Back in 2015, when I was still writing What Happens in New York, one of my friends suggested I write a book from Trinity’s point of view.
Writing from the villain’s POV? Now that sounded fun.
At the time, she was just the villain to me. I’d been writing about her like that since 2008.
It would take a lot of studying writing—and people in general—for me to see her differently.
Two sides of the same coin
To me, Trinity and Jack are two sides of the same coin. They’re both addicts. They’ve both been burned by other people multiple times. They both want love and affection.
But one wants to get better.
The other doesn’t.
The more I wrote about the What Happens in Hollywood universe, the more the characters came to life for me. Which is saying a lot, as most of them have lived in my head for over a decade.
Trinity was the one in particular who changed a lot when I developed the universe.
I started writing her book—then called Heart of Gold, as an intentionally cringeworthy play on her surname—back in 2015. I’d write the odd scene whenever I had some inspiration.
However, as I dipped in and out of it, that meant that several parts of the book I’d written in multiple different ways, and there were lots of gaps in the narrative.
My original plan was for it to be a fake celebrity memoir, making fun of the trend where celebrities share their ‘wisdom’ around various life experiences when they’re so out of touch with reality.
After I’d finished What Happens in Barcelona, I’d thought I needed to write and publish Trinity’s book before finishing Hollie and Fayth’s series. It would’ve been a good way to compliment What Happens in Paphos.
But no matter how hard I tried, the structure just didn’t work. I couldn’t figure out why.
The book went on to the back burner for what felt like the gazillionth time.
To work out how to fix Trinity’s book, I read several celebrity memoirs. Some I genuinely enjoyed, most I didn’t. I find them self-indulgent and too much like people just navel gazing. It made me cringe.
That changed I read Lily Allen’s memoir, My Thoughts Exactly.
That was when I finally started to figure things out.
Trinity’s book didn’t need to be chronological. Nor did it need to impart lots of wisdom. What it needed was to share her back story.
I restructured the book for what I think was the third time.
Then I abandoned it for a bit longer.
When I started working on Hollywood Gossip, I decided I’d go back to Trinity’s book at the end of Tate and Jack’s series and release it as an add on.
But the more I worked on it, the more I realised it didn’t need to be novel-length. Which meant that it would require less work. And that I could release it sooner.
I went back to the book a few months ago and started editing it. Even though it’s only about 17,000 words, it required a lot of editing because of how much I’d repeated myself. It’s one thing to do that in a novel, but in a short story you have to be even more careful as it’s even more noticeable.
After doing some work on it, I left it again to focus on Hollywood Parents.
Cover and title concept
While designing the cover for Hollywood Parents, I came across an image that I knew would be perfect for Trinity. It had the attitude, the sexiness, and the vulnerability all in one graphic. It was exactly what I needed.
Teamed with a red background it looked a little vampiric, but given that Trinity is often out for blood with her vengeful plots, that’s not necessarily inaccurate.
But what could I call it? Heart of Gold didn’t really work with a cover like that.
I toyed with following the Hollywood Gossip cover styles and came up with something that fitted Trinity’s situation perfectly: Hollywood Nightmare.
Different books, different people
A lot of readers who were fans of What Happens in… were surprised to see Trinity in a different light in Hollywood Gossip. But the book is set four years before What Happens in New York. A lot can change in that time.
While some of Trinity’s backstory is covered in Hollywood Gossip and Hollywood Parents, not all of it is. After all, it’s her story to tell, not Tate’s. The only character in the universe who knows the full story is Trinity, therefore she’s really the only person who can tell it.
Her story was a challenging one to write because she’s been through so much.
While I don’t shy away from dark topics in my books, this one is much darker than the others.
It doesn’t go into graphic detail, but it does cover rape, death, grief, and addiction.
It’s not something I would suggest reading if you’re feeling vulnerable. If you’re feeling that way but still one to read one of my books, I’d recommend Behind the Spotlight instead.
And if you find yourself affected by any of the issues raised in the book, please do speak to someone. Some charities that may be able to help:
Download Hollywood Nightmare
And now, you can finally read it.
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Let me know what you think to Trinity’s perspective in the comments 🙂