Interview with Whitney Dineen & Melanie Summers

“Text me on Tuesday is a winner! Charming, romantic, and oh, so funny! I devoured it in one sitting!” ~ New York Times & USA Today Bestselling Author Jennifer Probst

“What happens when two of your favorite rom-com authors team up? PURE MAGIC!” ~ USA Today Bestselling Author Becky Monson

All is fair in love and texting…

When Aimee Tompkins loaded up her old catering van and pulled into Manhattan, she had her sights set on becoming one of the best (and most lucrative) caterers to ever serve crudités and creampuffs in the Big Apple. But after a year of leaving fliers all over town, she’s not only running out of money, she’s running low on hope. So when she lands a gig at a big architecture firm, Aimee’s certain her luck is about to change.

Noel Fitzwilliam is pitching the most important project of his life–the type architects dream of. Everything has to go right, so when he finds the new caterer naked in his office bathroom right before the meeting, he’s torn between thrilled and extremely irritated. He doesn’t have time for romance, no matter how incredible she looks without her clothes on.

A mix-up means Aimee is accidentally given his cell number instead of his assistant’s. So when she starts texting Noel about how much she hates him, he decides to have a little fun with her. The last thing he expects is for her to turn his world upside-down. But that’s exactly what happens as the pair start sharing their deepest secrets and their greatest fears, and Noel discovers he can share so much more over the phone than he can in person. But what will happen when she finds out who he really is?

It’s a case of opposites attract, even when they repel…

This week’s interview is with two awesome authors who just co-authored a fun rom-com TEXT ME ON TUESDAY.

USA Today Bestselling author Whitney Dineen is a rock star in her own head. While delusional about her singing abilities, there’s been a plethora of validation that she’s a fairly decent author (AMAZING!!!). After winning many writing awards and selling nearly a kabillion books (math may not be her forte, either), she’s decided to let the voices in her head say whatever they want (sorry, Mom). She also won a fourth-place ribbon in a fifth-grade swim meet in backstroke. So, there’s that.

Melanie resides in Edmonton with her husband, their three kiddos, one adorable but neurotic no-eyed dog, Lucy, and a small furry dictator named Nelson. When she’s not writing novels, Melanie loves reading (obviously), snuggling up on the couch with her family for movie night (which would not be complete without lots of popcorn and milkshakes), and long walks in the woods near her house. She also spends a lot more time thinking about doing yoga than actually doing yoga, which is why most of her photos are taken ‘from above’. She also loves shutting down restaurants with her girlfriends. Well, not literally shutting them down, like calling the health inspector or something–more like just staying until they turn the lights off.

  • What literary pilgrimages have you gone on?

Whitney: My life has been one big literary pilgrimage. Every place I’ve lived or travelled eventually turns up in one of my books. Now, if you’re talking pilgrimages while I’m writing—most of those are to the kitchen for snack. My books are fueled on copious amounts of snacking.

Melanie: A literary pilgrimage is something I long to do, but will have to wait until my kids grow up and the pets die. At that point, I want to go EVERYWHERE. Except not space. Sorry, but no. I get horrible seasickness, I can’t imagine myself at rocket speed. (Is that a thing? Rocket speed?)

  • What is your favorite quote? Why does it speak to you?

Whitney: “Faith consists in believing when it is beyond the power of reason to believe.” –Voltaire. All of my successes in life have come from a deep-rooted faith that I will land on my feet. Looking back, I sometimes wonder how things worked out so well—but they have. I’ve decided that if you keep going, no matter the setback, things will always work out in the end.

Melanie: “Work hard. Dream big.” – John Close, my dad who did both really well his entire life.  It reminds me to keep that balance between busting my butt to get what I want and wanting a big, juicy life filled with incredible memories instead of regrets.

  • What other authors are you friends with, and how do they help you become a better writer?

Whitney: Obviously, Melanie is a friend of mine. We plot together, discuss the ins and outs of business, and we listen to each other complain when we can’t figure something out. In addition to Mel, there’s Becky Monson (my therapist and cover designer), Jennifer Peel (master romance plotter), Aven Ellis (royal consultant), Diana Orgain (plotter and co-dreamer), Celia Kennedy (my editor with the patience of a saint) and Kathryn Biel (the big meanie who tells me when something in my books totally sucks—and I’m SO grateful for that). There are so many others, but this group is the one who has to put up with my annoying day-to-day stuff.

Melanie: Whitney, definitely. We’re both slightly crazy when it comes to setting deadlines and really going for it. She’s one of the most positive people I’ve met and every time we talk or message each other, I’m better for it. I’m also extremely close with Kelly Collins, a small-town romance genius, who helps me plot and calm down when I’m using my imagination to get myself all wound-up (instead of for writing). She’s a whizz at the business-side of writing and pushes me to be more organized and mindful in my marketing. Another super close friend is Jenn Falls (who writes as Bella Falls). She’s my series plotting and branding guru. She just knows this stuff and can sniff out a problem with a story a mile away. I have other chick-lit writer friends who graciously share ideas and offer feedback on my covers, blurbs, etc. I’d be lost without my author friends.

  • As a writer, what would you choose as your mascot/avatar/spirit animal?

Whitney: Mrs. Roper from that old 70’s-80’s sitcom Three’s Company is my spirit animal. It’s her whole crazy, free-spirit caftan-wearing self that I vibe with.

Melanie: If a sloth and a rabbit had a baby, that would be my spirit animal because I love doing nothing, but I’m also always on the lookout for danger.

  • What was your hardest scene to write?

Whitney: I can’t write sex scenes to save my life. I’ve tried, I really have, but they always come off sounding like something that might happen at a circus. And believe me the romance/circus trope is not a thing.

Melanie: The romantic circus thing should totally be a trope! Great idea, Whitney. Next series?? I wrote a women’s fiction book a while ago and there’s a scene where the hero has to tell the heroine he’s got cancer. I wrote and rewrote it a bazillion times over the span of four years, but it always came out insanely melodramatic. Finally, I realized less was more, and cut it off right when she realizes what he’s about to say. SO much better.

  • How long on average does it take you to write a book?

Whitney: I can do a first draft in six weeks. Having said that, with Mel, we can apparently write, edit, proof, and publish in under a month. So… she might be stuck with me as a writing partner for life.

Melanie: Yes! I’m happy with that idea because it takes me a good three months to write a novel. Usually more. But with Whitney cracking the whip, I almost work as hard as a normal person.

  • Can you share a snippet that is in your WIP that isn’t the blurb?

A tall brunette in a pencil skirt so tight it looks painted on, pulls me out of trance by asking, “Who smells?”

I’m about to covertly sniff my armpit again, when she clarifies, “Who dared to wear perfume today?”

Byron looks at her, and shrugs. “That’s my bad, Cindy.  I forgot to tell Aimée here that WL Senior is severely allergic to scents.” Turning to me, he says, “Do you have anything else you can wear? After we get you washed up that is.”

“I … I don’t,” I stutter, horrified to have made such a bad first impression. I always used to keep extra clothes in my van upstate, but I haven’t exactly had a run on business since I’ve been here.

“Oh, for God’s sake,” Cindy sneers. “I have an extra pair of slacks in my office if you can find her a shirt.”

I’m pretty sure Cindy is at least six inches taller than me and at least two sizes smaller. I’m guessing I couldn’t even decompose to her size until I’d been dead for a year. There is no way I can wear her pants.

“Go get them,” Byron tells her. “Meet me in the boss’s office. She can shower in there.”

I’m suddenly whisked away to some inner sanctum while leaving Teisha in charge of the food. I could die of mortification.

“Mr. Fitzwilliam will be out for the next hour, so you can use his private bathroom to see to things.” He waves his hand in front of me like he’s either casting a spell or trying to read my aura. Then he hurries out of the room.

The office is as elegant as an Edwardian gentleman’s club in England. I know that from the descriptions in the hundreds of bodice-ripping historical romances I read as a teenager. There’s a wide bookshelf (full of books and awards), an enormous mahogany desk, a sitting area including armchairs and a couch, as well as a round table with four dining chairs tucked carefully under it. Everything looks antique and awfully expensive. I’m half-tempted to lie down and roll on the oriental rug to see if it’s as soft as it looks. 

I cannot imagine being this important. I only hope the short bald man—because the boss is always short and bald for some reason—who calls this office his own appreciates how good he has it.

When I open the door to the bathroom, I let out an audible gasp. The shower is as big as my entire bathroom and it looks out onto the East River. Getting naked in here is going to make me feel like I’m on display for the world to see.

I hurriedly pick up my phone and text Teisha.

Me: Are you okay?

Teisha: I’ve got everything under control. Don’t worry about a thing.

Me: Are you wearing any perfume?

Teisha: Nope.

Me: Okay, I’ll be out as soon as I can. You would not believe the office I’m in!

Teisha: Pretty flashy, huh?

Me: You could say that.

I slowly start to take my clothes off while hoping that Byron finds a fat woman’s pants for me to put on. Once I’m in the shower, I scrub myself as quickly as I can. The soap is an old-fashioned bar of Ivory and I run it all over my body before giving myself a good rinse.

I’m about to step out of the shower when I hear, “For the love of God, Byron, leave me alone. I’m in a hurry.”

The voice is right outside the bathroom door! Holy crap, did I lock the door? I step out of the shower in hopes of making sure no one can get in. As soon as my wet foot hits the shiny marble floor I slip and slide across the room like I’m starring in Frozen on Ice. Let it Go!!!

As luck would have it, that’s the exact moment the door opens, and I fall into the arms of the most devastatingly handsome man it has ever been my pleasure to lay eyes on—thick, dark hair that looks like not even one strand would dare to stray from where he wants it, moss-green eyes with flecks of gold and coffee-colored rims, and—oh, wow—a chiseled manly-man jawline peppered with two-day stubble.  I gawk up at him with sheer disbelief. I’m so blinded by his gorgeousness; I’m temporarily rendered mute.

With his arms around me, he calls over his shoulder, “Byron, you left one of your desperate strays in my en suite.” 

Two things. One, his British accent is so dreamy, it almost makes me want to swoon even though he just tossed out one of the worst insults anyone has thrown my way. And two, he smells so damn good, I want to rub myself all over his neck. Then, of course, there’s the other thing. I’m buck naked.

All’s fair in love and texting.


Make sure you pick up your copy of this awesome book and big thanks to Whitney and Melanie for joining me for the interview. Please leave a comment, I’ll be a picking one person from the comments to win a FREE ebook copy of TEXT ME ON TUESDAY!