lot of fun painting the scenes and sharing a big part of my world. Those scenes came out the fastest, and I was so happy writing them.

3)      Describe First and Goal in five words.

Football. Crushes. Brothers. Humor. Love.

4)      Who is your favorite author?

This is a tough question, because I have a lot of authors I love and admire. Some of the most authors who have most influenced my desire to write would include Julie Garwood, Rachel Gibson, Judith McNaught, Sophie Kinsella, Laura Ingalls Wilder, and Nora Roberts. Some of the authors who currently inspire me daily through social media—or by being my friend—are Tracie Banister, Brea Brown, Rachel Hollis, Cat Lavoie, Samantha March, and Julia Quinn. I love following their careers right now, because they’re so exciting and motivating.

5)      What genre have you never written that you’d like to try?

I started writing a cozy mystery a few years ago, and I’d really like to explore that genre more and perhaps do a series. I would also love to write a historical romance novel. I discovered historical romances in middle school, and they have been some of my favorite to read since. I’d particularly like to write Regency or something with a highlander.

6)      What do you order at Starbucks?

I probably visit Starbucks once a week to write during breakfast time, and my standard order is a venti blonde roast black with the egg white spinach and feta wrap. This is a breakfast that gives me the energy I need to concentrate, but it’s also filling which keeps me from snacking while I write.

7)      What place in the world do you most want to visit?

I have so many place in the world I’d like to see so it’s hard to pick just one. In the U.S., my top destinations include Alaska, Maine, North and South Carolina, and Tennessee. Abroad, I’ve always dreamed of backpacking Europe. I’ve been to England once, but there are several stops I’d make there plus Ireland, Scotland, and about a dozen countries on the continent, too. After I hit those places, I have my sights set on the rest of the world.

8)      What new projects are you working on?

I’m excited to be part of a Christmas anthology coming out from Marching Ink this holiday season. I’m also editing Going for Two, the sequel to First & Goal. After that I’ll have two more books in the Queen of the League series to write, and I have a few other projects vying for attention in my to-write pile. I’m going through a crazy-productive phase right now, which is both exciting and exhausting. I can’t wait to share more about all of these with readers!

Thanks so much for having me as a guest. I hope all of you will enjoy reading First & Goal as much as I did writing it.

Set your lineups and pull out the old game tape—football is here. This year, you can experience fantasy football vicariously through (or commiserate with) Harper Duquaine in First & Goal by Laura Chapman.

What begins as a way to make nice with her new co-workers soon becomes an obsession for Harper as she navigates the ups and downs of managing a fantasy football team. Add in a pair of meddling brothers, a crew of quirky colleagues, and a league-mate who makes her toes curl, and Harper’s football season has plenty to keep her interested.

This new romantic comedy is now available from Marching Ink on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and Kobo. Join in the fun and cheer Harper on as she takes on the old boys club.

If you can’t beat ‘em, join ‘em. Then beat them.

About the Book
When Harper Duquaine’s no-nonsense approach to work unintentionally ruffles the wrong feathers at her new job, she joins her co-workers’ fantasy football league to prove she can hang with the guys. Only problem: she doesn’t know a sleeper from a keeper (or any of the other lingo thrown her way).  
Embroiled in a world of lineups, stats, and trades, Harper’s quest to make nice topples when her competitive streak emerges. And her promise to herself that she’ll be a strong, independent woman and leave the drama and heartache behind is seriously tested when she catches the attention of her two biggest competitors: J.J., a local celebrity determined to win a fantasy championship, and Brook, the mild-mannered coach who seems too good to be true. Both threaten her resolve to remain single… and, more importantly, her chances at winning the prize pool. 
With a slew of conflicting advice in her real and fantasy worlds, Harper must figure out how to play the game and come out a winner.

Now Available
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Kobo | Marching Ink

About the Author
Laura Chapman is the author of First & Goal, The Marrying Type, and Hard Hats and Doormats. Her work appears in Merry & Bright, A Kind of Mad Courage, and a forthcoming Christmas anthology from Marching Ink. A native Nebraskan, she loves Huskers and Packers football, Netflix marathons, and her cats, Jane and Bingley. Laura is currently in pursuit of a fantasy football championship while penning her next novel.

Connect with Laura

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