Visit with My Friends

Jenna Jaxon

Today, I’m visiting with a new cyber friend of mine, Jenna Jaxon. Thanks so much for stopping by, Jenna to talk about your latest release Almost Perfect.  Congratulations, and I’m hoping the sales gods are good to you. So, let’s start with talking about our favorite job, writing.

When did you start writing, how long and what do you write?

Hello, Cera.  I wanted to thank you so much for the opportunity to be interviewed by you.  You have a fantastic blog and I’m thrilled to be your guest.

You’re more than welcome and thank you. I’m thrilled to have you here, too.

I started writing (with an eye to publication) about three years ago.  I had just directed a fantastic show and had all these creative juices still flowing after Christmas when I read Kathleen Woodiwiss’s last novel, Everlasting.  It was set in Medieval England, one of my favorite periods, and I was inspired to launch my writing career by writing a very long historical romance set in the medieval period, though somewhat later than Ms. Woodiwiss’s.  And once I started, I just couldn’t stop!  So now I write both historical (my first love) and erotic contemporary romances.

Wow… I started writing for publication three years ago, too.  You’ve done fantastically well in just 3 years!!!  And I agree, once the writing bug bites, there’s no turning back.

What can you tell us about Almost Perfect that isn’t in the blurb or excerpt?  Was it an easy write?  How long did it take you to write it?

I like to think of Almost Perfect as a sort of romantic comedy.  I think I intentionally tried to make Pam Kimball, my heroine, a trifle dramatic and therefore comic in a lot of her responses to her situation and to the hero.  She’s so obsessed with movies that she sometimes takes them for reality, so when she tries to use what she knows from the films it sometimes backfires on her.

In some respects Almost Perfect was an easy write and in some it wasn’t.  I’m used to writing LONG stories.  My first novel (mentioned above) came in at 187K!  So getting the plot and characters for AP wasn’t difficult–limiting myself to 12K, however, was very challenging.  I simply didn’t have enough room for the sex scenes when I got to them!  So they ended up skimpy (God forbid!) and I had to keep taking words out somewhere and adding them to the love scenes. LOL  I believe I wrote it top to bottom in about three weeks.

I so can’t wait to read this book… You’ve hooked me with your Six Sentence Sundays and Sweet Saturday Samples!  Wow!  187K… I thought the first draft of my first Western was a monster at 120K.  I don’t think I could write short.  I’d like to try something…but don’t know if I could do it.  Good job getting it just right!

Are you a pantser or plotter? What can you tell us a little about your writing process

Yes, I am a plotter.  I confess.  I can’t start a work without an outline–the more detailed the better.  But oddly enough I don’t do any character sketches or plot schemes (I need to, I’m always going back to check things like eye color, or a butler’s name or some detail).  It all just comes out of my brain–sometimes that’s a good thing, and sometimes not so much!

My process is to take the idea, let it mull in my mind–especially when I’m driving on my long commute to work–for weeks or months sometimes.  Then I write my plot outline and I’m ready to begin Chapter 1.  Can’t write Chapter 2 or 10 first. LOL  Gotta start at the beginning.  And I just write.  If I can sit down and write for 12 hours at a stretch I’m a happy camper.  Doesn’t usually happen though.  I steal whatever time I can, dive into my characters, and go with their flow.

Sounds like it is a great process to me. I sometimes wish I was more of an actual plotter, but I just freeze up when I start thinking about outlines…LOL  Oh! I love when I’m able to sit and write for 12 hours straight, too.

If you could be any fictional character—including your own, who would you choose and why?

What an amazingly hard question!  For me it’s like saying “Which hero would you like to be married to!”  I think I’d like to be Diana, Countess of Arradale from Jo Beverley’s Devilish.  Not only is she a strong, intelligent, beautiful woman who can shoot like a man and fence well, but she gets to marry the Marquis of Rothgar, one of the sexiest men in romantic fiction in my opinion.  I could do that.

Sounds like the perfect character to me! Gotta love those women who know how to take care of themselves and has a handsome hero to boot! Who wouldn’t want to be like them?

What is your favorite TV show or movie?

Television show all time is probably a toss up between Frasier and Grey’s Anatomy.  Favorite movie I would say (at least at this sitting) is Pirates of the Caribbean–Curse of the Black Pearl.  Rather apropos given my current book. LOL

Oh! I love me some Capt’n Jack Sparrow… Or Will. Not sure which one I like better. LOL

Okay, since I write both vamps and cowboys, I want to know, which is sexier:  Vampires or Cowboys?

I do like both, but I think Vampires have the edge if you’re talking sexy.  Come nibble on my neck and I’ll follow you anywhere.  Vampires are the kings of neck nibbling.

LOL!!!!!  Yes, they are good at neck nibbling!

I wanted to thank you again, Cera for having me today!

It’s been a real pleasure having you here, too. Now, for a little more about Jenna and her novella for the 1Night Stand series from Decadent Publishing, Almost Perfect.

Jenna Jaxon is a multi-published author of historical and contemporary romance who has been reading and writing historical romance since she was a teenager.  A romantic herself, Jenna has always loved a dark side to the genre, a twist, suspense, a surprise.  She tries to incorporate all of these elements into her own writing.

Jenna lives in Virginia with her family and a small menagerie of pets.  When not reading or writing, she indulges her passion for the theatre, working with local theatres as a director.  She often feels she is directing her characters on their own private stage.

She has equated her writing to an addiction to chocolate because once she starts she just can’t stop.

 Almost Perfect

Pamela Kimball’s birthday present, a 1Night Stand adventure, promises jump-start her life, put a new man in her bed, and help her forget her past.  Unfortunately, movie-buff Pam’s Pirates of the Caribbean fantasy takes an alarming wrong turn when she’s abandoned on a not quite deserted island—with ex-husband Roger Ware.

Forced by hunger to accept Roger’s offer of dinner,  Pam realizes the geek she married has transformed into one of the most charming, sexiest men she’s ever met. His newfound confidence—and hot body—re-kindles old fires.  A simple kiss leads Roger to challenges her to discover how much his lovemaking skills have improved, leaving Pam torn between self-preservation and burning desire.

With time running out before they’re rescued, Pam must decide if her heart can survive the consequences of becoming Roger’s “almost” perfect 1Night Stand.

Excerpt:

She inched into the lapping surf, searching for movement. Reflection off the water made this task harder than expected. Wasn’t the Caribbean supposed to be teeming with fish?  Now that’s something she’d had a lot of instruction in. Almost every marooned-on-an-island movie had a scene where the heroine learned to catch fish. Six Days, Father Goose, Blue Lagoon. All you needed was your hands and patience. She could do this.

Pam waded out further then stopped just before the water hit her now dry shorts. “Not gonna to have a damp crotch all night.” The words reminded her of exactly what she had hoped for tonight. “But not from wet shorts!” She headed back to shore to remove and drape them next to her shirt. The bandeau was a different story. Still damp, even after several hours, and uncomfortable. Might dry better if not next to her skin anyway. “Screw it!  Live dangerously.”

Standing as good as naked on the deserted beach, Pam smiled as the warm breeze caressed her bare body. The sense of being slightly naughty added to her delight in the sensual feel of the air as it dried her breasts. Her nipples peaked as the wind cooled them. She strutted down to the water’s edge to sink her toes in the sand, the salty tang in the air adding to the perfect moment.

“If you’re skinny dipping, you forgot to remove one very important piece of clothing.”

Pam whirled around. Roger stood on the beach behind her, a green bottle of Perrier in one hand. His gaze played up and down her naked torso and his salacious grin widened. “Mind if I join you?”

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33 thoughts on “Jenna Jaxon

  1. wyndwhisper says:

    thank you for the great interview. i love the cover , ir’s gorgeous and the excerpt was wonderful. i love the 1N stand series, it’s one of my favorites and has so many great authors. i ‘m glad to see your name among them. i look forward to reading the book soon.

    tammy ramey
    trvlagnt1t@yahoo.com

    • Thanks, Marika. Yes, Captain Jack/Johnny Depp can shiver me timbers any day of the week. LOL And I like the variety in the 1NS series also. I’ve got plans to work on another one shortly that will be very different from Almost Perfect.

  2. Fun interview ladies!

    Jenna, it was wonderful to get to know you a little better and find out about your writing journey.

    Enjoyed your blurb and excerpt! This sounds like a fun read and I love the little bit of quirkiness of your heroine 🙂

    • Pam was extremely fun to write because of her quirkiness. Which is why I’d love to write a sequel to Almost Perfect. I have too much fun with these guys to stop at just one story. 🙂 Thanks for stopping by, Christine!

    • Oh, i am too by the end of it. But after having to write in drips and drabs a huge stretch like that is a feast. Looking forward to doing it again soon. Thanks for coming by, Jerri.

    • Oh good! Another Rothgar groupie! I get warm just thinking about him. LOL Yeah, 187K of which probably 80K should be cut! But that’s how it is with first novels. And i had Kathleen Woodiwiss as my model, who wrote huge novels. But I can’t wait to start the revision. Time Enough To Love is still one of my favorite stories and I can’t wait to share. Thanks for coming by, Sharon!

  3. Great interview Jenna. I have enjoyed all of your books that I have read so far. love the sense of humor you add to them. I recently discovered the 1NS series and I am hooked. I have lots of reading to catch up in this one.

    Almost Perfect sounds like my kind of book. Who wouldn’t want a Pirates of a Carribean fantasy to come true? I’ll take Johhny or Orlando!!

    Mel

    • Hi, Mel! Thanks for coming by. i always like a sense of humor in the characters I like to read, so I guess I infuse mine with the traits I find enjoyable. I suppose a lot of writers do that. Hmmmm. That might make for an interesting blog post. 🙂

    • Oh, but it was a labor of love! I enjoyed every moment of the writing–it took me six months–and I still look forward to revising it this summer. 🙂 Thanks for coming by, Kristina!

  4. Great interview! I wish I could plot more…I’m just so impatient that I start an outline and then end up skipping straight to the writing. I have to say Jenna, I’m so excited about your upcoming release for Only Scandal Will Do. Also seems like a really great story. Thanks for sharing!

    • Thanks, Toni! Outlining is so ingrained in me that I can’t not do it. LOL I’m in awe of writers who don’t need to use one. And thank you, I’m also very excited about Only Scandal Will Do’s release in May. 🙂

  5. The two of you put together a lovely interview. I gleaned a lot from it. I had no idea your medieval was 187,000 words, Jenna. I thought my Elizabethan was torturous at 140,000! Loved Almost Perfect. It’s a great story and well worth reading.

    • Thanks for coming by, Patricia. 🙂 Well, the first draft was 187K; currently it’s at a svelte 160k and going on a strict reducing diet this summer. LOL Can’t wait to see your Elizabethan!

    • Thanks, Nina! I love Stephen King for his long novels, but I think the trend is toward shorter works, especially with romance. I’d never try to sell a 187K novel, though breaking it up into a series (which is what I plan to do) has worked very well for several writers I know. But if you can keep your readers wanting to turn the pages, it doesn’t matter how long a book is (I just finished Voyager (#3 in Outlander series) and it was over 1000 pages!). 🙂

  6. Very nice interview! I agree about the importance of having some sort of outline to follow, though most of the time my outlines are in my head, with entire books and storylines memorized for years while I’m waiting to get to them. Though it can be fun to not exactly plot everything and let the story and characters take you where they will. The head of the Creative Writing Club I was in at my first high school, Mr. Sawyer (who doubled as a physics teacher) had that very approach, and was always getting excited or surprised when things happened in his stories that he’d never anticipated.

    187K is a drop in the bucket for me, given that to date I’ve got a 387K (down from 397K), 335K (a bit over 350K at its longest), a 406K (sequel to the 335K), and one book that will eventually be twelve volumes and probably at least 600K. The lattermost is 99% handwritten, so I have no way of measuring exact word count. There’s just something to be said for writing a long saga.

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