Here Without You Cover Reveal

Cover Reveal: Here Without You 
by Jennifer L. Allen
Release Date: April 18, 2017
Genre: Contemporary Romance / Military Romance
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 Anna Romano had the picture perfect life. As a brilliant high school student and talented artist with a supportive family, she couldn’t imagine her life being any better. Her days are spent fantasizing about finishing high school, and dreaming of a future with her loving boyfriend.
Ryan Jacobs had his life figured out. He was enlisting in the Navy, and his high school sweetheart was applying to art school. Just a few more months and the life they’d planned together would become a reality.
On a cold February day, tragedy struck and flipped Anna’s life upside down. The bright and colorful world she once lived in turned to gray. Retreating into herself, she pushed Ryan away. She pushed everyone away. Then she ran.
Ryan was lost without Anna, but truthfully, she had been gone long before she even left. He did the only thing he could do, he went on with his life. Years later, the last thing he expected was to bump into her more than two thousand miles from home.
Love, pain, distance, and secrets.
Would their challenges tear them apart?
Or was their love strong enough to mend them forever?
*Here Without You is a standalone romance with a trigger warning. A mass shooting takes place in the prologue and is referenced periodically throughout the book.
Ryan: Whatcha reading?
Anna: Can it, Jacobs.
Ryan: No can do.
Anna: I’m not telling you anything.
Ryan: I knew it!
Anna: Knew what?
Ryan: You are reading the sexy books.
Ryan: I bet you did read the one with the whips.
Ryan: Anna?
Ryan: Hello?
Anna: Goodbye, Ryan.
Ryan: I’m like a dog with a bone, Anna. I’m not giving up.
Anna: You’re going to be greatly disappointed.
Ryan: Doubt that.
Anna: What makes you so confident?
Ryan: Because I know I’m right.
Anna: Hate to tell you this, but you’re wrong. I haven’t read that book.
Anna: Yet …
Ryan: *groans*
Anna: lol


About the Author
Jennifer was born and raised on Long Island, in New York. She relocated to South Carolina in 2002, where she met the love of her life. They got married and live their happily ever after just outside of Charleston with their fur-kids; a spoiled rat terrier, a cat who thinks he’s a dog, and a cat who think she’s an MMA fighter. When she’s not reading or writing, she works a day job in an office, and is an evening graduate student, pursuing a degree in clinical counseling. She enjoys amateur photography, traveling, and music … it’s a bonus when she can combine all three. She independently published her debut novel, Our Moon (JACT 1), in June 2015.
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What’s Up?

I haven’t written a blog post in a while, so I thought I’d take a moment to do that and provide some updates for those who follow me here. There’s so much to report, but I’ll consolidate it into highlights.

Signings = awesome. I’ve done four (Sassy in Jacksonville, Authors With Southern Charm, Carolina Book Fest, and Rebels Hit the Road) and all have been very different, though they’ve each shared one significant element – the opportunity to meet readers (existing and new) and authors! I had such an incredible time at each and every event, and I look forward to the ones on my calendar in the future. (See where I’ll be here.)

Boxed Sets/Anthologies, two of them.

The first, Christmas Interference, was for Authors in the City’s Christmas in the City holiday short story collection. This one goes off sale in about a week, after the AITC signing event in Raleigh next week, so grab it while you can for just 99 cents. I may be releasing my story from the collection elsewhere, but I don’t have a plan as of right now, and I’m not sure what the other author’s intentions are with their stories, so you may never see some of these again!

The second, Force, was a novella written for the Get Rocked! In Vegas boxed set. This story is a prequel to a one or two book series, titled The Gravity Series, that I plan to release in late summer. Get Rocked! is up for pre-order now, and releases May 16th. It will also be a limited time offering, so snatch it up while you can. It’s a collection of 12 sexy rockstar romance stories. I’m super proud of Force, so I’d love it if you’d read it. Only 99 cents!

What else?

I just finished a novel, Don’t Let Me Go, and plan to release it in the next few months. I’m excited because with all the novellas I’ve been working on (Wildflowers: JACT 2.5, Christmas Interference, and Force), it’s been a while since I’ve released a full-length novel. I plan on bringing you a few of them in 2017, if the stars align and all that. Check out the Coming Soon section of my Books page for more information on some of my works in progress.

The Gravity Series. Gah!!! This series has been my brainchild for some time now. I’ve got playlists, outlines, and rough ideas sketched out for it. I’m so excited to be bringing you a piece of it in Force, but I can’t wait to share the rest. It’s different from anything I’ve written before. It’s sexier, grittier, and rockier. You’ll meet the main characters in Force, as well as their two bands – Rhythms of the Restless and Sweet Hostility. In the (possible) duet, Push and Pull, you’ll have a front row seat to the rise and fall of their relationship and their stardom. I can’t wait to fully dive in to this project.

The Force cover is something I’m absolutely in love with. A while ago, I’d decided that if I ever used people on my cover, I wouldn’t show their faces so readers could envision the characters as who they imagined them to be. Then I was chatting with a fellow author, Jaye Cox, about the cover of her book, Under the Surface. She’d said the couple on her cover were a real couple! I thought, How cool is that?! That idea stayed in the back of my mind for a while, then images of models Daniel Wells and his girlfriend-turned-fiance Becca Bryant popped up in my newsfeed, right around the time I was brainstorming The Gravity Series. A cover idea was born and I couldn’t part with it. Daniel and Becca were my Ash and Lee. Period. Cassy Roop of Pink Ink Designs took the photo and she transformed it into a cover that completely rocked my expectations. It came together better than I could have ever imagined, and I can’t wait to brainstorm for the covers for the rest of the series. I have a vision, so we’ll see if we can make it work. But seriously folks, with Cassy, all things are possible.


On that note, I (finally) get to meet Cassy in person this weekend at Authors in the City in Raleigh. Cannot wait.

I think that kind of brings me up to date. I’m sure there are things I’m forgetting, but I’ll try to make my posts a little more frequent, sticking to the original weekly plan of posting on Mondays.

xoxo Jennifer

Wildflowers (JACT 2.5) is LIVE!

Title: Wildflowers
Author: Jennifer L. Allen
Series: JACT 
Genre: Contemporary






You’ve met them already, but how did they meet?
One night, small town Texas girl, Evie Carson, goes to a concert on a photographer’s press pass to see her brother’s best friend’s popular band. She doesn’t expect to meet Joey Adams, drummer for the up-and-coming rock band, JACT. Sparks fly and a life-changing adventure begins.
Joey Adams is living the life. He’s on a nationwide tour, drumming for his band, who are also his best friends, opening for the chart-topping band Infrared Flamingos. At a tour stop in Dallas he meets sexy, sweet and sassy Evie Carson, and he has to have her.
Join the tour and enjoy the ride as Joey and Evie’s lust at first sight quickly turns to love.
Catch up on the series now!
Our Moon
Hearts In The Sand


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Author Interview – Jade C. Jamison

So let me preface this interview by saying, this is one of my favorite authors! The first time I “spoke” to her, I might have fangirled from the other side of the computer. Bullet was my first rock star romance, and if you’ve read it, you know that it’s one of those epic stories that will just stick with you (and if you haven’t read it, it’s free, so one-click it now). It was just amazing. So well written and her interpretation of the rock star life was amazing. Anyway, I read it early on in my career as a reader (OK, so maybe I wish my career was reading…) so she w
as a celebrity to me, still is. So being able to talk to her, and shoot her a message with random questions about grocery stores in Colorado, is surreal.

With no further nonsense talk from me…here’s my interview with Jade C. Jamison

About Jade, the author:

Tell us about your books/series:jade-small-bio-pic

I’ve started to answer this question more than three times and have stopped each time due to a sense of overwhelm, because I’m not sure where to start.  Just four of my series make up over two dozen books, so I’m sure you can understand why.  So, instead, I’m going to start and see where this leads me, because I thought, “Oh, let me just talk about genre” or “I’ll just talk about two books that are well-known—er, three, no, four.  No, five—” Gah!  Talk about a first-world problem.

So let’s just talk about one.  Bullet is my bestselling book; it made me an international bestselling Amazon author, and it continues to outsell all my other books, hands down.  People either love it or hate it; there is no in between.  In a nutshell, it is a coming of age new adult rock star romance told in first person by the lead heroine.  Oh, and she becomes a rock star.  It follows her journey from teenage college student to wife of a rock icon and mother of his child.

It’s an awesome book, so it totally warrants a mention. 🙂


What genre(s) do you write in? 

I mostly write contemporary romance (but I’ve even written horror).  Within the romance arena, though, I write a lot of rock star romance, new adult, and romantic suspense, a little romantic comedy, and some second chance romance, a wee bit of paranormal, and I’m even working on an MC romance (but I’ve been working on it for a while now!).  More than genre, though, I focus on characters:  what motivates them, what drives them.  I ask what they care about, what matters, what they do and think when no one’s watching.  I want to know the things they hide from everyone else.  I want to watch them grow and evolve.

Are any of your books your favorite?

No.  Some have been easier to write, though.  They’re just like kids.

Where do you get your inspiration from? How do you come up with your characters and stories?

My crazy imagination, mostly, but anymore, just about anything can inspire me—a newspaper article, a dream, real life, a movie.  Anything and everything feeds into this brain.

I know exactly what you mean. The most random things will inspire a scene or a complete story line.

You’re in jail. Which of your characters is sitting next to gotthelife-newyou? Why? (I kind of see it being Nicki, haha.)

LOL  It’s probably either Sean or Jet.  Nicki’s too cute to get thrown in jail.  😉  I’m guessing Sean and it’s because he beat the shit out of someone.  Wouldn’t be the first time…

Are there any pieces of you in your books?

Absolutely.  In every single book and just about every character.  Let’s face it—when you read someone’s books, you’re seeing the world through their eyes, and I think it’s almost impossible to not let myself get in there somehow.  Me at the core, though?  I’m probably a combination of Nicki (from the Nicki Sosebee series), Valerie (from the Bullet series), and—in my youth—Kaylee from Finger Bang.

Which of your books would you recommend to someone who hasn’t read your books before?

That is impossible because I want to recommend them all, but my hardcore readers would tell you either Bullet or the Nicki series.

Both are exceptional series, so as a hardcore reader of Jade’s, I’d recommend both! 😉

Why and when did you start writing?

I started writing as soon as I could hold a pencil in my hands.  Words have always fascinated me and the idea that I can create an entire world on paper—and affect someone emotionally—is awe inspiring.  But I’ve always written, with or without readers.  I have an entire trunk full of stuff the world will never see.  It’s a compulsion.  It’s something I have to do.

What’s the most difficult part of being a writer?

Hmm.  Carpel tunnel, I’d guess.  (I know that’s not the answer you’re looking for but…)

What’s your favorite part of the writing process?

Finding out what others think about my work.  Discovering that I have moved them—to tears, to anger, to laughter.  That’s why I share.  I love knowing that someone enjoyed my work.  It makes publishing worth it.

How do you handle criticism…constructive or otherwise?

It comes with the territory.  Not everyone is going to like my writing.  That’s okay.  Reading the first few harsh reviews helped me get a thicker skin.  Negative reviews, though, I’ve started skipping over.  I’m sorry a reader didn’t like my work, but I don’t need to read about how they want me to slit my wrists or jump off a cliff just because they “wasted” an hour of their time reading my story.  Okay, so I exaggerate, but reviews are just that—someone’s opinion, and readers are entitled to them.  That doesn’t mean I have to read them.

Constructive criticism, however, is crucial.  When one of my beta readers tells me something she thinks I need to fix for whatever reason, I listen.  Let’s face it—the end result is still up to me, but beta readers are people who want me to succeed, who want my story to be the best it can be.  So I listen.  Their words aren’t written to hurt but to help.

What’s the best advice you’ve received as an author?

Probably Stephen King’s advice in On Writing, which is his call to “read a lot” and “write a lot,” the two things he says are important if one wants to be a writer.  Well…I was kinda already doing that long before I read his book.  But the advice I have given writing students in my classes over the years, whether or not they are creative writers, is to “keep writing.”  That’s, in my opinion, what makes a writer a writer.  And that’s what I do every day.  I keep writing.

Do you have any quirky writing habits?

I used to think it’s quirky but not anymore.  I have a hard time writing without music.  It’s hard for me to block out the world unless I’m listening to something I can tune out because I’ve listened to it a bazillion times and love it to death.  I might be tapping a foot or nodding my head to the beat, but it’s playing in my earphones and tuning out the noise of the world.  And, yes, it’ll be metal.  Always metal.

Love this answer!

How do you handle writer’s block?

I power through it.  Writer’s block is a state of mind and I write through it.  I realize that sometimes you can simply walk a few yards to get around a fence, but I climb over the damn thing, even if it’s a huge pain in the ass.  And, once I get over to the other side, I’m jogging again.

Do you have a current WIP, upcoming release, or other exciting book news you’d like to talk about?

Yup.  Currently working on To Save Him, a May-December romance that’s a whole lot more.  The male lead suffers from PTSD—or does he?  And will the protagonist find out before it’s too late?  I’ve explored a lot of dark realms in this book I never have before and can’t wait to share it with my readers.

I can’t wait to get my grubby little hands on this puppy!!

About Jade, the person:

What did you want to be when you grew up?

An actress.  I even have a bachelor’s degree in theater.

What do you do when you’re not writing?

Work 70 hours a week.  I’m also a mom, so there’s some laundry involved during my downtime.

Favorite thing about your hometown?

My original hometown…my favorite thing is that we moved just before I started high school.  But the town where I went to high school which I consider my hometown?  My favorite thing is that it’s small and quaint and charming—still just a neat little place.

Farthest place you’ve traveled from home?

Hmm.  I think Boston!

Favorite…Food? Color? Place? Movie? TV show? Song? Band? Etc…

Veggie burger and fries.  Black.  San Isabel, Colorado.  The Crow or Fight Club—it’s a tie.  Survivor maybe?  Song and band—way too many to say I have a favorite.  I have lots of favorites and they rotate like a CD…

Any weird collections? 

Not really.

Any strange habits? 

LOL  Don’t think so!

What is something you’d like the book community to know about you as a person?

They probably get tired of hearing about me as a person.  😉

Anything else you’d like to add?

Yes!  I’d just like to let anyone reading this know that if they’d like to read one of my books, they can get a free one from signing up to my newsletter:


Amazon Author Page
Goodreads Author Page

Thank you, Jade, for doing this interview, and readers…her books are amazing! I encourage you to hop on over to her Amazon page and click the heck out of her books. I’ve read most, if not all, of her books, and she is an awesome and incredibly versatile story teller.

I totally recommend her Vagabonds rock star romance series, too. You can get the whole series at Amazon for under $6. That’s less than a venti latte!

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Happy Halloween and #CBF2016 Recap!

Happy Halloween!

Sorry it’s been a little while since I’ve posted, I’ve been getting into a new groove over here and I’m happy to say I’m just about organized.

October 16th was Carolina Book Fest, and it was amazing! This was my third signing, and meeting readers and authors was still as exciting as the first time. I got to see some familiar faces, and some new ones, too! It’s super cool being able to put real faces to names I’ve only seen on Facebook.


Ok, and fangirl time…

I spent some time talking with Catherine Gayle and she’s just the sweetest person ever. If you like sports romance and haven’t read her Portland Storm series, start right now. Even if you don’t like sports romance, she’ll make you like it. Amazing stories, seriously. Check out her books on Amazon.

I also talked to Sawyer Bennett, who is just freaking awesome. She was actually the first author’s table I went to when I went to my very first signing as a reader, and I totally stuttered and spazzed and may have muttered something like, “I like your books. I’ve read them all.” But I’m not even sure I opened my mouth because I was star struck. Anyway, to have a conversation with her and talk books and writing…just wow. I redeemed myself to myself. And you can’t go wrong with Sawyer’s books, so check out her Amazon page and one-click any one of them. You won’t be disappointed. Ah-mazing.


My table was right beside Ariel Marie. We’ve been FB friends for a while now, but never met. So that was super cool. Our husbands also became BFFs at the event. Some serious separated at birth stuff going on there… Ha!


Hubs was a great assistant and we had a blast all weekend. I got to spend some time with Kim, one of the amazing organizers of the event. I also hung out with Jeannie, another one of my FB friends, while our husbands chatted about football. And at the Monster Mash, we met Thomas and Dominique (check out Thomas’ book here!). Great times, great people!

So, at Authors With Southern Charm in Charleston this summer, I was across the aisle from Steffy Rogers. We chatted some, but didn’t get to spend too much time together. We weren’t placed as closely at this event, but we caught up!


This is us at Roxbury, a nightclub in Charlotte. Yep, we had a Night at the Roxbury. It was a 90s themed club complete with 90s music and it was so much fun. We were there with a few other authors and readers.

Seriously, I had such an amazing time at this event! I hope I can make it next time!!


Christmas In The City Cover Reveal and Pre-order Blitz!

In case you missed it, I’m participating in this year’s Christmas In The City anthology! It’s a collection of stories from some of the Authors in the City authors, and all the proceeds benefit charity!


Preorder Blitz


Book Title: Christmas In The City II
Authors: Ashlee Taylor, Misha Elliott, Samantha Chase, Shari J. Ryan, Savanna Grey, Stephanie Rose, Janine Infante Bosco, Madison Street, CS Patra, Elizabeth Hayes & Jennifer L. Allen
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Release Date: November 1, 2016
Hosted by: Book Enthusiast Promotions


PreOrder Exclusively on iBooks

book blurb

Eleven newly written stories by Authors in the City authors.
This anthology will benefit Caring Community Foundation, located in Raleigh, NC where the 2017 Authors in the City book signing will be held.
Authors in the City is hosted by:
Stephanie’s Book Reports

Christmas Once Again – Samantha Chase
Like Christmas – Ashlee Taylor
Ugly Sweater – Elizabeth Hayes
A Change of Heart – Shari J. Ryan
Christmas Break – Misha Elliott
Joyful Temptations – Janine Infante Bosco
Dancing Snowflakes – Madison Street
The Lovers of Vale – CS Patra
Christmas Interference – Jennifer L. Allen
Rewrite – Stephanie Rose
All I Want for Christmas – Savanna Grey


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Blogger Interview – Kim from Bawaka’s Book Fair!

So I met Kim a little more than a year ago when I was invited to sign at Carolina Book Fest. CBF will not be my first signing, BUT, it was the first signing I was invited to join!! I’m really excited about it. Anyway, I met Kim through that and, hey, we both live in the Charleston area! AND we got to meet in person in July at the Authors With Southern Charm event. She’s a super cool chick and I can’t wait for you to meet her.


Bawaka's Book Fair LogoTell us a little about your blog and what you do with it. 

My blog is called Bawaka’s Book Fair. One of my best friends, Jaime and I, run it together. We post releases, blog tours, and generally whatever we find interesting. Last year we had a ton of fun with our “Hogwart’s Challenge” where we wrote fanfiction and incorporated our players into the story. At the end, there was a winner who walked away with some awesome prizes!

We can be found at or on facebook at

How did you get into blogging?

Well, as I mentioned, my friend Jaime and I run it together. She started it and wanted some help with it, and I agreed. I’m so glad that she asked me since it has been a great experience and opened up a whole new world for me!

What’s your favorite thing about being a blogger?

I think my favorite thing about being a blogger is learning about new authors and their work.

Least favorite thing?

I think my least favorite thing in the blogging community in general is that harshness or rudeness that people (authors and bloggers alike) receive.  I want everyone to get along. Sometimes there seems to be a lot of backlash in the community and it hurts my heart.

Do you have a prized bookish possession? (ie. a particular signed paperback, piece of swag, etc.)

I have an addiction to paperbacks. If I buy one, it becomes a prized possession for me. I honestly need a new bookshelf!

What are your favorite genres to read? 

I honestly read a little bit of everything, but I am heavily into romance. I also love suspense, mysteries, and dystopian.

Do you have a favorite author (or authors)? Or a go-to author?

I would have to say my favorite author is L.P. Dover because I am her PA and I adore her books! However, I have a large number of authors that are my go-to’s.  Tabatha Vargo is definitely one for me. I love anything by her and automatically one-click. Plus, she is super sweet and has such a huge heart.

You’re also a PA, how did you get involved in that?

I am always up for new experiences and I wanted to try my hand at being a personal assistant. L.P. Dover took a chance on me without even knowing who I was. It has been a match made in Heaven. We are perfect for each other. She’s become one of my best friends in the past 3 years that I have known her.

You’re involved in the Carolina Book Fest event in Charlotte this month, in which I’ll be an attending author, tell us about that and how you came to be involved with such an awesome event.

Well, Carolina Book Fest is hosted by L.P. Dover and myself. In 2014, we said, “Hey, wouldn’t it be fun to host a book signing?”  It started to unfold from there. We had an amazing signing in 2015 and are so excited to be bringing it back on the 15th!  It takes a lot of time and energy to put together such a large signing, but it’s something that we love to do because it is such an amazing experience for authors and readers.

Carolina Book Fest 2016 for FB Event

When you’re not reading, what do you enjoy doing?

Is there anything else to do besides read?! 🙂

I love spending time with my husband, Chris!  He’s an awesome guy who really puts up with a lot since I work 40+ hours a week and then come home and work some more!  I also love watching movies and playing video games. I am a gamer girl through and through.  You can also find me on the couch during any Harry Potter marathon!

What’s something you’d like the book community to know about you and/or your blog?

Bawaka’s Book Fair is not a large blog at all, but we definitely try to show the Indie community some love! Please feel free to stop by our pages, check us out, and chat with us!

Thank you, Kim, for stopping by!! Please go check out her blog on the web and on Facebook. Gotta love support for indie authors! And if you’re interested in Carolina Book Fest, check out the event tab at the top of the page for links to info for the signing! I hope to see you there!

Author Interview – Susan Fisher-Davis

This was one of the most fun interviews I’ve done to date, and I mean no offense to previous interviewees, but I did this one a little differently to try out a new format, and I love the way it turned out.
susanauthor1Anywhoo…today I’m interviewing Susan Fisher-Davis. Susan is the writer of some fine @$$ cowboys and we’re FB friends and I may or may not bother her for more men… If you haven’t made it to Clifton or Dry River yet, well…what are you waiting for? Check out Susan’s page on Amazon and one-click her books today. I promise, you will not be disappointed, but you may end up addicted.

It’s no secret that I love your cowboys, in fact I’m currently mourning the Men of Clifton and the Bad Boys of Dry River series as they’ve both recently been completed. I understand you’ve started a new series though, The Callahans. I haven’t dug into that one just yet…I have to wait until my Clifton/Dry River hangover is over. Can you tell us a little about The Callahans?

The Bad Boys series isn’t over, so don’t start mourning them yet. DAKOTA and STORM will be out next year. It will end with Storm’s story.

Oh, thank God! I don’t know why I thought they were finished, too. ** wipes the sweat off my brow **

As for the Callahans, it will be about three cousins who used to compete in the rodeo. That series began with Reid in A Cowboy for Christmas. The next one out will be A Cowboy of Her Own, which will be Rowan’s story. I’m hoping to start that series in April 2017. The other Callahans are A Cowboy’s Heart, which will be Devin’s story, then A Cowboy’s Trust, which will be Jaxon’s story. I will also have a book coming out in January called Fit for a King. Wade King makes Wyatt look tame. He’s mean and hateful but he has his reasons. At least, he thinks he does. Then there are five other books I’m working on. Two are novellas, one will take place in Clifton, and I also have one for Patsy and Micah, which will take place in Dry River. Anyone who reads the Bad Boys, knows who Patsy and Micah are. The other three will be full-length books. Two will be a miniseries, the two men are friends, and the other is a standalone. It’s about a younger man and older woman.

SAM_digital front cover final_3 600 x 876Back to Clifton and Dry River…which one of those books were your favorite to write?

I’d have to say SAM Men of Clifton, Montana Book 7 was my favorite of all of them. Although he ended the series, I’ve been in love with him since JAKE. Anyone who has read that series knows Sam was in every book. I couldn’t get enough of him. But I do have a favorite in the Bad Boys series, STORM is my favorite there. I have it written and he’s such a hot mess. He’s a little like WYATT in Men of Clifton, he’s not willing to put his heart out there again either.

Do you have a favorite character? Male or female? For me, I think Cooper was my favorite but I really loved them all.

Again, I have to go with Sam. He was a great character as far as his morals and how he loved the town. He took care of his town and the people in it. Even when he didn’t want to (Tessa). His love for Betty Lou, his dispatcher, was endearing too. He was a great man and sheriff. I do love Cooper too. He was such a character.

How about a least favorite character? Wyatt totally got on my nerves, but he also redeemed himself greatly!! I can’t say I have a least favorite character of yours, except for the villains, of course.

It’s hard to pick a least favorite if it’s not a villain! But, in all honesty, I was never happy with Ryder for some reason. I could easily kill him off and not feel a bit of remorse. I had such a hard time writing his story and I was never happy with it. I’m still not. I have to say, if Wyatt got on your nerves, then I did my job. I made him out to be that way just so he could be brought to his knees.

One of my fears when I’m writing a series is that I’m going to write the books too similarly, like they’re going to have a different title and different characters, but everything inside is going to be the same. I’ve read some books like that. Cringe. That doesn’t happen in your series at all. How do you come up with such unique stories for your characters? What’s your inspiration?

I write them all at one time. I know, sounds like it’s an accident about to happen but I do it that way because I need to make sure things match and don’t match. In any series, some things have to be the same, the town description, the people descriptions, etc. I’ve read books like that too. In fact, I recently read one where a male character had blue eyes but in the next book, he had brown. Some books are way too similar, as if they just copied and pasted it to another story. It’s hard to explain, really. I just get an idea for a story and run with it. I’ve had ideas come to me in the dead of night and I get up and write it down. I always have more than one book going at a time. Right now, I have seven going at once.

I remember how excited you were when you found your SAM. How do you decide on your covers? How do you pick out the lucky cowboys?

A lot of photographers contact me and I never turn down the opportunity to look at the photos. I mean, really, who would turn that down? Sometimes I just happen to see a photo and know I want it. That was SAM. Last year on National Cowboy Day, a photographer posted that picture and I was on him like white on rice. I messaged him right then and told him I had to have that for my cover. He told me he had to ask the model because he isn’t a model at all, just a man the photographer took photos of. Matt (SAM) is a real cowboy. He runs a rodeo and he’s a regular guy and a great family man. He agreed to let me use the photo and it turned out so good. I love it. My favorite cover so far. I’m not sure another one could top it. It took me almost two years to find my SAM and I am so glad I didn’t find one before seeing that one.

Do you have any strange writing habits?

Along with the habit of writing so many books at one time, the only other thing is I have to have the TV on in the background and headphones on to hear music. If it’s too quiet in the cave, I can’t write. I sing along too and trust me, that is not a pretty sound, but I do it anyway. I can’t be in the same room as my husband because he talks to me and I can’t concentrate. He says he doesn’t understand that. If I can have the TV on, headphones in and singing along, why can’t I talk to him. Men. They just don’t get it.

What is something you want the book community to know about you?

I’m just me. I’m very down to earth and say what’s on my mind. I’ve gotten into trouble like that but people need to stop taking things so seriously. I’ve never claimed to be anything more than what I am. I don’t think I’m above anyone. I help other authors with their books and I talk to my readers as friends. I don’t call them fans because I’m not a celebrity. I’m just me. I have a pet peeve about authors who look down their noses at me or other authors because they’ve been doing it longer or sell more books. I support all authors and they should too. It doesn’t take much to be knocked off that pedestal.

Feel free to share some of your favorite things…for example: food, TV show, movie, music, collection, etc.

My favorite food is seafood. I could eat it every day. Soft shell crabs are the best! I’m a huge fan of The Walking Dead. I love Scandal and The Last Ship too. My favorite movie is JAWS. I have it on DVD but still watch it on TV anytime it comes on. Country music is my favorite right now. I absolutely abhor rap. I think someone left the “c” of the front of that word.

I’m an NHL fan. I love hockey like you wouldn’t believe. I love my Nashville Predators and can’t wait for the season to start. Hockey will definitely get me out of the cave. There is nothing like seeing it live.

I love to fish and go as much as I can. There is no better feeling than being out in the sun, walking in the creek. I may not even get a nibble but I wouldn’t miss that feeling for the world.

Something my husband and I love to do is go for long drives in our Vette with the top out. We just drive with no destination in mind. It’s a lot of fun and more times than not, we end up in Gatlinburg, TN. It is so beautiful over there. Those Smoky Mountains are breath taking.

I love snow globes. I have over two hundred of them. I’ll buy them anytime I see them. I have one with a John Deere tractor in it! The more different, the better. My favorite is the wicked witch of the west in the Wizard of Oz. She is standing over the globe looking at Dorothy, Cowardly Lion, Scarecrow, Tin Man, and Toto on the yellow brick road. I have a lot of them from Disney movies and I even have a Hello Kitty one. It’s the only thing I collect and I’m running out of room!

Find Susan on the webFacebook, and Goodreads!

And here’s where you can find her guys!

A Cowboy for Christmas:

Susan, thank you so much for the interview!! Seriously readers, if you want some satisfying, quick reads (as in, you won’t be able to put them down!), one-click Susan’s cowboys today! Every one of them are good, but I, of course, recommend starting with the firsts in each series, JAKE and LUCAS.

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My Writing Process – Timelines

One of the things I love about my overall process is that I don’t really have a timeline. I start a story when I start it, and I finish it when I finish it. My timeline doesn’t really come into play until I’ve completed a story — because, for the most part, that’s when the pressure is off ME. Hehe.

When I started my writing journey, I wanted this to be fun for me. I wanted to enjoy what I was doing. And so far, I have. I write when I want or when need to, and when I’m blocked or otherwise at a loss for words, I set whatever I’m working on aside and either work on another story or do something else entirely.

I have that freedom and I love it.

Currently, I’ve got about seven stories I’ve started. Some have 20k words written, some have 100 words written, most are in between. Anyway, I decide which story to tackle based on my mood and which characters are talking to me. When a story is nearing completion, I do try to focus most of my energy on that. Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t.

The most important thing to me is that I don’t force the story to happen. That’s why I don’t do timelines or deadlines when I’m writing. I’m afraid that if I’m under the wire, I’m going to produce crap. That’s not me saying writers with deadlines produce crap, it’s me saying that if I am under the pressure of a deadline, I will produce crap.

However, I might make some loose goals if I feel the end is near. For example, at the time I’m writing this post (it’s a Friday), I’ve got about 5 solid hours left of work to do on Wildflower (JACT 2.5). So I told myself yesterday, “Self, try to finish Joey’s book by Sunday.” Then I proceeded to play on Facebook, make teasers, and do all sorts of other things that had absolutely nothing to do with Wildflower. Reason #2 I wouldn’t make deadlines: I would constantly disappoint myself!

So, I wait until I’m finished with a story before setting up a timeline and my timeline consists of start/end dates for the following processes: re-read/re-write, beta, beta implementation, edit, edit implementation, proofread, send out ARCs, and finally, the release date. Somewhere in there I’ll insert: blog activity sign-up, cover reveal, release blitz/tour, etc. I space the items on this timeline out based on what has been most effective with previous releases, availability of service providers, time of  year, length of book, etc.

This process, and all my writing processes, are like living organisms in that they are constantly changing, growing, shrinking, etc. I try different methods until I find what fits and I discover new methods when I’m not even looking. I’ve found that my flexibility is one of the things that makes writing so much fun for me. It keeps things fresh and I don’t get lost to routines.

So tell me…
Authors, what do your timelines look like?
Readers, do you have any processes or hobbies you set up timelines for? 

Author Interview – Kayla Smith

I met Kayla about a year ago, when I first published Our Moon. I can’t remember exactly how we met, but I believe we may have participated in each other’s release parties? Maybe? Anyway, we’ve been chatting ever since and are now both participating authors in a multi-genre readers group, Readers of the Hidden Trove. If you’re not a member, check it out!

About Kayla, the author:

Tell us about your books/series, feel free to include links!

Devina is about a vampire, not just a normal vampire, she is a Royal Vampire. They are stronger and more powerful than regular vampires. Also, vampires are born not created. If they are created they are evil. Anyway, she is driven by revenge to catch the two men responsible for killing her mom and dad. On her quest to find them she meets Sebastian. Her destined mate. They go through hell and back but eventually figure out who is after her parents and them.

You can get Devina here Amazon or Smashwords.Kayla9

My Pandora series is about a girl who grew up in this world, but was born in Pandora, the kingdom she is a Princess of. She is also the key to winning the sixteen-year long war that the Evil Queen has been so kind to lead. Jackie is blessed, or cursed, with many gifts that a normal Pandorian would only dream of having. But these powers, although powerful, may lead to her premature death, if not used correctly. Zack, her lifelong best friend is there with her every step of the way. He has agreed to be her personal guard and he helps train her. You can get Return to Pandora at Amazon or Smashwords.

You can also get Into Pandora book 2 at Amazon or Smashwords.

What genre(s) do you write in?

I mostly stick to Paranormal. I like that anything can happen in a supernatural book. I tired writing one that wasn’t and I kept finding myself lost with where to take it.

Are any of your books your favorite?

Yes, one that I am working on right now. It doesn’t have a title yet. But it’s in the works and I am loving it.   

Where do you get your inspiration from? How do you come up with your characters and stories?

Most of the time they come in dreams. Yes, I dream up most of my stories. Except, sometimes they run through my head at the oddest of times. I could be driving home from a long day at work and my brain is still going strong. I came up with a new story that I am working on with another author at the moment from one of my drives home. But another story I am working on came from a dream. Well, more than one dream. Once I have an idea and I start writing it, my brain goes into overdrive giving me all these endless possibilities that I can add into my book.

I can relate. I have the same issues with my characters and inspiration. They start talking to me at the most random and unexpected times! ~ Jennifer

Are there any characters you love more than others? Why?

I think it’s Devina. But when I first wrote Pandora I was in love with how I made Jackie, strong, yet innocent in her lack of knowledge and her ability to actual take a life.

Devina is an adult, so she is strong willed and knows what she wants. She is fierce and doesn’t care for anyone but Ally. Ally is her “sister” and Devina will kill anyone who tries to harm her. Even though she is fierce she is still vulnerable and Sebastian brings that vulnerability out of her more and more.

Any characters you hate? Why?

Hate is a strong word. But, I dislike one or two from my Pandora series. They wont make it far in this series. And those die or have died are the ones I didn’t care for when I was writing the story.

If you were in a bind, which one of your characters would you call? Why?

Devina. She is very resourceful.

Kayla11Are there any pieces of you in your books?

More of me in Return to Pandora than Into Pandora, and my sassiness is a big part of Devina. But I can’t tell you which parts of me are in Jackie, because well, because that’s just not that important. lol

Which of your books would you recommend to a new reader?

I would first have to ask if they like vampires or not. If they do, then I immediately tell them to read Devina. If not then I tell them to go for Return to Pandora.

Why and when did you start writing?

I was depressed and writing came naturally to me. Writing also cheered me up more so I made it part of my life.

What’s the most difficult part of being a writer?

I would have to say that it varies during each book. I hate edits. No I despise them. But marketing and keeping up with it is the hardest part, besides getting people who have read my books to review them.

What’s your favorite part of the writing process?

Starting a new story is always the best. New characters, new adventures, and new everything. Even if its book 4 in a series, it’s still the best.

How do you handle criticism…constructive or otherwise?

I have had to deal with criticism in everything I have ever done. I know it helps to shape me, and I try to ignore the nasty and use the rest to better myself and my writing, but I don’t get too worked up with it. We are always going to have people that don’t like what we write even if it’s a NY times best seller. It’s part of the job.

What’s the best advice you’ve received as an author?

To get a professional editor and use better covers. My first book, long before my Pandora series was a horrible book. The storyline was great, but the book lacked an editor and a lot of the things wrong with it would have been fixed if I had only just paid for it then.

Do you have any quirky writing habits?

I need snacks, and music. I prefer Reese’s, but chocolate in general in the best.  

How do you handle writer’s block?

I read. I read anything I have or can get in the same genre I am writing and after that book is done I go back to my keyboard and my brain is actually functioning again.

Do you have a go-to book blog?

No, I am still new to this blog business.

What is one thing you want people to know about you as an author?

That I strive to make each book better than the last and I am a very hardworking individual.

Do you have a current WIP, upcoming release, or other exciting book news you’d like to talk about?

I am working on book 3 of Pandora Series. If by some miracle I have it done before the end of the year I will have that one in December. I also have another book Michelle and I are working on and we planned for December as well. So we will see. That last one is still in the very early stages of being written so there isn’t much to discuss. I can’t really discuss book 3 of Pandora just because things I say will be a giveaway, but it is coming along great and there are many surprises laced into this beauty.

About Kayla, the person:

What do you do when you’re not writing?

I have 3 kids. I got married August 1st, I’m super excited. I also work full time as a Department manager for McDonald’s. I’ve working for McDonald’s for 10 years, and even though I am still there, I work hard and like it because they work with my schedule as a mom.

Favorite thing about your hometown?

My hometown is small. I knew everyone around my age, but it is a boring town, there isn’t much to do. No theater or mall, or anything like that for kids. But, my favorite part is the trial from West Street school (that starts in Southbridge) that leads you to Westville Dam (that ends in Sturbridge). Westville Dam is a nature trail as well. It circles the dam, and there are places to fish, and have picnics and parties.

Farthest place you’ve traveled from home?

My new place of living. Florida. I used to live in Massachusetts.

Favorite…Food? Color? Place? Movie? TV show? Song? Band? Etc…(whatever favorite things you’d like to share)

Food, Lasagna, Colors. Are purple, red, and lime green. Place, Westville dam. TV Show, only one? I love Arrow, the Flash, NCIS, Bones, The Game of Thrones, Once Upon a Time. There are many more. These are my top choices.

Any weird collections?

I collect Scooby-Doo items. I have at least 10 stuffed animals and figurines in the boxes still. I even have a Pez collection of them.

Strange habits?

Define strange. I am a very unique induvial. All of my habits, may be strange. haha

What is something you’d like the book community to know about you as a person?

I am shy at first, and some people take it as me being rude. I have no intentions of being a rude person, I just don’t know how to make small talk with strangers. (Yeah, I’m that person.) Once you get to know me, I am pretty out going and enjoy spending time with everyone. So if you ever meet me, give me time to come out of my shell, I promise, I am not always that quiet and unsocial. Just ask my boss. 😉


Amazon Author Page
Goodreads Author Page

I’m so excited to have had Kayla here today. I hope you’ll check out her books and find something you like! Also, congrats to Kayla on being a newlywed! I wish you all the best!!

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If you’re an author, reader, or blogger and you want to be featured here in an interview, spotlight, or guest post. Let me know!