It is my pleasure to interview Jackie Ashenden, author of Talking Dirty With the Player. Welcome to Room With Books, Jackie!
First let me give you a little background on Jackie.
Jackie has been writing fiction since she was eleven years old. Mild mannered fantasy/SF/pseudo-literary writer by day, obsessive romance writer by night, she used to balance her writing with the more serious job of librarianship until a chance meeting with another romance writer prompted her to throw off the shackles of her day job and devote herself to the true love of her heart – writing romance. She particularly likes to write emotional stories with alpha heroes who’ve just got the world to their liking only to have it blown wide apart by their kick-ass heroines.
She lives in Auckland, New Zealand with her husband, the inimitable Dr Jax, two kids, two cats and some guppies (possibly dead guppies by the time you read this). When she’s not torturing alpha males and their stroppy heroines, she can be found drinking chocolate martinis, reading anything she can lay her hands on, posting random crap on her blog, or being forced to go mountain biking with her husband.
1. Tell me a little about Talking Dirty With the Player and what inspired you to write it?
When I sold my first book to Entangled – Talking Dirty with the CEO – I was asked to make it a series. My editor suggested maybe a sports hero – much to my annoyance since I don’t like sport much! But then I thought about it and as the books are all set in Auckland, New Zealand, I decided I could do a rugby player since that’s our national game. Plus Judith, the heroine, didn’t know anything about rugby either which made Caleb perfect for her.
2. When you start writing do you have the story outlined or do your characters dictate what will happen?
Nope, I never know what’s going to happen. The characters totally take the ball and run with it (see what I did there?? Rugby…ahem…even if it’s to somewhere I don’t want them to go!
3. Have you ever had arguments with your characters and who usually wins?
Sometimes I wish my heroes wouldn’t make the decisions they make. But I usually let them go for it since once I start pulling them back the story starts to suffer (and my critique partner yells at me).
4. What is one thing about you your readers would be surprised to know?
I can quote Star Wars, A New Hope, verbatim? Although that’s not all that surprising if you know me…
5. If you could write with any other author who would it be any why?
I would write with my critique partner, Maisey Yates. Because we have similar processes and enjoy messing with the heads of our characters.
6. When you were little, what did you want to be when you grew up?
I totally wanted to be a writer. It’s true. I did.
7. When you decide to write, what prompted you to start?
I’ve been writing since I was a kid (I’m not tell you how long ago that was) and I used to write romances in my spare time. I wrote about eight of them over a twelve year period (one of them was 300,000 words long!!) and as I was finishing it, I happened to meet a real live and published romance author. She encouraged me to just send something to a publisher and so I did. Took me five years to get published, but I got there in the end!
8. What music, if any, inspires your writing?
I used to listen to music while writing when I was younger but these days I find I have to have silence. Otherwise I start writing down lyrics instead of the dialogue. But listening to angsty music does put me in the mood to write I have to say.
Fun Facts about Jackie Ashenden:
What is your favorite breakfast? Waffles!! Or pancakes!!
What is your favorite color? Purple
What is your favorite movie? Bah. I don’t have just one. Ummmm…Star Wars!
What is your dream car (details please)? As long as I have my own personal chauffeur, I don’t care.
How can our readers find you?
And where can they purchase your books:
Up-and-coming photographer Judith Ashton is pretty sure she has everything in her life under control. That is, until a blast from the past comes back to taunt her, in the shape of Caleb Steele, her older brother’s best friend…and the man who broke her heart eight years ago. Their chemistry is combustible, but she’s been fooled once by this player, and she’s not going there again. To pro rugby player Caleb, Judith has always been his Kryptonite. But his former playboy lifestyle is the last thing she wants to be involved in. In the midst of her brother’s threats to back off, and the deal of his career sending him far away from her, he knows he’s playing with fire. And this is one game he’s going to lose.
Here is an excerpt from Talking Dirty With the Player:
His smile widened and Judith had to remind herself that she was now immune to its lethal charm. Completely immune. “Oh don’t be like that,” he said. “You missed me. Admit it.”
“Yeah. Like I miss gonorrhea.”
One dark brow rose. “You’ve had gonorrhea?”
Judith sighed. He was all about the witty comeback. If that’s what you called wit. “Oh, shut up, Caleb.”
“See, this is what I’ve missed while I’ve been away. I say something then you say something, then I say something back and you end with ‘shut up, Caleb’. We always have such great, in-depth conversations.”
Still the same old Caleb. Patronizing, arrogant, and cocky as hell. They’d been friends once, a long time ago. And then more than friends. Until he’d broken her poor little teenage heart. She’d forgiven him for that, though; it had been years and years since their affair, after all.
Eight years to be exact.
Nevertheless a familiar feeling began to creep up on her. An antsy, irritated feeling. Like she’d brushed up against poison ivy. Okay, so she may have forgiven him. That didn’t mean he didn’t bug her on occasion.
Judith swallowed her irritation and maintained her usual calm-and-in-control expression. The one that seemed to exasperate him as much as his teasing arrogance exasperated her.
“Did you have something special you wanted to say?” she asked him in bored tones. “Or are you just here to be annoying?”
“Actually, I’m here to shoot you. Though, being annoying is always an added bonus.”
Jackie will be awarding a digital copy of Talking Dirty to the CEO and a $50 Amazon GC to a randomly drawn commenter during the tour. Follow the tour and comment; the more you comment, the better your chances of winning!
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