Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Blog Tour and Review: Stay Tuned by Lauren Clark

What happens when a #1 news team becomes the top story instead of reporting it?
For TV producer Melissa Moore, crisis management comes with the job. From employee disputes to her high-maintenance boss, there’s not much she hasn’t seen or can’t handle.
But no one—including Melissa—expects a fistfight during the ten o’clock news. When sexy-but-crazy Alyssa Andrews lands a punch on her co-anchor’s face, Melissa jumps on set to help. She’s determined that WSGA’s reputation won’t be destroyed on her watch.
Both anchors are fired and Melissa agrees to fill in—but not before polishing her look from haircut to heels. While the new Melissa wows WSGA viewers, her personal life starts fraying at the edges. Melissa’s husband is away more than he’s home, leaving cryptic Post-it notes in his wake. Her mother’s antics spiral out of control at the nursing home and a stalker decides Melissa is her next target.
What happens next? Stay Tuned to find out…

Prior to giving my review, I would like to share with you my interview with Lauren Clark, the author of Stay Tuned.
What was the hardest thing about writing this book?
The most difficult part about writing Stay Tuned was making sure that the book remained true to the ever-changing broadcast news industry. I've been out of the TV business for several years, so I relied on a few, close girlfriends who are still anchoring and reporting to let me know if the story was authentic. Fortunately for me, they said yes and have really supported the novel! 
Which of your characters can you relate to the most? 
I relate to Melissa most in Stay Tuned. She's the main character, she's married, has a child, and loves to take care of the other employees at the station. Melissa isn't perfect and has to learn to trust herself and her abilities when it comes to being on-air. She's a regular girl with the normal stresses of juggling a job, marriage, friendships, and an elderly parent. Like everyone, Melissa has her moments of doubt and moments of truth, but in the end, she learns that she IS a strong, capable woman able to create and shape her own destiny.
Which part of the book was the easiest to write?
The easiest part of Stay Tuned to write was the anchor fist fight scene. Before I began work at WWNY-TV, the two main anchors there were involved in a very volatile, emotionally-charged romantic relationship. One of their infamous arguments came to blows in the back parking lot of the television station. Both of them were fired and continued a very public battle in the newspaper through editorials (threats of lawsuits, arrests, etc). I always remembered that crazy incident and thought it would make an excellent starting point or turning point in a novel--something that would cause everything in the main character's life to change.
Which songs would be on the soundtrack of the movie version of the book?
I'd have to include Don Henley's "Dirty Laundry." It's the perfect song about all of the crazy, seedy parts of the journalism profession. "Georgia" by Ray Charles, as Stay Tuned is set in Macon. "(Sweet) Melissa" by the Allman Brothers Band for my main character, Melissa. Christina Aguilera's "Beautiful" and "Little Wonders" by Rob Thomas, "Bad Day," Daniel Powter, and Train's "Calling All Angels." 
Any future books in the works? 
I am so excited that Dancing Naked in Dixie will be released May 21st on Amazon and! My Beta readers have given it a big thumbs up!
Here's the summary: Travel writer Julia Sullivan lives life in fast-forward. She jet sets to Europe and the Caribbean with barely a moment to blink or sleep. But too many mishaps and missed deadlines have Julia on the verge of being fired.
With a stern warning, and unemployment looming, she's offered one last chance to rescue her career. Julia embarks on an unlikely journey to the ‘Heart of Dixie’—Eufaula, Alabama—home to magnificent mansions, sweet tea, and the annual Pilgrimage.
Julia arrives, soon charmed by the lovely city and her handsome host, but her stay is marred by a shocking discovery. Can Julia's story save her career, Eufaula, and the annual Pilgrimage?   
Lauren Clark writes contemporary novels set in the Deep South; stories sprinkled with sunshine, suspense, and secrets. A former TV news anchor, Lauren adores flavored coffee, local book stores, and anywhere she can stick her toes in the sand. Her big loves are her family, paying it forward, and true-blue friends.
Where to find Stay Tuned:
Amazon: Paperback  and  Kindle


For a very short time, I worked as a journalist so this book really piqued my interest.

In Stay Tuned, Melissa Moore is a producer-extraordinaire who suddenly finds herself as a substitute anchor after her show's two anchors caused a stir on-screen.

For some reason, I was under the impression that Melissa was in her late 20s. I was surprised to learn that she was in her late 30s and she has a college-aged kid. Despite the age gap I have with her, she's still pretty easy to relate to.

The plot started out pretty interesting, but eventually there were so many things happening and coming one after the other that it felt too much at times. I liked Melissa and her mom's subplot, though. It's very realistic. I should know; my grandmother had Alzheimer's too and my mom's interaction with her was much like Melissa's and her mom's.

  1. It's a fun read.
  2. You get an inside look at a TV station.
  3. The characters are interesting.

  1. The events happen really quickly so sometimes it feels rushed.

The shade decided it for me in the end: rich chestnut brown, with gold and caramel intertwined.
  1. You're curious about what life would be like as a journalist.
  2. You like chicklit.
  3. You are looking for a fun read.




Note: This post contains Amazon and Book Depository affiliate links.


  1. Mai - Thank you so much for the lovely and thoughtful review. I didn't realize that you'd also been a journalist!! My grandmother also had dementia and it was very difficult seeing her lose her memory and not know who I was some days. She was a vibrant, strong, smart woman and I miss her a lot.

    I do like the way that you broke down the "My Take/The Good/The Bad" excellent way for readers to get a glimpse into the novel :)

    All the best, Lauren

    1. Thanks, Lauren! Sorry to hear about your grandmother. I completely understand what you went through.

      I enjoyed the book a lot. I also enjoyed reading your answers to the interview questions. :)


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