Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Author Cindy Miles Guest Post for STUPID GIRL

Stupid Girl Synopsis:
Only fools fall in love...
After her senior year of high school leaves behind nothing but heartache, Olivia Beaumont is sure of this: She’s no stupid girl. She sets out for Winston College, promising herself that she will remain focused on her first and only love – astronomy. But all it takes is cocky sophomore Brax Jenkins and an accidental collision with a football, to throw her entire year off course.

A quick-tempered Southie who escaped the inner city streets of Boston to pitch for Winston, Brax is known to play way more fields than just the baseball diamond. So, when his name is drawn to take part in his fraternity’s hazing dare, Brax eagerly accepts the mission to take Olivia’s virginity. But he doesn’t plan on falling hard for the sweet and sassy Texas girl who sees right through his bad-boy persona.

As Olivia and Brax battle their feelings for each other, echoes of the past year begin to surface. A boy who once turned Olivia’s whole world upside down reappears, and “harmless” pranks wreak havoc. Pretty soon the aspiring astronomer is on the verge of revealing her most difficult, heartbreaking secret. All the while, Brax must wrestle with the irrevocable dare, and Olivia struggles against all logic as she does the one thing only a stupid girl would do: fall in love.

From choosing a name to 3-D character: How Stupid Girl’s Brax Jenkins was born.

Naming characters is at the top of my list of fun things to do when beginning a new project. Names mean a lot to me. Not only are the characters, like our children in real life, stuck with the name you choose, but having certain meaning behind the name adds an edge to their character. It did for the bad boy Southie pitcher from Boston, BRAX JENKINS, in my New Adult novel, Stupid Girl.

Just another bad boy? No way. In Stupid Girl, Brax was abandoned at a Chinese restaurant on Braxton Street as a baby. That’s a pretty bad start in life for a kid. But it didn’t stop there for Brax. He was passed from foster family to foster family, some not-so-nice, raised by the judicial system, and learned the hard way how to survive on the streets. The harder it got for him, the tougher he became. He had no choice. He grew angry. Defensive. And he had no real family. What he did have was baseball. And you don’t have to necessarily love baseball to get that in order to survive you have to have something that matters. It was the driving force of Brax’s survival. His desire to be something more than a delinquent street kid with a crappy home life. All these qualities, to me, make him a 3D character. Add in his cockiness, his swagger, and his wicked fast ball? Seems like he’d be someone real.

When he meets the heroine in Stupid Girl—Olivia, whom he affectionately calls ‘Gracie’—she stuns him by not tripping all over herself to be with him like all the other girls do. Olivia is smart. Goal-driven. And despite having her own horrific ordeal the summer before her senior year—followed by her entire senior year—in high school, she prevails, determined to take the scholarship she’d earned in astronomy and make something of herself. Make her dreams come true. Her hard-working ranch family proud of her. When she first meets Brax and all his cocky swagger, she doesn’t think there’s a chance in hell they could be friends—much less anything else. They both proved to be wrong.

All of these things combined affected Brax Jenkins in a way that made him want to be a better person. Not just a survivor of the streets. Not just someone who was thrown away as a baby. But of who he wanted to be for the rest of his life. Olivia makes him whole.

And to me, that makes a character real.

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Twitter: @cindymilesbooks

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