A Taste of Bliss – Adrian Hale

I was introduced to A Taste of Bliss by my very good friend Casey. I’ve always gone to her for book recommendations, and she has yet to let me down! Adrian R. Hale is the self-published author of A Taste of Bliss who is a recent Austin transplant by way of California. She is a hair and make up artist with a dash of novelist in the mix. I am honored to be able to share this interview with Adrian with you.

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What are your ambitions for your writing career?
I would love to publish more books to share my stories with others. I tend to write fast and furiously, or not at all, so it’s hard to figure out just how many books I am capable of writing in any given time. I gave myself a lofty goal this year, and well, it’s a little harder to produce than I imagined haha

What made you decided to sit down and start writing?
I have these characters in my head that have a way of making it to the front of my brain with bits and pieces of their stories. If I ignore them for too long, they get really pushy! I started writing two years ago when one story was so loud in that I just couldn’t ignore it anymore. Finishing that first book was a huge breakthrough for me after starting and never finishing so many others. It gave me the confidence to know I could create a full story and let my characters live on the page instead of just in my head.

What have you written? (Any other books, novels, short stories, poems, blogs)
I have written three full novels, A Taste of Bliss being the third, but only one to be published, and I am working on a fourth right now that is a companion to ATOB. Before I started writing novels, I loved to blog. I still have an active blog that rarely receives content called The Happy girl Blog (www.thehappygirlblog.com) which is a random mix of lifestyle stuff like recipes I have tried, workouts and activities I am doing, photos and life updates, and really, anything that makes me happy. I had some truly terrible poetry filling up spiral bound notebooks from high school, but I did everyone a favor and threw those out after I graduated. There is only so much angst a teenager can write about and not seem whiny!

Where can we see or buy them?
You can buy A Taste of Bliss at all major e-book sellers! The paperback is available from Amazon, and I also have a sign up for signed paperback copies.
Amazon Kindle: http://bit.ly/ATOBAMZFB
Paperback: http://bit.ly/ATOBAMPB
Signed copies: http://bit.ly/ATOBSignedPB
Barnes & Noble Nook: http://bit.ly/ATasteOfBlissBN
iBooks: http://bit.ly/ATOBiBooks
Google Play: http://bit.ly/ATOBGP
Kobo: http://bit.ly/ATasteOfBlissKobo

You can also add A Taste of Bliss to your Goodreads to be read list here http://bit.ly/ATasteofBlissGR

How can we contact you or find out more about your book?
You can sign up for my newsletter to get information about new releases and book news here http://bit.ly/AdriansBooks
I also love connecting with readers through social media. Find me on
Facebook www.facebook.com/adrianrhaleauthor
Twitter: www.twitter.com/adrianrhale
and Instagram www.instagram.com/adrianrhale

How long did it take you to write A Taste of Bliss?
I wrote ATOB during NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month www.nanowrimo.org) which takes place in November. You are challenged to write a 50k word story in 30 days. I hit 50k on Bliss in 11 days, and finished it on day 30. This story poured out of me, and even when I doubted myself and it, I kept going because I knew I wanted to finish. I highly recommend turning to NaNo when you want accountability and a community of other writers working on projects as well. Once I finished my first draft, I edited it several times and then gave it to a professional editor. It took a few more months of editing rounds, formatting, cover design, and other contracted services to get the novel ready for publication.

Who is your intended audience and why should they read your book?
I write what I love to read, and I feel like my audience can be very broad. My category is NA (new adult) contemporary romance, meaning my main character is in her early twenties and dealing with early adulthood issues. This book will appeal to romance lovers because the main storyline is that of undeniable love. A Taste of Bliss is not just a romance, though. It has elements that can speak to anyone who has ever experienced passionate first love, terminal illness, the joys and setbacks of starting your own business, and has struggled to balance everything neatly. It’s tender and romantic, funny, will pull your heartstrings, make you believe in your dreams, and show you just how powerful the bond between a mother and daughter is.

Tell us a little about your main character(s)? What makes them special?
Bliss Kaufman is a girl you would love to have as a friend. She’s a fantastic hair and makeup artist living out her dream job in San Francisco. She’s approachable and honest, a hard worker, loyal, selfless, and looking for happiness. She’s also unsure of herself as she begins new ventures in business and love, she questions motives and actions and is guarded when it comes to giving her heart away.
Talan McGregor is mysterious and fun, flirty and passionate. He’s the guy you can’t believe is talking to you, but makes you feel like it’s just the two of you alone together even in a crowded room. He’s driven and successful while still being laid back and secure.
Together, they are strength and commitment, honesty and belief. They are the perfect mix for each other of devotion and independence, security and doubt, and a faith in new beginnings.

Can you give us a snippet or synopsis of your book?
A Taste of Bliss is a new adult contemporary romance set in the San Francisco Bay area. It follows the title character, Bliss, a young hair and makeup artist, as she navigates the often rocky path of being a freelance beauty pro with conniving rivals out to get her. She meets Talan, a slightly mysterious and oh so sexy bartender, at a winery after working a wedding and decides to give him one evening of her time. The only problem is, Talan doesn’t just want one night with her, but when he comes back, his timing couldn’t be worse. Bliss is dealt a crushing blow as her mother receives awful news, and she can’t possibly imagine having the time in her hectic life or the room in her guarded heart to let Talan in. She quickly learns that even though she can make anyone beautiful with her bag of tricks, she can’t smooth over the rough parts of her life, and finds she might need him after all. Talan works on her heart while supporting her emotionally through the tough hand she’s been dealt. He’s a force to be reckoned with, in the bedroom and out. This is a bittersweet love story with the resounding themes of family, chasing your dreams and embracing life to the fullest. It’s a standalone tear jerker with a happily every after.

If your English teacher were dissecting your book, what would they say? Would they find any hidden meanings?
Oh boy, I can’t imagine my high school English teachers reading my book! But they would probably see the themes of family, chasing your dreams, and fully giving yourself over to another who is worthy of you. At least that’s what I hope they would see!

Are you working on anything currently?
Yes! I am writing a companion novel to A Taste of Bliss called Drift Heat that follows two characters introduced in ATOB. It’s a very different story, and the characters are soooo different from Bliss and Talan! I can’t wait to finish it so I can share with readers and see what they think.

If your book were made into a movie, whom would you want to play the lead character?
It would be a huge honor to ever have anyone even remotely interested in creating a movie from A Taste of Bliss, but I do know who I would want to play the characters!! I used a few famous “muses” for inspiration. Brittany Snow would be Bliss and Tyler Hoechlin would be Talan. Love those two!

What was the easiest thing about writing?
Letting my characters have free rein to grow into themselves and develop beyond what I had imagined for my story! I’m sure you think I am crazy when I say that my characters develop their own personalities as I write, which dictates a lot of how they will interact and react to story plots and situations. I will sometimes plot out how I think something will go, and then change it drastically when I am writing it because “that’s not how so-and-so would react!”

What was the hardest thing about writing?
Sitting down and actually writing! I am a very energetic person, so finding the time to sit down and write the words is always where I struggle. I also doubt my story and where it’s going before I finish, so that makes it hard to keep going until I feel better about what I have written. It’s a crazy cycle of writing, doubting, reading through it, feeling better about things, and continuing on.

Did you learn anything from writing your book?
YES! I learned that you must fully devote yourself to the people and things you love. Say hell fucking yes, or no, to the things that matter. Writing this made me appreciate my mother so much more as I turned to her when I was writing particularly poignant scenes with Lisa and Bliss, or when I wanted her perspective. I put a lot of my own relationship with my mom into Lisa and Bliss, and I feel particularly protective of that plot line now. I have had some reviewers not love that there was this whole second storyline going on that was not part of the romance, and it hurts me to see them unhappy with something I loved writing and thought made the story better. Oh, I learned I do NOT have a very thick skin when it comes to reviews! haha

You self-published. Do you have any tips for other writers?
Treat it like a business! You need to learn EVERYTHING before you dive in. Ask other authors, research like crazy, and create a business plan for how you will produce and market your book. The easy part was writing, the hard part was editing it into a novel, and the hardest part is getting it into the hands of readers. Do your homework and know what you are getting yourself into. It’s incredibly rewarding to publish your own book, but it takes a village and a good deal of your soul to make it work.

What are the advantages and disadvantages of self-publishing?
Advantages to self-publishing are that you control EVERYTHING. You can pick the cover photo, title, write the back cover blurb, and make it just how you want it. The disadvantage is that you control everything!! It’s on your shoulders to be the editing team, art department, marketer, and more. My tip is to hire professionals to help you where you lack skills. I hired a professional editor, cover designer, formatter, and PR team for A Taste of Bliss, and it was worth every penny.

Who are some of your favorite authors, and what about them strikes you?
I love J.R. Ward’s Black Dagger Brotherhood series and Karen Marie Moning’s Fever series. Both are more paranormal romance genres, and oh, so good. I can read anything by either of those authors and know I will freaking love it. For contemporary romance, I will read anything by Rachel Robinson or Heidi Joy Tretheway; they are both friends of mine and amazing writers who always deliver a killer story. I find myself buying books on my Kindle and randomly picking what to read next, so I get exposed to a lot of great authors that way. I usually prefer contemporary romance, but will read basically anything that strikes my fancy.

Is there anything that you would like to add?
I am so grateful to everyone who has picked up my book to read and left me feedback, it means so much! When I started this self-publishing journey, I had no idea where it would go. I expected to sell a handful of books to my family and friends–people who have to care– and then never sell anything else. To have a complete stranger find my book, and maybe even like it, seriously rocks my world. I wouldn’t write if I didn’t want someone else to read it and maybe find some of the joy I put into writing it. It’s a cool connection that I am grateful for. Please find me on social media and say hi, I love making new friends!

Terrible better than perfection teaser

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