July is hot, hot, hot and we have some very HOT authors with us, like Ms. Jenna Bayley is here today to talk about her book Just One Spark, and a little about her self. Coffee Time wants to take this time to welcome Ms. Jenna Bayley-Burke.
First Jenna, could you please tell us a little bit about yourself?
Hi everyone! I’m a domestic engineer, romance novelist, cookbook author, freelance writer, recipe developer, and freebie fanatic. I hide out in the Pacific Northwest with my high school sweetheart and our two blueberry eyed baby boys, who all have me wrapped around their little fingers.
"Just One Spark" is a terrific debut novel. Can you tell me what inspired this story?
A song. I’d been writing romance novels forever, but never got around to finishing one. After a medical scare in 2004, I realized I wanted to be a published romance novelist, but no one publishes unfinished novels. To get a draft finished I signed up for National Novel Writers Month, and drafted the story in November of 2004. Some of the elements came from discussions with my local writing group – the kiss, the stalker, the hairless dog…and the penguins!
When Mason meets Hannah for the first time, the Laundromat scene had me laughing out loud. Another favorite scene of mine is Hannah's name for her vibrator. Does your sense of humor shine in your work? Do you tend to write stories with humor in them?
I like to read quirky things, so I write that way. When you write a book you have to read it at least 100 times, so best to have bits in there that make you giggle no matter how many times you read it.
When did you start writing? And how long did it take you to get published?
I’ve always written, but I never pushed for publication in fiction until Just One Spark. Draft to publication was just a year and a half. But there are eleven other novels in pieces on my hard drive that clamor for recognition.
I think most writers tend to be avid readers also. Can you tell me your favorite genres and some of your favorite authors?
Favorites are overrated! There are so many great stories out there. In college I was in love with classics like Austen, Eliot, & Dickens. I’ll read anything, but category romance is my favorite. I’m pressed for time and like my stories concise and packed with emotion.
Do you feel that the type of books you like to read has encouraged the type of books you want to write?
I read a lot of category, and always have, so I think my story arcs follow that pattern. But non-fiction influences me as well. For my December release, Cooking Up A Storm, I was inspired by cookbooks. I read cookbooks like people read novels.
How does your family feel about your writing? Is there someone special that encourages your career and gives you the inspiration you need?
My husband likes that I am able to have a fulfilling career and still be at home with our boys. My oldest son likes to tell his preschool friends I write books, big ones. That cracks me up.
Is there a certain genre that you haven't tried writing but would like to?
I have a Regency percolating…but fun contemporary will always be my favorite. I’ve considered a relationship novel…but every time I try I swing it back to romance.
When you aren't writing, what do you like to do in your spare time? Any special hobbies?
As a SAHM, writing is what I do in my spare time. The boys and I love to walk to the park, hike, and go to the beach. I also develop recipes for magazines. My recipes have been featured in Cooking Light, Sunset, and I won Better Homes & Gardens Prize Tested Recipe contest in 2006.
I see on your website that "Cooking Up a Storm" has sold and will be out in December. Congratulations! Can you tell us a little bit about this book?
In a nutshell - Mr. Buttoned Uptight needs a caterer and a girlfriend and decides to multi-task.
What are your plans for the future? And special works in progress that we should be watching for?
I’m working on more stories for Modern Extra with Mills & Boon. I think the stories I dream up are a natural fit for the new line of fun, flirty romances.
Can you give the readers your website?
I’m at www.jennabayleyburke.com
Thank you so much Jenna! Another fantastic interview with one your favorite authors! Coffee Time Romance wants to Thank Ms. Bayley for taking time to chat with us and let her readers know more about her. Thank You Ms. Bayley!
Interviewer for Coffee Time Romance