When I saw I’d been assigned the topic “how to turn a fling into something more”
for this blog post, I snort-laughed wine onto my keyboard.
Then I realized whoever assigned it was probably referencing the setup for my new
romantic comedy, ABOUT THAT FLING, and not requesting an exposé on my personal
life. But since the stories run parallel, it’s probably true I’m qualified to
write on that topic (along with the topic of how to get marshmallow syrup off your
bed sheets, but that’s a post for another time).
FLING is the story of Adam and Jenna, two strangers who meet in a wine bar and
decide to have a one-night-stand. They soon realize they’d like to turn it into
something more, but discover that careers, exes, and a madcap mix of families and
circumstances are conspiring to make that impossible.
I suppose I was destined to write a story about a fling turning into something
more, since that’s precisely what happened to me nearly five years ago. When I
went through a rather unexpected divorce, I reached out to a distant friend-of-a-
friend knowing he’d been through the same thing a few years earlier. I wanted the
counsel of someone who’d experienced it before, but I’ll admit I wanted something
When I proposed a no-strings fling to my new friend, he did not respond by tearing
his clothes off and jumping into my bed. That was my first sign things wouldn’t
unfold quite like I planned.
Though he accepted my proposal in a roundabout way, he set a pretty clear rule:
constant, open, honest communication was an absolute must, and if feelings changed
at any point, we had to talk about it immediately.
I agreed, happy to get what I wanted one way or another.
But what I didn’t expect to get was the exhilaratingly terrifying sense I was
falling for the guy in a little over a week. I also didn’t guess in my wildest
dreams we’d be walking down the aisle together three-and-a-half years after that.
So while I can’t offer you a step-by-step guide to turning a casual fling into “I
do,” my now-husband’s thoughts on constant, honest communication have served us
well so far.
Not-so-coincidentally, that’s also what works for Adam and Jenna (though it takes
them a while to reach that point). Jenna’s career makes her an expert on glossing
over unpleasant truths for the sake of good PR, but Adam’s career as a corporate
mediator requires the exact opposite. His techniques for prompting open,
constructive communication came straight from the countless workshops and
counseling sessions my now-hubby and I went through in our quest to develop strong
Though I didn’t set out to write this book as a tutorial on communication
strategies (and quite frankly, the idea of that makes me want to stab myself in
the eye with a pencil) I’ve heard from a surprising number of readers who found
those parts of the book to be enormously helpful in their own relationships.
So if you’re looking to turn a fling into something more....uh, buy ABOUT THAT
Or maybe just buy that marshmallow syrup. That’s probably the wiser approach.
Tawna Fenske writes humorous fiction, risqué romance, and heartwarming love
stories with a quirky twist. She traveled a career path that took her from
newspaper reporter to English teacher in Venezuela to marketing geek to PR manager
for her city’s tourism bureau. An avid globetrotter and social media fiend, Tawna
is the author of the popular blog, Don’t Pet Me, I’m Writing, and a member of
Romance Writers of America. She lives with her husband in Bend, Oregon, where
she’ll invent any excuse to hike, bike, snowshoe, float the river, or sip wine on
her back deck.
Tawna has published several romantic comedies with Sourcebooks, including Making
Waves, which was nominated for contemporary romance of the year by RT Book
Reviews. She also writes interactive fiction capers for Coliloquy and the steamy,
heartwarming Front and Center series for Entangled Publishing. Tawna’s quirky
brand of comedy and romance has won praises from Kirkus Reviews, which noted, “Up-
and-coming romance author Fenske sets up impeccable internal and external conflict
and sizzling sexual tension for a poignant love story between two engaging
characters, then infuses it with witty dialogue and lively humor. An appealing
blend of lighthearted fun and emotional tenderness.”
Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads
As the top PR person for the Belmont Health System, bright, beautiful Jenna
McArthur knows how to spin bad news and make it sound good. But when her adorable
Aunt Gertie—a secret romance writer—urges Jenna to embrace her wild side, Jenna
tumbles into bed with Adam Thomas, a guy she’s just met, for a fun and fantastic
one-night stand. Too bad Adam is the one guy who’s totally off-limits. There
aren’t enough clever words in the world to spin the story in a way that won’t
wreck Jenna’s closest friendship or destroy her job.
With the irresistible Adam always around her at work, wearing an aura of
temptation like a fabulous cologne, Jenna has to hold tight to her senses to avoid
falling for him. Will he take her to the heights of pleasure again—or will their
attraction destroy everything she’s worked for?
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