Love Between the Covers

Four years ago, in August of 2012, I shared with you how much I loved the Kickstarter project, Love Between The Covers and all the wonderful work filmmaker, Laurie Kahn was doing on it.  For anyone who loves romance, be they writers, readers, librarians, booksellers or editors and agents, Love Between the Covers will make an impact as it reveals the global community of women who create and make these books so successful.

Today, I’m excited to tell you that this documentary will be available in 13 days and you can Pre-Order your copy now!  I hope you’ll check it out and here’s a quick clip:

Happy Father’s Day!

I know a lot of you don’t get my newsletters anymore due to spam filters, so I’m sharing my newsletter here AND adding a special giveaway for one of you!

Today is Mac’s last day of first grade and then, on Sunday, it’s Father’s Day! Where did time go? I began a book a few months ago, looked up, and now it’s mid- June. On Sunday we head to Hawaii for the summer so Ty can get back in the water. His surf school is always so busy during school holidays, and Mac can’t stand being apart from his dad, so we all pack up and travel together. I love Mac and Ty’s special bond. They are two peas in a pod!

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Speaking of wonderful fathers and Father’s Day, my romance about a single dad, Cormac Sheenan, is part of this fantastic Father’s Day Collection – available for a short time! If you’ve not had a chance to read A Christmas Miracle for Daisy, you’ll want to snag this collection featuring many of my favorite authors. And every story has a special father in it!

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Look for this Father’s Day Collection here:
AMAZON | B&N |iBOOKS | GOOGLE | KOBO

Having signed a new contract with Harlequin Presents and continuing with my books for Tule Publishing, I’ve been writing a lot this year! My sixth and final book in The Taming of the Sheenans series will be out on July 8th! You can pre-order The Lost Sheenan’s Bride now or pop over to my website to read an excerpt from Shane’s story.  If you love this series as much as I’ve loved writing it, then I can’t wait to hear what you think of the series conclusion.

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Pre-Order your copy of The Lost Sheenan’s Bride here:
AMAZON | iBOOKS | AMAZON UK

Writers and books need one thing, readers, and I need and appreciate you! If you are in the San Diego area in July, do consider attending the “Readers For Life” Literacy Autographing at the RWA National conference in San Diego on July 13, 2016. Hundreds of authors will be there with their most recent books and all sales go to the literacy efforts in the San Diego County. I’m one of the authors signing and I’d love to see you there!

literacyHave a wonderful Sunday. Sending you love. I hope you and your family have a great weekend together.

PS: I have a great Hawaii giveaway to celebrate summer.  Leave me a comment about your plans for this weekend and I’ll announce the winner on Tuesday!

 

The Scandalous Billionaires!

I love tycoons and I am a huge fan of gorgeous settings and this Scandalous Billionaires collection has it all…and even better, it’s written by five of my friends…and for just .99 for the next few days!

Here’s Eve Gaddy to tell us more about the stories:

Today I want to tell you about a very special project I’m proud to be part of. Scandalous Billionaires is a sizzling set of stories set on the Amalfi Coast. Four of my friends and I–Katherine Garbera, Mimi Wells, Nancy Robards Thompson, Kathleen O’Brien and Eve Gaddy– wanted to set our stories on a fictional island off the fabled Amalfi Coast. We decided that all our heroes were billionaires because, well, billionaires are hot. Ours certainly are.:) The setting is the fabulous Isola Del Sole at the Hotel dei Fiori and we gave our billionaires strong, feisty women to fall for. There’s a little bit of everything in the Scandalous Billionaires box set. Intrigue, deception, mistaken identities, and a lot of long, steamy nights!

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The Billionaire’s Temptation by Katherine Garbera

Rocco De Luca lives and loves in the fast lane. A past Formula 1 champ, he has been jetting around the world arranging celebrity charity races and partying with the world’s elite. Coming home to Isola del Fiori and filling in for his older brother for a few weeks sounds…well, boring. Until he meets Steffi Harlan.
Steffi Harlan is sophisticated, elegant, and way too smart to fall for a tanned chest and a bad-boy smile, or so she thinks, until she’s put in charge of keeping the jet-set playboy out of trouble while he’s gone. Sure, no problem. Except Steffi isn’t immune to Rocco’s charms.
They burn up the nights they spend together, and the last thing Steffi wants is to crash out and end up with a broken heart… Can they both survive love in the fast lane?

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The Billionaire’s Deception by Mimi Wells

After quitting her first “real” job, Janine Pike takes off for Europe, saving an excursion to the famed Isola del Sole for last. But when her travel-mates sail off with her backpack, phone, and passport after a night of partying, she’s left only with the euros in her pocket and the faint hope that her estranged half-sister, who works at the renowned Hotel Dei Fiori Isola del Sole, might help her.

Shel Myerson, amateur racecar driver and wildly successful TV mogul, oozes wealth and prestige. What he doesn’t have much of is privacy, thanks to a recent and ugly public breakup. What he doesn’t expect is to be mistaken as an employee by a very pretty—and very broke—Janine, the one person in Europe who also doesn’t have any idea who he is.

Shel and Janine discover their chemistry is combustible—but will their budding relationship survive the heat once the press catches on?

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The Billionaire’s Betrayal by Nancy Robards Thompson

As heir of Dei Fiori Enterprises, Matteo De Luca‘s single focus after his father’s untimely death is rebuilding his family legacy and hotel empire. After two years, he’s close to achieving his goal, but there’s one person standing in his way… A sexy distraction he’d never anticipated.

Two years after her beloved husband’s death, Helena Von Lienz knows it’s finally time to let go. With her share of a hotel business, Helena heads to the Amalfi Coast in search of closure, and a portrait created for her by her late husband. What she doesn’t anticipate to discover during those hot Amalfi nights are some unexpected truths about her late hubby, and a strong sensual shared desire with Matteo, the sexy and ambitious CEO of Dei Fiori…

Will mixing business with pleasure be the end, or just the beginning, for Matteo and Helena?

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The Billionaire’s Secret by Kathleen O’Brien

High School art teacher Sophie Smith is usually the most honest of women. But when her dearest friend and mentor asks her to be her stand-in on a two-week vacation at an Amalfi Coast luxury resort, she won’t let her down… even if it means posing as a rich, pampered socialite.

As it turns out, Sophie could get used to this, especially handsome, enigmatic gardener Declan Muldoon who’s strangely more thrilling than any of the billionaires buzzing around. She ends up falling for him—hard.

Then Sophie discovers she’s not the only one pretending. Declan’s gardener gig is temporary. He’s actually the black sheep of a very wealthy, powerful family, a man who appears to be in need of an heiress.

An heiress exactly like Sophie is pretending to be…

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The Billionaire’s Charade by Eve Gaddy

Summer St. Croix hates weddings. But when she meets hot-as-sin Luke Vanetti at her oldest friend’s ceremony, he promises to give her a reason to like them.

It’s all sexy fun and games until Summer realizes that Luke is none other than her new boss. Summer refuses to continue to have a fling with her superior, even though the passion between them still runs wildfire hot. But the billionaire private investigator doesn’t see the problem, especially since he knows that one night with Summer won’t be enough.

When Luke’s cousin sends an SOS asking for help in stopping a ring of jewel thieves from robbing his luxury hotel on the Amalfi Coast, Luke agrees. And Summer’s first assignment will be posing as his very sexy, rich, and bejeweled fiancée  at the Hotel dei Fiori Isola del Sole.

Playing the happy couple is hard enough during the day, but the nights… will those romantic Amalfi nights turn the charade into more than just a job for both Summer and Luke… for good?

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Escape to Italy’s fabled Amalfi Coast with five USA Today Bestselling and award-winning authors for a limited time at a special price!

The Scandalous Billionaires box set can be yours for only $0.99! Get your FREE copy of Nona’s Cookbook. Just send a screenshot of your order page to scandalousbillionaires@gmail.com and we’ll send you a copy.

Look for the Scandalous Billionaires boxset at these online retailers:
Amazon: http://bit.ly/SBNewAmz
KOBO: http://bit.ly/KOBOSB
Google Play: http://bit.ly/SBGOOP
iBooks: http://bit.ly/iBooksSB

Check out our Facebook page at www.facebook.com/ScandalousBillionaires

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Thank you, Eve for sharing more about each of the stories!  Readers, if you haven’t already downloaded this boxset do it soon as this .99 cents sale won’t last long!!  For more fun and celebration, I’ve also got an awesome prize celebrating the very sexy alpha billionaires in Scandalous for one of you.  🙂  For a chance to win, leave a comment below and share if you’ve love Tycoons and what your favorite story is featuring one!  Contest ends Saturday with winner announced Sunday.

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A Chat with Kiersten Hallie Krum

salonXdayXfebX2016Today, I’m happy to introduce you to debut author, Kiersten Hallie Krum.  Kiersten and I go back all the way to Grand Central when I was writing Odd Mom Out and Mrs. Perfect and Kiersten was hired to the write the back cover blurbs!

I have been rooting for Kiersten as she pursued her writing and was so excited about her first release,  Wild On The Rocks which is available now on Kindle Worlds on Amazon.  I had to have her on my blog to share about her publishing journey!

Welcome Kiersten!

Please tell us a little bit about yourself that is not commonly known.

Ever play that ice breaker game at party where you had to write down one thing nobody knew about you and then go around the room with a list asking people “are you the one who hates the ocean?”? Yeah, I always draw a blank in those cases.

But, I do alphabetize my cash money…or I did when I carried cash rather than use my debit card for everything. See, dollar bills carry the name of the city in which they’re printed and each city is assigned a different letter of the alphabet. New York is B, Boston is A, Philadelphia is C…and so on. So, whichever city you live closest to is the letter you’re likely to see most often. I alphabetize my money (outside in, in my wallet) so I’m spending the most common letter first and preserving the rarer letter as long as I can manage. I’ve gotten as far as “N,” though I don’t remember from which city it derives.

How long have you been writing?  When did you first get interested in writing?

It’s a bit of a cliché these days for writers to say “I’ve been writing all my life,” but I can remember writing a play about Alexander the Great and his horse, Bucephalus, in 6th grade. I’ve been reading romance novels since I was a young teen (and hiding them from my mother) and started thinking “I could do that” not long after that. I spent the first years of my career working for publishing companies in New York City, sort of a back end run around way to maybe, someday being published. During this time, I got my Masters in Publishing from NYU. Then 9/11 happened and six months later as the publishing industry took a huge hit from people not reading so much as recovering their lives, I was out of work and simultaneously struck with the need to care for my suddenly disabled mother.

Those are things that make you re-evaluate your life in a big way. By 2008, five years into a steady job in a new career, I realized it was time to pony up. I used my tax return to join Romance Writers of America and determined that I would finally allow myself to aggressively pursue my dream of being published. I started small with monthly meetings and somewhat affordable regional conferences, branching out to the RWA national conference in 2011. I’ve spent that time polishing my craft and networking, building a network of friends and colleagues and learning, learning, learning.

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Why did you choose to write Wild On The Rocks?  What keeps the attraction alive for this genre for you?

I didn’t so much as choose to write this book as had this book thrust upon me—in the best of ways.

Last fall, I received an email from New York Times bestselling author Roxanne St .Claire asking me to be a part of her launch of the Barefoot Bay Kindle Worlds. Roxanne and I began as Twitter pals in the years since, she has become a mentor and close friend. I was deeply honored that she asked me, an as yet unpublished writer, to launch my debut romantic suspense novel under the Barefoot Bay umbrella…and terrified too!

I love to read and write romantic suspense novels because I like me a good action story, sure. My shelves are filled with 007 films and spy thrillers. There’s something about being taken on a wild adventure that’s deeply entertaining…especially when you know you’ll spend your day at a desk job and not running through a European city with a hot alpha hero (sadly enough).

But I’m of the opinion that romantic love is hard work and takes time. I’ve always found it difficult to believe in the veracity of a romance that ends in “true love” when the heroine and hero have only known one another for about a week. Romance novels offer the suspension-of-disbelief by nature of being a work of fiction, but you always want to believe that those relationships are at least possible in real life, that they are, perhaps, even achievable for a regular lady like myself (and they are, BTW).

In a romantic suspense story, the danger of the situation ramps up the true natures of the hero and heroine—it’s hard to hide behind an emotional mask when bad guys are gunning for you. I find those stories strip people down to their cores, making it much easier to believe that a woman and a man could fall in love in such a short period of time.

So when Roxanne asked me to join her Barefoot Bay Kindle World launch, I immediately knew that I would write a romantic suspense novel (‘cause that’s what I do) and I also wanted to take the opportunity to use one of my favorite tropes—reunited lovers—and one of my favorite kinds of heroes, a Navy SEAL.

Please tell us about the premise of your new release. 

In my debut romantic suspense novel, Wild On The Rocks, mixologist Quinn Forrester wanders down the wrong hallway of an Atlantic City casino at the wrong moment and witnesses a murder by the Russian mob. She goes on the run and winds up a week later in Barefoot Bay on Mimosa Key, a small island off the coast of Florida. Though she’s been divorced now for about a year, Quinn takes back her married name to hide in the swanky resort, Casa Blanca, where she tends bar until she can figure out her next move. She never expected to see her ex-husband, Navy SEAL Lt. Jasper McQueen, walk through the door.

Jasper has never gotten over his wild wife even though she ran out on him more than a year ago. With his career in shambles after a devastating incident with one of his men, Jasper came to Barefoot Bay to decompress and decide his next steps. Now with Quinn unexpected back in his orbit, Jasper’s determined to use their still crackling chemistry to work out a ton of sexual frustration while getting some straight answers from his wayward ex-wife. Provided the Russian mob doesn’t catch up with her first.

Will there be more books connected to this one? 

There will! The sequel, SEALED WITH A TWIST, will be available in October 2016! It is about Jasper’s best friend, Twist, who is a featured player in Wild On The Rocks.

What’s your writing process?  Do you have a set routine?  Do you work every day?

I have a demanding full time job that often has late hours, so I’ve found through trial and error that trying to write every day doesn’t work for me. This means I spent most weekends cramming in the words to make up for the lack…and therefore have little social life! This works some weekends better than others, but it gets the job done. I use a laptop but I like to work away from the desk since I sit at one for long hours for the day job, so I’ll write in bed with my cat as companion or outside or at Starbucks…wherever I can plug in.

Does your main character have any characteristics (personality quirks) that are similar to your own?

All my characters have some piece of me in them, yes. For Jasper, it’s the peace he finds whenever he’s near a body of water. Wherever I am, the water calls to me, be it ocean, river, lake, or a trickling stream. I gave Quinn my motorcycle boots, because I love them, and my love of a man’s delicious arm porn.

What’s your own favorite scene from the book?

There’s a scene toward the end of the book where Jasper takes Quinn on a sail. My uncle sailed and, while I was growing up, he’d take me, my sister, and my cousins out for sails. We’d hang our feet over the edge and when he caught the wind, drag our feet in the water as we flew along. The last boat he had before I went to college was a Catalina 22. Jasper takes Quinn out on that same kind of boat and some of my memories from that time are what Quinn experiences during their sail.

Do you flesh out all your secondary characters before you start the writing process or do they sort of take life as you write?

I guess I’d have to go along with “both”. For example, I knew Jasper’s best friend would be called Twist and I knew why because I stole the nickname (with permission) from a co-worker of mine whose known as Twisti Sisti (though I promise that’s the only thing my co-worker has in common with my character). But when I started writing the book, Twist unfurled along with the story and had more than a few surprises in store for me. Though I had no idea that he would be such a fan favorite! Now I’m getting lots of reader requests for Twist’s story, so I’m glad I can answer that it’s coming soon!

Is it hard for you to get back in the zone if you take a break from writing regularly?

It really is! Turns out, I do my best worked locked away from everyone and everything—and by “locked away” I’m mean in my spot at Stsarbucks with my ear buds in and the world tuned out. Leave me there for 10 or 12 hours and I’m good. Since I also have a full time day job, this is usually how I spend my weekends. Fun stuff, right?! But I’ve learned there’s no going home and picking up where I left off. Once I’ve made the break from the regurgitation of words, I’m done for the day.

How much time do you generally spend on research before you start writing or do you do the research as you write?

Research for me is usually current events, like magazine and or newspaper articles that catch my attention or a documentary film. The event that puts Jasper’s career in jeopardy came from a feature article in the New York Times about an incident with a Navy admiral that surprised everyone who knew him. Once I had that, the rest started to fall into place. I spend a lot of time thinking about a project, shifting things around in my head while I’m driving to and from work or in the shower or watching T.V. I find that, when I get to the keyboard, sometimes without knowing what’s going to happen next, that there are more words ready to come out than I expected, because it’s allbeen percolating for a while.

What are you working on at the moment?

Twist’s book! And a books I’ve been noodling on for a while that I playfully call my therapy book because I’m using it to deal with some issues that have interrupted my life in the last five or six years. Cheaper than a shrink! (Don’t tell Twist I said that.)

Are you involved in a critique group, plotting group, any kind of writer’s group? What advice do you have for someone looking for a critique group?  Anything specific they should keep in mind?

I have two or three critique partners who are with me every step in the life of the project. They talk me down from ledges and help me flesh out the plot and character journeys for the book. I absolutely couldn’t do it without them. But I find a smaller group of trusted partners works better than a large critique group. Having too many different voices and opinions in my head tends to do more damage than good because it makes me start questioning every little comma and character decision. In the end, outside of the technical things, like grammar and sentence structure, you need to trust your gut because it is your story and your vision that you’re putting down on the page.

How big an impact would you say a book cover plays in the process of a reader’s buying process?

Oh my gosh, HUGE! I can’t tell you how many compliments I’ve received on the cover for Wild On The Rocks, which makes me super happy because I love it and feel it visually conveys the spirit of the novel—sexy, romantic suspense in a tropical clime. Really sexy. 😉

My first book publishing job at Avon Books (many years ago) was as a publishing assistant and one half of my duties were about the cover conferences that were held with the editor, the art department, and the publisher to discuss the direction in which the cover would go and what visual elements that would include. That’s the level of importance Avon felt the cover deserved as part of its marketing strategy and it’s stuck with me to this day.

The cover is the first thing that will grab a reader’s attention. It immediately tells them the kind of feeling they can expect to feel while reading the book, be it sweet, sad, sexy, funny, romantic, scary…you name it, the cover should communicate it. We are a visual culture, perhaps now best evidenced now by the “GIF culture” of social media, which makes the cover of a novel more important to its success than ever. An eye-catching cover is what makes a reader choose your book—or someone else’s—off the shelf and want to learn (and read!) more about it.

Describe your personality in 5 specific words.

Hmmm. I’d say funny, dramatic, passionate, stubborn, and ballsy. I tend to be polarizing—people either like me or they don’t. There doesn’t seem to be much middle ground on that one. 😉

You’ve got to take a trip suddenly, with just twenty minutes to pack and you don’t know how long you’ll be gone. What 5 things would you absolutely have to take with you – besides clothing?

Music, I can’t live without music, so definitely my iPod (which is my only Apple device). My phone (so I can get books). My cat, Baxter. My meds. And wet wipes. You’d be surprised how key portable wet wipes are to a messy life. Or maybe not. I can buy a toothbrush anywhere.

What’s your astrological sign?  Do you read your horoscopes or is it all malarkey in your opinion?

I’m not into astrology but I’ll occasionally take a gander if only for fun’s sake. That said, I’m a Leo and I’m practically a textbook case of that signs components. But I don’t believe the configurations of the star decides the paths of our lives. While I’m a woman of faith, I also believe that we make our own fate through our free will and by the choices and decisions we make and what we do with the fallout from those decisions, good or bad, right or wrong. Or as Linda Hamilton puts it, “no fate but what we make.” What can I say? I am a complicated lady.

For your personal reading preference, do you prefer ebooks or print books?  What are you reading for pleasure right now?

A few years ago, I would’ve died side by side clutching my paper books tightly in hand. But since I’ve had to start reading advanced reading copies of other books on my Kindle for Android app, I’ve been converted to the convenience of the ebook on my phone. But I still love the smell and feel of paper.

Writer, singer editor, traveler, tequila drinker, and cat herder, Kiersten Hallie Krum avoids pen names since keeping her multiple personalities straight is hard enough work. She writes smart, sharp, and sexy romantic suspense. Visit her website at www.kierstenkrum.com and find her regularly over sharing on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, and Tumblr via @kierstenkrum.

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Congratulations on your new release, Kiersten and thank you for taking the time to chat with us today!  Readers,  get your download of Kiersten’s book soon and to add more fun to this celebration, I’m also giving away a fun prize to one lucky winner!  For a chance to win, leave a comment for Kiersten and you’ll automatically be entered to win!  Contest ends Monday with winner announced Tuesday.

A Chat with Brenda Janowitz

janowitz-headshotSo very happy to have the lovely, talented  Brenda Janowitz with me today!!  I’m so excited about her new release, The Dinner Party and can’t wait for you to know Brenda and learn more about her new book!

Welcome, Brenda!

 

Jane! Thank you so much for having me here. I’m so delighted to be visiting your blog. I remember meeting you a month after my first novel came out in 2007. We were at the Harlequin Book Expo party, and it was my first big publishing party. I was so star-struck meeting you, you were already one of my favorite authors (Flirting with Forty, OMG!), and you were so lovely and down to earth and just generally awesome. What a thrill it is to be here now.

Please tell us a little bit about yourself that is not commonly known.

I’m Brenda Janowitz, the author of five novels, including The Dinner Party, which came out on April 12th. My work has also appeared in the New York Times, the Washington Post, and Salon.

But what a lot of people don’t know about me is that I used to be a lawyer. I worked at a large Manhattan law firm and clerked for a federal judge, but I would wander the halls, thinking about the stories I wanted to write. When I turned thirty, my best friend Shawn had all of our friends chip in to send me to a writing class and the rest, as they say, is history.

My mom is still heartbroken over the fact that I don’t practice law anymore. At my readings, she likes to tell people that I’m still a lawyer, could still go back to practicing law tomorrow. She also likes to tell people that when I was in third grade, I starred in Ms. Kostecki’s production of Really Rosie. (I still know all the words.)

Please tell us about the premise of your new release.

It’s the story of three very different families getting together for a holiday meal they won’t soon forget. It’s about love and forgiveness, status and success, family and the ties that bind us to each other.

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Look for The Dinner Party at these online retailers:

Amazon | Barnes & Noble | iBooks | IndieBound

What sparked the idea for this novel? Do you draw inspiration from real life for your stories?

I wanted to write a book about letting go of the past. It’s something I have trouble with, this idea of letting go. I can never throw anything away, be it a Playbill from a Broadway show, an old pair of shoes, or even hurt and angry feelings from an argument, so I did what all writers do when they have something that’s bothering them: I wrote about it.

I wanted to set the novel around a holiday meal. Since I was writing about letting go of the past, Passover seemed like the perfect metaphor for this idea, “let my people go” and all that.

I don’t purposely draw from real life. But I do think that life has a way of seeping into every book. After all, I’m the author, so everything comes from me.

When it comes to inspiration, I always say that I’m inspired by everything and nothing. Every experience that I have, everything that I see, inspires me. But I don’t specifically draw from things in my real life.

What message would you like readers to take away with them once they read this story?

I’d love for readers to have a great reading experience. That’s the first thing for me, always: I want to entertain. Take people out of their busy lives for a few hours. Life is so hard these days (isn’t it hard?!), so if I can give people a laugh, or a cry, or just take them out of their own heads, then that’s a win for me.

But on a larger level, I’d love for readers to think about their own families and how they relate to each other. At its core, this is a story about family, about mothers and daughters. How we hurt each other. How we heal each other.

What’s your writing process? Do you have a set routine? Do you work every day?

I just do whatever works. I write whenever and wherever I get the chance. Usually, I try to get right to work after I put the kids on the school bus, but sometimes, it’s on my laptop while the kids are in the playroom (sort of like right at this very minute!). I’ve even been known to dictate full chapters of my books while I’m at pick-up in the nursery school parking lot!

On Facebook the other day, Allison Winn Scotch wrote that she’s been hitting her word count every day before 9 a.m. She got up and just wrote. No fooling around on the internet, no checking email, just writing for a solid hour.
I was insanely jealous.

And then I got inspired. This week, I’ve been waking up at 6 a.m., before my kiddies get up, and hitting the computer. I write for a solid hour before my children come downstairs with my hubby at 7 a.m. And you know what? I’ve written at least 1,000 words a day that way. And this morning I wrote 2,400 words. So, I may have a new routine after all.

Does your main character have any characteristics (personality quirks) that are similar to your own?

Sylvia Gold, the matriarch of the family that hosts the Passover Seder in my novel, is created completely from my imagination. She’s meticulous, and she cares about her family, what other people think, and can be described as a little bit of a control freak. People on social media are poking fun at the way she set her table with place cards for the Passover Seder. A relaxed family meal this was not.

As I prepared for my own family Passover Seder this year, I realized that I was a little more like Sylvia than I cared to admit. When I found myself making place cards for my table, I emailed my editor: I think I may be Sylvia! And she immediately wrote back: Oh, honey, I think we all have a little Sylvia in us.

What are you working on at the moment?

Besides promoting The Dinner Party, I’m working on my sixth novel and I’ve also been doing a lot of freelance work, like the book roundups I do for PopSugar.

For my sixth novel, I’m writing about marriage and parenthood. I wrote my first novel when I was single, before I even met my husband, but now I’m married with two kids. As my life has changed, so have the topics I want to explore with my writing. So has my writing voice.

Describe your personality in 5 specific words.

Ooh! That’s a tough one. I’d have to say: Funny, quirky, silly, thoughtful, and kind.

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Here’s a pic from the night I met Jane. That’s me, Carole Matthews, and Jane Porter at the Harlequin BEA party in 2007. What a night!! (Jane, you look EXACTLY the same!!)

You’ve got to take a trip suddenly, with just twenty minutes to pack and you don’t know how long you’ll be gone. What 5 things would you absolutely have to take with you – besides clothing?

Okay, this is just too much fun! (Are we going somewhere?! I could be ready in ten.)

The first thing is books. I cannot survive without books. When I go away on vacation, my husband has to put a few books in each suitcase, to even out the weights of each bag!

I also cannot survive without writing. So, I’d need to bring either my laptop or a notebook, something to write in.

Next is a camera. I’m a big picture-taker. (Though, strangely, not a selfie-taker.) I love documenting happy occasions and making photo albums of my family each year.

I also love makeup. So, I really can never leave the house without concealer, lip gloss, and blush. For a trip, I always bring miniature versions of everything.

Finally, I’d have to bring my family. The biggest and best accomplishment of my life is creating my family—my husband and our two sons. So, if I’m leaving and I don’t know when I’ll be back? I’ve got to have them with me.

How may fans contact you?

Yes! Please contact me! I love hearing from readers. I’m all over social media:
Website | Twitter | Facebook | Pinterest | Goodreads | BookBub

And of course, there’s always good old-fashioned email. I’m at BrendaJanowitz [at] gmail [dot] com. I’d love to hear from you!

Jane, thank you so much for having me here! This has been a blast.

Brenda Janowitz is the author of five novels, including THE DINNER PARTY (St. Martin’s April 2016). Her work has also appeared in The New York Times, The Washington Post, Salon, the New York Post, Publisher’s Weekly, PopSugar, Mom.me, Hello Giggles, Writer’s Digest Magazine, WritersDigest.com, and xojane. You can find Brenda on her website, www.brendajanowitz.com, and on Facebook and Twitter at @BrendaJanowitz.

Brenda attended Cornell University and Hofstra Law School, where she was a member of the Law Review. Upon graduation from Hofstra, worked for the law firm Kaye Scholer, LLP, and did a federal clerkship with the Honorable Marilyn Dolan Go, United States Magistrate Judge for the Eastern District of New York.

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Brenda, I am so glad you were able to spend time with us here today.  Readers, do pick up a copy of The Dinner Party.  It’s a fantastic read.  Leave a comment below and you’ll automatically be entered for a chance to win an awesome box of women’s fiction novels from Brenda, me and more!  This is a book lover’s dream giveaway.  Don’t miss it!

Meet Robin Bielman and her Bachelor!

Robin2-287x3001I’m so delighted to have the extremely talented Robin Bielman on my blog today!  I was thrilled when she agreed to write a story for Montana Born’s Bachelor Auction and I can’t wait to introduce her to all my readers….although I know a number of you are already a fan.

For those who may not be as familiar with her, Robin is a USA Today author and a RITA finalist who loves to read, take hikes with her hubby and loves to frequent coffee shops.  A California girl, the beach is Robin’s favorite place for fun, relaxation and inspiration.  Here’s Robin now to tell us more about her new book, Falling For Her Bachelor!

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Thanks so much for inviting me to be on your blog, Jane! (You guys, before I even met Jane, I read her blog. This goes back years and I’m a total fan girl so this is kind of surreal – and wonderful.)

I’m also wonderfully happy to be a part of the Tule Publishing family now! My first book with them, Falling for Her Bachelor, is part of the Bachelor Auction Returns series! My story is book two and it’s been such a pleasure and honor to be in a series with Charlene Sands, Sinclair Jayne and Jeannie Moon. As with the first bachelor auction series, our books take place in the small town of Marietta, but this time they bring together four high school football friends on the auction block to help their coach raise money for a worthy cause.

I can remember vividly several months ago when Charlene emailed me asking if I’d like to participate in this series with her. You see, Charlene isn’t just a writer friend; she’s also my mentor. We were paired together years ago during a mentoring program with our local RWA chapter, and we immediately became fast friends. So much so, that we’re friends outside of writing, too. She’s answered countless questions of mine, plotted with me, listened to me, shared advice on publishing, and always been just a phone call or email away. So getting the chance to be a part of something with her has been a dream come true. Add in the awesomeness that is Tule Publishing, and this experience has been really special.

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Writing Falling for Her Bachelor was really fun, too. Nick and Cassidy came to me pretty quickly and their story flowed easily. That doesn’t always happen when writing! I had an especially good time learning about Marietta and adding characters to the already established town. And okay, writing about a hot Navy firefighter in a bachelor auction also made for lots of happy writing days.

Charlene’s book, Bachelor for Hire is live now along with mine. Sinclair’s, Seducing the Bachelor is releasing on April 19th. And Jeannie’s Weekend with Her Bachelor is releasing on April 26th. Four sexy bachelors and I’m thrilled I got to be part of it!

About Falling for Her Bachelor

When Navy firefighter Nick Palotay returns to Marietta to go on the bachelor auction block for a good cause, he expects it to be risk free. But when he needs someone safe to bid on him and his sister’s best friend is coaxed into stepping up, Nick isn’t prepared for the effect Cassidy has on him. She sends his mind to all kinds of dirty places…places his battered heart can’t afford.

Freelance photographer Cassidy Ware is in waaay over her head. She’s always been Nick’s other little sister, but she’s all grown up now and just a glance from him leaves her hot and bothered. Still, she can stay immune to his charms and keep him at an emotional distance because she’s got an agenda, too. She’ll help the too-handsome Nick with his charitable deed, and, in return, he’ll help her keep an unwelcome suitor at bay.
A deal’s a deal, but when their “business transaction” turns into more pleasure than duty, can they walk away from each other without losing what matters most?

Look for Falling For Her Bachelor at these online retailers:
Amazon Kindle | iBooks | Kobo | Google Play

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Thank you for sharing with us today, Robin!  Readers, be sure to download a copy of Robin’s new release – and do check out the other books in the series too.  You’re in for some good Bachelor fun!  And to keep the fun going, I’ve got a box of fantastic Montana Born reads and reader treats for one of you.  🙂  For a chance to win, just leave a comment for Robin and you’ll be entered!  Contest ends Tuesday with winner announced Wednesday.

A Chat with Christina Phillips

ChristinaXPhotoToday I’d love to introduce you to the very talented Australian based author Christina Phillips, who  is a multiple finalist in the 2012-2014 ARRA Awards for Erotic, Contemporary and Paranormal Romance.  Christina loves to write really strong alpha bad boys and heroines who are equally strong and able to stand up to these men.

I was introduced to Christina through good friend Joan Kilby last year and knew she was my kind of book girl because like me, she loves strong coffee, expensive chocolate and bad boy heroes!  What more could a book girl need?

Christina is one of the three authors in a new Erotic stories boxset that was released just around Valentines Day and I invited her to have a quick chat with her!  Here’s what she had to say:

Thank you so much for inviting me onto your blog to chat about my newest release, Jane!

I’m always intrigued where writers get their ideas, but it’s a question I dread answering because the truth is most of the time I haven’t the faintest clue where mine come from! But that isn’t the case with my steamy novella from Tule Publishing, Every Breath You Take.

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It started when I was chatting with my lovely friend Joan Kilby, who also writes for Tule. She told me they were launching a new erotic romance line, and was I interested?

Since I’d wanted to write for Tule for a while, that was a big yes 🙂
After a couple of emails with the publisher, I decided I’d submit a novella with a Valentine theme.

A couple of days later I told my daughter about this new venture. “Now all I need is an idea.”

She immediately came back with, “I know. Have it so the guy dies. That’s a great conflict.”

Well sure, it’s a fantastic conflict if I’d been writing a paranormal romance with vampires! I kind of scoffed, and she maintained it was brilliant and I should definitely do something with it.

Instead of discarding the idea, it lingered in the back of my mind, and by the next day I had the premise for Every Breath You Take. The guy did, indeed, die, but he was the hero, Mason’s, brother and he died five years ago. Back then Mason fell for his brother’s girlfriend, Piper, even though she was everything he never wanted in a girl. And now, five years later, Mason and Piper have the chance to hook up for one unforgettable night.

Mason knows it can never lead anywhere. After all, it’s his fault his brother died, and he’s lived with the guilt every day. Piper might want a hot one night stand, but she’d never want anything deeper with a rebel like him. As the tagline says,

She’s the one girl this bad boy could never have…

And here’s more about Every Breath You Take –

She’s the one girl this bad boy could never have…

It was only supposed to be a forbidden one night stand with the bad boy she’d never forgotten, but Piper Thomas soon discovers it takes more than sizzling sex to scorch her teenage fantasies. The more he gives, the more she needs…

It’s been five years since Mason Hunter’s brother died, and he’s tried to put the guilt behind him. But when Piper, the girl his brother should’ve married, reappears in his life and offers him the one thing he’s always craved – one steamy night in her arms – he can’t resist.

Piper’s the only woman he’s ever wanted, but how can they have a future together when the past haunts every breath they take?

Look for it at these online retailers: iBooks | Amazon | Kobo | B&N | Goodreads

Christina Phillips is an ex-pat Brit who now lives in sunny Western Australia with her high school sweetheart and their family. She enjoys writing contemporary, historical and paranormal romance where the stories sizzle and the heroine brings her hero to his knees.
She is a multiple finalist in the 2012 – 2014 ARRA Awards for Favorite Erotic Romance, Favorite Contemporary Romance and Favorite Paranormal Romance.
Christina is addicted to good coffee, expensive chocolate and bad boy heroes. She is also owned by three gorgeous cats who are convinced the universe revolves around their needs. They are not wrong.  Catch up with Christina: Website | Facebook | Twitter

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Christina, thanks so much for stopping by to share with us today!  Readers, if you like stories with plenty of heat, don’t miss this spicy boxset full of some really good stories!  It could be the perfect way thing to curl up with on your kindle tonight.  Also, don’t forget to leave a comment below for Christina and you’ll automatically be entered to win a fun mystery prize!  Contest ends Friday with winner announced Saturday.

Tule’s 4 RITA Nominees!

I’m in Hawaii for Easter and I woke up at 4:25 am Hawaii time to make sure my son Ty, who was heading to LAX this morning to fly to Oahu, was fine and all checked in.  But instead of a text from Ty, there was a text from Megan Crane, saying:  CJ Carmichael! Go Tule!

I answered:  Hey, it’s only 4:25 am here, and I’m slowly waking up.  What’s going on?

Megan answered:  The RITAS!

Well, I woke up pretty fast, and then Megan texted me again:   Plus Madeline Ash and Heidi Rice.

And then:  Kat Latham.  Twice!

So wow.  Yes, son Ty made it to the airport, but that’s so boring when you get amazing RITA news that tells you 4 Tule authors have  finaled for the RITAs with 5 Tule stories in 2 different categories.

I am beyond excited for them….but I also have to go the airport to get that boy so please help me celebrate these four fantastic authors with their 5 fantastic stories!

CJ Carmichael – A Bramble House ChristmasBrambleHouseChristmas-MEDIUM

Heidi RiceTempting The NightHeidiRice-MEDIUM

Kat LathamOne Night With Her BachelorThree Nights Before ChristmasOneNightWithHerBachelor-MEDIUM

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Madeline Ash – Her Secret PrinceMadelineAsh-MEDIUM

Cheers to my lovely author friends!  So thrilled and proud of each of you.

And to celebrate properly (its the only way to celebrate!) I’m giving away a copy of each story to one lucky winner plus lots of Tule reader swag. Want a chance to win all these fantastic reads? Tell me if you’ve read any of these authors before and that’s it! You’re entered to win. Contest ends Tuesday March 29th at midnight PST with the winner announced Wednesday. Good luck and Happy Easter to all Book Girls!

xoxox

The Tycoon’s Kiss…a made for TV movie?

Two years ago I wrote The Tycoon’s Kissthe second book in my Taming of the Sheenan series.  The Tycoon’s Kiss, is classic Jane Porter romance:  Troy Sheenan, a gorgeous driven tycoon falls for Taylor Harris, the smart, bespectacled small town librarian.

A year ago The Tycoon’s Kiss was one of four Tule stories being considered for a TV film by a reputable Los Angeles producer.  Discussions and film options take a lot of time and very often nothing happens, so I was really delighted when just a couple weeks ago the producer’s team sent Tule an offer to option Tycoon’s Kiss.  The story is  now in pre-production and I promise to share more once I have firm details.

 

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But until then, I wanted to be sure you’d seen the UK cover for the book.  I love the illustrated covers for the series so much!  Which do you prefer, the American photo or the UK illustrated cover?

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If you haven’t read the Tycoon’s Kiss yet, you can find it at these online e-retailers:
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | iBooks | GooglePlayKobo

One of the great joys of Tule Publishing is the opportunity to be creative at so many different levels.  Not only do I get to write the stories I know my readers will love, I get to work with talented authors on their stories, and then also take Tule’s terrific catalogue and pitch those stories to Hollywood production companies.  Romance writers know how to write a happy ever after.  Why not try to turn some of those amazing stories into film?

To celebrate the option of The Tycoon’s KissI have a fun giveaway:  a signed print copy of the story, plus delicious Mountain Chocolate, and a JP reader tote bag, and lots of reader swag.  Interested?  Tell me the last book you read and what’s in your TBR that you’re looking forward to reading!  Content ends midnight March 23rd with the winner announced Thursday, March 24th.

 

 

Somewhere Out There with Amy Hatvany

AuthorXPhoto.XAmyXHatvanyI met Amy Hatvany at the Tucson book festival number of years ago.  We were on the same panel and I felt like I had met my soul sister.  I loved her from the start and am a fan of her books and her massive heart.  So delighted to have Amy on my blog as she shares about her new release,Somewhere Out There.

Here’s Amy!

As so often happens in my writing life, the idea for Somewhere Out There began in the smallest of ways, after my cousin—a wonderful, single man who has fostered and adopted several children over the years—told me how one of the young boys he was fostering reacted upon seeing a fully stocked pantry in their home. This six-year-old child had never lived in an actual home, instead spending most of his short life sleeping in car with his mother.

My cousin’s description of this undernourished child’s reaction to seeing a pantry full of food—”Is this all ours?” the boy asked as he sat down and began to touch the cans of peaches and boxes of rice. “Do we really get to eat it?”—was an image that my heart couldn’t shake, and it was from there that the premise for Somewhere Out There was born.

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As I began my research, I learned that a child enters the foster care system every two minutes in the United States, most commonly because of parental abuse or neglect. Of these children, some are adopted, but most spend years bouncing from one foster family to another or living in a state institution, never having a place to truly call home. I thought about what kind of circumstances would lead a mother to sign away her parental rights, giving up her two young daughters to the state because she was unable to care for them. I imagined how different the sisters’ lives might be if one of them was adopted and the other ended up never having a family to call her own. I considered what might happen if the younger sister’s adoptive parents waited more than three decades to tell her that she had an older sister, and how the two sisters find each other, then have to decide whether or not to search out the mother who abandoned them.

How different would these two women be, considering how each of them was raised? Would they connect, simply because they were sisters, or would it easier for both of them to just walk away? And what about their mother? What had she gone through over the years? How did she survive the guilt of abandoning her own children, and what happens when they manage to find her? These are just some of the questions I address in this story, told from all three women’s point of view.

By the time I finished writing, I felt as though I had experienced each woman’s journey firsthand. Somewhere Out There was a joy to create, and I hope that after reading it, you end up feeling the same way.

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Thank you, Amy for sharing with us!  Readers, I hope you’ll get your own copy of this book to enjoy.  She has a talent for penning such realistic, flawed characters who steal into your heart and never really let go.  Look for Amy and her new release online:
Amazon | B&N | IndieBound | Amy’s Website

Before you go, I have a special giveaway of some of my favorite women’s fiction novels by my favorite authors and friends for one lucky winner.  Leave a comment and you’ll be entered for a chance to win!  Contest ends Sunday with winner announced Monday.