Janna’s in the House! Please Welcome Janna Shay, Author of FAIR PLAY!

SMP:  Janna, welcome! Tell us all about you! What would you most like your readers to know?

Janna:  I have a huge family which I refer to as my tribe. It consists of 1 husband, 7 children plus 7 significant others or spouses, and 23 grandchildren, for a grand total of 39 including me. When we all get together we have a great time.

Besides being my family, they are my 38 cheerleaders who stand beside me and encourage me in my writing career. I consider myself extremely blessed to have them in my life.

SMP:  Are you one of those writers born with a pen in your hand and ideas flitting through your mind, or did your interest develop later?

Janna:  I’m never without pen and paper. Whether it is to write ideas down or make a list, they are my constant companion. I’m one of those people who makes lists for everything. Besides, I never know when ideas are going to pop into my head.

My children think I’m neurotic. I like to think of myself as being prepared.

SMP:  When did you become serious about seeing your name in print and begin writing your first romance novel?

Janna:  As far back as I can remember I’ve always wanted to write, but I never really thought I’d actually be able to write something worthy of print. I took a serious look at writing as a career after my father died. I wrote a journal for my family that chronicled my ancestors’ lives so my descendants would have some understanding of their heritage. What started out as a small journal, within two weeks, turned into a full manuscript. That’s when I seriously thought of writing a romance novel. I figured if I had that many thoughts and words floating around in my head, I should be able to harness some of them into a book.

SMP:  How long did it take you to complete your first manuscript? Did it fly from your fingertips, or did the story emerge slowly?

Janna:  It took me about three months to complete the first rough draft of my manuscript. Once I sat down to write, the words flew from my fingertips onto the computer screen faster than I could type. Of course it took a lot longer to fine tune it.

SMP:  Tell us about your writing process. Soft lights and music? White noise? Child-and-pet confusion? Locked in a room alone? What sets your writing mood and pushes you forward?

Janna:  Soft lights and music usually steers my mind in a totally different direction than writing. I like to write in my kitchen with my miniature schnauzer lounging on the floor next to my chair. My husband is the next room, which is connected to my kitchen, so I can write and still spend time with him.

As far as what pushes me forward so I can write, it’s waking up in the morning. The first thought that comes into my mind upon waking is I can’t wait to start writing. (Let me rephrase – the second thing – the first being of a more amorous nature. Hence, I write romance novels.)

SMP:  What are some life experiences that have infiltrated your stories?

Janna:  I have to keep a few secrets, but I will reveal there is a little bit of my life in each of my books.

SMP:  Literary Inspiration: throughout your life, what novels have lifted you, made you think, “Someday I want to create something like that….”

Janna:  I couldn’t name specific novels that have lifted me, because I love to read everything. I read one or more books a day as a daily regime.

There are many authors however, that have influenced me. Nora Roberts, Julie Garwood, Judith McNaught, Johanna Lindsey, Kathleen Woodiwiss, plus a multitude of others have all had an impact on my decision to write romance novels. But I have always loved the classic writers also such as Nathaniel Hawthorne, Charles Dickens, Mark Twain, and Edgar Allan Poe. Playwrights like Sophocles and William Shakespeare as well as Philosophers such as Aristotle and Plato have also influenced me.

SMP:  Let’s talk about romance. How do you set the mood for your characters, what do you draw from that helps your H/H achieve oneness with each other? And how much conflict do you give them, along the way?

Janna:  I draw from life. Being married to a romantic man helps me, as well as experiencing a deep love. I also draw from my parents’ marriage. They were married for 65 years and always had a deep, complete love for each other. Up until the age of 90, when they passed away, it was not unusual to see them holding hands, or to see my father’s arm around my mother’s shoulders, or even frequently catch them smooching. They had a true love, and I might add, it was love at first sight. I’ve also drawn from my children’s relationships and have seen the love manifested in their lives.

SMP:  What shining moment in your journey stands out the most as a real turning point for you as a writer?

Janna:  Everything about writing is a shining moment for me. But if I had to pick one thing, then I would have to say when I signed my contract with Soul Mate Publishing. Up until that time I harbored many doubts as to my ability to write something people would want to read.

SMP:  Five vital things surround you as you create. What are they? What makes them special to you?

Janna:

  1. 1.  My laptop – an indispensable tool. I love modern technology.
  2. 2.  My husband – who reminds me he’s around at least once every hour, either with a touch or with laughter – another indispensable tool.
  3. 3.  My dog – he stays by my side the whole time I’m writing. He won’t go to bed until I do.
  4. 4.  Coffee – my blood is almost 100% pure caffeine.
  5. 5.  My iPod – have to have my music.

SMP:  Writers face many challenges. What are some of yours? What do you do to overcome them?

Janna:  Self-doubt is a big one. I lose perspective every so often but my cheer team (family) throws me right back into the fire.

SMP:  What is the most thrilling aspect of the writing process for you?

Janna:  Writing a story that gives readers hopes and dreams. I know a lot of people don’t consider romance novels as books that inspire people, but I’m proof that they do. My first marriage was an extremely abusive relationship. During that dark period of my life there were few things that made me happy. Reading my romance novels was one of them. Not only did they bring some sunshine into my life, but they also gave me hope and eventually helped me find the courage to leave my first husband and find the love and happiness I’ve found with my second husband.

I hope my books entertain readers and bring enjoyment into their lives. I also hope they give women who are trapped in abusive relationships the courage to reach for a better life and hopefully find someone who truly loves them.

SMP:  What aspects of the writing process do you find most challenging?

Janna:  Plotting.  Even though I have an almost obsessive compulsion when it comes to organization in most aspects of my life, I’m a pantser in my writing. It doesn’t make a lot of sense to me, but I can’t plot a book to save my life. When I write, I sit down with an inkling of how I want my story to go, but the characters invade my brain and take over. It’s like being attacked by brain eaters. My characters take over the story right from the beginning and I just go with the flow. By the time I’m done, my manuscript doesn’t resemble my original story in any way, shape, or form.

SMP:  Who or what sparks the ideas for your stories?

Janna:  Life sparks my ideas. There are millions of things around me that catch my attention and make my imagination go wild. But I think my family has the most influence on my writing. I’m an observer. I like to look at everything around me and then file it in my memory. Like I said earlier, there is some aspect of my life in each book I write.

SMP:  Tell us a little about what you’re currently working on.

Janna:  I just finished a book about a woman who, because of prior experiences, believes she’s incapable of love and doesn’t want a man in her life. And a playboy who’s convinced that women are just objects to be enjoyed lightly but never seriously. Enter fate, the catalyst that throws both of their lives in turmoil.

I’ve just begun the sequel to Fair Play but it’s anyone’s guess where that story will go. I’m leaving it up to the characters and fate.

 

 

Forced to live a clandestine life, Danielle “Dani” Jordon believes she has found a safe haven in Las Vegas until she meets devastatingly handsome casino owner Jace Diamond.  With his compelling sexual magnetism and mind-numbing kisses, Dani finds her world turned upside-down.

Inexplicably drawn to her, Jace embarks on a relentless pursuit to make Dani his. It isn’t long before he finds himself totally in love, but can he convince Dani that she belongs with him?

Resisting the most compelling man she has ever met proves to be a task Dani doesn’t have the strength to fight. Trapped in her life of deceit, Dani is afraid to admit her growing love for Jace. Can Dani take the chance and trust Jace to provide the sanctuary she so desperately needs or will that trust lead to exposure of her secrets and destroy her life?

SMP:  Janna, thanks so much for visiting with us today!

Janna Shay’s debut novel, FAIR PLAY, has a release date of May 2, and will be available at Soul Mate Publishing, Amazon and Barnes and Noble.

Janna’s Giveaway!

One lucky commenter will win an ebook copy of FAIR PLAY!  Please include your email address in your comment.

 

 

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Article source: http://smpauthors.wordpress.com/2012/05/02/jannas-in-the-house-please-welcome-janna-shay-author-of-fair-play/

Raven’s in the House! Please Welcome Raven Raye, Author of BROKEN PROPHECY!

SMP:  Raven, welcome! Tell us all about you! What would you most like your readers to know?

Raven:  I’m a little eccentric. I follow my own path religion-wise. I feel extremely connected to the earth and animals. Strays follow me home. Honest! Wife and mother of two exceptional kids; one is waiting to get his commission picked up as a Police officer, the other is working her way through Nursing school. After getting laid off from my Radiation Therapy job, I snatched the opportunity to throw myself into writing full-time.

SMP:  Are you one of those writers born with a pen in your hand and ideas flitting through your mind, or did your interest develop later?

Raven:  Always had rhymes and prose drifting through my head. Wrote some really, really bad poetry as a child and wrote down all my cool dreams. I always kept a journal to write down my thoughts.

SMP:  When did you become serious about seeing your name in print and begin writing your first romance novel?

Raven:  Started writing my first novel in 2008. It didn’t start out to be a romance, but the hero and heroine kept ending up together. I’m a sucker for a happy ending.

SMP:  How long did it take you to complete your first manuscript? Did it fly from your fingertips, or did the story emerge slowly?

Raven:  That first one flew off the fingertips. Or so I thought. It was ‘finished’ in six months and I queried my first agent. Rejection! So I entered contest after contest looking for critique. Boy did I get it. After going back and rereading that first manuscript, some of those harsh words were not undeserved.

SMP:  Tell us about your writing process. Soft lights and music? White noise? Child-and-pet confusion? Locked in a room alone? What sets your writing mood and pushes you forward?

Raven:  I prefer being alone with music, but I can write just about anywhere. I used to take my computer to work and write during lunch.

SMP:  What are some life experiences that have infiltrated your stories?

Raven:  Bigotry and race hate experienced over-seas and the greed of family after my mother’s death.

SMP:  Literary Inspiration: throughout your life, what novels have lifted you, made you think, “Someday I want to create something like that….”

Raven:  Hard to pin down when there are so many. Linda Howard’s ‘Son of the Morning’, Christine Feehan’s ‘Dark Carpathian’ series, ‘Alas Babylon’ by Pat Frank, ‘Dune’ by Frank Herbert… I could go on and on.

SMP:  What shining moment in your journey stands out the most as a real turning point for you as a writer?

Raven:  Opening email from Deborah Gilbert and reading “Great News!” I couldn’t breathe for about ten minutes. It had taken me that long just to open the email. I’d gotten a reply so quick I was sure it was a rejection. It was validation that my writing was NOT a hobby.

SMP:  Five vital things surround you as you create. What are they? What makes them special to you?

Raven:  Number one is my Crossword Thesaurus—because I like to just read it; a heart-shaped, gem encrusted ‘Hello Kitty’ mouse from my daughter, paper and pens because I have an office supply fetish, crystals and rocks because I like crystals and rocks, music.

  Awwww!

SMP:  What is the most thrilling aspect of the writing process for you?

Raven:  When the characters start taking over the story and you can’t write fast enough to get it down onto the page. I love to get lost in the story like that.

SMP:  What aspects of the writing process do you find most challenging?

Raven:  Hm, my daughter says grammar. ‘The Elements of Style’ by Strunk and White is an excellent reference.

SMP:  How do you begin a story? Do you just sit down with an idea in mind and start writing, or are you a person who wouldn’t dream of starting without a detailed outline, character sketches, and pages of research data?

Raven:  First, I write down the idea then flesh out a few plot lines. I live with the characters in my head while they talk to me and tell me their history, fears, dreams. I use note cards to keep track of scenes and character sketches. I keep labeled folders for research data. It sounds very well ordered, but I have bits of paper and napkins with notes on them everywhere.

SMP:  Who or what sparks the ideas for your stories?

Raven:  Ooo, lots of stuff. My patients, sorry, but true. Commercials, other books, a muddy truck (he could have just dumped a body), storms, my cat… This list could be extensive.

SMP:  Tell us a little about what you’re currently working on.

Raven:  Working on books two and three of my Heirs of Aeden series. Two will be Brenna and Nicolai’s story.

SMP:  We asked Raven for some insight into what makes her tick…

Raven:  I love misty mornings and overcast skies. I guess I get that from growing up in England. Carbon Leaf is one of my favorite bands; I love their metaphorically driven lyrics. So far, my familiars have always been cats and now is no exception- Vladimir saved my soul when this stray showed up a year ago.

 

(Designed by Raven Raye!)

Blurb for BROKEN PROPHECY:

Only Killian’s bloodline was created with the planet.  No other can accept the Seal and no human can carry the seed to bear the Heirs of Aeden.

Killian, King of the Fey, is in love with Marcella Rowan, human and forbidden to his kind. An errant Angel, seeking revenge, awakens creatures thought long dead or mythological. Marcella’s life in danger and against the Divine Council’s orders, Killian saves her from death—by claiming her as his soulmate. As earthly and other-earthly creatures polarize toward good or evil, Marcella and Killian must survive the forces driving them apart. Only their love can unite the worlds of magick and mundane. Only their love can force their peoples to put aside bigotry, jealousy and fear to overcome the evil tearing the earth apart. Only the magick they make together can repopulate earth’s garden in Aeden.

SMP:  Raven, thanks so much for visiting with us today!

Raven’s debut novel, BROKEN PROPHECY, will be available at Soul Mate Publishing, Amazon and Barnes Noble, upon release.

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Article source: http://smpauthors.wordpress.com/2012/05/03/ravens-in-the-house-please-welcome-raven-raye-author-of-broken-prophecy/

Erin’s in the House! Please Welcome Erin Bluett, Author of A WITCH’S LOVE!

SMP:  Erin, welcome! Tell us all about you! What would you most like your readers to know?

Erin:  I love anything romance but I love my romance to have a twist of paranormal adventure. My love of romance doesn’t stop at books-Movie and television series grab my attention as well. This has inspired me to write my own novels and I can’t wait to take you all on the journey that is: A Witch’s Love.

SMP:  Are you one of those writers born with a pen in your hand and ideas flitting through your mind, or did your interest develop later?

Erin:  I always loved to write- poems in particular but my interest in writing a novel developed much later.

SMP:  When did you become serious about seeing your name in print and begin writing your first romance novel?

Erin:  Last year, in 2011, after reading a book I said “I could do this,” and my husband replied, “I bet you could.” With that I got hard at work.

SMP:  How long did it take you to complete your first manuscript? Did it fly from your fingertips, or did the story emerge slowly?

Erin:  It took me about nine months. I had road blocks throughout the story but nothing that stopped me for long. I found the trick to writers block is to write. Later, I would go back and change some of it but at least it got me over the hump.

SMP:  Tell us about your writing process. Soft lights and music? White noise? Child-and-pet confusion? Locked in a room alone? What sets your writing mood and pushes you forward?

Erin:  I love music. It really inspires me. I usually have the radio or iTunes filling the house. I find at night I’m the most inspired…I’m not what you call, a morning person.

SMP:  What are some life experiences that have infiltrated your stories?

Erin:  I love visiting the Adirondacks, so when I sat down to write, I knew the setting would have to be that very area.

SMP:  Literary Inspiration: throughout your life, what novels have lifted you, made you think, “Someday I want to create something like that….”

Erin:  I can still remember reading a Kresley Cole novel and thinking that very statement. Into the Wilderness by Sarah Donati was also another novel that I felt inspired by: strong heroines and   great adventures are always inspiring to me.

SMP:  Let’s talk about romance. How do you set the mood for your characters, what do you draw from that helps your H/H achieve oneness with each other? And how much conflict do you give them, along the way?

Erin:  I think it’s important that they have as much in common, as they don’t. They can learn from each other as they try to accomplish their goals. I give them as much conflict as I think they can handle. Making it realistic is a must so I try not to go overboard.

SMP:  What shining moment in your journey stands out the most as a real turning point for you as a writer?

Erin:  When I was writing the POV of the hero, I had this thought of, “Wow, he is really tortured,” and I realized: I had created that.

SMP:  Five vital things surround you as you create. What are they? What makes them special to you?

Erin:  A dictionary, thesaurus, music, coffee, and chocolate: I’m actually a horrible speller. That’s why I need the dictionary and thesaurus, the coffee and chocolate keep my imagination going.

SMP:  Writers face many challenges. What are some of yours? What do you do to overcome them?

Erin:  I’m not big on the social networking that as a whole has been an adventure. I found the best way to learn is to just do it. I’ve been learning along the way….

SMP:  What is the most thrilling aspect of the writing process for you?

Erin:  Right now, its when I’m in the zone writing like crazy.

SMP:  What aspects of the writing process do you find most challenging?

Erin:  I think I will find promoting as well as social media to be the most challenging.

SMP:  How do you begin a story? Do you just sit down with an idea in mind and start writing, or are you a person who wouldn’t dream of starting without a detailed outline, character sketches, and pages of research data?

Erin:  I like to have an outline of major events. Also a character description so I don’t fall off course. So far I like the system, I can keep to a schedule but also write by the seat of my pants to one major event to another.

SMP:  Who or what sparks the ideas for your stories?

Erin:  The media. I have an interest in paranormal and romances so when I watch T.V., movies, read magazines or books, I find inspiration for ideas swimming in my head.

SMP:  Tell us a little about what you’re currently working on.

Erin:  I’m working on the second novel in the Immortal Destiny series. The sister of Ava Worthington- Ella is going to have her own story: her own destiny she is supposed to accomplish. I’m very excited about the whole series, giving each sister their own happy ending-hopefully.

SMP:  We asked Erin for some random details about herself, and she said:

Erin:  I’m a huge Adele fan: Love her music. I love animals but in particular cats. I’m also a ginger, an only child, and love the color purple.

A Witch’s Love is scheduled for release in late Spring, 2012:

One dangerous lycan. A beautiful young witch.

Forced together… to discover their immortal destinies.

Desperate for his kiss…

Ava Worthington love’s her life in a small town in the Adirondacks. She has a decent job and sisters she couldn’t live without.  She thought she had it all, until she has a chance encounter with the handsome Lucas Grant.  Ava knew she had fallen hard for this mysterious stranger but when he reveals his true identity she vows never to see him again.

Longing for her touch…

Worldly and fiercely independent, Lucas Grant prides himself on not needing anyone, not even his lycan clan until he meets his life mate.  He is surprised to find his predestined mate that he never wanted, is a witch with a haunted past. This Ava is a beauty like no other and begins to tempt him in ways he never imagined, making it hard for him to walk away. Yet when dark forces attack her, the lycan finds himself furiously protecting her.

A dark desire neither of them can deny…

Afraid of Lucas’ true identity, attacked by dark forces she doesn’t understand and in danger of losing her sisters, she’s forced to discover her magical destiny and work with Lucas. But is she trading one danger for another? Will she find her sisters but lose her heart?

SMP:  Erin, thanks so much for visiting with us today!  Keep us posted on A WITCH’S LOVE release!

Look for Erin’s debut paranormal romance, A WITCH’S LOVE, at Soul Mate Publishing, Amazon and Barnes Noble!

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Article source: http://smpauthors.wordpress.com/2012/05/01/erins-in-the-house-please-welcomc-erin-bluett-author-of-a-witchs-love/