24 Oct 2014

Just a Little Crush by Renita Pizzitola

Good girls stay away from Ryder Briggs . . . or, at least, they try to. In Renita Pizzitola’s emotional novel of heartache and seduction, one college freshman just can’t get enough.
Brinley Dawson doesn’t drink, she studies—and despite the accusations of her alcoholic mother, she’s still a virgin. But if Brinley’s life is so put together, why is she freaking out to be going to college with the gorgeous, green-eyed jerk she kissed on a stupid dare in high school? Ryder Briggs can have any girl he wants . . . and the rumors say that he does. So why, after publicly embarrassing Brinley four years ago, is he suddenly acting like he’s interested?
Ryder never forgot Brinley. In fact, those perfect seven minutes permanently raised the bar for what a kiss could be. The truth is, Ryder doesn’t dare get too close to anyone. He knows how that worked out for his parents. But when his roommate takes a shot at Brinley, Ryder can’t contain his jealousy. Now he must do the hardest thing he’s ever done: forget about sex and convince Brinley his feelings are real.
Brinley isn’t sure whether she believes Ryder, but for the first time, her body isn’t playing by the rules. Then she discovers that she’s an unwilling part of a cruel game, humiliating her all over again—and Ryder might be to blame. Has Brinley’s little crush turned into a huge mistake . . . or has she found the one guy worth trusting with her heart?
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Just a Little Crush Playlist
Some people find it interesting, or even surprising to learn I only write with music playing. Maybe they believe it would be a distraction or a challenge to have one set of words in your ear while another flows from your fingers? But to me, finding the perfect playlist is like finding a soundtrack for your book. The right song can set the mood and evoke emotions, which, in turn, help the words pour out of me. Other times, I find that the constant hum of a familiar track playing softly in the background helps me turn off everything else and I become more fully immersed in my characters’ lives. In the end, the playlist is such an integral part of the process; I can’t imagine working without it.
Each book I write has a playlist unique to it and as I work, my playlist may change a bit. I’ll add more songs or occasionally even delete a few. Once I find the perfect songs, they become a part of that story. The only downside is when I hear them on the radio in my car, and all this emotion slams into me and characters start talking, scenes start taking shape, and I’m stuck in traffic! At least it still serves as some good brainstorming time… But the absolute best part about music is finding THE song that captures something hugely important in my book in a way that nothing else can.
For JUST A LITTLE CRUSH, I was having one of those days where I was stuck in my car and an older song came on. I’ve always loved this song, so I’m not sure why it never occurred to me how perfect it was, but as I listened, it hit me: This is it! This is Ryder’s song! If Ryder were a musician, this is the song he’d write Brinley. After that, I played the crap out of that song while writing their story. :)
In the end, my playlists are usually a few hours long, but I thought I’d share with you a few songs from the JUST A LITTLE CRUSH playlist, including Ryder’s super special song!

After reading JUST A LITTLE CRUSH you should go back and listen to Ryder’s song (which is the last one in the list) and see just how perfect it is! It could practically be an open letter to Brinley :)

Renita Pizzitola is the author of New Adult contemporary romance and Young Adult fantasy. When not writing, she can be found feeding her caramel macchiato addiction and reading just about anything she can get her hands on. She lives in Austin, Texas, with her husband and two children.

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