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Tuesday, October 17, 2017

At Last in Laguna by Claire Marti - Book Tour - Guest Post - Giveaway - Enter Daily!

Hi lovelies! It gives me great pleasure today to host Claire Marti and her new book, “At Last in Laguna”! 

When I saw this tour, I knew I had to be part of it!  As I am the main character in this book – haha jk!  Okay, I’m not the main character, but it is quite rare to find my birth name, Alyssa, featured in a book and even spelled correctly lol.  So, I was very excited to check out this book and feature it on my blog!!

For other stops on her Goddess Fish Promotions Book Tour, please click on the banner above or any of the images in this post.

Be sure to make it to the end of this post to enter to win a $25 Amazon or Barnes and Noble Gift Card!!  Also, come back daily to interact with Claire and to increase your chances of winning!

Thanks for stopping by!  Wishing you lots of luck in this fabulous giveaway!

At Last in Laguna
by Claire Marti


GENRE: Contemporary Romance



Alyssa Morgan has secretly been in love with her older brother Nick’s best friend, Brandt Dempsey, since she was an awkward, lonely teenager. When she catches the bouquet at Nick’s wedding, she throws caution to the wind and propositions Brandt to a two-week fling. He’s tried to ignore how Alyssa has blossomed into a strong, talented, gorgeous woman because as his best friend’s baby sister, she’s off limits.

After they share a mind-blowing kiss, Brandt struggles to fight their undeniable chemistry. His tragic childhood scarred him, but he pushes it deep inside, only allowing the world to see a wealthy, carefree entrepreneur. Forced to work together on Brandt’s latest charitable venture, Brandt and Alyssa’s passion cannot be denied. Alyssa knows he’s the one. Can she convince him they belong together?



Alyssa Morgan gripped her champagne flute in her left hand and glued her right arm to her side, fingers curled into a fist. How in the world had she been recruited for the traditional wedding bouquet toss? The last place she wanted to be was among the pack of women vying to snag a bunch of flowers.

In fact, she’d hidden in the restroom with her champagne, certain she could escape the single ladies’ ordeal. Unfortunately, Sophie Morgan, née Barnes, refused to begin the archaic ritual until her new sister- in-law could be included. The other bridesmaids hunted her down and corralled her back to the dance floor.

Fine. So here she was, squeezed into the middle of the group. She’d pretend to participate. Nothing short of a cattle prod to the back could induce her to jump up and try to obtain the unwanted prize for herself.



Always Continue Studying, Learning, and Honing Your Writing Craft

On the eve of the release of my second novel, At Last in Laguna, I’m filled with anticipation and excitement because I’m proud of this book. Don’t get me wrong, I am proud of my debut, Second Chance in Laguna, but I feel like this second book reflects all I’ve learned about the craft of writing over the last few years.

When I wrote Second Chance in Laguna, I’d studied several books on the craft of writing, devoured articles on the importance of goal, motivation, and conflict, read advice about proper pacing and what actually makes a book a page-turning pleasure. Because I’ve always been an avid bookworm and my love for reading fuels my writing, I’m intuitive with the rhythm and flow of words on the page. Wouldn’t this be enough to create a wonderful story?

After I began submitting queries to agents and editors, I realized the answer was no. On the recommendation of other writers I met at a local RWA chapter meeting, I began entering my manuscript into contests. Some of the scores and comments stung and I learned quickly that in one contest with three judges, you can receive two “A’s” and one “F.” I ended up winning one contest and placing third in another, which bolstered my confidence, as well as helped me fix flaws in my manuscript. This feedback enabled me to polish the story and receive a contract for my Finding Forever in Laguna series.

Four primary new habits and activities help me continue to improve my writing. Hopefully, one or all of them will resonate.

1. Find critique partners and beta readers who aren’t afraid to give you true constructive criticism. Another pair of eyes on your manuscript will give you the objective viewpoint you require to produce your best work. In a perfect world, your critique partner will suggest edits and/or help you brainstorm new ideas.

2.  Attend workshops and conferences as much as your budget allows. Workshops are invaluable to acquire new tips and techniques and are also the chance to connect with like-minded writers. I’m always motivated after a conference and energized to return to my writing cave. I attended my first RWA annual conference back in 2015 when I had barely finished Second Chance in Laguna. I was a newbie, eager for knowledge and inspiration and felt like I’d found my tribe. Smaller local conferences are another excellent way to stay motivated.

3. Listen to your editor or if you don’t have one, hire a great one.
My editor at The Wild Rose Press, Roseann Armstrong, is fabulous. At times I’d pull my hair out at the attention to detail she insisted upon with each round of revisions. But, incorporating her feedback from book one into the writing and self-editing of books two and three transformed my prose.

4. Read books and follow newsletters and blogs containing tips and advice. I regularly buy or borrow books on writing to stay fresh and informed, even if I glean only one helpful tip. For instance, I now make a poster board and write all my scenes on different colored sticky notes to visualize the big picture of the flow of my story. It’s simple to rearrange scenes when you can see them laid out.

In sum, never stop learning and improving your craft.



Claire Marti started writing stories as soon as she was old enough to pick up pencil and paper. After graduating from the University of Virginia with a BA in English Literature, Claire was sidetracked by other careers, including practicing law, selling software for legal publishers, and managing a non-profit animal rescue for a Hollywood actress.

Finally, Claire followed her heart and now focuses on two of her true passions: writing romance and teaching yoga. At Last in Laguna is the second book in her Finding Forever in Laguna series from The Wild Rose Press.






Goodreads Author Page:

Goodreads Book Page:

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Amazon Kindle:

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Apple iBooks:

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The Wild Rose Press Inc.:



Claire will be awarding a $25 Amazon or B/N GC to a randomly drawn winner via Rafflecopter during the tour.

**This post contains affiliate links and if clicked and a purchase made I may receive a small commission to help support this blog.  This does not cost you anything, it just helps pay for all those awesome giveaways on here.**

This contest is sponsored by a third party. Fabulous and Brunette is a registered host of Goddess Fish Promotions.  Prizes are given away by the sponsors and not Fabulous and Brunette. The featured author and Goddess Fish Promotions are solely responsible for the giveaway prize.


  1. Claire ~ It is great to have you here again! Congrats on your new book and good luck on the book tour! :) Also, thanks for writing a book about me jk - I mean using my name and spelling it correctly! Growing up we could never find my name on those pens, keychains, notepads, etc. So I changed it to Ally in high school, since nobody could ever spell it or pronounce it correctly... And I like Ally and it works, but I have noticed that Alyssa is starting to get somewhat more popular - so thanks for helping with that :)

    1. I love it! I've always thought Alyssa was such a pretty name and spelling too. I'm glad I gave you a happily ever after too.

  2. Congrats on the tour and thank you for the excerpt and giveaway.

  3. I enjoyed reading the excerpt to get to know your story; congrats on the tour and I hope it is fun for you :)

    1. Thanks for following Lisa. I hope you enjoy the book. Yes, it's fun!

  4. Thanks so much for hosting Alyssa. I love your blog and am honored to be a part of it. I hope you enjoy "your" story!

  5. Congrats on the new release and the great reviews you're getting! Best of luck with this book and this series!

  6. Thanks Victoria. I appreciate you following!

  7. Happy Friday! Have a great one and thank you for this chance at winning.

  8. I like all the advice you gave for aspiring writers. After all, great writers started out as fans of reading first. I like the characters' names that you chose. After actress Alyssa Milano hit the scene, all of us boring kids thought, "How come we didn't get that cool name?" And, singer-songwriter Sophie B. Hawkins elevated her first name to eternal coolness.