Today I have a very special blog for you. I have not one, not two, but three wonderful authors for you! I’ve introduced you to a couple of them before, but one is a debut author, and they share something unique . . . they all started out in a critique group together, and they all had book releases on the same day last week! How exciting!
First, debuting with her novel, The 25th Hour, is Jaye Garland. Then, with the second in her series of Paranormal romances, The Witch on Twisted Oak, Susan Muller. And, rounding it out, a Contemporary romance with a hint of a mystery, but separate from her Cupid Chronicles, Elvis is a Keeper, by Shauna Allen.
So, since these gals are friends, instead of my typical interview, I’ve asked them to share a bit about their books, about being critique partners, and to give up the goods on each other. And, stick around and comment, because I’ll be giving away a copy of each of their books next week!
Jaye, why don’t you go first . . .
Given the chance to work with other authors who also needed to find their perfect-match critique partner(s), I finally fell into a group that works with my crazy-busy writing schedule. Hint: Some of us might fit as Looney Tunes characters, but Speedy Gonzales, I’m not. I’m the wordiest writer in the bunch, and you know what that means, heavy edits. <sigh>
There are four members in our group. Janet Nash and I had already been critiquing each other’s work for a while. Enter Shauna Allen and Susan Muller who had also connected with each other prior to the four of us working as one group. Wow! Quadruple Magic!
We’ve exchanged scenes, chapters, and whole manuscripts. We’ve traveled to exotic writer’s retreats [read: rough, arrive in a 4-wheel drives, bring-your-own-bug-spray and bed linens.] We’ve stayed awake long into the night as we brainstormed, giggled, plotted, giggled, edited our pages, and hunted for the mysterious singing Christmas carol cup hiding in the cupboard.
What are my “Release date mate’s”, Shauna’s and Susan’s, Looney Tunes characters? Okay here goes.
While Tweety Bird appears to be an innocent, vulnerable canary, underneath his delicate, yellow exterior beats a crafty heart. This would be Susan. She’s the epitome of Southern grace and charm, and she refuses to see the negative in any situation, but her rapier wit catches you by surprise—every time. She’s also a chocolate lover, but it doesn’t like her.
Confident, cool and usually three steps ahead, Bugs Bunny also has a few surprising quirks, not the least of which is having cartoon characters as his best friends. This would be Shauna. In truth, she gives no-nonsense advice, and is the heart and soul of her loving family. She also sleeps like a rock and writes with sound canceling headphones.
I’m truly blessed to know these women and share this awesome release day with
them. Thanks, ladies!
So fun! Now how about your book, The 25th Hour?
Chased through time by her father’s murderer, an architect lands in the arms of a 19th century rancher. The two lovers realize they must find the killer before another life is taken…and the window of time separates them, forever.
Sounds fantastic! Now, how about you, Shauna?
Ooh, not sure how I can follow that! Looney Toons? Couldn’t she just make me sexy and give me Gerard and call it a day? LOL!
But seriously, I began writing as a solitary journey, until I realized I couldn’t go it alone and I stepped out and joined my local chapter of RWA. I quickly joined our large critique group, which parred down to our much smaller group and we “babes” were born. It was amazing how we clicked, each with our own skills and writing genres. (A grammar queen, one who looks at the “big picture,” an Inspirational writer, the historical girl, the mystery writer, and me. They apparently think I write the sexy stuff, LOL!)
And I can tell you I wouldn’t be near the writer I am, nor as happy without them. We’ve celebrated the highs, and they’ve scooped me out of the low valleys when I’ve been down. That is what a critique group is all about. Love them.
Now, onto the dirt! Hmmm . . .
I think Jaye might have closet OCD. That, or maybe she just really loves the historical times she writes about so much that she tries to live there. You see, she still prints manuscripts. On paper. And highlights them and writes notes on them and everything. And she has time to do all this because she gets up before the roosters. Seriously. I don’t think the woman sleeps. But, that’s OK, because she’s a woman after my own heart in the junk food department. On our last weekend retreat she brought the candy and Twinkies. <3
As for my Susan, I have shared a bed with her a few times on our weekend retreats, but, again, I’m not sure she sleeps either. (Am I the only one who sleeps?) I’ve accidentally seen her in her (almost) birthday suit, but I’m relieved to say we have all the same parts and I have much sexier panties. And, lastly, she’s a dog whisperer. Caesar Milan better look out. If writing doesn’t work out, she could take his job.
LOL! How about your book, Elvis is a Keeper?
Hook, Line, and Sinker . . . Elvis is alive, he’s brainy, and he’s a Keeper!
A spunky female fishing guide’s life is turned upside down when her beloved father is accused of a brutal crime. The last thing she needs is a brainy Elvis clone to waltz in and tempt her heart.
Intriguing! OK, up last is Susan . . .
Because I write mysteries, and usually keep secrets well hidden until the end of my story, I’ve been tasked with revealing some of those secrets about my writing partners, Jaye Garland and Shauna Allen.
I’ve know these ladies for four years, and like any good mystery, the things I’ve learned about them have come to light slowly, gradually.
Take Jaye Garland for example. I knew from the beginning she was a solid craft writer, but I soon discovered the she’s a grammar queen. Have a question about commas? Ask Jaye. A little trouble with your tenses? Get Jaye to help you out.
Jaye also gives every appearance of a mild, suburban housewife. Appearances can be deceiving, because Jaye has a wild side. She grew up in Wyoming and can ride and ranch with the best of ‘em. Now that she’s in Houston, she substitutes a little blue Beamer for a horse and zips around town with the top down. Zip is the operative word here. Stay out of her way on the freeway.
She spent several years living in Saudi Arabia. When she returned to American soil, she had trouble adjusting. Every time she wore short sleeves or a V-neck blouse, she felt like a harlot and worried about going out in public. Fortunately, she seems to have gotten over that.
Shauna Allen on the other hand, looks exactly like what she is: a crazy combination of loving wife and mother, hardworking nurse, devoted Christian, Gerard Butler super-fan, and half-Aussie rock music lover. She’s a lightweight in the drinks department, though. She claims to love Margaritas, but I’ve yet to see her finish one.
Shauna has a play list of music for each of her characters and puts it on when writing their scenes. If you see her head bobbing and her fingers flying over her laptop keys, she’s in the groove. Don’t disturb her. Fun fact (well, fun for us, maybe not so much for Shauna,) she is legally blind in one eye.
We all know Shauna loves tattooed heroes, and most of you know she has at least one tattoo of her own. I know how many and where they are located, but that’s one secret you’ll never get out of me.
I’d love to know, but you’re a good friend! But go ahead and tell us about your book, The Witch on Twisted Oak . . .
Sounds wonderful! Thanks for being here, ladies!
I cannot wait to read all three of these books! How about the rest of you? Now, it’s your turn to leave a comment. Do you have a fantastic friend? Or two? Or three? Leave your comment and let us know which of these books you’re most interested in, and I will be giving away one Amazon e-copy of each to some lucky winners. Check back next week to see if you’ve won. Good luck!