Sunday, March 02, 2008

Leaving November is the second novel in the Clayburn Novels series from Howard/Simon & Schuster.

Daughter of the town drunk, Vienne Kenney has escaped Clayburn for law school in California.

But after failing the bar exam - twice - she's back home with her tail between her legs, managing Latte-dah, the Clayburn cafe turned upscale coffee shop.

Jackson Linder runs the art gallery across the street and Vienne has had her eye on him since she was a skinny seventh grader and he was the hunky high school lifeguard who didn't know she existed.

Now it's his turn to fall for her and suddenly Clayburn seems like a pretty nice place to be. . . until Vienne discovers that Jack is fresh out of rehab and still struggling with the same addiction that ultimately killed her father.

DEBORAH RANEY is at work on her seventeenth novel. Her books have won the RITA Award, the HOLT Medallion, National Readers' Choice Award and Silver Angel from Excellence in Media.

Deborah's first novel, "A Vow to Cherish," inspired the World Wide Pictures film of the same title.

Deb serves on the advisory board of American Christian Fiction Writers. She and her husband, Ken Raney, have four children and enjoy small-town life in Kansas. Visit Deb on the web at

Chatting with Deb. . .

Q. I love the premise of this book, Deb, what was your inspiration for Leaving November?

A. When I was writing the first book in the series, Remember to Forget, Jackson Linder, a secondary character in the book, really intrigued me. Jack has struggled with something that is my greatest fear: being responsible for the death of another person. I wanted to explore how someone in his shoes could find forgiveness, redemption, and even happiness.

Q. Living with that responsibility would be incredibly hard. What a great topic to tackle in fiction. So, what are you working on now?

A. I've just finished the first draft for the third book in the Clayburn series, Yesterday's Embers.

I have a new contract for another three-book series, and a couple of stand-alone novels to write, but there are other characters from the Clayburn novels begging to have their stories told! I don't know if I'll get to write any more Clayburn books, but I've loved my time in this little fictional Kansas town!

Q. Writing about a town and people we love really helps the writing journey. What do you enjoy most about writing? The least?

A. Most: Having written! Because that means I'm getting reader feedback on my novel - the reward for all the hours of solitude! I also love that I get to be at home and make my own hours.

Least: First-drafting! I love rewriting - taking my editors' comments and applying them to make my book the best it can be. But the blank page terrifies me! For me, it's far easier to fix a horrible manuscript than to try to come up with something out of thin air.

rh: I agree, Deb. I love getting my editor's feedback, then get to rewriting. Most of all, hearing from readers.

Q. Tell us, what do you do when you're not reading or writing?

A. I love working in the beautiful garden my husband, Ken, designed in our back yard (for a peek, go to and I love decorating our home.

It's such fun to comb antique shops and flea markets for a great object from the past that I can use on my desk or in my kitchen, or a great piece of furniture to paint or refinish.

I'm not much for pretty stuff just for the sake of having it on display, but I love "repurposing" antiques -like the old chamber pot I use for deadheading in the garden, or the antique bank mail sorter that serves as my filing "cabinet."

As much as I enjoy my career, I've always believed that my most precious calling is wife to Ken, my husband of 33 years; mom to four great kids; and now mom-in-law, and "Mimi" to two darling little grandsons.

In addition, I have some of the most amazing friends in the world, including a group of women who share my name. We affectionately call ourselves Club Deb. I think being in the solitary profession of writing helps you really appreciate the people you have eye-to-eye contact with!

rh: Very true. We need to keep up with the outside world!

Thanks for stopping by, Deb.

1 comment:

squiresj said...

Love your blog. I also like antique shops and hoping that for my birthday that I get to go to antique shops, bargain shops, estate sales, whatever.
But with the weather changing and the storms today we are flooded in with creek over banks. Now we are suppose to get ice and 4 to 8 inches of snow. I am more than ready for Spring. We had 60 and 70 degree weather this weekend.
God Bless.