Thursday, November 3, 2016

A Holiday Wish VBT

Noelle Silver has been a wedding planner for six years, and in all that time, the only bride she's failed to get down the aisle is herself. Abandoned by her fiancé and disillusioned with love, Noelle is ready to pack it in and leave town when Brooke St. John, orphaned heiress, offers her a staggering amount of money to do Brooke's Christmas Eve wedding to a much older man.

Though she's reluctant at first, the payment Brooke offers is enough for Noelle to return to her hometown and start a new life. It's also an opportunity to prove to herself - and her former fiancé - that despite her broken heart she still has what it takes to pull off a wedding worthy of an heiress in the mere two months Brooke has given her. But the best man, Brooke's gorgeous older brother Everett, seems dead set on stopping the nuptials. Will he succeed, driving the final nail into the coffin of Noelle's career as a wedding planner - and completely shattering what's left of her expectations of love?

The crisp autumn air smells clean in a way heavy, humid summer air never can. It bites at my cheeks and ruffles the edges of my burgundy scarf. Through leaves burnished gold and crimson the sun dapples the sidewalk and bounces off the shop windows as I hurry past. It’s so nice out this morning that if it weren’t for the promise of coffee, croissants and Drew, I would have been a little disappointed to come to the end of the half-mile walk between my apartment and The Daily Grind, which is on a quaint tree-lined street just a few doors down from my own shop—Silver Bells Wedding Designs. It’s a play on my name, Noelle Silver, and the fact that I specialize in Christmas weddings. They’re my absolute favorite. Something about the holiday season just lends itself to gorgeous weddings. But Drew’s the outdoorsy type and has his heart set on getting married outside. If he didn’t, we would definitely do it at Christmas.

I’m pleased to be able to interview the main character of A Holiday Wish, Noelle Silver. Noelle was kind enough to take a few minutes from her busy schedule of trying to plan the wedding of the century to answer a few questions for us. Thanks for being here, Noelle!
NSThanks for having me. I'm not going to lie - this is kind of weird.
CJHYou've never been interviewed before?
NSNope. Well, the Springhollow Stalker did a little writeup on me when I opened my business. But that was a few years ago, and it wasn't really an interview. Just a blurb, really.
CJHThe Springhollow Stalker?
NSThat's what my fiancé - I mean my ex-fiancé - calls the local paper. It's a small town, and he used to swear that the people who write for it get their stories by looking into people's windows. They always seem to know what's going on.
CJHI get it. Well, welcome to your first interview!
NSThanks, I think.
CJHDon't be nervous. I'm just going to make you tell us all of your deepest, darkest secrets.
NSFire away. I hope you're not disappointed by my completely boring life.
CJHI doubt that. Well, first things first. Your name is Noelle Silver. How old are you?
NSReally? Do I have to answer that?
CJHWould you rather I guessed?
NSUgh. Fine. If I have to. I'm thirty. Thirty-one in January.
CJHI wouldn't have guessed that. And where are you from?
NSI'm from a little town called Blackton. It's not as little as Springhollow, but it's definitely not some sprawling metropolis. It's a suburb of Harrisburg.
CJH: What brought you to Springhollow?
NSSchool. I went to Springhollow College.
CJHThat's a great school. You must be intelligent.
NSI'm not researching string theory on my day off, that's for sure. But I get by, I guess.
CJHWhat was your major?
NSEnglish literature.
CJHAnd what do you do?
NSI own Silver Bells Wedding Designs. I'm a wedding planner. Money well-spent!
CJHWell, it's not unusual for people to end up doing something they never thought they would. What made you decide to become a wedding planner?
NSYou know, I don't remember actually making the decision. I'd never even been to a wedding until after I graduated from college. I just remember showing up and being just completely obsessed with every little detail. I wondered how they picked the food, the colors, the theme, even the music. It fascinated me how all of these little parts came together to create this beautiful, magical day. I spent more time talking to their coordinator than my fiancé - sorry, ex-fiancé.
CJHAnd how soon after that did you start your own business?
NSSooner than I should have. I didn't really know what I was doing for that entire first year. I got lucky, though. I didn't screw up too much and the stuff that did get screwed up, I fixed the best I could. I worked out of my apartment for the first three years. Then three years ago I rented my own shop. It's on Main Street, a few doors down from The Daily Grind.
CJHSo you're doing pretty well, then?
NSWell, I guess. Not that it matters.
CJHWhat do you mean?
NSI'm - well, I'm actually closing down. I'm working on my last wedding now, and then I'm done.
CJHWhy's that?
NSUm. A couple of reasons. The biggest one being that my heart's just not in it anymore. I've had some personal issues lately and that makes it kind of hard to put my all into planning someone's dream wedding.
CJHI see. Does it have anything to do with your own broken engagement?
NSHow did you know about that?
CJHYou've referred to your ex-fiance twice.
NSOh. I didn't realize. Well, yeah. It does have to do with that. It's kind of hard to tell people you can plan their weddings when it's common knowledge that you couldn't pull off your own, you know?
CJHI understand. So what are your plans?
NSUm, if you don't mind, I'd really rather not get into that. It's kind of personal. I don't feel ready to talk about it.
CJHNo problem. I have some other questions I could ask, if you prefer?
NSThat would be fine. As long as they don't involve romance, or weddings. Or Christmas. Or coffee.
CJHCoffee? I think you're safe.
If you had a free day and your only mission was to enjoy yourself, what would you do? I would sleep as late as I could, even though when I can sleep late I still end up waking up around 9. I'd have a leisurely and really fattening breakfast - a few cups of tea and a bunch of pastries. Then I'd take a walk downtown to the art gallery and spend a few hours there wishing I had the money to be able to afford some of the abstract pieces. After that I'd go to the park and sit by the mini-waterfall and meditate. I've never meditated a day in my life! I just want to know what it's like. Then I'd pick up some Thai food for dinner and then wind down with a movie and some Chardonnay.
What are you most proud of about your life? Wow. That's a hard one. Well, up until a few weeks ago I'd say I was most proud of starting my own business. I never thought I had that in me. But I failed. So I don't know. I really don't know.
When you wake up in the morning what’s the first thing you do? Pee. Can I say that?
Do you think you've turned out the way your parents expected? No, probably not. My mom always bragged about how smart I was. I walked and talked so early she seemed to think it meant I'd be a genius. I really doubt she ever expected me to be a failed wedding planner. And my dad ditched us when I was ten. If he had any expectations for me, he never made them known.
What have you always wanted to do but haven't done? Why? I've always wanted to visit Europe. There's a lot of reasons why I haven't. takes a lot of money, and growing up we never had any. Then I was in school, and right after school I started my business, so there was no time.
What is the worst thing that's happened in your life? What did you learn from it? Being ditched by my fiance for his twenty-three-year-old assistant. And even though I already knew from my dad that you can't really trust men who say they'll be there for you, that just drove it home. There. I said it. Don't ask me to talk about it.
What is the most important thing in your life? What do you value most? My family, absolutely. I'd do anything for my mom and my sister. Even if it meant giving up my life as I know it.
What flaw must you overcome? (Laughs) Just one? Let's see. I'm a slob. I can be insensitive. Apparently I have a tendency toward self-absorption and outright selfishness. There are probably more but those are the biggies.
CJHWell, I think that's all the questions I have for you, Noelle. Thanks for being here! Good luck with the last wedding.
NSThanks for having me. This was...enlightening.

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October 31: Louise Lyndon Romance Author Hear Me Roar
November 1: EskieMama Reads
November 2: Fabulous and Brunette
November 2: The Silver Dagger Scriptorium
November 3: Sharing Links and Wisdom
November 3: Long and Short Reviews
November 4: Queen of All She Reads - review only
November 4: Hearts and Scribbles - promo

Author Bio and Links:
Courtney J. Hall is the author of Some Rise by Sin, a historical romance set in the tumultuous final days of Mary Tudor’s reign, and A Holiday Wish, the first book in the Silver Bells contemporary romance series. She lives in suburban Philadelphia with her husband and a stolen cat.

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  1. I really enjoyed reading your interview, thank you!

  2. Thank you so much for having me!

  3. Great interview, Sounds like a terrific read!

  4. Congrats on the tour, the book looks great, and thanks for the chance to win :)