I’m so excited to have Jamie Farrell as my first author for my Featured Author Friday. Over the last two years, I’ve not only had the chance to get to read all of Jamie’s books, but also gotten to know her as a friend. I found out about Jamie’s writing through my college roommate, Jen, who knew her when they were stationed together as military wives. One of the things I love the most about her writing is her wacky sense of humor (which also occurs in real-life – I mean, how many people do you know would read the world Buffaloaf as Butt-loaf in the middle of a restaurant!).
Interview with Jamie
Dee: Are you a writer that likes to plan and outline or do you have more of a ‘let it flow’ style?
Jamie: My voice is most raw and true when I just let it flow, but I’m not a natural plotter, so I tend to write myself into corners from time to time. I’ll have an idea of a plot point or two, and I’ll know a few things about my characters, but they tell me things in that first draft I never dreamed would happen. This also means that I do a lot of re-writing to get all the kinks worked out (because sometimes rainbow-spouting were-dragons appear randomly in that first draft of my feel-good contemporary romances, and those need to be edited out, sadly enough).
Dee: Are you working on another book right now? What is your writing schedule like? Do you write everyday or when you feel like it?
Jamie: I’m currently working on two books. One is a novella in the Officers’ Ex-Wives Club series, which will appear in the Small Town Summer anthology coming in July. The other is The Battle of The Boyfriends, the second book in my Misfit Brides of Bliss series.
I try to get up at 4 AM to write every day before my kids are up, except for weekends, and I will also sneak away to a coffee shop for a Sunday afternoon writing session at every opportunity. With three kids between 2 and 7 years old, and with the number of snow days, sick days, and weather-induced school delays, this has been a tough winter. But I still make progress, even when it’s slow. The business side of writing takes a good bit of time too!
Dee: Do you remember the first romance novel you ever read?
Jamie: Compared to my colleagues who were sneaking their moms’ Harlequins at young ages, I came “late” to the genre. I fell in love with Janet Evanovich’s Stephanie Plum series in late college, and one afternoon, browsing the book store, I stumbled across a little sign that said, “If you like Janet Evanovich, you should try Jennifer Crusie!” I think my first true romance was Getting Rid of Bradley. I discovered Susan Andersen’s Marine series soon thereafter, and I was totally hooked.
Dee: What do you do when you get stuck on a scene or a storyline?
Jamie: I sleep on it, or sometimes I’ll take a shower. Showertime is thinking cap time. I like to play the “what if?” game, imagining various possibilities for what could happen, or I’ll analyze if my characters are properly motivated and defined. I’ll often discover I don’t know my characters well enough, so I’ll dig a little deeper into who they are and what makes them tick. If those tricks don’t work, I pick up the phone and I call Maria Geraci or Kelsey Browning. They’re my critique partners, and they always bring a fresh perspective and help me see things that I can’t, either because I’m looking at the story sideways or because I’m too close to see the big picture.
Dee: Chocolate or Bacon?
Jamie: GAH! Seriously? This is the meanest question ever!!! I love them both! Can I pick chocolate-covered bacon? No? Sheesh, Dee, you drive a hard interview. ;-) Okay. If I have to pick, I’ll take bacon, but only because nutritionally speaking, it’s both protein and fat, whereas the chocolate is mostly sugar. (grumble, grumble) (Also, *sob*! I think this means I’m finally admitting to being a responsible adult.)
And because it wouldn’t be an interview without a giveaway – I’m gifting one lucky commenter an ebook choice of one of Jamie’s books (must be able to accept gifts from either Amazon or Barnes and Noble) or a print copy of Mr Good Enough. Please make sure you leave your email address in the comments. The giveaway will close next Friday (the 10th of April)