Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Conversation with Jayne Anne Krentz

Posted by Susan B James on 2:41:00 AM with 22 comments
Meet the multi best-seller, multi-genre, multi-talented Jayne Ann Krentz,(Contemporary) aka Amanda Quick (Victorian)  aka Jayne Castle (Futuristic romances).

All of Jayne’s books are spiced with humor. Most of her books are mystery/suspense stories. Her stories that feature heroines and heroes with psychic gifts who need each other on every level, are my personal catnip.

Her latest book, The Hot Zone , which comes out today.invites the reader back to Rainshadow Island, a psi hotspot in Jayne’s futuristic world, Harmony. And I can’t wait to visit.

I love firsts, so tell me about the moment when you found you’d made your first sale.
JAYNE: Well, that was so long ago that everything was done by snail mail -- what I got was a letter, not a phone call or an email --  but it was just as thrilling, believe me.  And I still get the same thrill today when an editor tells me she loves my book and wants to buy it. 
How about the first time you dated your husband?
JAYNE:  As I recall, I had to cancel our first date because I got tickets to the Lipizzaner Stallions show.  First things first.  Luckily, he gave me a second chance.  He's still around.  Those horses never came back to town.  

What is the most exciting moment, so far, in your writing career?
JAYNE: The best part of this business is that moment when the book I'm working on feels "right" and I know intuitively that it's okay to write The End.  That never gets old.
Jayne Ann Krentz, Amanda Quick and Jayne Castle are the identities you write under now, but I’ve heard you’ve had seven pseudonyms altogether. I’ve tracked down your Stephanie James ID, but who were the others? I don’t want to miss anything.
JAYNE:  Oh, gosh, I'm not sure I remember them all!  I think there was a Jayne Taylor in there for one book and a couple of Jayne Bentleys.  But, hey, who's counting?  I should add that I never set out to create three separate careers, which is what I've got now.   I always figured one would work better than the others and I'd go with it.  But somehow they all three worked.  And I do love moving between my three fictional landscapes.  It's very refreshing for me as a writer.
What is your favorite pastime, other than writing?
JAYNE: Cooking, travel and Nordstroms.

 From your books, I get the feeling you are a vegetarian. Got a recipe you want to share?
ANSWER: Our household is low-carb and mostly vegetarian (with some fish).  As for recipes, I'm having a blast with my new Paderno vegetable spiralizer! This gadet, which makes zucchini into noodles, has changed my life! It's put pasta back into our lives.  If you want to see what it can do, just check out this website: http://www.inspiralized.com/category/zucchini/
Any advice for new writers just starting out?
JAYNE:  The best advice I can give new writers in any genre is to join Romance Writers of America.  Best writers' organization in the world.  You will learn more about the business and the craft from RWA in six months than you will in six years if you go it alone.  Trust me.    http://rwa.org/

One of Harmony’s features are a mysterious species which look like dust bunnies. Tell us about your latest Dust Bunny.
ANSWER:  The heroic dust bunny in THE HOT ZONE is named Lyle.  The story is Halloween on Rainshadow. Need I say more?  It's the perfect holiday for Rainshadow and it's a dream come true for dust bunnies.

Halloween on Rainshadow? I can't wait! What can we look forward to in your January release as Jayne Ann Krentz?

NEXT UP for Jayne Ann Krentz (January) is TRUST NO ONE.  It's a contemporary romantic-thriller set in Washington State.

Jayne is one of my major sources of writing inspiration. I re-read her books frequently. I try to learn technique from them, but I usually end up lost in the story. Here are links to The Kindle previews of

 Rainshadow/Harmony novel, Deception Cove, 
Amanda Quick, Otherwise Engaged

And her 2014 Contemporary, River Road 

The Hot Zone, which has no preview,  is available as a paperback at your local bookstore. It's also available on Kindle or Audible book.

Jayne, I cannot thank you enough for stopping by

I have a paperback copy of The Hot Zone to mail to one lucky commenter.
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Monday, August 18, 2014

Conversation with Author and Editor, Cheryl Yeko

Posted by Susan B James on 3:30:00 AM with 11 comments

Cheryl Yeko is a multi-published, award-winning author. She belongs to several writing groups, and is a member of Wisconsin Writers Association, and Romance Writers of America (RWA), as well as its Wisconsin Chapter. 

Cheryl is also an Acquisitions Editor for Soul Mate Publishing. As an Editor, she welcomes Romantic Suspense, Paranormal, Sci-Fi, Contemporary, and Erotica.
Cheryl acquired Time and Forever from me in 2013 and I will be forever grateful. Not only for the acquisition, but for her editing skills which made my book infinitely better. 

Her sixth book, The Notary came out this summer.
I took the opportunity to ask her for an interview.
Please tell us a little about yourself.
I live in Wisconsin with my husband Patrick.I love to read, play piano, and spend time with family and friends. 

I love firsts, so tell me about the moment when you found you’d made your first sale.

I remember it well...what a rush. The thrill was beyond description. I’d never written so much as a short story before, but after receiving a Kindle for Christmas from my wonderful husband I began reading romance novels and fell in love with them. After a few years I decided to try writing one myself. I disappeared into my room over a long Wisconsin winter and wrote Protecting Rose. I sent my baby out to three publishing houses, expecting rejection, and within three weeks I received an offer from Soul Mate Publishing, which I quickly accepted. I was on cloud nine. Then two days later I received and offer from a second publishing house. I think I was in shock at this point ... lol. Then Protecting Rose went on to win the 2012 Gayle Wilson Award of Excellence in the romantic suspense category. Well, I was hooked and quit my full time job as a legal assistant to write full time. You should have seen my husband’s face ... priceless!!
But he’s been very supportive, and I now have six romantic suspense novels released, and I’m an acquiring editor for Soul Mate Publishing. I'm just as thrilled as the author when I send out a contract letter, the joy of being contracted still fresh in my mind and something I’ll probably never forget.

If it isn’t too nosy . . . (well of course it is!) How about the first time you kissed your true love?

Gosh, we’ve been together for so long, I don’t really remember it...lol. But he’s a great kisser so I’m sure he rocked my world! J

In all your spare time, what books do you like to read?
I enjoys novel with fast-paced action and steamy romance, protective alpha men and strong heroines. 

Other than your own, who are your favorite (heroes/heroines/writers) in your genre?

Oh gosh, the list goes on and on ... but if I had to choose, I’d say Lori Foster and Karen Rose. Lori Foster is a little lighter read than Karen Rose, so depending on the mood, either one of these ladies does it for me. There are many others who are on to-buy list, including Cynthia Eden, Lisa Marie Rice, Julie Ann Walker, just to name a few...

My second love is paranormal, and I’m actually trying to write a paranormal, just to see if I can. A few of the authors in that genre that I love are J.R. Ward, who writes awesome vampires, and Larrisa Ione who does the best demons. I loved, loved Jeaniene Frost’s Night Huntress series and was sorry to see it end. And of course nobody does sexy shape shifters better than Jennifer Ashley, or hot, hot new species like Laurann Dohner.

A couple other fun ones that come to mind are Lara Adrian and Alexandra Ivey.

Sigh...I love books!!
Cheryl, you have some of the best ideas for plots ever. Do they sneak up on you in your dreams or do you have to wrestle for them?
 I'm a total pantser and my plots come to me as I go along....lol. No plotting (or very little) involved. Although as a mobile notary myself, I've had this idea swirling in my head for a few years and finally got around to writing it. It's my favorite so far...Smile

What is the most exciting moment, so far, in your writing career?
That had to be when I won the Gayle Wilson Award of Excellence for my debut novel, Protecting Rose. Wow! Knock me over with a feather. My novels continue to place in contests, but I’ve yet to get another win ... although I’m not giving up. J Besides winning contests, I’d have to say it’s when I get my new book cover. Each time is as exciting as the time before...

And then of course, there was the day Debby Gilbert asked me to come on board as an Editor for Soul Mate Publishing. From no writing experience to award winning author and acquiring editor for a publishing house within a span of two years was quite a wild ride...and it’s not over!! I’m going to ride this fun-train as far as it’ll take me. J

What is your favorite pastime, other than writing?

Hanging out with my husband...the love of my life. Just being around him makes my day better.

What’s your snack of choice while writing?


Got a recipe you want to share?

Sorry, I don’t cook...lol. I’ve always told my husband if he wants a good meal, he can take me out to dinner.

Any advice for new writers just starting out?

Join a critique group, and write, write, write.

Tell us about your latest release.

THE NOTARY. I love this story and it was so much fun to write. I drew from my background as a Mobile Notary, where I conducted real estate closings for title companies in people’s homes and business, coffee shops, and other totally off the wall places. The craziest one I remember was when I showed up for an appointment and the home was overflowing with folks dressed up in formal attire. I found out there was a Wake going on for the borrower’s sister. I told her we could reschedule, but she insisted I come in and close the loan. Which I did!

I conducted other types of projects besides real estate closings, although that was the majority of my business. On occasion, I’d perform fingerprinting for people who were moving to other states for a job that required them, or even close a loan at a car dealership when they’d receive new inventory. I worked as a mobile notary for over ten years, and still, to this day, take an occasional assignment. It’s been very interesting...lol.

The Notary's premise, where the heroine is given an incorrect address for a closing appointment and shows up at the wrong home, actually happened to me. Of course, I didn't walk into the middle of an undercover operation with a sexy cop to save me. But it could have happened...LOL
I’d like to share the Blurb for The Notary with you.

Adrianna Morgan's life takes a dangerous turn when she's given an incorrect address for a notary assignment, ending up in the wrong place, at the wrong time.

Attempting to take down a local drug ring, Lucas Hunter's cover is blown when he goes to the aid of a beautiful woman during an undercover operation.

But the bad guys better watch out, because this sexy cop will do anything to protect the woman he loves, no matter how high the body count.

I created the book trailer for The Notary myself. I love how it turned out. It helps that I had such an awesome book cover! 
Cheryl did a great job; Check out the  Book Trailer: 

Here is an excerpt:

Lucas watched as Adrianna gave her head another vigorous shake, glaring at the paramedic. He instinctively moved toward her to see what was wrong. She’d been through enough and he didn’t want this guy making her more upset.
What am I doing? She’s not my responsibility. That thought didn’t slow him down for an instant. He came to a stop in front of the paramedic, narrowing his eyes on the man. “Is there a problem here?”
The paramedic scowled, not appearing intimidated by Lucas’ surly attitude in the slightest. Pretty damn brave of him, Lucas admitted with grudging respect, given that the guy was no taller than Adrianna, and almost as skinny.
“She refuses to go to the hospital to get checked for a concussion,” the paramedic complained. “Maybe you can talk some sense into her.”
Lucas frowned at Adrianna and her stubborn chin jutted forward, a kiss-worthy pout pursing her mouth. Did the woman have no sense whatsoever? First, she shows up at a strange house late at night, then stuck around when she should have been hauling her fine ass out of there. Although there was a good chance he’d be dead if she hadn’t, which ticked him off further. It was his fault she’d been injured, and dammit, she was going to the hospital to get checked out if he had to carry her there.
“I’ll take her.”
She gave him a look of exasperation. “I’m not going.”
“Yes . . . you are,” he returned, his annoyance rising. What the hell was wrong with this woman? Stubborn didn’t even come close to her attitude.
She crossed her arms and tapped her slender bare foot, irritation marring her pretty features. Her alluring eyes flashed a deep shade of green. “No. I’m not.”
She shifted her gaze to the paramedic in a look of reproach, then spun around and headed for a blue Ford Focus parked in front of the house.
“She can’t drive,” the paramedic snapped.
“Right,” Lucas agreed, sprinting after her. “I’ve got this.”
He came up behind her just as she neared the Focus, her steps slowed, then came to a complete stop by the driver’s side door. But she didn’t open it. Instead, her shoulders drooped and her head fell forward as she tugged the blanket more tightly around her. When a tremor shook her shoulders, the need to comfort her nearly undid him. She was due for a meltdown after what she’d been through.
His annoyance fell away at the sight of her distress. “You okay?”
“My car’s broken,” she said, her voice no more than a whisper. A chill nipped the air as a slight misting rain fell on them.
He reached for her and slowly turned her around, placing a finger under her chin and tilting her face up. Her eyes were glassy with tears. “What?” he asked softly.
She blinked moisture from her lashes and squinted up at him. “I had an accident”—sniffle—“on the way here and now it won’t start.” Her bottom lip trembled.
His gaze fell to her mouth and an urge to press her back against her car and taste those full pouty lips coiled inside him. He swallowed hard and forced the image out of his mind, but it was harder to force the desire from his body. “You weren’t hurt?”
She hadn’t appeared injured when he’d seen her peering inside the dirty window. His eyes dropped back over her body, accessing her injuries. His body tightened, noting the way her conservative outfit, still damp, clung to her soft curves.
His mouth pressed tight. Since Susan’s death, he’d taken less than a handful of women to bed to scratch his itch. All one-nighters who knew the score. This woman had ‘long-term’ written all over her. Lucas didn’t do long term.
Adrianna continued. “I just need my purse.” Her voice shook and two fat tears leaked from her eyes. “And I—I lost my glasses when that man hit me,” she ended on a wail.
The thought of Ellis touching her, hurting her, made Lucas want to do some damage to the guy. His nostrils flared and his spine stiffened. Too bad the bastard was already dead. The anguish he heard in her voice bothered him. On pure instinct, Lucas found himself leaning in to comfort her. Inhaling her sweet floral scent reminded him of everything good in the world and the reason men like him fought to protect innocence.
Two more tears rolled down her face, one dripping off the end of her cute nose. An emotion that could only be described as tenderness flickered to life inside him. An emotion he’d sworn never to feel again. An emotion he sure as hell didn’t want. One he did his best to tamp back down, as the need to claim and protect her smoldered, like a low burning fire. Then she sniffled again, the sound soft and feminine, as two more tears fell.
Like throwing gasoline onto a flame, the emotion exploded, raging out of control.
Ah, hell!

What’s your current WIP?

As mentioned above, I love Karen Rose, she writes the darkest stories with killer villains (literally). So, I’m trying my hand at a serial killer story. It’s a bit darker than my other novels ... at least that is the intent. So, we’ll see. I hope to have it completed by the end of the year.
I’m also still chugging away at my paranormal story, which keeps getting pushed aside for a new romantic suspense novel. My intent is to have my paranormal completed by the end of next year...which would put it almost three years into the making. So, I’ll be stretching my writing skills over the next year. Wish me luck!

I do! Can't wait to see what you come up with.
Thank you, Cheryl.I loved Protecting Rose and I bought The Notary the day it came out. Great read. 
These are Cheryl's links. 
Cheryl is thrilled to be able to add author/editor to her resume and would love to hear comments from readers.

Cheryl is offering a giveaway of her novella, Mountain Hero either as an eBook or and Audible Book - Reader's Choice. Please leave a comment and, If you are feeling sprightly, click on The Power of Three, Cheryl's shared Facebook author page. You'll be liking three lovely authors for the price of one click.
  Cheryl will choose a winner.  

You can find Cheryl at these links: Where Love Always Winshttp://www.cherylyeko.com/
Soul Mate Publishing: http://tinyurl.com/lav53p3

Monday, August 11, 2014

Who are your favorite Romance authors.

Posted by Susan B James on 2:00:00 AM with 18 comments
I have so many authors I read. I have fewer that I read over and over. I thought I would try a post on some of the authors I cannot part with.
Susan Elizabeth Phillips. I think I have everything SEP ever wrote and I read many of them over and over again. She's always been good but she's grown so much over the years. Many of her books feature a really great B story line
Natural Born Charmer and This Heart of Mine both feature older couples as B stories and I adore them.  Her dialog is fabulous, her heroines feisty and her plots wonderful.  Many of her books feature characters from her other novels which makes them into one huge family and I love revisiting the people I've grown to love in minor roles in her new books.
I've pre-ordered her latest book, Heroes are My Weakness  and I can't wait.

Jayne Anne Krentz aka Amanda Quick aka  Jayne Castle

I've read all of her books. The ones I like best are the ones which feature telepathic links of some sort between the heroine and the hero. (When I was younger, my ambition was to be rich, thin and telepathic. I've achieved none of these but I like reading about them.) All of her books have a mystery in the background. In the past few years, she's come out with three books per year, one under each name. Each features a hero and heroine with a PSI Talent and and organization called The Arcane Society, Her heroes have a sense of irony. Her heroines are intelligent and the mysteries are great fun.
While I read all three of her styles, I have a special weakness for her futuristic world novels written as Jayne Castle. Her newest book,  The Hot Zone  comes out August 26th and yes, I pre-ordered it.

Lynn Kurland    Lynn has two worlds. Time Passages and The Nine Kingdoms
I am partial to the world which contains the de Piaget and MacLeod books All of the MacLeod and most of the de Piaget  feature Time travel.  The first of them is A Dance Through Time
Over the course of the books many medieval heroes and heroines have been brought forward it time. Other members of the modern families end up going back in time and staying there.
I love her medieval world and I love best when medieval heroes or heroines are brought to the modern world. Her romance level is sweet. No overt sexual scenes. But the love is wonderful. She has made a wonderful set of time travel rules. Reading Lynn Kurland and Robert Heinlein's Door into Summer taught me I got to make up my own time travel rules.  Lynn's latest book Dreams of Lilacs  is a medieval de Piaget book featuring many of the characters I love.

Who are your favorite authors and why? Please leave a comment telling me. You'll be entered in the Rafflecopter giveaway of three audio books of Time and Forever
The audio book came out while I was on my way to Brazil and I couldn't share my joy till I came home. Stephanie Bentley, the narrator did a wonderful job.
I am sleep deprived, so I'd better stop. (nineteen hours in transit from Abadiania, Brazil to Los Angeles)
Also there is a new Paleo fudge recipe on the recipe tab, so please check it out.
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