Please welcome Deanna Jewel, multi-genre romance author. Ms. Jewel shares wisdom and personal experiences in her interview, information writers, authors, and readers may use or find interesting. Readers, thank you for joining us this week and be sure to get into her contests below! Without further delay, I’ll hand the floor over to Ms. Jewel:
Christina: Deanna, welcome my blog! Of your books, which one was the easiest to write? Why?
Deanna: Thank you for having me this week. I love chatting with new readers! Never Surrender was the easiest. I have to explain this: No Turning Back was actually my FIRST manuscript, but published second because I had so much correcting to do as I learned a LOT writing that first manuscript. When I wrote Never Surrender, it came easier than my first manuscript and was like a movie in my head that I just put on paper. During the writing of the second one, I had learned the meaning of POV for characters and NOT to head hop for my readers. That only confuses them and causes them to go back and reread. So – Never Surrender was released first but was my second manuscript. No Turning Back was the first, and for me a training manuscript, and was released second.
Christina: Which of your characters do you most resonate with?
Deanna: It’s not so much one character as it is different character traits. I like a strong female who isn’t always on the fence about how to react to a situation. They’re strong and know what they want and one way or another, WILL get what they want!
Christina: Which of your characters was the toughest to write? Why?
Deanna: The toughest was Vanessa in No Turning Back. I still can’t put my finger on it but she was different. She’s still a strong-willed character but I know I didn’t go deep enough with her.
Christina: What is your writing routine – a typical day? Explain.
Deanna: I do my own marketing and email in the morning and normally write at night because I help at the office as much as I can as we own offices for a tax business, so we’re extremely busy January through April. My writing begins again full force about mid-May. I wrote a sequel to No Turning Back and reincarnated my characters 200 years later in Whispers at Ghost Point, about a ghost in an abandoned light house at Wilmington NC.
Christina: Did you do research for your books and if so, where did you find it?
Deanna: For Never Surrender, my brother lived in Dubois WY and when I visited there back in ’95 and ’97 the story just popped into my head or rather, the characters did, and wouldn’t leave until I finished their story. They are now at me to write the sequel and I’m not ready to do that yet so they keep etching scenes into my mind for later. I did lots of research on the Shoshone Nation and their way of life back then so I hope I did them proud in my novel. I was also lucky enough to contact a linguistics professor from Boise State University who was kind enough to translate a bit of my Shoshone dialogue into their language for me. I’d love to reach him to let him know it’s now in print but haven’t been successful at that. He did the translation back in ’98 for me so it’s been a while.
The research I did for No Turning Back was fun but I have to admit I was very fortunate to have someone stumble upon a few chapters I’d posted and she let me know that I didn’t have all my equine information correct. She alerted me to bloodlines in England at the time my story takes place so I was able to pull in and include that information to make the story a bit more real. I owe all the horse information to her and she IS in my acknowledgements for the book.
For Whispers at Ghost Point, my husband and I visited Wilmington NC and Savannah GA. I’m happy to say I ate and walked many of the locations in the story. I loved visiting both states and locations! I also believe in the paranormal and that helped me make the ghost as real as possible!
Christina: What inspired you to write fiction? Romance?
Deanna: I’ve always been a romantic at heart and still am. I also believe in happy endings and finding love a second time when one thinks there is no one else for them. I fell in love with Kathleen Woodiwiss, Rosemary Rogers, Virginia Henley, and Victoria Holt – oops, I think that’s dating myself a bit, but their books are soooo good. Then I read several by other authors that had poor plotting, bad dialogue, head hopping which caused me to have to reread paragraphs to see if I missed something and I knew I had to at least try my hand at writing. It took me 15 years after writing the stories to actually put them into print so I hope readers will enjoy them.
Christina: List the ways people can find you.
Deanna: I have contact links on my websites, as well as links to sign up for my newsletter (I do hold contests for subscribers!) All of my books are available on at all online stores and Never Surrender and Unleash Your Inner Strength are FREE until the end of September. I love to hear from readers and other authors so please contact me, follow me or join me:
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Christina: What tip would you give an aspiring fiction author?
Deanna: Study character POV so you aren’t head hopping; this confuses the readers. If you ever read a book and it seems a fast read for you, it’s probably because the author only used a few points of view so you didn’t always wonder whose head you were in!
Be sure to use all five senses! Your readers want to smell what the characters smell, feel what they touch…does the hero have a smooth face or did he not shave yet today? *wink* Let the reader taste what the characters do – is the lemonade tart? Does it stab at the back of their jaw when they taste it?
One more tip: Read your work out loud. If it sounds short and choppy as you read out loud, it will sound the same way to a reader. Make one sentence flow into the next so it reads smoother. Word has a function that will let you find words that are used too often such as she/he, her/him, was, etc. Use that and highlight those words then go back and make changes. Don’t make your story sound like an instruction manual!
Christina: Would you tell us about why you decided to self-publish, and how it is working out?
Deanna: A few years ago I agreed to go with an online publisher. It ended badly and was partly my fault because I didn’t research her company or her for that matter. I woke up one day to find the website gone and the authors scrambling to figure out what was happening. She’d kept all the royalties and not paid any of them for a year or more. Luckily, I wasn’t one of the badly burned authors and didn’t lose much money but some lost a lot.
Currently, I self-publish after being burned like that. I do realize not all online publishers are like that but I’m not ready to take that chance again just yet. I enjoy doing my covers although I did have someone else finish the cover for No Turning Back for me and I didn’t have the time to learn how then. I did produce the new cover for Never Surrender and have received many comments on it! The sales are finally moving on that book also.
I do my own marketing, Twitter, FaceBook, blog, Author’s Den, websites, book signings, book marks, book trailers, at YouTube (which I find I love doing though they take about twelve hours to do, or longer), and I do interviews on my blog for other authors to help get their books out there.
Christina: Tell us a little about your current work in progress.
Deanna: I recently finished Whispers at Ghost Point and it’s now available. I find reincarnation fascinating though some don’t believe in that. I do and I believe in ghosts and that they are all around us, good or bad. But my ghost in Whispers has been trapped in the light house for centuries searching for the love he lost in a past life, his ship and his crew off the coast of North Carolina.
I’m now working on the sequel to my Indian time travel, Never Surrender. I’ve got no title yet and no release date at this point but the story will continue where Never Surrender ends. I hope all of you download the FREE book while you can.
Christina: Can you share a bit of your historical with us?
Deanna: I’d love to share a bit from No Turning Back:
He tasted her skin and kissed a path down the side of her neck, along her bared collar bone. The muscles low in his groin contracted as her touch ignited embers deep inside of him that had lain dormant far too long. Nathan had hoped he’d hardened his feelings, buried them deep, but this woman had unknowingly found a way to caress his soul. He never thought he’d find another female who could incite such rolling passion within him, but then – Vanessa was no ordinary woman.
Listening to her moans of pleasure, feeling her body quiver at his touch, he knew he had awakened feelings she wanted left hidden, but the fire she created with him needed to be quenched. The heaviness of his arousal, coupled with the intoxicating scent of her, intensified the sensitivity of his flesh, making the movement of her hands on his back send a tremor down his spine. He ached all over for her.
As his lips seared a path across the swell of her breast, a moan again escaped her lips. When he glanced at her face, her closed eyes more than explained the pleasure she experienced with him. He slid his fingers beneath the material of her gown at her other shoulder, slipping it down to bare her breasts. He took his time, enjoying her soft skin. Leisurely tasting a rosy peak, Nathan gathered the weight of her breast in his hand. She pressed her head back into the pillow, and bit into her lower lip. Her movements brushed against his arousal and a groan slipped from his throat as he suckled her breast.
Gripping Vanessa’s waist, he rolled over, taking her with him. Her hair swept his face. He brushed it to one side, cupped her face in his hands and their eyes met; he sought another slow, amorous kiss. Her lips burned with fire, her tongue hot against his own, swirling together, making him crazy. The passion intensified his emotions.
The weight of her body atop him drove his desire to the edge. He’d make love to her right now if they didn’t slow down. With his need for her being so strong and suppressed for too long, Nathan withdrew from the kiss. Vanessa’s breath came in ragged gasps, telling him this affected her in the same way. He’d loved her for so long now and to hope for the same feelings to be returned made his heart soar.
She rested her forehead on his chest as he held her tight. “Nathan…we have to stop. I can’t do this,” she whispered and the muscles of his body tensed upon hearing her words, knowing they couldn’t go where they both wanted at the moment.
* * * *
Christina: Deanna, thank you. It’s been a pleasure and enlightening having you as my featured guest author today. Congratulations and I wish you many more publishing successes.
Deanna: Christina, thank you so much for introducing me to your readers. I hope you get a chance to read Never Surrender so you can enjoy a trip back to the Rockies in Wyoming and meet Taima, my blue-eyed warrior! Readers, thank you all for stopping in. Do click over and get into my other contests! My Grand Prize Contest is HERE.
Leave a comment, along with your email and GC choice, and tell me what your favorite genre is to read and why. I’ll pick one commenter on the 21st to win a $10 gift card! Plus the code for the Grand Prize giveaway via Rafflecopter (4-$25 gift cards) – drawing is Oct 14th:
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Author Biography &Links
Deanna Jewel lives in the Pacific Northwest and has been writing multi-genre romance since 1991. She is married to a retired captain of the fire department. He’s also owned his own businesses for 23 years. They have two Siamese cats: Zoie and Sinbad, who keep them entertained. Deanna has enjoyed reading historical romance novels for over thirty years, camping with her family, and traveling.
She writes to draw the reader into the story to experience what the characters feel, to show both the hero’s and heroine’s points of view, and to take the reader away from their every day stress to a place not yet visited.
A trip to Dubois, Wyoming, south of Yellowstone, inspired her time-travel novel. The landscape and town locations described in NEVER SURRENDER are real. Jon Daley, a professor at Boise State University, translated the Shoshone language that you will find in the book. This novel won an Honorable Mention in the 2008 Quill Awards at Writing.com.
NO TURNING BACK, her historical romance, takes place in England, 1778, was released in April 2010, and is available in print, eBook and iBook for download to your electronic readers.
Her newest novel, WHISPERS AT GHOST POINT, released in late December, 2012. Whispers takes place at an abandoned lighthouse in Wilmington, NC and is the sequel to No Turning Back. The characters are reincarnated into the present. Join Dana as she learns about her past while working toward her future. The dangers that lurk at an abandoned lighthouse pull her into a past she was unaware of but also involves a man she’s never met…in this lifetime!
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