Interview with Jennifer Macaire

 

welcome-paradise

Where do you hail from and what do you love most about your hometown?

my dad was in the marines and my mom was a teacher – and they both worked for the military so we moved around a lot, going from NY where I was born, to California, to Samoa, to the Virgin Islands, where I went to high school. I graduated and moved to NYC where I started modeling and landed a job in Paris, where I shared an apartment with my friend Andie MacDowell, and where I met and married my husband! He plays polo, and after living in England, Argentina, and Florida, we moved back to France where we raised our three children. Because of all that travel, I don’t feel as if I have a home town! It could be St. Thomas in the Virgin Islands, or Kinderhook, New York – a tiny town near the state capital, Albany, or it could even be Paris! I guess for me, home is where the heart is – and that is wherever I am!

 

As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up? 

I wanted to be a vet, and take care of animals. Life decided otherwise, when I graduated high school and decided to try modeling for a while to earn money for school. I ended up falling in love with a polo player and living out of a suitcase for fifteen years! 

 

Tell us about your latest book.  

My most recent book is a YA contemporary romance called “Welcome to Paradise”, and I really love this book. It’s set in Saint Thomas, where I grew up, and makes me dream of white, sandy beaches, turquoise water, and palm trees! I hope I hear from readers about it!

http://www.evernightteen.com/welcome-to-paradise-by-jennifer-macaire/

 

Is there anything you find particularly challenging about writing?

Everything is challenging! I’m dyslexic and thank goodness for spell check! But I love  writing and I love telling stories. I used to make up bedtime stories for my sister and brother, and then when my children were born, I’d tell them endless stories. I was writing from a very young age – I wrote my first book, “Tafy the Wunder Hors”, when I was just seven. Oddly enough, it never got published, lol.

 

What advice would you give to writers just starting out?

Read a lot, get a good beta reader, join a writer’s group, but most of all, have fun.

 

Do you ever suffer from writer’s block? If so, what do you do about it?

It usually happens when I’m overtired or stressed, so getting some rest and taking care of whatever problem is bothering me usually does the trick.

 

Who is your favorite author and why? 

Ray Bradbury has always been my favorite because of his beautiful prose and wonderful storytelling.

 

What books have most influenced your life?

There are almost too many to list – but to give a few: To Kill a Mockingbird, Where the Red Fern Grows, Black Beauty, A Once and Future King, I sing the Body Electric, Slaughterhouse Five, The God of Small Things, Leaves of Grass, The Golden Notebook, Something Wicked This Way Comes…I could go on and on!

 

How did you deal with rejection letters?

I won’t say they don’t affect me – I hate getting rejections, anyone does, and I’ve had my share! I guess I try to put them behind me though, and it helps that writing is such a subjective art; what is one man’s meat is another man’s poison and all that! What is important to me is not to let the rejection letters stop me from trying. Perseverance  really is important.

 

What tools do you feel are must-haves for writers?

A good spell checking program is important. My personal writing must-have is a slim book called “The Elements of Style” by William Strunk. My father gave me my first copy when I was about 12, and I’m now on my third copy – and I just bought one for my  daughter. It is an amazing book that any writer can learn from.

 

Where do you as an author draw the line on gory descriptions and/or erotic content?

It depends on what kind of book I’m working on. I write erotic romance, so I don’t hesitate to write hot if the story calls for it. I don’t like gratuitous violence, so I won’t write it into my books, and the sexy parts have to go with the plot and the characters. I don’t just write it in to be titillating.

 

What’s the weirdest thing you’ve ever done in the name of research?

I don’t know if this counts as weird – but in order to get things right, I will contact people who can help me. I have written to historians and specialists, and once I called the chief of police in Paris so he could explain how the chain of command worked in France for a murder case. We had a lot of fun discussing different cases, and he told me about one case he’d worked on in connection with the US police – fascinating stuff!

 

Don’t forget to give us links to your website etc.

Email: jennifermacaire@gmail.com

Twitter: @jennifermacaire

Website/blog: http://www.jennifermacaire.com

Amazon author page: http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=ntt_athr_dp_sr_1?ie=UTF8&field-author=Jennifer+Macaire&search-alias=books&text=Jennifer+Macaire&sort=relevancerank

Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/271874.Jennifer_Macaire

WELCOME TO PARADISE

 

JENNIFER MACAIRE

 

Blurb:  Growing up on an island paradise isn’t as easy as one might think. Sugar is infatuated with the boy next door, worried she won’t make the cheerleading squad, and even more worried that she will. She is paranoid that because of the horrendous scar on her face, no one really expects her to succeed at anything. Her sister is smart, her mother is a legendary model, and her father is a famous artist. Her family’s success sets a high bar for her to live up to.

 

 

 

Everything changes for Sugar when a plastic surgeon removes her scar. The surgery makes her beautiful, but she makes the shocking discovery that being beautiful can be awful. When she finally discovers who she is, and what she wants from life, it nearly destroys her tightly knit family. She must confront abuse, an elopement, loss, and a secret her father has kept from her all her life. Sugar is struggling to pull everything together and find her own version of ‘Happily Ever After’.

 

 

 

Author Bio: Jennifer Macaire lives in France with her husband, three children, & various dogs & horses. She grew up in upstate New York, Samoa, and the Virgin Islands. She graduated from St. Peter and Paul highschool in St. Thomas and moved to NYC where she modelled for five years for Elite. She went to France and met her husband at the polo club. All that is true. But she mostly likes to make up stories. http://www.jennifermacaire.com/

 

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Interview with K.D. Van Brunt

win-ringsWhere do you hail from and what do you love most about your hometown?

I was born in La Mirada, California, but we moved around southern California a lot, so I consider the entire LA area my hometown.  What I love most is the weather, the beaches, the restaurants, and that it’s not New York.

As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?

A policeman or a rockstar.  I sure missed those by a mile.

Tell us about your latest book.

Win the Rings is a story with a girl heroine who is a tough fighter in the tradition of the great YA tough girls we all love.  She’s stuck in a rather hellish situation she’s desperate to escape from, and when offered a deal, she jumps at it, even though she’s going to have to hurt people that don’t deserve it.  If I had to invent a genre name for it, I would call it YA urban dystopia—a marginalized group of people forced to live in a frightening social setting, but within our current world.

Do you have anything new in the works and can you tell us a bit about it?

Win the Rings is part of a three book series.  Book two is done, so now I’m trying to finish book three.  Also, I’m about half way through a new adult sci-fi book that takes place in America 120 years in the future, after we have fought a second civil war.

Is there anything you find particularly challenging about writing?

Everything.  But seriously, my biggest challenge isn’t getting the first draft down on paper, it’s forcing myself to then go back and edit and revise that draft.  That’s always a tough slog for me.

What advice would you give to writers just starting out?

Start writing every day.  Like exercise, you get better the more you do it.  Also, read.  If you’re not a good reader, you’re not going to be a good writer.  Finally, don’t go it alone.  Find others who will read and critique your work and inspire you to keep going.

Do you ever suffer from writer’s block? If so, what do you do about it?

Oh yes.   I put in my earbuds, pull up my special writing playlist, and I take long walks.  So, if you happen to be in DC and you see this guy walking for hours around the city talking and gesturing to himself, that could be me trying to work through and block out the next scene.

Who is your favorite author and why?

That’s a tough one.  It’s changed over the years.  Currently, I’d probably say the late Robert Jordan.  His Wheel of Time series is epic.  I find his world building and character development awe-inspiring.

What books have most influenced your life?

In no particular order:  Lord of the Rings, Middlemarch, Pride and Prejudice, Asimov’s the Foundation Trilogy, and the Wheel of Time series.

How did you deal with rejection letters?

Unfortunately, rejection is part of this business.  When I get a rejection letter that really stings the first thing I do is remind myself that it’s not personal and I can’t take it personally.  Second, I try to keep it in perspective.  It’s just one person’s opinion, and often the person hasn’t actually read the work he or she is rejecting.  Third, I immediately open my laptop and start writing on my current project—you know, if you get thrown off the horse, immediately get back on thing.

What tools do you feel are must-haves for writers?

A good playlist, a thesaurus/dictionary, a quiet place to work, and someone to encourage you to keep at it when you want to throw your laptop across the room and give up.

Where do you as an author draw the line on gory descriptions and/or erotic content?

Good question.  For me, drawing the line depends on the particular scene and genre I’m writing in.  I try to avoid being gratuitous. If it’s not important to the plot and advancing the story, then I’m not going to dwell on the blood and body parts.   In terms of erotic content, in the YA world sex is like juggling a hand grenade.  It can blow up on you if you’re not careful, but you usually have to deal with it on some level since it’s such a big part of the teenage experience.  My general preference is to be suggestive, but not too descriptive; give the reader enough to bring them into the scene and then let their imagination do most of the work.

What’s the weirdest thing you’ve ever done in the name of research?

There’s a scene in the book where a gunman stalks into a Walmart, which I was having a hard time visualizing since I don’t shop at Walmart.  So, I went to the local store and stormed in with my hands formed like pistols, which I waved around the way I imagined my character doing.  The Walmart greeter and I had a special bonding moment: he thought I was practicing to be a mass murderer and I thought he was about to have a coronary on the spot.

Don’t forget to give us links to your website etc.

Details about me (twitter/facebook/etc) and my book, including bonus content, can be found at www.kdvanbrunt.com.

Thanks for having me.

Win the Rings by K.D. Van Brunt

Blurb:  Jace has been the property of the U.S. Army since they found out about her when she was five, and now she has become one of its most valuable weapons.  But Jace is not the only one of her kind. Gray is one too, but with the help of his sister, he has spent most of his sixteen years hiding from the Army.

Now, the Army has found out about Gray and they cannot allow him to roam free.  Operating on the theory that it takes one to catch one, Jace is send out with a special ops squad to hunt Gray down. But Jace is not the only one pursuing Gray, and the competition is after her too.  What ensues is a desperate chase through city after city as duty and honor collide with love and sacrifice.

Bio:

During the eight hours of the day when I’m not writing, reading or sleeping, I’m a lawyer in Washington, DC.  I grew up in Southern California, moved to Seattle before coming east to Boston to go to school.  Now, I live in the great state of Maryland with my wife, my dog—a standard poodle named Buffy (and who do you think named her?), and my hot Camaro.  One of the few things I like better than pizza is driving fast.  So, if you happen be in the DC area and a black Camaro with a red stripe and a rear spoiler roars by and blows your doors off…thaaat could be me.

Website: http://www.kdvanbrunt.com

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/KDVANBRUNT

Win the Rings - KD Van Brunt