Author Interview – Michele Campbell

I recently reviewed It’s Always the Husband, author Michele Campbell. You can check out that review here. Michele was kind enough to join our book club for some discussion about the book as well as some personal questions. She also was kind enough to let me share that interview with you all here.

Michele-Campbell-casual-2019-200t

RGR (RealGirlReview) – Where is your favorite place to work/write?

MC (Michele Campbell) – I write in a home office or else in libraries. I need to be free of distractions. I like silence, good light, a desk and an officey sort of chair. I’m not one to write in coffee shops, in bed or lounging on the sofa.

RGR – What is your favorite vacation/relax place?

MC –  I love to travel and see the world. I prefer going to new places over returning to a favorite. My last trip was to England and Scotland.

RGR – Who is your favorite character from literature?

MC – Lily Bart from The House of Mirth by Edith Wharton. She’s a tragic figure because she was too independent for the times she lived in.

RGR – Do you have any rituals associated with your writing process?

MC – I send myself notes via email constantly then print them out every morning to update the WIP that day.

RGR – This has been my first of your novels to read, is your style consistent with suspense? Do you have a favorite style?

MC –  I’d say my style is relatively consistent with standard suspense novels except probably more character driven than most.

RGR – Your next novel is coming up, do you have a book signing tour scheduled? If so, where will we be able to meet you in person and get a signed book?

MC –  I tour virtually all the time for all my books. I do chats like this or book club skypes several times per week and am very accessible on line. IRL, I do larger marquee events when I’m asked. For example, last weekend I appeared at PopSugar Playground which was heavily featured on all my social media if you’d like to see photos. I’m on Facebook and Instagram as Michele Campbell Books, and those who would like signed copies should follow me there bc I do lots of giveaways.

RGR (Question from a bookclub member) – I really enjoyed the character development in this book, I often wonder where the profiles come from. Do you have a particular source for inspiration?

MC – Life plus imagination. I observe people in the real world, take bits and pieces as inspiration, and recombine. The characters grow and develop on their own once the writing process begins. They come to life, and I learn about them as I go.

RGR (Question from a bookclub member) – I read this book earlier this year and loved it. But it’s not as fresh in my mind as it is the other readers in this group.
What advice would you give to a young (12 1/2) aspiring writer?

MC – How exciting!! Twelve and a half is a perfect age to start writing seriously. Here’s my advice. Read all the time and read widely. Practice writing. Keep a journal. Write stories. Enter writing contests if your school offers them. Join the school paper or literary magazine. If your school doesn’t offer these opportunities, talk to a teacher about starting them. Junior high and high school are where real writers are born!

Michele was very kind to give us so much of her time. I am including a link to her website below. I hope that you will check her out. I am also including a link to a teaser video for her next book to be released. I hope that you will all check it out.

Michele Campbell Website

Teaser for A Stranger on the Beach

Love and

Becky

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Makeup Monday – Dominique Cosmetics – Lemonade Lipgloss

Happy Monday my makeup loving friends! Today I am going to tell you a bit about my Lemonade Lipgloss. The color, scent, flavor (LOL) that I received in my BoxyCharm box was Peach Tea. I loved the name and it was true to the color. The scent was somewhat Peachy so I was a fan of that.

Here is a link back to my post to give you the deets on the price, etc. June BoxyCharm Review

Overall this was a decent lipgloss. I am one of those girls that is funny about lipgloss. I love for them to look glossy but I don’t love for them to feel sticky on my lips and unfortunately most glosses are just that, very sticky. The wind blows and now you have hair stuck to your lips and you try to get the hair off your lips and you have gloss in your hair and on your cheek and it’s all just a mess. This gloss was no exception it was sticky.

I used the gloss all last week. The first picture was a fresh application and it is sooooo pretty with the glossiness that I got. I really did love it. The middle picture was taken after an application which included a lip liner. The last picture was taken after I had the gloss on for a couple of hours one day. It had reasonable wear but something about the way it settled into sticky, made me want to continue to apply it throughout the day. I realize this sounds confusing but I really believe it got more sticky as it was on my lips longer throughout the day.

Would I wear this gloss for a photo shoot? Sure! If anyone, ever actually wanted me in a photo shoot! LOL! I probably will not continue to wear this regularly but I will keep it handy in the event I just really need something on my lips, because let’s face it friends, those days occur.

Overall, my review is this…if you are a lip gloss person, I really believe that you would love this gloss. If you are more of a balm or regular lipstick wearer,  I would avoid this product.

For me this was a three out of five lipstick review! 💄💄💄

Love and 💄

Becky

 

Book Review – It’s Always the Husband by Michele Campbell

Some of you may not know this, but the real girl behind RealGirlReviews (me!) has an online Facebook book club. The book club reads different books every month that are selected by the members. We then enjoy some discussion about the books at the end of the month/beginning of the following month.

We select our books by vote, there are always three books to choose from, fiction, non-fiction and classic. If you are interested in joining our club, please drop me a line. We are 65 members strong and growing. We have members all over the country and would invite anyone that loves to read to join us.

For June the book selection was the fiction selection It’s Always the Husband by Michele Campbell. This is a story of three women that meet in college as freshman. The girls are all very different. Kate is the rich beauty that doesn’t necessarily have a lot of time for classes. Jenny is the smart local girl that wants to go places. Aubrey is the girl from the wrong side of the tracks that is on financial aid and considers herself lucky to meet these other girls. Twenty years later, when one of these girls ends up standing on a bridge in a desperate situation, how do they all move forward with their lives and current situations. When one of them ends up dead, where will the fingers point. Is it always the husband?

Have you ever had a frenemy? This novel took me on a journey of friendship and enemy loathing like I could never have imagined. You want to like all of the girls. You want to hate all of the girls. The story grips you in a way that I honestly wasn’t expecting. As you learn more about each of these woman, you finds pieces of yourself in each of them. The insecurities and struggles. The book does a great job of going back and forth between the past and the present. Sometimes when I read a book that does that, I get frustrated or can’t understand the purpose of the “flashbacks”. With this story, I felt like every part of the past and present was relevant. Michele Campbell created a world where although you didn’t fully like everyone or maybe even anyone, you can’t put it down. You have to know what happened to these people and all of the details.

I will not give any spoilers away about the book, but I will say you are left in suspense and guessing right up until the very last minute, which I absolutely love. This is an excellent beach read. I would highly recommend you check it out. Check back next week when we have an interview with the author. The following is a link to this book on Amazon, I do not get anything from this but wanted to provide a quick way for you to check out and/or purchase this excellent novel.

 

Overall I am going to give this one 🥐🥐🥐🥐 out of 5 croissants.

Love 📚 and 🥐,

Becky

Makeup Monday Review – Tarte – Be You, Naturally, Eyeshadow Palette

Happy Monday my makeup loving friends! I hope you all had a fabulous weekend.

This past week I tried a different eye look with the Tarte pallet from my Boxy Charm box for June. This was my first use of a Tarte palette ever! For a little reminder of the palette here is a pic!

Here are some pics!

So here is my review. First the palette smelled like chocolate. This was awesome every morning! I really didn’t think I would like that type of smell each morning but it was fantastic. The shades were all neutral enough to be used by any skin type. The shimmers were gorgeous.

I didn’t use any other shadows to complete my looks. I purposely limited myself to this palette only. The only complaint was that the deep brown shade did not blend as well as I would have liked. You can tell by my photos I struggled. I will say however the overall looks were great! I’m excited to keep using this in conjunction with some other shades that I use often to create some really great looks!

Here’s one of my favorite makeup looks from the week!

The sad thing about being a glasses wearer is that your eye looks aren’t as prominent sometimes but hey it was a good makeup day.

Overall this palette gets a 💄💄💄💄 out of 5 rating.

Have you tried other Tarte eye palettes? What are your thoughts on the brand?

Love and 💄

Becky

Thursday Story-Telling The Intervention Chapter 6

Britney found herself floating above her own desk at work. She saw her cubicle neighbor Samantha working as normal. She wished she could be doing the same thing. What a strange thought. She found herself realizing how odd it was. She wasn’t sure if she was dreaming or dead, but she would rather be at work?

She floated to her boss’s office. Kathy Greene, so much more than just a boss, she was one of Britney’s best friends. The week Anthony and she had spent with Kathy and her husband at their lake house had been one of the best memories she had of her relationship with Anthony. Anthony and she had not fought the entire week and they had actually had a wonderful time with another couple. Nights had been filled with friendly chatter and wine drinking.

The trip had only been a couple of months ago, yet the relationship with Anthony had dwindled from those glorious nights shortly after they returned home. Perhaps the peace had come simply because they had been with another couple and not wanted to embarrass themselves but she had a distinct feeling that there was another reason that week had been so wonderful. She just couldn’t place her finger on it. Britney floated through the door of her boss’s office and she found it empty. She discovered it was only 9 AM as she glanced at the computer and saw the time on the bottom corner. Where could Kathy be?

As she sat in the chair, Britney couldn’t help but wish that someday it would be hers. She had worked hard at the marketing firm and wanted to grow and have her career with this company. After she was better, if that was a possibility, if she woke up; she would make sure that she was at work on time everyday and that she stayed late. She was ready to give 100 percent to all of her accounts and really prove herself. This desperate desire for a career had been part of Anthony and her problems all along.

She wanted a career so badly that she worked long hours, and she spent more time in the office at times then she did with him. He only wanted her. She had felt at the time that he just didn’t want her to be successful. How could she have thought that? She realized now looking around the office that Kathy couldn’t have much of a life either. She didn’t even have a picture of her husband anywhere to be found in her office. She had talked to Kathy many times about the problems that Anthony and her had, and Kathy confirmed that her and her husband had shared the same difficulties but Kathy’s husband was as much of a workaholic as she was and they had managed to find a happy medium by scheduling at least 3 vacations a year together and giving completely during those times with no cell phones or email at all. It was a compromise that worked for them, but one that Britney was sure would never appease Anthony. She couldn’t imagine Anthony ever being willing to be satisfied with three weeks uninterrupted a year. He wanted to be with her all the time and he someday wanted a family. She wanted these things too, but she really wanted a career as well. She would have to learn how to balance it, if she wanted that family with Tony. The more she thought about it, the more she that she might want that family with him.

Britney glanced the computer screen again and realized that Kathy had left her email open. A new email popped up from Samantha, “Kathy, please let me know if there is anything that I can do. I will handle Britney’s accounts until you get back. Please call us as soon as you hear anything.”

Britney wanted to read more of the email. It was a reply message to something that Kathy had sent. She wondered if she could touch the mouse; after all, she had been able to walk through doors how stable could her body be. Wait a minute. This was a dream. And if she wanted to scroll that mouse she could. She grabbed for the mouse and was able to hold it. She scrolled down the email and read that she had been in a car accident. Britney remembered that she had been in the car on the way to work. She had been thinking that it was time to end things with Anthony and then her favorite song came on the radio. She remembered singing along with the radio but she couldn’t remember anything after that. Had she hurt someone else? Had she driven off of the road? She couldn’t remember anything.

Media Wednesday Review – I Feel Pretty

While traveling I occasionally have an evening where I am done with work and want to just relax in the room. I tend to search for movies I haven’t seen that my husband wouldn’t want to watch with me at home. This trip I found, I Feel Pretty starring Amy Schumer and Michelle Williams.

This story of a very insecure woman that suddenly has all the confidence in the world was a very interesting premise. It somehow reminded me of the flick Shallow Hal from the 90s. Anyone else see that one?

Any way the movie does a good job of showing how very insecure the lead character is and how a simple powerful suggestion can make her feel otherwise. I will be honest as a larger woman I get so confused when I see women that are thin and dress well, etc. feel insecure about themselves. I do realize though that as women we all have things about ourselves we would like to change and I think the movie does a good job of showing that insecurity is a universal problem.

I liked that the movie moved along well and it didn’t have any slow spots in my opinion. I like the character arc and where the lead takes the story and the ending was actually better than I had hoped for an Amy Schumer movie. I’ll be honest I’m not necessarily a fan. There were some good laughs, some cringe worthy moments and some good girl bonding moments. Also shout out to Michelle Williams. Here character was well played. I am glad I watched it and wouldn’t want my money back! On a scale of 1 to 5 popcorns I give this movie🍿 🍿🍿.

Here is a link to the trailer so you can decide if you want to check this one out as well. I Feel Pretty Trailer

Love and 🍿 my friends,

Becky