Interview with Laura Heffernan, Author of America’s Next Reality Star

Today, Laura Heffernan, talks about her wonderful novel, America’s Next Reality Star, which debuted on March 7.

What’s your book about?

After Jen loses her job, her boyfriend, and her home, she is cast on a reality show where she hopes to win the cash prize but finds she also wants to win the heart of fellow contestant Justin.

Share a teaser sentence or two from your novel.

“Looking good boosted my confidence. Confidence would make people want to vote for me. I needed votes to win. And I was going to win.”

What do you want people to know about your book?

AMERICA’S NEXT REALITY STAR is a light, fun book about trying new things and living life to the fullest. Sometimes what you want isn’t what you really need.

What did you learn about yourself while writing this novel?

I learned that I could write a book, that I could edit it, and that I’d find people who wanted to read it. To someone struggling with self-doubt, that’s huge.

What was your timeline from drafting to publication?

I started drafting AMERICA’S NEXT REALITY STAR in October 2013, and it’s being published March 2017. The sequels, thankfully, will be out in less than 3.5 years!

What is your favorite part of writing (drafting characters, making up scenes, plotting, developing emotional turning points, etc). Why?

I love just sitting down to draft without a plan and seeing where the plot goes. My characters never fail to surprise me.

Briefly, where did the idea for your book come from?

In 2012, two of my friends appeared on reality shows. I learned a lot about the process of casting and what goes on behind the scenes, and it seemed like so much fun, I wanted to create my own show.

When do you do your best thinking about your work in progress?

At the gym, usually, or taking walks. I think best when my body is moving but my mind isn’t engaged.

Share something people may be surprised to know about you?

I’ve been doing pole fitness for three and a half years. I can do sit-ups while hanging up-side down by my ankles.

What’s the best piece of writing advice you’ve ever gotten?

No matter what obstacles you’re facing, you’re not alone. Everyone has ups and downs, and seeming “overnight” successes struggle for years before it happens.

What’s next?

SWEET REALITY is coming out in a few months, followed by the currently-untitled third book in the series. I can’t wait to share these stories with the world.



Twenty-four-year-old Jen Reid had her life in good shape: an okay job, a tiny-cute Seattle apartment, and a great boyfriend almost ready to get serious. In a flash it all came apart. Single, unemployed, and holding an eviction notice, who has time to remember trying out for a reality show? Then the call comes, and Jen sees her chance to start over—by spending her summer on national TV.

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