July 09, 2012

Interview with contemporary romance author Rita Oberlies!

Tell us a little bit about yourself and your latest release, Second Chances.

Thanks for having me here today. I grew up in the Boston area, the youngest in a family of six children. After graduating from Villanova University with a degree in English, I spent a decade pursuing a career in Corporate Training. Today I live in Western New York with my husband, our two young sons, and a pair of neurotic shelter dogs.

Second Chances is my third published book and I’m really excited that it’s allowed me to work with Entangled Publishing. This story is about a young couple that establishes a relationship in college that eventually falters because of underlying trust and maturity issues. Six years later circumstances bring them back to the same city where they quickly discover that their attraction to each other hasn’t diminished. Unfortunately before they can have a lasting relationship one of them must reveal a potentially damaging secret.

How long have you've been writing?

Right after my boys were born I decided to take a few years off from my work as a Learning Development Manager. During some down time I sat at the computer one afternoon and started writing a romance novel. It was weird because I hadn’t spent a great deal of time thinking that I wanted to write a book. My brain just needed to focus on something other than laundry and Sesame Street for a few hours each day. It wasn’t the easiest process but I reached the end, cleaned it up, and sent it out to a few publishers. Eventually it received a contract offer. That was back in 2008.

What was the writing process like for Second Chances?

I actually scrapped my first draft for this novel. Ouch! Although I liked the original story, I realized I wanted to go in a different direction. The only things that carried over were character names, occupations, and geographical settings.

This is my third published novel but my first time working with Entangled. It’s been an incredible experience. Normally after I hit the send button on a submission I start hyperventilating. The team at Entangled – from the founder to the editorial director to the publicist – has such a welcoming approach that it takes a lot of pressure off of the author. So this is has been a fun journey.

What can we expect next?

My first goal is to finish reworking my next manuscript, The Only Exception. I altered a significant secondary character not realizing how much of an impact it would have on the overall story. Now I’m overhauling almost every chapter. When that’s completed I have a sports themed story outlined in my head that I’d like to complete before the end of the year.

Can you share a small teaser from Second Chances with our followers?
“I’m guessing we can’t slip down the hall for a shower,” he whispered, running his thumb along the curve of her hip. “Tess might not be pleased if she finds me jumping her grand niece’s bones at the crack of dawn.”

It was the answer to her unspoken prayer. “I’m sure you’d rather shower at home anyway. Go. Grab some sleep in your own bed.”

His back stiffened as his hand dropped away from her body. Post coital etiquette had never been her strong suit. Most guys jumped at the chance to escape. Luke looked like a naked Green Beret waiting for the start of war. This was unfamiliar territory. Couples automatically had the green light to linger, even spend the night. Hookups were never given that same license. And sex between them... who the hell knew what category that fell into.

She blinked, hoping something would alter the brutal chill in the air.


Not exactly what she wanted to hear. She would have preferred anger to the disappointment in his voice. “Don’t do it. What just happened was awesome. Let’s not put it under a microscope.”

Steady hands claimed the white briefs tangled up at the bottom of the bed. “Okay.” His single word response was like a kick in the gut. Her brain screamed foul. She hated being on the defensive.

“I’m not kicking you out,” she said, shrugging her arms into her discarded shirt. “Sure you are.” He brushed his index finger across her lower lip to stop her from responding. “And if that hurts my feelings...well, that’s my problem.”

“I don’t regret having sex with you.”

He lowered his head, breaking eye contact with her. “Fair enough. And I don’t regret making love with you tonight.”

Brief Bio:

Rita Oberlies grew up in the Boston area, the youngest in a family of six children. At an early age she developed an addiction to books, baseball and the beaches of Cape Cod.

After graduating from Villanova University with a degree in English, Rita spent almost a decade pursuing a professional career in Employee Development. With the arrival of two children, Rita began writing stories during those brief periods of time when her young sons were sleeping.

Today Rita resides in Western New York with her husband, their young boys, and a pair of adopted shelter dogs. Despite her best efforts, she remains addicted to books, baseball and the beaches of Cape Cod.

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About Second Chances...

Will the past keep them apart…

High-powered attorney Luke Braden knows that perfection only comes once in a lifetime, and for him it came and went in the form of his college girlfriend, Brenna Morgan. Circumstances beyond his control separated them before, but now that she’s back in Boston, Luke won’t let her slip away again.

…or give them a second chance at love?

For Brenna Morgan, returning home is the very last thing she wants, especially when it means facing the man who once became her salvation—and then dumped her at the first sign of trouble. But Luke is determined to make up for his past mistakes, and Brenna finds herself weakening against him. A decade of deceit lies between them, and he’ll have to fight if he wants to keep his second chance at love.


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