I've known Jen for many years and have been in the past a critique partner, She;s a chapter member and a good writer. I'm hoping to talk her into sending me 300 or 400 hundred of her recent sale to Red Sage and I'll add it to the end of her interview.
1. What's your genre or do you write in more than one? My main genre is short contemporary, but I do write erotic novellas and have a children's book coming out within the year.
2. Did you choose your genre or did it choose you? It definitely chose me. I have always been drawn to contemporary romance, even younger - always seeking out Silhouette Desire and Harlequin Tempations, and moving up to single title category. I guess I am a modern day girl!
3. Is there any genre you'd like to try? Or is there one you wouldn't? I don't think I will ever try paranomral, historical or Regency. I enjoy reading them, but don't feel the calling or the talent. Contemporary allows me to write novellas, category or mainstream, so I'm very satisfied with that niche. I would eventually like to branch out to longer contemporary novels in the future. It woudl be fun to delve more into secondary characters. And I love suspense but since plot is definitely my weak spot, I try to avoid hiding a killer in my books.
4. What fiction do you read for pleasure? I have a vast array of books consistently on my table and they are across all genres. I am a huge Stephen King and Dean Koontz fan. I love all contemporary romance novels in category and mainstream. My new favorite book is the Art of Racing in the Rain by Garth Stein. Brilliant book in its simplicity.
5. Tell me a bit about yourself and how long you've been writing, I'm happily married after many challenging years of trying to find Mr. Right. We met later in life so settled right down to domestic bliss: rescue dogs, two little boys 3 and 5, a house already way too crowded and two full time jobs. Whew.I live in the Hudson Valley and though I despise the winter, I love the mountains too much to move. I started writing when I was 12. I knew I would be a writer even when I was six years old. Other children would talk about being astronauts or teachers, I would state a writer. I wrote a young adult romance longhand, bound it in a folder and passed it around school. I continued to my second when I received a Word Processor for Christmas (how old am I?!) and never stopped.
6. Which of your characters is your favorite? I'm in love with each one during the process. I'ts the only way it works - to be madly in love with my hero and want to be my heroine.
7. Are there villains in your books and how were they created? When I tried to sell my first book, the editor called me and said to add a villain. I immediately created a lawyer to add conflict to the romance and it worked. My villains usually consist of the ex-lover or the hero/heroine's inner emotional fear - that is as villinous as any outside person.
8. What are you working on now? I'm working on a contemporary erotic novella entitled The Tantric Principle. It's pretty much done but I'm gutting with revisions and hope to get to the editor soon. Very soon. I'm also collaborating on a book with three other authors that I'm very excited about but we are in the research mode right now.
9. What's your latest release and how did the idea arrive? I have two books out now: Heart of Steel by Lionhearted Publishing and "Masquerade" by Red Sage Publishing in Secrets Volume 11. Heart of Steel was my first book, re-written for different editors over a five year span before finally being sold. My first children's book will be issuing within the next few months entitled, Buffy and the Carrot .The idea came from my 12 year old niece who wanted to tell me a story. It was so funny, I knew we struck gold. I told the story over and over to different groups of children and always got a big belly laugh. I revised and polished it up and now we will be co-authors on the book.
10. Tell me about your latest book and how it came about. Enclose the opening of the book around 400 words.
The low, gravelly voice stirred in her ear, and strong hands grasped her hips with capable fingers and pushed. Her body sunk down an inch. He hooked his bare feet around her ankles and leaned over her as if about to take her from behind. Arianna prayed for strength as her arms shook with the effort to hold her pose. Her spine automatically straightened, but he softened the movement further by gently placing both palms on her shoulders. Heat rushed through the thin material of her t-shirt and burned. With slow, conscious movements, he stroked down the length of her spine to settle at the small of her back. She kept her eyes closed, concentrated on her breathing, and mercifully, she felt him move away toward the next student.
Arianna Devlin took a moment from her relaxed stance to curse fluently. Well-versed in standard truck driver language, she applied her skills with enthusiasm. Not that her yoga teacher would approve. And the whole damn time she listened to him counsel her, she imagined getting rid of the stress in bed.
Arianna smothered a groan and pushed her concentration back to the class. The whole thing was ridiculous. She was twenty-six years old and had a crush on her yoga teacher. The thought made her fight back a blush, then tried to minimize the horror of the situation by creating a mental list. He introduced her to an ancient technique that changed her life. She was more relaxed, energized, and happy after practicing yoga for the last few months. She had transferred those emotions to him like a patient to a therapist, a college student to a professor. He opened her world and made it anew, so naturally, she had a crush on him. Made perfect sense.
So why couldn't she just get over it?
Arianna eased back onto the mat for final relaxation and cleared her mind. She let the annoying thoughts scatter and finally sank into a clear, peaceful state. By the time class ended, she felt a little bit more in control.
A shadow fell over her purple mat and she looked up. The cause of her distress stood above her, a slight smile curving his lips as he stared down. Arianna gathered a tight hold on her composure as if approaching a business meeting, and eased gracefully to her feet.
Her gaze swept his figure in a search for answers. He really wasnt her type. Arianna was always attracted to the men in power suits, with short hair and quick movements. She enjoyed the energy of business men and their ambitions.
Grant Madison was completely different.
He wore his inky black hair long, past his shoulders. Tonight, he held it back in a ponytail, which showed off an array of carved features that was anything but handsome. His nose was too long. His mouth too sensual, with its full lower lip. A slight shadow darkened his jaw, and Arianna knew he was the type to forget to shave, maybe for days. Fierce, black brows set off those piercing eyes, the color a rich deep brown that seemed fathomless, and his skin was olive, as if he had Greek or Italian descent in his blood. He was tall, lean, and efficiently graceful. He rivaled an executive in a power suit, yet stood before her barefoot. Waves of tightly focused masculine energy hummed around him. She imagined his hot gaze locked on hers as he thrust himself deep inside her wet heat; imagined him gloriously naked with sinewy arms holding her down and muscled thighs riding her like a stallion.