Guest Post By Mari Mancusi

mariOne thing I love about writing is the chance an author has to “try on” different worlds—from time travel to futuristic to paranormal—truly, anything goes. But in this particular case, I decided to go the opposite route and use my real life experiences instead. Love at 11 is a new adult romance set in a television newsroom, the very same place I spent much of my career.

I will never forget the day I started writing Love at 11. I was in the middle of a rough draft of what would eventually become the sci-fi romance Moongazer and I’d had the worst day at work. My executive producer had assigned me the stupidest story on the planet — Cosmetics that Kill — and I wasn’t making any progress on it. Simply because, cosmetics, as a rule, don’t actually kill. But the station loved the scare stories and hey, it’d sound great in a promo, so they weren’t going to take my objections or rationalizations. I was to find some makeup with gross, nasty bacteria lurking in it, have it tested and inform the world about all the grossness I found.

(Note: You’ve probably seen these germ stories before. They’re the kind of stories stations always fall back on to get the ratings. And no matter what you test–be it the bottoms of purses or the ice in ice machines, you’re likely going to find something that sounds gross to the general public. But what you don’t see on the news is that most of these germs, while icky, actually won’t harm you. Our bodies have antibodies to take care of those kinds of things.)

Anyhow, I started thinking about all that goes on behind the scenes in television news. How they exaggerate to scare, how they won’t tell you about something truly deadly if it involves one of their advertisers, how managers will only approve a story if you can attach celeb’s name to it (they wouldn’t let me do a story on teens cutting until I mentioned that Lindsay Lohan was rumored to be a cutter), how they fire veteran journalists who make too much money and replace them with hot 20 somethings who have no experience, but will practically work for free, etc. etc.

I started writing. And the words poured out of me. About Maddy, a hapless special projects producer, like myself, who was always assigned the most ridiculous stories. She longs to become a real journalist and work for a network news show that still takes pride in reporting the truth. Instead, she’s stuck with silly, sensationalized stories like Deadly Dishwashers, Killer Clay, and Perilous Pets–stories aired for the sole purpose of boosting ratings through scary promos–while the most shocking news event in her town goes unreported.

I think when many people read Love at 11 they will assume much of it was exaggerated for fiction. But while the plot and characters are made up, the inner workings of the television newsroom are extremely real. For example, these “Household Products That Kill” stories Maddy’s assigned are all based on real news reports I’ve been assigned over the years. We really did air Problem Pedicures, Cosmetics that Kill, Shower Shocker and the rest on a daily basis.

But just as Maddy and her photographer–sexy, motorcycle riding bad boy Jamie Hays–find a way rise above the corruption and risk their jobs to uncover the truth–in real life too, there are true journalists slaving away in the trenches. The unsung heroes who work overtime to expose the bad guys, right the wrongs, and produce fair and balanced reports. If anyone can save the industry, it’s them. They give me hope for the future and inspired the Love at 11 novel.

Love at 11 amazon GR Smash (1)When Maddy graduated from Columbia University, she was ready to change the world. She’d get a job at Newsline, meet a nice guy, and live happily ever after with a real designer handbag on her arm. Two years later, she’s stuck producing puff pieces for News 9 San Diego–where “if it bleeds, it leads.” She’s still single, her family’s falling apart, and so is her knock-off Kate Spade. 

 Then Jamie Hayes walks through her newsroom door. The former filmmaker is now her cameraman and everything Maddy has ever dreamed of. Creative, smart, and sweet—with eyes that could make a girl melt. The perfect guy…but perfectly unavailable. And the more Maddy tries to stay away—the further she starts to fall.

 Now a secret scoop from her favorite knock-off purse guy has Maddy chasing a lead that could make her career. Or destroy it forever. How far is she willing to go to broadcast the truth? And will this breaking news lead to more broken dreams…or an exclusive on Jamie’s heart? Stay tuned…

It’s the story of a lifetime.

About Mari Mancusi

Mari Mancusi used to wish she could become a vampire back in high school. But she ended up in another blood sucking profession –journalism — instead.  Today she works as a freelance TV producer and author of books for teens and adults. A graduate of Boston University and a two time Emmy Award winner, she lives in Austin , Texas with her husband Jacob, daughter Avalon and their dog Mesquite. You can find Mari online at or


This week I’m giving away two copies of Mari’s book, Love at 11.  But you must leave a comment in order to win. (If you are reading this on Goodreads, you have to comment on my CC Hunter Books blog to win. And, yes, sorry, but this is limited to U.S. residents only. But if you live outside the U.S., be sure to read the end of this blog!)

Haven’t Read Saved at Sunrise Yet?

Saved_at_Sunrise_ebook_FINALIn Saved at Sunrise Della…

  1. Almost gets arrested.
  2. Disobeys Burnett and skips out on her partner.
  3. Comes face to face with Lee—and his fiance.
  4. Gets thoroughly kissed.
  5. Wakes up in bed with Steve.

You can read the first chapter here.  It’s available for only $1.99 at Amazon and Barnes & Noble.

Want to Meet CC Hunter?

Well, I’d love to meet you! If you live in the Houston, Texas area, come out to one of my Chosen at Nightfall signings. Tell your friends–better yet, bring them with you!

Friday, May 3rd, I’ll be at Katy Budget Books, Katy, TX, 7-9 pm. (The first ten people to show up and buy a book get a FREE t-shirt. The next 25 people will get a FREE signed posters.)

 Saturday, May 4th, I’ll be at the Barnes & Noble, The Woodlands, TX, 2-4 pm. (The first 25 people to show up and buy a book will get a FREE Shadow Falls t-shirt. The next 25 who show up and purchase a book will get a FREE signed poster.)

And the Winners are…

Okay, last week I had a huge giveaway to celebrate the release of Chosen at Nightfall. I got many wonderful comments.

The winner of the Kindle or Nook is Elise N.

The winner of the copy of Chosen at Nightfall (hard copy or ebook) is Donya.

The winners of the Shadow Falls poster are Alison Troutman, Essie B. and Angela Sickles.

The winner of Jennifer Armentrout’s Apollyon is Mariah Kerivon.

The winner of Kelly Armstrong’s The Rising is Fiona Sutton.

The winner of Kiera Cass’ The Elite is Chastity Duffey.

I know I have many readers who live outside the U.S.  So, in the next couple of weeks, I am planning a special giveaway just for you. 


54 thoughts on “Guest Post By Mari Mancusi

  1. Ooh yay!! Book give aways outside of the US?!?!?! I love you CC. 🙂
    Also, I know I should probably email you to ask this, but will we hear anything about Kylie in Della’s new series? I’m so excited to see their friendship out of Della’s perspective! And of course….Steve!!
    Yay so thankful you decided to (sort of) continue the series!!!!

  2. Oh wow I’m 3rd person to comment. Yay it’s 8:00 I’m getting ready for so I gotta do this quick so I won’t ge in trouble.
    Cc hunter I am so happy that chosen at nightfall came out I haven’t gotten a chance to read it yet but I can’t wait I hope I get it soon and I read saved at sunrise it’s amazing really nice to get a glimpse inside is Della’s head so I can’t wait to read chosen at nightfall
    Yay your gonna give giveaways put of USA to good cuz I live In Canada .
    Bye thank u

  3. Wow I’m so excited for this new book! I’m always excited to read new things! I love the shadow falls series and I can’t thank you more for making Dellas story. The dream lives on! I hope you will come out with more. Have you heard abything new about making this into a movie or t.v show? That would be awesome and i’m glad to still read a little about kylie in the della series. The love at 11 sounds fantastic! I always love reading books like these! I intro duced my friend to the first and second book, and she read the WHOLE series in a week! She really loves them now! Hah good stuff! (:

    • Check out my Dec. 11, 2012 blog,Trinity. I announced the sale of the rights to Shadow Falls to a producer. I’m sooooo excited!

  4. Omg, The Woodlands. >.< SO CLOSE TO WHERE I AM. Hope I can make it to the signing! But I was wondering, is the spin-off of Della's story going to be a mini-prequel? Or will her series be a full-on series like the Shadow Falls? Bleh, either way, Im really excited to start reading it!

  5. I’m gonna make my dad drive me to Houston so I can go to your signing…(: I want to meet you so bad! plus it’s the closest since I live in Austin. I can’t wait to read Della’s point of view!

  6. ooohhh sounds like a great book! i hope i get a chance to read it! right now i am reading “The girl in the box” it is so far a great read and you should read it

  7. The book loved t 11 sounds like good book and so excited about saved at sunrise I preordered the book so of course I already read it and it was an awesome book love you cc hunter keep up the awesome novels.

    • And even though i am a teen and not a “adult” this books sounds interesting, thanks for introducing it Mari.

  8. This book sounds great! We have no bookstores in my town other than a wal mart, and target so it is hard to find good reads! I would love to win this book!

  9. Chosen at Nightfall was amazing!!!!! the night before its release I was on the web and I actually saw an ad about Chosen at Nightfall and I had never seen ads for books online before . Sense I am a dork and love your books I took a picture :D. Anyways I have already read Saved at Sunrise and I’m already in love with Steve! So I can’t wait for Della’s books to come out. You’re the BEST C.C!!

  10. omg!!! I love Mari Mancusi. she is my second fav author after u, CC!! I wont b able to read saved at sunrise till I get a kindle at xmas so :`( !!!! but anyway, my mom finally ordered chosen at nightfall and it will b here any day now!! yay…… keep writing CC!!


  11. Well this book just sounds awesome, I’m so wondering what the secret the guy is hiding. I just know this is going to be a good read. Good luck to all and thanks for the great giveaway!

  12. I’m glad you gave away a copy of the Rising. I love that series! I was sad when it was over just like I was when I closed Chosen at Nightfall. Thank you for your awesomeness!

  13. That book looks great. When I read the synopsis I got so excited. I love to look at books that others that I like are reading because usually they will have the same taste in books as I do.

  14. Yay!!!!!! I love Mari Mancusi, i have read her books since 6th grade!!!! I really wanna read Love at 11. She is my fav author. Everything written by her is awesome!!!!! Thanks for doing this giveaway! Ahhhh! So exited!

  15. Mari’s book sounds awesome. I hate the news now because it is exactly what she described. I want to hear about real new not what the celebrities are doing or that there is bacteria on everything I own. I look forward to reading this one. I am a new Shadow Falls fan and can put it down. I am on book 4 an cant wait to see where Kylie’s journey takes her. It’s very exciting for me living in Houston because I can recognize some of the locations mentioned in the book. It feels like this story could be happening in my backyard.

  16. More giveaways outside US? *’hallelujah’!* Can we have more copies of Chosen at Nightfall, please? It comes out June 13th in the UK, which makes me want to kill something because i have waited long enough.

    And about Della’s books, are they going to be like Kylie’s? Or like these short novellas that we have now? What about Miranda? Will she get her own books too?

    Love at 11 sounds really good, i love the cover! I think i might give it a shot and buy it sometime this year 🙂

    • Sandra,

      Della’s books will just like Kylie’s books. And yes, I’ll offer up a few more copies of Chosen At Nightfall to all my international fans.



      • Omg! Yes!!! More of Della! I love her! Thanks so much for the international giveaways! You’re so amazing! 3>

  17. I Love All Of Your Books! I don’t know what I would do if you stoped making them. I can’t wait for the next one to come out, when they come out I go out and get them as soon as possible. I hope that Lucas and Kylie stay togehter!

  18. I was really hoping that this book wouldn’t come to an feels like Kylie is my best friend like she is to holiday and in the last book I’m kind of scared to read it its like she is finally going to pick one ?but who? Can’t wait to read it but at the end I am kinda hoping that she will just pick the right guy and I also hope that you keep on writing because you are really the only author that I like. Because you go into details and you always pick a good outcome although I didn’t really want Ellie to die which really had me in tears.dino tears ;( but I’m really hoping that at the end Kylie will do the right thing and follow her heart<3. Well I don't know if you really get these instead of your assistant but I just wanted to tell you about how I feel about your books even if I win or don't either way you gave me a new hobby reading! and a new friend thank you
    Yours truly
    Shajuana Stewart

  19. I’m so sad the series is over but I’m so looking forward to the new Della series I have heard rumors of. please please please come visit us on the east coast!!! we would live to have you.

  20. Love at 11 looks so cool I really want to read it consider me entered:)
    I’m so excited for Della’s series CC!!

  21. Hey C.C.
    I was just wondering if Dellas story going to start after Chosen at Nightfall or is it going to be during the Shadow Falls series. I really hope its after.

  22. Hi Mrs. Hunter! im sorry i havent commented lately. ive been really busy with school.. but i still had time to buy Chosen at Nightfall! i just wanted to let you know how much your books have done for me, so im going to try and sum up how i feel and the situation. I really hope you read this so that you know how important you and your series are to me. 🙂 During the beginning of the series, i lived with my mom, for the first two books. (Because my parents are divorced) and over the summer, my mom left the country. but she never came back.. which practically killed me inside, because she lied to me and a lot of other drama that i dont think i need to specify. so i had to move into my dad’s house, which is a little two bedroom house that now has 5-6 people living in it, depending on my brother. i love my dad. but its not the same, and i miss my mom, i had barely ever been away from her for more than a couple weeks.. and now this. i cant even describe how sad i was. and sometimes still am. i think about it everyday and sometimes cry myself to sleep. But the point was that now that im a my dads house, ive still been reading your series. and your series was about the only thing that remained constant in my life. It became a major part of me. Every time i finished a book, i died a little because i knew i had to wait for the next one. I felt like i was Kylie, or more like she was there for me when i had my problems. i cant describe how happy i was when i could escape my life and go into hers, like i still had my mom, and i was home. It helped me so much. Thank you. So so much. <3 But i also wanted to say that now that Kylie's journey is over, i feel like my life is over too.. i literally feel empty inside knowing that there is no more of her to go on with me. its like someone important in my life left me again. i cried in the shower when i finished the book because i felt to sad. and now when i think about it, i dont know what to feel. I still have that shirt you sent me, though. 🙂 im too afraid to wear it because i dont want to wash it and risk washing your signature away. i hope i dont sound crazy.. haha, but i still want to thank you for EVERYTHING even though the series is over. So thank you CC, and i really hope you read this.. If you read this, would you please reply with the word "bubbles" so that i know you read the whole thing?? 😀 Thank you! You are the reason i still smile. Love, Margaret (15)

  23. Saved at Sunrise was a really good book! I really wish for there to be a sixth book of Shadow Falls cause I want to see what happens like will Kylie get any more gifts. And how everyone is like Holiday and Burnett’s child or Kylie’s mom falling in love again.

  24. Love at 11 looks really good. I’ll have to keep an eye out for it at my local book store. 🙂 I need a new series or book to read since Shadow Falls is over. Although I can’t wait to read all about Della!!

  25. Hey CC
    I love your books … I really wanne see you at the Book Fair in Germany… Come and visit us, I’ve been waiting =D
    I’m very curious about your new ideas and books but no one can inspire me more as Lucas and Kylie… I love them both and every moment in the book with them
    International Giveaways <3 ohhh wow thats so nice =)
    Thanks that your thinking also for the international fans <3

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