Top 5 Chick Lit Cities

It's no secret that Chick Lit follows a formula. It varies with each novel, but at the heart, Chick Lit novels all share certain commonalities. The setting often plays a big part in the story. There are 5 cities that pop up in Chick Lit again and again. It's true that Chick Lit can be set anywhere, especially evidenced with recent releases, but the same cities remain constant, no matter how much authors try to change things up. These cities are classic Chick Lit. There's an instant comfort when a reader picks up a book set in any of these cities. They're familiar. We knows these places, and we love them, but even with that familiarity, we still want to see how they play a role in the life of a new heroine we're meeting for the first time.  

London - This is the most popular Chick Lit city. Chick Lit has the biggest readership in the UK. Bridget Jones's Diary, the book that arguably started the genre, was set in London. British Chick Lit is hugely popular. Major publishers still consider it a viable genre and haven't declared it "dead" like in America. Compared to American Chick Lit, it is more lighthearted, funnier, wittier, and more amusing overall. Another London-based novel that defined the Chick Lit genre is Confessions of a Shopaholic by Sophie Kinsella. But do note that over the course of a 7-book series, Shopaholic main character Becky Bloomwood travels to NYC and Los Angeles, two of the other most popular cities. 

New York City - Remember Sex and the City and The Devil Wears Prada? Of course you do. And I'm sure you also immediately remember that they were set in NYC. The city is like a character in these novels and so many others set here. NYC has a vibrancy and energy that cannot be ignored. It's an integral part of the story and the characters' lives. Another great example of the popular cities at play is I Heart New York by Lindsey Kelk in which a Londoner moves to NYC, and in subsequent books in the series, she resides in Paris, LA, and her original hometown of London. See?  

Paris - The "City of Love" (as it is often called) is a major backdrop for many Chick Lit novels. The first book I read that was set here was The Art of French Kissing by Kristin Harmel. More recently, author Juliette Sobanet has become quite popular with her Paris-based novels, including Sleeping with Paris, Dancing with Paris, and Honeymoon in Paris. Other notable recent releases include The Loveliest Chocolate Shop in Paris by Jenny Colgan and J'Adore Paris by Isabelle Lafleche. The French countryside is also a popular locale.

Dublin -  Irish novelist Marian Keyes is considered a pioneer in the Chick Lit genre with the mid-90s release of her debut, Watermelon. She blends humor and dark themes, causing some to argue if her books are actually Chick Lit or fit more in the serious Women's Fiction category. Popular Dublin-based Chick Lit also hails from authors Cecelia Ahern and Sinéad Moriarty. Similarly to Paris, the outskirts of Dublin and the countryside are popular settings, too. 

Los Angeles - The bright lights of Hollywood attract many Chick Lit novels to LA. The main character is often a personal assistant to a celebrity, an entertainment reporter, a movie star, talent agent, producer, or chef to the stars. Notable releases are The Second Assistant by Clare Naylor and Mimi HareA Total Waste of Makeup by Kim GruenenfelderDown and Out in Beverly Heels by Kathryn Leigh Scott, and Hollywood Girls Club by Maggie Marr.  

What Are Your Favorite Chick Lit Cities? Leave a Comment Below.

8 Authors Celebrated Women's Fiction at Bay Shore Library

Left to right: Cindy Arora, Laura Dave, Lisa Doyle, Liz Fenton, Anna Garner, Nancy Scrofano (me), Lucie Simone, Juliette Sobanet

Left to right: Cindy Arora, Laura Dave, Lisa Doyle, Liz Fenton, Anna Garner, Nancy Scrofano (me), Lucie Simone, Juliette Sobanet

Yesterday, I went to Bay Shore Library in Long Beach, CA to participate in a panel discussion about Women's Fiction with seven other authors, including Cindy Arora, Laura Dave, Lisa Doyle, Liz Fenton, Anna Garner, Lucie Simone, and Juliette Sobanet. What a lovely event! I had such a great time meeting everyone in person, and we had a good turnout, too. Moderator Joel Zlotnik asked us questions about why we write Women's Fiction, where we get our ideas from, the merit of Women's Fiction and defending the genre, the influence of reviews, other women writers we're reading now, what our latest novels are about, and the differences between Romance, Chick Lit, and Women's Fiction. It was a well-rounded, lively, and informative discussion, and audience members got to ask their own questions at the end, too. Afterwards, authors sold and signed books, and everyone enjoyed cupcakes from Frosted Cupcakery. Thanks so much to Lucie Simone for organizing this wonderful event! And thank you to those who attended. I hope everyone had a good time! I look forward to the next author event!  

Left to right: Juliette Sobanet, Cindy Arora, Liz Fenton, Anna Garner, Lucie Simone, Nancy Scrofano (me), Lisa Doyle, Laura Dave

Left to right: Juliette Sobanet, Cindy Arora, Liz Fenton, Anna Garner, Lucie Simone, Nancy Scrofano (me), Lisa Doyle, Laura Dave

Moderator Joel Zlotnik. Plus, Laura Dave and Liz Fenton chatting in the background.

Moderator Joel Zlotnik. Plus, Laura Dave and Liz Fenton chatting in the background.

Liz Fenton and Lucie Simone

Liz Fenton and Lucie Simone

Left to right: Juliette Sobanet, Cindy Arora, Liz Fenton, Anna Garner, Lucie Simone, Nancy Scrofano (me), Lisa Doyle, Laura Dave

Left to right: Juliette Sobanet, Cindy Arora, Liz Fenton, Anna Garner, Lucie Simone, Nancy Scrofano (me), Lisa Doyle, Laura Dave

Liz Fenton and Laura Dave

Liz Fenton and Laura Dave

Liz Fenton and Juliette Sobanet

Liz Fenton and Juliette Sobanet

                                                             Left to right: Juliette Sobanet, Cindy Arora, Liz Fenton, Anna Garner, Lucie Simone, Nancy Scrofano (me), Lisa Doyle, Laura Dave

                                                             Left to right: Juliette Sobanet, Cindy Arora, Liz Fenton, Anna Garner, Lucie Simone, Nancy Scrofano (me), Lisa Doyle, Laura Dave

Photos courtesy of Cindy Arora, Liz Fenton, and Lucie Simone. 

Book News #2

Sarah Vance TompkinsThe Fairy Godmother’s Rule Book will be published in 2016 by Swoon Romance. A twenty-five-year-old late bloomer with a slow metabolism, terrible eyesight, and a paralyzing fear of birds, discovers her true calling as a fairy godmother who must spark a romance between her overachieving step-sister and a billionaire, if only she hadn't fallen for him in the process.

Emily Bleeker signed a two-book deal with Lake Union Publishing for Letters from Dust. A young widower and father receives letters of guidance and comfort from his deceased wife, but when the letters begin to raise questions about her past, he becomes obsessed with her secrets, and questions if he ever really knew his wife at all. Expected publication begins in 2016.

Bestselling author Kristen Proby signed a three-book deal with William Morrow for Listen to MeThe first book in the new Fusion series follows five long-time girlfriends who co-own a hip restaurant in Portland in which the restaurant's manager finds herself falling for a former superstar rocker, whose posters adorned her walls years ago, when he swaggers through the doors to apply for a weekend music gig. Expected publication in Spring 2016.

Kayti McGee's That Thing You Do will be published by St. Martin’s Press. A perpetual bridesmaid who doesn't believe in love plans a series of fake dates to get her friends off her back about dating, only to face the possibility of a real relationship as sparks fly between her and a handsome DJ.

Lindsey Rosin's Cherry will be published by Simon Pulse. A humorous look at four best girlfriends' last year of high school; about sex and love and friendship; about first times and last times; about the memories and choices and mistakes we make—and the people we make them with. Expected publication in Spring 2016.

Allison Pearson's sequel to her 2002 bestseller I Don’t Know How She Does It will be published by St. Martin’s Press and The Borough Press. Kate Reddy returns to the workforce on the cusp of turning 50, addressing the challenges of being a parent in the era of social media, ageist discrimination against women in the workplace, the struggle to remain relevant, and all the hard questions women must ask themselves as they get older. Expected publication in Fall 2016.

Former Golden Apple Author of the Year K.M. Jackson signed a three-book deal plus a novella with Dafina for Insert Groom Here. The first in the Unconventional Brides series follows a Manhattanite who was dumped on-air and then attempts to salvage her public persona by participating in the network's new show to find a replacement groom for her original wedding date.

Stephanie Scott's Alterations will be published by Bloomsbury SparkA re-imagining of the movie Sabrina set in Miami in which a shy fashion designer is caught between her lifelong crush and his nerdy brother after she gives herself a makeover. Expected publication in 2016.

Founder of the lifestyle blog The Chic SiteRachel Hollis’s Fan Girl will be published by Lake Union Publishing in January 2016. The next book in her trilogy about three best friends striving to find success and love amidst the glitz and glamour of L.A. follows a free-spirited, unabashedly geeky event designer who decides to use her favorite romance novels as a guide to snaring the man of her dreams, but things don't go quite as she planned.

Jamie Beck signed a two-book deal with Montlake Romance for Accidentally Hers. A sexy ski guide whose future is threatened by a run-in with a drunk driver tumbles head over heels for his determined physical therapist, who also is the driver's sister.

Samantha Joyce signed a two-book deal with Pocket Star for Flirting with Fame. A young woman keeps her identity as a bestselling author a secret, but when she finds out her books will be made into a TV series with none other than her celebrity crush as the star, she hires someone to pretend to be her on set, and as things fall apart, she finds herself with a choice to make.

Olivia Dade signed a four-book deal with Lyrical Press for Broken Resolutions. A librarian makes a resolution to swear off men in the coming year but ends up falling for one of the men at the library's New Year's Eve singles night. Expected publication in December 2015.

Laura Stampler's Little Black Dresses, Little White Lies will be published by Simon Pulse. It is described as The Devil Wears Prada meets Sex and the City. When a girl scores the summer internship of a lifetime, she moves to New York City to work at the hottest women's magazine in the country, but there's just one problem: she's not exactly the dating expert she claimed to be on her job application.

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