I love the new Montana Born series, Bachelor Bake-Off, as Marietta is near and dear to my heart, as are all the occupants,including those hunky bachelors.
Girls, I hand it over to you!
Jessica: Hello Jennifer, it was so much fun working with you on this series! Could you tell me a little about yourself?
Jennifer: Hi, I’m Jennifer Faye. I live in the United States with my very patient and helpful husband and two needy furbabies aka cats. 😉 I’ve been writing for most of my life. When I was very young, I asked Santa for a typewriter. I was certain that one day I’d be a writer. I just didn’t know about all of the twists and turns there would be on my journey to being a multi-published author. But it has truly been a dream come true. What could be better than giving people their happily-ever-after’s?
And I am very fortunate to be able to work with an amazing group of authors on the Bachelor Bake-Off series. Jessica, you’ve been wonderful. Why don’t you tell us about yourself?
Jessica: Thank you! I’ve loved working with you all too. I l really enjoy being part of a series because it makes a solitary job into a really social one. I’m Jessica Gilmore and I live a whole ocean away in the north of England with my husband, my ballerina teen daughter, two cats and a very spoiled dog. I work part time for a conservation charity and I’m lucky enough to be a multi-published romance writer as well. Like you it was quite a journey to get here – I always thought I’d write regency romances for a start! Maybe one day I will… So tell me about your Bake-Off book? I can’t wait to read it.
Jennifer: My book, Sprinkled With Love, is the third in the series, but each book can be read as a standalone. They each contain their own HEA. It is a light-hearted romantic comedy with the most adorable cat with a mind of his own. 😉
What does one do with a matchmaking cat named Romeo?
Spirited and beautiful, Jillian Parker is one of Marietta’s newest business owners. Still, her mother worries about Jillian’s bare ring finger. So in order to give her mother something else to fuss over, Jillian adopts a cat named Romeo. He turns out to be anything but a docile lap cat.
One snowy night, Romeo makes a break for it. With Jillian right on his heels, they have a near miss with a passing pickup driven by Avery Wainwright, one of Jillian’s closest friends. A rodeo accident has the sexy cowboy returning home to recuperate, and he’s not happy about it.
So when Avery finds himself lassoed into the Bachelor Bake-Off, he turns to the one person who has always helped him out—Jillian. But will teaching him to take chances outside of the show ring have them both discovering that their feelings for each other run much deeper than they ever imagined?
Jessica, I just love the title of your book, Baking For Keeps. I’m fortunate that I’ve gotten some behind-the-scenes tidbits about your book and it sounds fabulous! Can you share with us a bit about the book?
Jessica: That sounds fabulous, I’m really looking forward to it. Mine is the fourth in the series – and there is a cat, Patchwork, but he is a very minor character. Lacey Hathaway has it all — a job she loves as a local radio DJ, a home with her adored, eccentric aunts and, best of all, a community after a childhood traveling with her musical parents. So what if her life is a little too safe? Marietta is everything to Lacey. Not only is she helping to organize the Bachelor Bake-Off and filming a documentary about the process, she’s also volunteered her brother as a Bachelor. But, when her brother backs out, Lacey has to find a last-minute replacement. And who better than her aunts’ lodger, gorgeous – if taciturn – Zac Malone?
Zac’s not exactly community-minded. In fact, he makes it clear that the sooner he’s out of Marietta the better. But when Lacey persuades him of the powerful impact the Bake-Off funds will have on local children, he decides to give it a go. On one condition. If he has to learn to bake, so does disaster-in-the-kitchen Lacey. Desserts aren’t the only thing heating up, and as the attraction flares and Zac makes plans to leave, Lacey’s beginning to realize that maybe there is a world beyond Marietta’s borders after all… if she’s brave enough to take that step.
As I mentioned earlier I do really enjoy writing series with other author -s but it does take some organisation! What did you find most challenging?
Jennifer: You’re right. Organization was the key to making this series work. For me, the most challenging part of this series was that all of the books were written to encapsulate the same time period, but they are from very different points-of-view. So it was the small details that had to be tied together in every book. And lucky for us, the Tule team was fabulous about smoothing out the details such as the bell that Mrs. Monroe uses at the beginning of the Bake-Off.
But the readers should be assured that the books are all quite different just like the characters in each romance.
How about you, Jessica? What did you find the most challenging?
Jessica: I think the same, making sure there are no continuity errors and not being able to head off anywhere I wanted without checking in first! Not only did all my details need to tie in with your books but I also had to make sure that the setting was absolutely right too – Marietta is a very well-known town and I’m sure the readers will pick up on anything I got wrong! But on the flip side it was great having four other authors there to answer questions and brainstorm the details with and the editorial team were so helpful too.
One of the hardest things for me was coming up with the recipes – especially the pie! Have you made any of yours?
Jennifer: Funny you should ask that question. While I was busy writing the book, I asked my husband to pick me up the ingredients for each item my hero bakes. It’s amazing all of the information that sprang to mind while I was baking the Montana Cowboy Cookies. It was a very helpful and delicious exercise. Sadly I ran out of time to bake the pie and cake. Luckily, I’d baked them in the past and was able to draw on my memories for those scenes.
Did you make any of your recipes? If so, which was your favorite?
Jessica: The cake is a recipe I made up once when I needed to use some apples and have repeated quite a lot so I was pretty confident with that. I don’t often bake cookies (or biscuits as we call them – the difference in language was a little bit of a challenge as well!) but I did make a version of the shortbread and, like Lacey and Zac, mixed it by hand. I can testify that it is a lot harder than using a mixer! The pie is a gamble. I haven’t made it so I have no idea if it works. I’ll have to give it a go sometime…
Jennifer: Jessica, thank you for chatting with me about the Montana Born Bake-Off series. I really enjoyed working with you and hope we get to do it again. And thanks to the Tule team for all they’ve done to make this fun series a reality.
Jessica: Absolutely, I’d love to work with you again too – and echoing your thanks to the Tule team. I hope the readers enjoy discovering the Bake-Off series as much as we did!
Thank you, Jennifer and Jessica for sharing your chat with us and for two wonderful stories in the Bake-Off series! Readers, be sure to look for Sprinkled With Love and Baking For Keeps at your preferred online retailer. If you enjoy them, be sure to drop the authors a line as I’m sure they’d love to hear your thoughts!
Now, to celebrate with Jennifer and Jessica for their new releases, I’ve got a fun JP prize lined up for not one but Two lucky winners. For a chance to win, leave a comment below for Jennifer and Jessica and you’ll automatically be entered to win! Contest ends Tuesday with winner announced Wednesday.