Tell us a bit about yourself:
I grew up on a small farm in western Pennsylvania (I was one of nine kids), so I had plenty of chores to do around the house all the time. Because I lived further away from school, I wasn’t involved in many activities, but I liked to read (frequented the bookmobile a lot), and I took piano lessons. After college, I worked as medical technologist in a hospital laboratory and started a family. Many years later, I wrote my first children’s book and wanted to write a novel. I’ve always heard that people should write what they know. The idea of writing about a deadly drug spreading across the country came into my head and sounded intriguing, especially since I used to test drugs of abuse when I worked in the lab. This novel has been a labor of love for the past few years. In my free time between writing and author visits with my children’s book, I also work as a church accompanist, musical director, and substitute teacher. I’m never bored.
How do you find time to write?
(Laughs) Usually I write when my husband and kids go to bed. I’m often typing away on the computer through the late hours of the night. This schedule makes it rough when I have work the next morning, though. Sometimes I take a day off during the week to sleep in and spend the day typing on the computer when the house is empty.
What’s your publishing tips?
This is my first novel, so I don’t think I’m very qualified to give any tips, but I’ve been taking close notes from other authors and websites over the past few years, jotting down what they recommend publicity wise. I believe that the writer should be as responsible as possible reworking sections and meeting deadlines to show the publisher they are dependable. Craft a compelling query letter and never give up searching for a publishing company. You only live once so never give up on your story.
Any promotional and marketing tips?
Marketing is a huge task and I don’t know if you can ever do enough marketing. I’d definitely recommend making connections on social media as much as possible to gain more readers. Also, find as many venues as you can to schedule book signings. Contact stores around your area and state (dare I say nationally?) to carry your books. Plan a blowout book launch. Notify newspapers, community websites, contact newspaper/local online newpaper reporters, TV stations, radio hosts. Many will gladly help promote your book. Make contacts and get your name and book out there. Find book clubs and ask them to consider discussing your book (offer to do a signing mid-way through or at the end of the book’s discussion). No one cares more about your book than you so get out there and promote it!
Tell us about your recent book.
Finding Euphoria is about a woman who suffered a traumatic past and starts a new life. On the surface, Hailey Langley has it all: a handsome federal agent husband, two beautiful kids, a comfortable home, and a rewarding career in biochemistry. But beneath Hailey’s American dream, a nightmare lurks as she struggles to maintain the love and security of her “new” family, like the one she lost in her adolescence when kidnapping and rape left her orphaned and pregnant. Seeking the best place for adoption, Hailey gave the baby to a couple and worked at a Texas-based national security organization. In time, Hailey closed the door on the past and started a new life on the East Coast, but the secrets of her old life strain her marriage. When a mysterious drug sweeps across Chicago, Hailey’s former partner implores her to hunt for the drug that has put his adopted son—Hailey’s child—in a coma. Hailey is torn between risking her current security to save the son she gave away.
Now her partner is divorced and old sparks fly between them. Drug dealers kidnap Hailey, and her husband, a federal agent, is caught up in the chase. He finds his love for Hailey renewed as he is a part of her rescue. Hailey races against time to save her son, and hopes her marriage can survive the secrets.
Anything else you would like to add?
I’d like to thank you for having me on your blog today, Olivia. This has been a great experience telling your readers about my new novel. Oh, one last thing to add: Euphoria has a double meaning throughout the Euphoria series. In this first book, the reader learns Euphoria is the drug harvested from a shrub originally grown in the Amazon Rainforest. Hailey and others race to find the drug’s structural formula before the drug spreads worldwide. But the other meaning for euphoria is Hailey’s journey to finding happiness in her life after all the misfortune in her earlier years. Each book in the trilogy will focus on Hailey’s enduring different tragedies and the different drugs discovered from the Amazon shrub’s bark, leaves, roots, and flowers.
Finding Euphoria is the first book in the Euphoria Trilogy. The second book takes place six years later and the protagonist Hailey has once again suffered a horrible heartbreak in her life.
Tagline: The search is as deadly as the high
Hailey Langley refuses to be a victim and has moved on from her traumatic past. But her marriage problems worsen when a deadly illicit drug threatens to draw her into the life she left behind.
Mark Langley has allowed his job to interfere with his marriage, but he never suspected the secrets in Hailey's past might hold the key to solving both of his current investigations.
Together, they must unravel the mystery of the drug called Euphoria and find a way to save not only their marriage, but countless lives, before it's too late.
Excerpt (around 500 words):
He turned the bottle around in his hand and set it on the end table. “Don’t put me in this position. You know what would happen. Grace is his mother. She’s the one who needs to stay with him.”
Regret tugged at her heart. “I wouldn’t take any time away from her.”
Parker groaned. “Just you being there would make her feel uncomfortable.”
“You know why.”
“But I’ve stayed away for seventeen years,” she whispered.
“That was the adoption arrangement.”
She bit her lip. “I can’t stay away any longer.”
“You agreed to those terms in the contract. You terminated all parental rights.” Parker stood and paced to the kitchen.
“But it’s not fair!” She put down her water and began wringing her hands.
Straightening his arms, he leaned against the bar. “Hailey, please don’t start. I know how you feel…”
“You couldn’t possibly know how I feel. I need to see him.” She fought to control the bitterness in her voice.
She rose, knocking over the water bottle. “He’s my son!”
“Not anymore, he isn’t.”
The rebuke stung. “He’ll always be my son!”
“When you gave him up, you promised to keep your distance.”
The reminder lanced her heart. “You’re being unfair. He’s dying.”
He slammed his fist on the bar. “Don’t say that. He can’t die.” Parker pushed himself up and stomped near the window, raising his hands to rest on top of his head as he faced the curtain.
A muscle twitched in her hand. Her knees buckled. She sat on the edge of the couch, wringing her hands. “I was young. I couldn’t give Justin the life he deserved. I’m not asking to take him back. I only want to see him.”
Rubbing his jaw, he walked back to the couch and sat. The hard lines on his face softened. “The adoption papers were clear. No contact.” He placed his hands on top of hers and stilled them. “If the decision was mine, I would allow it, but Grace would lose it if she found out you’re Justin’s biological mother.”
Her hands squeezed into tight fists. The urge was unbearable. “I wouldn’t tell her.”
Parker ran a hand through his hair. “Argh! Don’t you understand? She’d take one look at your face and know the truth. Don’t forget, you’re the one who wanted us to protect him.”
She stood. “Well, you did a hell of a fine job, didn’t you? You divorced Grace and deserted him. Parenting takes sacrifice, Parker. You were too busy changing careers, and now he’s messed up with drugs. How did that protect him?”
Standing, he reached for her.
“No. You stay away from me.” She extended her hands and backed up a step. “Justin’s dying! Dying, Parker! And I don’t know him…You won’t let me see my own son.”
He wrapped his arms around her.
She pushed him, pummeling her fists against his chest with all her strength.
He silently took his beating.
The Wild Rose Press Finding Euphoria ebook link
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To reach C.Becker or get more information about her books:
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A native of western Pennsylvania, C. Becker earned a B.S. degree in Medical Technology and MT (ASCP) certification. She has worked in clinical settings analyzing body fluids and testing drugs of abuse. As an author, C. Becker has published multiple stories in various genres.