Interview with JA Saare

Today I have the awesome JA Saare in the hot seat. Jaime is celebrating her newest release Dead Undead or Somewhere in Between. So grab a cup of coffee, sit down and get to know Jaime a little better.

How would you describe your writing style?
That’s a tough one. ;-) I would say that my writing is dark and gritty but contains romance, humor, and snark. As much as I love writing romance, I also love horror, blood, and carnage, so that usually plays a role in what I write.



What inspired you to start writing?
In the beginning it was a way to write something in which the werewolf was the sexy hero and the vampire, while beautiful, was the dangerous thing you didn’t want to cross at night. I’d had an idea for a story years ago but never sat down and put it to paper, so I had a general idea of what I wanted to create. What I didn’t know was that it would take on a life of its own and that I wouldn’t be able to stop.

Crimson Moon is one of those stories that created an itch I was unable to scratch. I figured once I was done, that was it. There was never any goal or plan to write more. It was only after I completed it that I started thinking about new stories, characters, and worlds
.


What is the best piece of advice on writing you’ve ever received?
When it stops being fun, stop, reevaluate, and get back in the groove. I’ve learned that as much as I love to write, promotion is a chore. When you are published you face things like promo, loops, chats, edits…the list goes on and on. During those times, the muse sometimes clams up and writing becomes a chore that you resent.

I’ve found that by allowing myself some space to write, lowering the expectations and having genuine fun, I can hear the voices of the characters better, and in some cases, advance the story I’m creating in ways I never would have conceived of otherwise.

That is so true and something I have to remind myself of often. What kind of goals to you set for yourself when writing? Word count? Page count?
I try not to focus on those things when I write. I just sit down, allow myself to let go, and write what comes. When I started, I had this strange compulsion to have “so many pages per chapter” but even then, I never worried about word count (aside from the finished product. Silly me thought everything had to be at least 90k+).

Who knows, maybe I should have one! I might speed things along.



Not always. : ) Do you listen to music while you write?
Always, always, always. I can’t write without it. Depending on what I’m working on, the music will change, but it’s always there.


Where were you when you heard your first book was contracted. What did you do?
My first contract experience might be different than most. The Wild Rose Press expressed an interest in my first story, Crimson Moon, but told me straight-up they wanted a sex scene. I was flattered they wanted the story, but I was also torn.

It took me a couple of months to come up with a compromise that worked for the story and I sent it in. Within a week, I got the acceptance email. It was an exciting time, but also stressful. I don’t know if it’s ever taken me that long to do a revision!



That first revision letter is a killer. Tell us about your newest release.
My newest release is Dead, Undead, or Somewhere in Between, a dark urban fantasy with a bit of romance. It’s told through the voice of Rhiannon, a tough-as-nails bartender working in a gentleman’s club in New York. Although she can see the spirits of the deceased, including the “twice dead” -- vampires who have died -- it isn’t an ability she wants or enjoys.

After a string of vampire disappearances in the area brings Disco -- a prominent vampire with a missing family member of his own -- to her bar, she is forced to start investigating the circumstances that have left them permanently dead, minus their hearts.

It’s a story that allowed me to embrace my dark and slightly macabre side, and the memory of writing it will always be a fond one.



And you know I loved it. Do you have anything in the works?
I have two releases coming in June (and possibly beginning of July depending on scheduling). The first is Crimson Moon, the first story in a trilogy, which will release at The Wild Rose Press on June 25th. The second, Crimson Sunrise, is currently under submission, so we’ll see how it goes. My second release, Eternity and a Day, is a paranormal/fantasy erotic romance and the first in a series which will release at Loose Id.

As for writing, I’m trying to wrap up The Renfield Syndrome (sequel to Dead), Omega Mine (an erotic paranormal romance), Dark Hunger on a Killing Moon (story following Eternity and a Day), and my newest urban fantasy, The Company of Wolves.

You know how it goes -- the muse is always busy, busy, busy!



That's a good thing. Who is your favorite character in your novels?
That would be Rhiannon, hands down. She’s the one character I relate to most and is so loud I can’t help but hear her. I can honestly say she is a joy to write, even when she’s at her worst.


If you could have lunch with one writer, who would it be?
One writer?? But there are so many great ones I’ve met along the way.

I suppose if I could pick one it would be Joey W. Hill. I’m sure people are tired of hearing me praise her glory, but she writes emotional scenes like no other. When I open one of her books, I know my heart is about to get ripped out, piece by piece, but take comfort in knowing in the end it will be put back together again.

I’d love to know about her process, how ideas develop in her mind, and how she manages to create such vivid characters. She’s amazing.



Where can we find you?
You can always find me on my blog: www.jasaare.blogspot.com , my website www.jasaare.com , or on Twitter http://twitter.com/JASaare

Okay, now for some personal questions.

Have you ever had a one-night stand?
That would be a yes. Back in my wild and crazy days I took the plunge with this sexy man who was visiting from South Africa. I met him in a dance club I was at with some friends. We flirted, chatted a bit, and…well, you do the math! The accent was the proverbial nail in the coffin, but it didn’t hurt that he was crazy sexy.


Crazy sexy is always good. ; )What is the craziest or most unusual place you’ve had sex?
I can’t believe I’m telling you this, but… okay, when I was eighteen and dating my high school sweetheart, we got it on in a public pool while on spring break in Florida. We were in the corner, in plain sight of everyone, which made it all the more devious and exciting.


Ah the public pool. That is daring. What would you consider a romantic date?
Before I got married I’d say a game of pool, a few drinks, and a walk in the park. Now I’m just grateful to get dinner, a movie, and a night alone with my husband!


If you could take a date anywhere in the world, where would it be?
Since my hubs is an Italian, I’d love to take him for dinner in Italy!


I love Italy. Best olive oil in the world. What is the best pick-up line someone has ever tried on you? Did it work?
Once someone told me, “Your legs must be tired, because you’ve been running through my mind all night.

No, it didn’t work. *laughs*



What is your favorite thing to eat?
It’s not a food but I’m addicted to Sam’s Choice Cola. ;-)

What is your favorite color?
Red

What is your favorite time of day?
After dark, definitely.

That doesn't suprise me. What is your favorite flower?
The African violet.

What is your favorite season?
The fall.

I love the fall too. The colors especially. If you could have any car, which would it be?
A 1969 Oldsmobile 442 big block engine, painted cherry red with black leather bucket seats.

Who is your favorite actor?

James McAvoy

Who is your favorite actress?
Sarah Michelle Gellar (yes, I was and remain a Buffy fan).
Who is your favorite band or singer?
I’m pretty sure I’ve said this before somewhere. ;-) That would be Trent Reznor AKA Nine Inch Nails.

What is your favorite song?
I can’t name just one, I just can’t! ;)

What is a movie you could watch over and over?
I’ve seen Gone With The Wind over two dozen times, so I’d have to say that’s a safe bet.

What is your favorite non-alcoholic drink?
Sam’s Choice Cola, baby. ; )

What is your favorite alcoholic drink?
Wood Chuck Apple Cider on tap. So yummy!


Blurb:
One bad corpse can ruin your whole day. No one knows that better than Rhiannon Murphy. She’s left behind the flash and sass of Miami for the no-nonsense groove of New York City, eager for a clean slate and a fresh start. A bartender by trade, a loud mouth by choice, and a necromancer by chance; she’s managed to keep her nifty talent hidden from those around her – until now.
The deliciously good-looking vampire Disco knows her secret, and when he strolls into her bar to solicit help investigating the mysterious disappearances of his kind from the city, she discovers he’s not the kind of person that appreciates the significance of the word no.
But in a world where vampires peddle their blood as the latest and greatest drug of choice, it’s only a matter of time before the next big thing hits the market. Someone or something is killing vampires to steal their hearts, and unlike Rhiannon, this isn’t their first stroll around the undead block.

Excerpt:
I took my time walking down Goose’s street. Brooklyn Heights was a nice area and relatively safe to wander on your own. It was quiet, a few people walking across the street in the opposite direction. I unwittingly drifted into Never-Never-Land, combining thoughts about my past, present, and future. Things didn’t turn out the way I thought, and I wasn’t sure how I’d reached this point. But now that I was here, I didn’t know what to do or what to expect.
I thought of Disco and that wrenching sensation of being torn in two overwhelmed me, something that happened each time I pictured his face or those heavenly golden blue eyes. I had never been so conflicted in my life. Normally I knew exactly where I stood in situations, but not so much anymore. The black and white areas that governed my decisions just took on a huge middle ground of grey.
My daftness proved to be my undoing yet again. I thwacked into an older woman with her mixed breed ankle biter, our shoulders knocking each other off course. I took the "watch where the fuck you’re going" in stride, nodding and muttering a half-assed apology, eager to get downwind of the Icy Hot wafting off her body and into my nose.
I closed my eyes and groaned when I heard chuckling. Disco was gentleman enough to laugh out loud instead of startling the piss out of me, but it didn’t erase the fact he was laughing. Being humiliated always made me cranky.
“You do have a short attention span,” he teased, and I glanced up.
He was waiting on the stairs, eyes sparkling in amusement. Dear God, would I always find ways to look like an asshole in his presence?
I was grateful I’d decided to make the extra effort with my appearance because he had too. He was dressed in his color of choice, but the shirt was a nice long sleeve button down, the collar open around his throat. His dress slacks were a matching black and his trench coat was gone. He’d also left his honey blond hair unkempt and I worried he’d read my mind the night I thought about just how amazing it made him look.
“Laugh it up,” I sighed.
He was busy taking me in, starting at my feet and working his way up. He approved of my change of attire and wanted me to know it, taking his time and allowing his eyes to linger. I shifted my face away, annoyed by my awkwardness.
“You look delectable.” He used his uncanny speed to close the distance between us. I didn’t have time to contain a quiet gasp. My face jolted upward from his shirt to his face. Meeting his eyes, I was utterly transfixed by the shifting colors. “I’m going to buy an entire wardrobe consisting of things just like this for you.”
How do you respond to a remark like that? I had no clue, and at the present moment, I didn’t care. His close proximity made me remember that heat I experienced on the couch in his foyer, and this time I couldn’t completely fault the blood. I was attracted to Disco whether I wanted to be or not, and he knew it. The smart thing to do would have been to back away, but I didn’t want to. That grey area expanded, melding black and white together until there was no concept of right or wrong.

10 comments:

Kelly A. Harmon said...

Dead Undead or Somewhere in Between truly rocks. If you haven't picked it up, you should! It's a real page turner. I couldn't put it down.

TaraLeigh said...

Jaime, what a great intv!
I'm with you, girl---LOVE the tunes when I'm writing.

Looks like I'll have to pick this ebook up, it looks great. And Cari can't say enough about you. ;)


T

J.A. Saare said...

Lynne!! Thanks for having me! :) I loved the questions (even if I provided TMI!).

Kelly ~ I'm so glad you enjoyed Dead. Blood Soup is coming soon in the mail for me to read. Can't wait!

Tara ~ Cari can't say enough about you (really, she loves ya!). I hope you like Dead! ;)

Cecile said...

Oh wow, great interview ladies!
Lynne, thanks for having Ms. Saare over. I have seen her book circulating the blog and great things are being said. So thanks for having this interview.. so that we can learn just a little more about her!
Have a great Friday!

Helen Hardt said...

Jaime, always great to see you, and Lynne, great interview!

Kaye Manro said...

What a great interview! I so enjoyed it. It's nice to see your writing process, Jaime.

J.A. Saare said...

Cecile ~ It's nice to meet you too! *wave*

Helen ~ CG again on your great review! Thanks for saying hi!

Kaye ~ Always love talking to you. My process is changing... so I just hope I can continue doing what I enjoy!

Cari Quinn said...

Fun interview, Jaime and Lynne! Very eagerly awaiting The Renfield Syndrome. Oh, and music's a constant for me, too.

And yeah, I love all you gals, Lynne too. :)

Lynne Roberts said...

Hi Everyone! Sorry I was MIA. I decided to take a needed mommy break. (where I was just mommy for an entire day) Cleaned house, volunteered at the preschool's Easter egg hunt and made brownies.

Fun stuff. : )

Jaime is awesome and so is DUSB! Thank you all for commenting.

Kaily Hart said...

Great interview! Loved the blurb.