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Barbara Davis makes a stop on Sanibel for book signing tour

By Staff | Aug 26, 2015

Author Barbara Davis stopped at MacIntosh Books & Paper Friday, Aug. 15 to talk about her latest novel, “Summer at Hideaway Key” and sign copies of her book for those who attended. MEGHAN McCOY

Barbara Davis sat on a stool behind a collection of her three novels while sharing her story to some fans who attended a book signing event at MacIntosh Books & Paper Friday, Aug. 14.

“Local bookstores provide such a service,” she said of why she chose MacIntosh Books & Paper for a stop on her tour. “I like the whole experience of indie bookstores.”

The author, who now lives in Dover, New Hampshire, became an overnight success at 50.

“I toyed with it my entire life,” Davis said of writing. “I read so much I would hear how it would sound.”

While in eighth grade, she wrote her first novel, which she said laughing was a disaster. Davis eventually put her dream of becoming a published author aside when reality hit – she needed to put food on the table and keep her lights on.

She joined the corporate world and worked in the jewelry industry for 12 years. Once the recession hit, Davis was laid off and encouraged by her husband to follow her dream of becoming a writer.

Her life experiences are incorporated into her book, which includes a layer of maturity through the development of her characters. Since she grew up in south Florida and lived in such areas as Charleston and Raleigh her books often times depicts the beachy scene.

“The Secrets She Carried,” was Davis’ first book, which was published in 2013. The following year, “The Wishing Tide” was published and her latest “Summer at Hideaway Key” came out this month.

Davis said “Summer at Hideaway Key” was developed from two different ideas. One of the ideas struck her 30 years ago when she heard about two sisters who were abandoned by their mother, which they never quite overcame.

“I knew I wanted to do something with it,” she explained. “I took seeds of it and used it as a back story.”

The contemporary and historical novel touches upon romance and mystery with a little bit of beach flavor.

The novel is about “strength women find to overcome horrible circumstances and come out more beautiful,” Davis explained.

Her third book centers around a 1920s bungalow with a sagging front porch that Lily St. Claire decides to visit after her father leaves her the small home on Hideaway Key. Davis said Lily walks into the small house and finds packed boxes until she ventures to the back bedroom where nothing is packed. As she rummages through the belongings Lily finds pieces that eventually shares a part of her past.

Davis is now working on her fourth book, which is set in Charleston, South Carolina.

Since her first novel, she continues to master writing on shorter deadlines given by her publisher. The third novel was completed in eight months.

When Davis sits down and begins writing a new book, she writes an outline that depicts every scene.

“I do it all up front,” she said of her writing. “After I work the kinks out, I get to play with the words. Every morning I know what scenes I am working on.”

The last two months before deadline, Davis spends time filling any holes she may find.

“If you love your book and your characters, you want the perfect ending,” she said, adding that she rewrote the ending of “Summer at Hideaway Key” because she did not think she gave Lily a good ending.

Her latest novel is dedicated to cancer survivors.

For more information, visit www.barbaradavis-author.com.

Follow Meghan @IslanderMeghan on Twitter.