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Please welcome Jess Dee


Jess, Thanks for agreeing to be a guest on my blog.

Hi Greta.

Thanx for inviting me to over to your blog. I’m honored. 🙂

Can you tell everyone a little bit about yourself?

What can I say? I’m just an ordinary girl, leading an ordinary life, and writing hot sexy romances.

I grew up in Johannesburg, but left about six years ago to come to Sydney. (Still can’t believe when I wake up in the morning I look out my window at the sea.)

I live in a house oozing testosterone. One hubby, two kids and a dog. All male. Sometimes it can be a little challenging…

How long have you been writing?

I began in my early 20s, when I completed my first book. Don’t like to talk about that much coz it was truly, utterly terrible. So terrible in fact I put aside my writing dreams and focused on real life. When we arrived in Australia, I decided to give the book writing fantasy one more chance. And guess what? The second story wasn’t so terrible. In fact, it became my first published book, Photo Opportunity.

What is your writing process like?

Haphazard and all over the place. There is absolutely no method to my madness. Aside from a vague idea of what the book will be about, I don’t plot, I just write whatever seems to fit in with the previous scene.

Problem with me is, I am a compulsive rewriter, so as soon as I’ve completed a page or even a paragraph, I have to go back and rewrite it – at least five times.

Sigh. I guess there’s a reason I am the world’s slowest writer.

Can you tell us about the release you have coming out tomorrow?

I sure can. It’s called Only Tyler, and it’s the first book in the two part series called Circle of Friends.  It’s a story line that had been haunting me for a while: A woman in love with her fiancé’s best friend.

Critique partners and writer friends warned me not to write it. Love triangles are too controversial, they said.

But honestly? I couldn’t help myself. I had to get the book completed. It took a while to reach the final version-with a lot of criticism and a lot of rewriting. But in the end, it was worth the long battle!

This is the blurb:

Love…or friendship? Does she really have to choose?

Katelyn Rosewood is facing a moral dilemma, one that’s six-foot-two, sexy as sin-and her fiancé’s best friend. Katie spent a lot of time getting over Tyler Bonnard, but now that he’s back in Sydney, he’s turning her carefully reconstructed world upside down.

Her relationship with Steve Sommers may be short on heat and desire, but after Tyler left her two years before, she’ll take security and solid friendship over wild passion any day. Except Tyler seems to have a good-if outrageous-explanation for why he’s returned.

After a tragic family secret tore him out of Katie’s life, Tyler is glad to be back with his two best friends. But one thing is out of place: Katie’s in the wrong man’s arms. And if her reaction to his return is any indication, she’s not quite over him. Which could mean hope for Tyler, heartbreak for Steve…

And another devastating loss for Katie, who must choose between the man to whom she’s committed her future, and the man who still holds her heart.

Warning: Keep a tissue or two handy while reading this book. While it does contain a few steamy love scenes, the rest of the story might just make you cry.

Do you have any other books coming out this year?

Yep. I’m really excited, because in April, the second book in the Circle of Friends Series releases. Its called Steve’s Story.

And here’s the blurb for this book:

When love is threatened by truth, every moment counts…

Steve Sommers is having a gut-wrenching week.  His fiancée has left him, the woman who broke his heart is back in town-and they’re all gathered at the bedside of his best friend, who’s in a coma. The emotional ties between them are strained to the breaking point.  Like it or not, it’s up to Steve to find the strength and compassion to support the four of them through the toughest ordeal of their lives.

In the midst of the turmoil and trauma, passion unexpectedly flares anew between Steve and the woman he loves. Suddenly the future he’d believed lost lies within his reach. But she still carries the secret that once tore them apart, and determined to protect Steve from the truth, she fights their rekindled relationship every step of the way.

Now the fragile bond they’ve developed hangs in the balance, threatened by a reality that love may not be strong enough to overcome…

Warning: This book might just make you cry, but it’ll make you smile as well. The story will probably get you all hot and bothered too. It contains naughty activities in the car, sex on the kitchen counter (and up against the wall), a quickie in the garden-oh, and some hot loving in the bedroom.

What are you currently working on?

I’m ashamed to tell you I’m working on three different books, and not getting very far with any of them. I’m hoping to kick off 2009 with a great burst of energy and actually get these stories completed. (Please, wish me luck.) Being a great fan of sequels (because I can’t seem to let my characters go until I know they’re all living their happy ever afters) I’ve started the sequel to A Question of Trust. Then I’m toying with a spin off from Ask Adam. (Yes, I’ve been toying with it for over a year now. Isn’t that pathetic?) Also, and most excitedly, I’ve started an all new book which I’m having so much fun with. I don’t want to say any more about that one though. It’s still too new to talk about. 🙂

Where do you get your ideas for your books?

Hmm, I’m not sure. Some have just been bubbling beneath the surface for a while now. Some come from asking “what if?” questions to real life issues.

Visiting Paradise from Boys Down Under was written after a day trip on a luxury yacht in Sydney Harbor. (Yep, that was a treat indeed.) I’d recently visited the Whitsunday Islands, and after those two experiences, it was impossible not to a write a book set on a boat among tropical islands.

Do your characters talk to you? If so who talks the most heroes or heroines?

Recently it’s not so much been my characters talking to me as bossing me around. Honestly, I’ll be sitting innocently writing a scene, and then one character or another will insist something different happen to what I have in my mind. And if I try and write the scene the way I want it to be, I get nowhere. I have to listen to them. Tyler and Gabe  (from A Question of Trust) were the bossiest of all. Once they had their say, they would not let me get away with anything else. (Damn alpha males.)

I do confess though, I had several chats with Amy and Daniel from Photo Opportunity. (But I made sure I was either alone in my car, or in the shower, so no one could hear me.)

As an author, you must be an avid reader. What books do you enjoy reading? Who are your auto-buy authors?

I’m not too fussy. I read almost everything (big on suspense) but romance is my all time favorite. I bow at the feet of Karen Marie Moning and Sherrilyn Kenyon. (Lord I love the books those women have written).

My first choice in e-books is always contemporary, erotic romance, and I’m happy to try any author, as long as their book blurbs and excerpts (yes, and covers) tempt me.

What books are on your keeper shelf?

The Dark Hunter Series (Sherrilyn Kenyon). I just finished Acheron, and love, love, loved it!

The Highlander Series (Karen Marie Moning)

Diana Gabaldon’s Outlander Series (Sigh. Jamie Fraser!)

Anything by Jenny Crusie, Linda Howard, Susan Elizabeth Phillips… (Hmm, the list goes on and on…).

What was the first romance book you read?

Pride and Prejudice. But honestly, at the time I was too young to appreciate the brilliance and wonder of the book. (Had to read it again and again to make up for that first time. :))

I adored the Sweet Dream line. (Remember them? They were like a teenage version of Mills & Boon?) I must have devoured every one of those books. And from there it was just a hop, skip and a jump to the purple covered Silhouette Romances…

If one of your books was made into a movie, which book would you like it to be and which actors would like to see as the lead characters?

Hmm, now that’s a nice dream…

I guess it would have to be the Circle of Friends series. (Okay, so I’m greedy. I want both the books on the big screen.)

As for lead actors…well, I don’t know. The characters are so clear in my mind that it’s tough to put strangers’ faces to theirs. (Although I can’t help but think Hugh Jackman would make a perfect Tyler. 🙂 )

When you are not writing or reading, what do you enjoying doing in your spare time?

Um, what is spare time? I vaguely remember something like that in my pre-children life…

If you could ask readers anyone question, what would it be?

Darn, I only get one question?

Okay, here’s one I’d love to know the answer to:

As a reader do you openly tell your friends/family/colleagues that you read erotic romance?

***Leave a comment for a chance to win a download e-book from Jess’s backlist.***


17 Responses

  1. […] if you’re interested, hop on over to Greta’s blog and check it […]

  2. Hey Jess! Great interview Greta.

    As for your question, yes my family knows. Of course I was reading romance in middle school!

    I just let my mom *gasp* yes my mom, read my first steamy book. I told her I didn’t want her to read it because it had sex, but she did the mom thing and guilted me into it! lol

    I’m very open with family. lol

  3. Greta – wonderful interview! Jess – you rock! Your books are fantastic.

    Yes, I tell people I read erotic books. Hey, at least I READ something! Most of the people who ask me don’t even know what a bookstore is, so pffft on them! LOL


  4. Great interview! I can’t wait for the upcoming books as I have loved your other books.

    As for the question, my immediate family knows I read (a lot) and I guess what I read so I don’t really keep it a secret (I have been reading romances since I was in my early teens and I have a blog devoted to the genre). But even though I don’t intentionally hide it from anyone, I have found that my reading choices aren’t topics of conversation that come up that often in my “real” life (AKA non-online life). But if anyone asks, I’ll tell them.

    I do have to be careful with covers around the nephews and nieces though (and other family members who I know are uncomfortable with them).

    But I figure that there are worse things I could be doing than reading and if it makes me happy and doesn’t hurt anyone then it shouldn’t matter what I read.

  5. Great interview!! Thanks Jess!
    As for your question. My husband knows and I have a couple of friends who know. If I feel that they would be *ok* with it, I will tell them. I guess it is the people who are comfortable talking about sex with me that know my erotica desire 😉 Those who don’t talk with me, are kept in the dark.
    Natasha A.

  6. I’ve been reading romance stories for over 40 years, but the fact that they are erotic romances I keep to myself, as my little secret, lol.

  7. Hi there

    JJJ- you let your mom read your book? Gasp. My mom is still asking, and I am still saying no!

    V- LOL. Knowing you I can’t imagine you’d hide the fact. Besides, you create book covers for just such books!

    Jennifer – thank you. 🙂 Yep, I have to be careful around my niece and nephew also. They’ve reached an age where they will understand I don’t just write regular romance stories. ave to keep what I do well hidden from them.

    Natasha – i think you hit the nail on the head. There aer people you know who will be comfortable with the topic, and people who won’t. I guess it’s just a matter of discretion on our part. (Although sometimes I like to tell people what I write for pure shock factor. LOL)

    Cathy – I understand! Took me a long time to open up and tell people, yes I read erotic romance. I’m still surprised by people’s perceptions of “those kind of books.”

    Thank you so much for answering my question,


  8. Good luck on the 3 WIPs!

    I LOVED Sweet Dreams! They were awesome.

    Everybody that knows me knows that I only read romance-the hotter the better. It is only since I have been reading online blogs that I realized that there is suppose to be a stigma attached to reading romance. I have never found this. Lucky me I guess-not that I would care anyway. lol

    I read erotic romance and I am proud! 😀

  9. Great interview! First off – I disagree about love triangles being too controversial. Some of my favorite stories involved a triangle.

    Most people know I read alot. Only family and some friends know I read romances. Only a handful of them know I read erotica.

    Usually the topic of my reading erotic books is lead into either by accident or slowly. One coworker mentioned a friend’s husband giving her an Ann Rice book. When I asked which one. She said *Not a vampire one* . Since I knew of, and owned the books myself, we talked about them.

    Another coworker mentioned she read. Again, I asked what. She hesitated and I broke in with, I read romances. We went from coworkers to great friends just because of books.

  10. I absolutely adored both Photo Opportunity and Ask Adam. Can’t wait to read the new books! Samhain does such a beautiful job with the covers, too. Gorgeous!

    I can totally relate to the whole testosterone thing, too. And sympathize. Even down to the dog.


  11. Darn, I spelled testosterone wrong in my blog address. But well, you get the idea, LOL!!! That’s what I get for not proofreading!

  12. Hi! Another great interview, the Circle of Friends series sounds great. I love to complicated stories and see how the writer makes me care what happens in the end.

    I read a lot, mostly romances and my family knows that I read erotic romance and so does anyone who ask, but it doesn’t come up much in – in person conversations.

  13. Hi Joy – Yay, another sweet dreams fan. Do you remember “PS I love you”?

    Linda – I’m glad to hear you like love triangles. I hope you enjoy Only Tyler. 🙂 Hmm, it’s funny how we have to tread so carefully into discussions about erotic romance. But once we find another person who reads them, well there is that instant, undeniable bond.

    Lori – I am so glad you enjoyed Photo Op and Ask Adam. You just put a big smile on my face. 🙂 Just spent a little while browsing your blog. AAARRRGGGHHH? Is that what’s in store for me?

    Rhonda – if you read Only Tyler, and care about the characters, then I will know I have done my job well. It’s everything an author could ask for…. especially an author who writes sequels, containing all the characters from the first book. 😉


  14. Great interview! Only Tyler sounds great! I do tell my friends I read erotica books.

  15. Wow, you sound like a ball of fire when it comes to plans for writing this year. Good for you!

    I’m looking forward to reading the Circle stories. My hubby knows I read ’em. He read my story but I don’t think he’ll read anymore. Too much romance, not enough people shooting things…

    I’m trying to find a way to convince my parents they don’t want to read my books, Mom because they’re too hot for her and Dad because, well, just because I don’t want my DAD to read my stuff.

    Lol. Funny, isn’t it?

  16. Hi Greta, Hi Jess! Thanks for sharing lots of neat info about yourself Jess. Loved Ask Adam, and I think it’s great you went with your instincts and are sharing the Circle of Friends stories with your readers. My husband is my best friend, and I’ve been sharing tidbits of my reads with him – reading them aloud puts a very different spin on them!

  17. Thanx Amy
    It sure is nice to hear you’re open about the books you choose to read. 🙂

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