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Monday, June 2, 2014

Post and a Prize with Valeria J. Clarizio


I am often asked the following question: 
How did you get started in the writing business?
Well, truth be told, for years I worked a full-time and part-time job while I attended classes at night to obtain my Master’s Degree (MBA).  When I finally finished school, I suddenly had all this time on my hands and wasn’t quite sure what to do with myself.  A friend of mine suggested that I try reading for pleasure, you know, NOT textbooks.  That said, she handed me a Janet Evanovich book, and I took the book from her with the thought that perhaps I’d get to reading it someday, because, quite honestly, the last thing I wanted to do was read anything after all that school reading.  Once I cracked that book open, I couldn’t put it down until I was finished.  The first book of Evanovich’s Stephanie Plum series turned me into a reading maniac.  I logged over 50 books read in the first year after my graduation.  After reading all these books, it occurred to me that I should take a shot at writing one.  After all, how hard could it be?  I’ll just answer this question right away.  Writing the book was a piece of cake, it was learning the craft and re-writing book that was difficult.  In the meantime, I could have wallpapered my house with the rejection letters.
In the beginning, I didn’t understand why my book was being rejected, and I was on the verge of giving up when this this awesome lady from my writers group offered to take a look at it.  She critiqued the first few chapters and provided lengthy feedback in regard to POV, dialogue tags, pacing, etc.  Not only did I read her comments numerous times, I studied the corrections and suggestions she made in the document itself, and then I re-wrote the book based on her feedback.  I dare say, the re-write took twice as long as writing the book in the first place, but it was worth every painful minute once I saw that contract offer pop up in my email. 
My point to this whole little article is…The most useful thing I’ve learned thus far in my writing career is the importance of finding a honest and dedicated critique partner.  One who isn’t afraid to tell you like it is, and who is sincerely interested in helping you succeed.  Additionally, when you find that awesome critique partner make sure to reciprocate the effort. 

After Alex Polecheck's police officer husband, Sam, is stabbed in cold blood, she vows to see the murderer brought to justice.  Peter, Sam’s best friend, and fellow police officer, seems to be the only member of the Police Department interested in catching the killer.
Peter sets out on a perilous hunt for the killer, while trying to protect Alex, who appears to be next on the murderer’s list. 
The mystery begins to unravel when Peter finds a connection between the murder of Sam and two other law enforcement officers, who were all part of an internet crime taskforce. Peter and Alex find themselves alone in the battle for justice and truth when they discover members of the local police department cannot be trusted.  Will Peter piece together the puzzle before Alex is silenced?  While battling to protect Alex, will he be able to continue to conceal his love for her? 

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Valerie is a writer of romantic suspense, contemporary romance, and women’s fiction novels.  She lives in beautiful Door County Wisconsin with her husband and one very spoiled cat.  She loves to read, write, and spend time at her cabin in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan.  She’s lived her life surrounded by men, three brothers, a husband, and a male Siamese cat who required his own instruction manual.  Keeping up with all the men in her life has turned her into a successful hunter and fisherwoman.
She is a member of Romance Writers of America and the Wisconsin Romance Writers of America. Additionally, she was a finalist in the 2011 Celtic Hearts Romance Writers, Novellas Need Love, Too! Contest.

Ms. Clarizio’s Links:


  1. Hi Brenda,
    Thank you so much for hosting this stop of my blog tour for Unforeseen Obsessions.