Thursday, April 24, 2014

#TNTConfidential Author Interview to Jessica Jayne & In Flames

Happy Thursday, darlings!

I know some of you are still shivering under some lousy weather, but, worry not, I have the solution! Be prepared to get hot with In Flames by Jessica Jayne! She's celebrating her 1 year release anniversary and I've interviewed her to see what has changed since her sizzling novel came out...

Gracelyn Riley married a firefighter. She knew that came with risks. But she never imagined herself widowed in her early thirties with two children to care for on her own.

As a fireman, Matt Riley was at the scene when his brother, Chad, was killed. He suffered greatly from survivor’s guilt and depression after the accident.

The last year has been difficult for both Gracelyn and Matt. They’ve relied on each other to get through the tough times. With the anniversary of Chad’s death upon them, Gracelyn and Matt once again turn to each other for comfort and support. They find it in each other’s arms—and bed.

Will their desire for each other consume them? Can they overcome the guilt and scrutiny to find love again…together?

Available at:

Welcome to In A Dream Beyond, Jessica! I’m thrilled to have you here, celebrating 1 year since the release of In Flames! Looking back at the #TNTConfidential guest list, I discovered that a little after In Flames released you popped in for a visit and I interviewed you.  Now, the evil in me cannot help but go back and make a comparison so… 

Back in 2013 you said your favorite part of the writing process was watching characters come to life and your least favorite part was feeling stuck. Now, a year later with more published novels, do you still feel the same?
My favorite part of the writing process is definitely still the characters. They form in my head and I jot them down on the first available thing I can find. Once they are on “the list,” I just wait until they start talking in my head for their story to be told and I get to work. I find the process amazing. Even in those moments when I think I know exactly where the story or character is headed, they will surprise me. For instance, I started a short story with the aspiration to submit it for the Office Romance Anthology call for Evernight Publishing. I started writing it and the characters, Derek and Raina, didn’t want their story told in 10k words. Nope! I’m currently over 35k words and I’m still tapping it out. That’s just the way it works sometimes and I love it.
As for the worst part of the writing process for me, I’d have to say it is dealing with the technology. I’m not computer illiterate, but I’m also not a computer genius. I’ve learned my lesson the hard way (which is par for the course) to back everything up ten times. My computer acted up and spent a week in the shop. Then I had a thumb drive debacle that I’m still trying to iron out. Fingers crossed! I sometimes yearn… hahaha… for the days of paper! ;)

What do you do now when you get writer’s block?
In the past, I struggled with bouts of writer’s block and I found it so frustrating. I thought I had to be producing quality writing every step of the way and I’d be upset when crap came out or sometimes nothing at all. I was given the advice to just sit down and write. Write. Write. Write. Even if at the end of the day, I cut thousands of words that I wrote… I wrote something. That advice helped me forgive myself for less than perfect writing and it helped me push past the wall preventing the story from coming out.

What comes first, the characters or the plot?
That’s a good question. For me, it is the characters. An aspect of their story might come to me with the character, but the plot is rarely developed or flushed out. But I can clearly see the characters in the story and the potential conflict.

Did you have to do any research for when you wrote In Flames?
I did. Though I am a wife, I’m not a fireman’s wife, so I didn’t know the protocol of what happens when a firefighter is killed on the job. I had to research the titles and ranks of the firemen. I had to research a bit about the gear they have to wear on their calls. I even visited our local firehouse to get an idea of what the inside of firehouse looks like. Then I spent some time looking at the various Firemen Calendars across the world trying to find one that best depicted Matt Riley… for research purposes, I swear! ;)

What’s your favorite line of In Flames?
My favorite line from the book is when Matt says to Gracelyn “I’ve put out every kind of fire in my job, but I can’t put out this fire that is burning inside of me for you.”

I think it says a lot about their story. Gracelyn was married to Matt’s brother, who was killed on the job during a fire. No matter what their feelings for each other might be, it is hard to get around that fact. And for a good part of the book, Matt really struggles with this. A part of him wants to walk away from her because he feels doing anything else dishonors his brother. But he loves her. As we all know, love can be complicated.

In 2013 you wanted to travel to Ireland and England… has it happened? What was your most memorable trip in 2013?
 I have not made the trip to Ireland and England YET! But it is already on the agenda and in the planning stages for Summer 2015. You see, I have three children (ages 7,7, and 5) and my husband and I want to bring them. A year ago, we didn’t think they’d appreciate such a big trip overseas. This year, we already took the kids skiing and tubing in North Carolina. We have a summer road trip planned to Michigan, Ohio, Indiana and Kentucky. And my brother is getting married in December and the wedding is shaping up to be in Hawaii! 2014 is definitely looking FUN!

As for 2013, it was sort of weird year. We spent a week in a beach house on Anna Maria Island in Florida. We visited my sister in Atlanta. My husband and I took a long weekend in St. Augustine. And my grandfather, who was 101, passed away, so we had to travel back to Ohio to lay him to rest. We didn’t do as much traveling as we usually do. We were a bit more focused on visiting family. But, nonetheless, it was a memorable year.

**April Showers bring…**

What do April Showers bring?
April Showers bring out crazy drivers. When it rains in Florida, it quite literal pours. It comes down in sheets and your visibility is minimal. It’s best to stay off the road, if possible, because the nutty drivers come out when it’s raining causing accidents left and right. Of course, this could just be my frustration with all the snowbirds staying extra long in Florida because of the rough winter folks had up north! ;)
But April Showers also bring out the beautiful purple flowers on our Jacaranda tree in the front yard! :-)

A book to read this month— I finished the Bronze Horsemen trilogy this year by Paullina Simons. I absolutely adored these books. They are rich in romance, rich in history, rich in life. I would highly recommend all three! 

Raincoat or umbrella? - Umbrella

Do you like your handwriting?  I’m not particularly fond of my handwriting. Since going to law school and becoming an attorney, my handwriting has taken on the sloppy scribble usually attached to doctors! ;)

What are you listening to right now?
My husband bought this “café sounds” app for his iPhone and it sounds like I’m sitting in a café. Plates are clanging. People are talking. The blender runs making a Frappuccino. It’s pretty cool and for some reason I work really well with it.

Have you ever played an April Fool’s joke on anyone? What was it?
I did. I had my youngest in September 2008. (Nineteen months before that I had twins!) When April came around I went into my boss’s office and told him I was going to need to fill out the paperwork for another maternity leave because I was pregnant again. He about fell out of his chair. I was joking and we still laugh about it today! J

Thanks so much for having me again, Elyzabeth! It’s been a pleasure! And thank you for giving me the opportunity to talk a little about In Flames. With the one year anniversary of its publication right around the corner, I couldn’t help but reflect on the story. Faith, hope and love are some good things we’re given… but love is by far the greatest. In Flames is really about LOVE! 

About Jessica

I am a born and raised small town Ohio girl, who moved to the Sunshine State after graduating from college. I graduated with a bachelor's degree in English because I could not imagine doing anything else but reading and writing. It is such a pleasure to be able to share all the stories in my head!

In the journey of life, I got my law degree (and license) and also became a wife and a mother of three children. So, life is always an adventure.

I love to read and write... obviously! I’m a huge sports fan, especially college football and the Ohio State Buckeyes!  Go Steelers!  Go Rays! Go Lightning! I LOVE to travel... LOVE, LOVE, LOVE to travel. And I love sharing my love to travel with my children. Did I say I love to travel? I love to drink coffee in the morning and tea at night! I love a good glass of wine, especially if it comes from a bottle made by the FOOLS wine club… yep, I’m a founding member of that crazy group! 
J  I love hanging out with my family and my friends!  Music makes me happy. I’m a mix between country girl and city chic. But I love nothing more than putting on my jean shorts, tank top, cowboy boots and hat and watching Tim McGraw or Eric Church belt it out!  I’m a sucker for a cowboy hat! J

Favorite quote:  “If nothing ever changed, there would be no butterflies.”

Get in touch with Jessica at: 

Twitter: @JessicaJayne13


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