Ask Jess Michaels discussion

Jess Michaels
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Ask Jess Michaels

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message 1: by Jess (new)

Jess Michaels (jessmichaelsbks) | 50 comments Mod
Let's have some fun! Ask me about writing, my books, what's coming up next, anything that comes to mind! I'll be answering ALL the questions!


message 2: by Lara (new)

Lara  (lalamrcds) | 3 comments Hi Jess! You've written both contemporary and historical romance. I've only read your historical romance novels...so far...but I find myself getting wonderfully lost in the whole production of the story that comes with historical romances. Do you find you favor one over the other (Contemporary v. Historical)?


message 3: by Jess (new)

Jess Michaels (jessmichaelsbks) | 50 comments Mod
Lara wrote: "Hi Jess! You've written both contemporary and historical romance. I've only read your historical romance novels...so far...but I find myself getting wonderfully lost in the whole production of the..."

Hi Lara,

I would say I like historical better, especially for romance. I love being lost in the time period and the rules of the Regency impact the characters so much more than a modern setting where that normally isn't true. It just leads to much more high drama for me as a writer.

Plus, I'll say that I have SO many ideas for historical romance. :) So I write where the ideas take me.

Jess


message 4: by Jmb (new)

Jmb | 2 comments I love your Regency period romances, but is there any other time period or place that appeals to you as a setting for a novel?


message 5: by Jess (new)

Jess Michaels (jessmichaelsbks) | 50 comments Mod
Jmb wrote: "I love your Regency period romances, but is there any other time period or place that appeals to you as a setting for a novel?"

Oh thanks! Regency technically stretches from 1811-1820, though the period labeled as Regency by most romances is about 1800-1830. I wouldn't mind maybe going into that later Regency period/early Victorian. I think the Edwardian period covered by Downton Abbey is also really fun.

What time periods have you guys not seen that you'd like to see?


message 6: by Jmb (new)

Jmb | 2 comments I think the period between the World Wars was one of great turmoil and social change (much like the Regency era was) and that is always interesting. Victorian is fun too because all the old rules are still in place but society is barreling toward the future (plus the women's clothing was amazing).


message 7: by Tammy (new)

Tammy | 1 comments Hi Jess,

I know you have book 1 of a new series coming in July. Can you give us any details and how many books will there be.


message 8: by Millie (new)

Millie (milliefromphilly) | 2 comments Of all the books you have read, who is your favorite character and least favorite character, and why?


message 9: by Jess (new)

Jess Michaels (jessmichaelsbks) | 50 comments Mod
Jmb wrote: "I think the period between the World Wars was one of great turmoil and social change (much like the Regency era was) and that is always interesting. Victorian is fun too because all the old rules ..."

Oh yes, that period between would be interesting to explore.


message 10: by Jess (new)

Jess Michaels (jessmichaelsbks) | 50 comments Mod
Tammy wrote: "Hi Jess,

I know you have book 1 of a new series coming in July. Can you give us any details and how many books will there be."


The new series is The Pleasure Wars Taken By the Duke. It's a very Romeo and Juliet set up about two families, at war for decades and the fall-out from it for three couples.

There are three books in the series. The first is Taken by the Duke, which comes out July 2. http://www.amazon.com/Taken-Duke-Plea...

Here is the blurb:

Amid all the lies and scandals that fuel Society’s gossip mill, one truth has stood out: House Rothcastle and House Windbury have always hated each other.

Lady Ava Windbury prays the feud will someday end, to no avail. One dreadful night, her brother accidentally causes the death of Christian Rothcastle’s sister, a tragedy that leaves both men maimed.

Consumed by grief, Christian makes a grim decision. He will kidnap Lady Ava so that her family will feel the pain of loss as keenly as he feels the loss of his own sister. But once he has Ava in his clutches, desire takes unexpected hold. Even more surprising, she willingly surrenders to his every sexual whim—after haggling over the terms of giving up her virginity.

Too late, he realizes she is using her body for peace, not war. But just as their affair of revenges turns into an affair of the heart, the past rears its ugly head to take matters into its own hands…

And I just contracted two additional series with Samhain so I'll have books out through 2015 at this point!


message 11: by Lara (new)

Lara  (lalamrcds) | 3 comments Although I really enjoy the Mistress Matchmaker series I absolutely LOVED the Albright sister series. Your cover for Taboo caught my eye while I was messing about on Amazon one day and when I saw it was part of a series I grabbed all the books. I am curious though, and it's something I've often wondered in the Romance genre but would the Albright series lean towards or be considered erotica? Sometimes that sub-genre is really obvious to me and then other times not as much. I wouldn't consider the Mistress Matchmaker series to fall into that category. I guess I'm curious where that distinction falls?


message 12: by Danielle (new)

Danielle (iqb2001) | 1 comments What are your favorite types of heroes and heroines to write about?

Is there anything specific themes you try to stay away from?


message 13: by Lara (new)

Lara  (lalamrcds) | 3 comments Jess wrote: "Lara wrote: "Hi Jess! You've written both contemporary and historical romance. I've only read your historical romance novels...so far...but I find myself getting wonderfully lost in the whole prod..."

Well keep them coming! I love what I've read so far and am extremely excited for the Pleasure War series. I've got my copy of Taken by the Duke per-ordered! :)


message 14: by Jess (new)

Jess Michaels (jessmichaelsbks) | 50 comments Mod
Millie wrote: "Of all the books you have read, who is your favorite character and least favorite character, and why?"

I tend to completely forget about characters I don't like. I got to a point where if I didn't like a book, I just stopped reading it. LOL So I don't really have least favorites.

But in romance, I'd say a favorite is Emily from Scandal by Amanda Quick. She so darn plucky, even though the hero in that book is very dark.


message 15: by Millie (new)

Millie (milliefromphilly) | 2 comments Jess wrote: "Millie wrote: "Of all the books you have read, who is your favorite character and least favorite character, and why?"

I tend to completely forget about characters I don't like. I got to a point wh..."


Actually, when I said "least favorite" I was thinking more along the lines of a villian or a mean character.


message 16: by Jess (new)

Jess Michaels (jessmichaelsbks) | 50 comments Mod
Lara wrote: "Although I really enjoy the Mistress Matchmaker series I absolutely LOVED the Albright sisteries. Your cover for Taboo caught my eye while I was messing about on Amazon one day and when I saw ..."

I would categorize all my Jess Michaels work as erotic romance. Erotica isn't neccesarily about the development of a relationship the same way romance is. So while I do have the sexy, I also always have the relationship development.


message 17: by Jess (new)

Jess Michaels (jessmichaelsbks) | 50 comments Mod
Danielle wrote: "What are your favorite types of heroes and heroines to write about?

Is there anything specific themes you try to stay away from?"


I do love those dark, broken boys. They tend to be a theme of mine. I also like heroines who may have a lot in life, but they work to pick themselves up. When I was writing Ava is TAKEN BY THE DUKE, I just loved her strength. She takes something that should destroy her and decides to make the best of it.

So far I haven't found a lot of themes I'm not willing to write if it fits the characters and their development. They end up dictating what happens in the story.


message 18: by Ezrah (new)

Ezrah (I Heart Romance) (mynameisezrah) In choosing names of your characters, where do you start looking? I know you have a mix of non-traditional and traditional period character names and I was wondering where you get your inspiration with character names from.


message 19: by Jess (new)

Jess Michaels (jessmichaelsbks) | 50 comments Mod
Zeee (I Heart Romance) wrote: "In choosing names of your characters, where do you start looking? I know you have a mix of non-traditional and traditional period character names and I was wondering where you get your inspiration..."

Naming is a difficult thing for me. I have almost 50 books now and I try really hard not to repeat names, so I have begun to run out of names that are or could be appropriate and aren't just awful. I have a book called

Names through the Ages and it's a great resource. I've also started to enjoy playing with http://www.ugoi.net/nonsense/name.html which is a name generator. It's a good starting spot.

Really, though, I've just got to feel like the name matches the character and fits the story.


message 20: by Maria (new)

Maria | 2 comments hi Jess. what you like more in beam writer?


message 21: by Jess (new)

Jess Michaels (jessmichaelsbks) | 50 comments Mod
Maria wrote: "hi Jess. what you like more in beam writer?"

Hi Maria,

I think by your profile that you are one of the Portugeuse fans! That is so exciting, I know Everything Forbidden was just translated there, a little out of order, eh?

There are so many great things about being a writer. I get to work from home and make my own schedule (though being your own boss often means you are constantly working, I probably work 70-80 hrs a week all told). I also get to enjoy what I do, since writing is just about my favorite thing ever.

But probably the best thing about writing is meeting readers either through email or other online outlets or in person. It always kind of confuses me when someone tells me what a fan they are. A fan of me? But I'm just a geek from Arizona...

So that's pretty fun! :)


message 22: by Suzanne (new)

Suzanne (suzieqsb) | 1 comments Hi Jess,

Have you thought about writing in a different genre! Like steampunk or using an exotic place like ancient Egypt in your books?

Suzie


message 23: by Jess (new)

Jess Michaels (jessmichaelsbks) | 50 comments Mod
Suzie wrote: "Hi Jess,

Have you thought about writing in a different genre! Like steampunk or using an exotic place like ancient Egypt in your books?

Suzie"


Actually my first novella, Ancient Pleasures from Red Sage Publishing, was set in Egypt. My second Aphrodite's Passion was set in Cyprus. But I don't really have an interest in going to another genre like steampunk. I've tried to read it and it strangely doens't hold my interest. Weird since I love that kind of stuff normally and am a Doctor Who fan and stuff.


message 24: by Isabel (new)

Isabel (isabelgrilo) | 2 comments Hi Jess!!!

I'm Isabel, and I want to say that I love your books!!! My favorite one is Taboo and Nathan is amazing :) Do you had a special man in mind when you wrote this book?


message 25: by Jess (new)

Jess Michaels (jessmichaelsbks) | 50 comments Mod
Isabel wrote: "Hi Jess!!!

I'm Isabel, and I want to say that I love your books!!! My favorite one is Taboo and Nathan is amazing :) Do you had a special man in mind when you wrote this book?"


Lots of time I'll start with an actor or actress when thinking about a hero/heroine just to get the features in my head. But honestly, it's been soooo long since I wrote Taboo, I don't remember who I first pictured as Nathan. Now it's a little easier to remember since I do Pinterest boards for each book. Cheating!!

Who do YOU picture?


message 26: by Teresa (new)

Teresa | 1 comments Hey Jess! If you get to a part in your book where the scene just isn't coming in to focus for you how do you get passed that place?


message 27: by Jess (new)

Jess Michaels (jessmichaelsbks) | 50 comments Mod
I tend to just write through. I'm a big plotter so I know where each scene needs to take me and I write toward that even if I feel like the writing is crap. I almost always hit a writing sweet spot after a few pages and then I'm fine. And what's funny is that scenes I struggled most with during writing are often scenes I like most when I got back after a few weeks of break to edit. Sometimes what you feel is bad is actually just getting hard emotion onto the page.


message 28: by Isabel (new)

Isabel (isabelgrilo) | 2 comments Jess wrote: "Isabel wrote: "Hi Jess!!!

I'm Isabel, and I want to say that I love your books!!! My favorite one is Taboo and Nathan is amazing :) Do you had a special man in mind when you wrote this book?"

Lot..."



Hi :)

When I think about Nathan, I picture something like this:

 photo ff28942d09fa197ed1d000ab7207bc99_zps6ea2d39c.jpg

Do you approve?


message 29: by Jess (new)

Jess Michaels (jessmichaelsbks) | 50 comments Mod
Yeah, yeah, I'll take that. LOL


message 30: by Lori (new)

Lori Meehan (lorimeehan) | 2 comments What do you do to relax or you just need to get away?


message 31: by Jess (new)

Jess Michaels (jessmichaelsbks) | 50 comments Mod
Sorry I didn't answer this sooner. Had a wedding to go to today, so was a little crazed. I don't have a lot of hobbies. I do like to hang out with my husband. We play video games or go for a walk/hike. We like to travel, too.

But I have to say that the thing that drags me out of my obsession with my job the most are my two nephews. At almost-3 and just-5, they pretty much demand Aunt Jesse's full attention, love and amusement. Which is a very good thing. There's nothing like a kid hug to let you know you are okay even if you didn't hit the USA Today or NYT Bestseller list.


message 32: by Lori (new)

Lori Meehan (lorimeehan) | 2 comments Totally agree with the kid hugs.


message 33: by Jess (new)

Jess Michaels (jessmichaelsbks) | 50 comments Mod
It's pretty much the best part of any day. :)


message 34: by Maria (new)

Maria | 2 comments Hi Jess (again)
How do you realized that being a writer was what you wanted to do for a living?

And, when you come to Portugal say hi to your portuguese fans? :)


message 35: by Jess (new)

Jess Michaels (jessmichaelsbks) | 50 comments Mod
I always wanted to write, but figured it would never be my career. Then when my husband got a great job at a big software company, he suggested that I try for it. So I started writing full-time straight out of collge and it's actually been my only "grown-up" job.

I'd love to come to Portugal! Wish I had the funds to do it. LOL


message 36: by Meredith (new)

Meredith Martinson (meme03) | 2 comments Hello Jess,
I was wondering if you had any book recommendations for me (either yours or any other authors books.

Thanks,
Meredith


message 37: by Jess (new)

Jess Michaels (jessmichaelsbks) | 50 comments Mod
Hmmm, well in my books An Introduction to Pleasure starts the Mistress Matchmaker series, so it's a good place to start. Or my July 2 release, Taken By the Duke starts my next series, The Pleasure Wars. All my books from Samhain are available in eBook and they come out as paperback about a year after their initial e-release.

As for others, I enjoy Lisa Kleypas a lot. I haven't been reading as much romance lately because I don't generally read what I write, but I'm trying to find a way to change that since I miss my romances.


message 38: by Cris (new)

Cris Bento | 1 comments Hi Jess, how much research do you do to write your historical romances and would you consider writing about a more recent time, like the 20s, for example?
And yes, a trip to Portugal? ;)


message 39: by Jess (new)

Jess Michaels (jessmichaelsbks) | 50 comments Mod
I've been writing in the Regency for a loooong time, so I end up doing spot research now. I don't think I'd want to write in a different time period at this point. I like the Regency! :)


message 40: by Leslie (new)

Leslie (chibilee02) Hi Jess! Just wondering if you do any research for your historical romances?


message 41: by Jess (new)

Jess Michaels (jessmichaelsbks) | 50 comments Mod
Hi Leslie,

Like I've said above, I've got a good basic knowledge of Regency period after writing so many books set there as both Jenna Petersen and Jess Michaels. But I do research on spot things and try to read research books to spark ideas and give myself greater depth when I write.

Jess


message 42: by Gail (new)

Gail Chianese (gailchianese) Hi Jess,
I know you've jumped the line a few times from one genre to another. Do you find it hard to make the switch (following new rules, promoting, getting readers to follow you, remembering your name)?


message 43: by Jess (new)

Jess Michaels (jessmichaelsbks) | 50 comments Mod
It's actually sometimes a relief to write something a little different, like a palate cleanser. But having multiple pen names is very difficult, since it's a lot of time and energy. That's why you'll notice there's no longer a dedicated Jenna Petersen page (jennapetersen.com takes you to a page on Jess Michaels) or Facebook or Twitter.

My Jesse books are different and have a different audience. I have a book out July 29 (The Monsters In Your Neighborhood) so I'm doing a little here and there for that, but right now my focus is on Jess Michaels erotic historical romance and my newest release tomorrow!!! (July 2)


message 44: by Gail (new)

Gail Chianese (gailchianese) Consolidation is a good thing. And a big congrats on your new release!


message 45: by Patrícia (new)

Patrícia (patyy) Hi Jess!

I only read two books of yours but in both I was surprised to find female characters so strong and no convencional and for what I see in Everything Forbidden of the three Albright sisters, all your female characters are different of what is usual. How you get the inspiration from them?

P.S. You're my favorite erotic romance author and we in Portugal will love to see you!=D


message 46: by Jess (new)

Jess Michaels (jessmichaelsbks) | 50 comments Mod
Well, the trouble with writing historical stories in a modern world is that I want my heroines to be sympathetic for a modern woman. So yes, they may be a little stronger than perhaps they could have been in truth, but I really have to like my heroines to write them. :) And I like strong women who can save themselves or their men if need be. Real love means saving each other.

And oh thank you so much! I'm so excited that the books are slowly being translated into Portuguese!! I hope my Samhain books will do the same.


message 47: by Patrícia (new)

Patrícia (patyy) Jess wrote: "Well, the trouble with writing historical stories in a modern world is that I want my heroines to be sympathetic for a modern woman. So yes, they may be a little stronger than perhaps they could ha..."

For me is perfect, I love your characters! An the best of your books is the fact that the women don't need a hero or a savior but a real lover and friend, what is much better.

We only have three books translated but I hope to have Penelope's book very soon because I'm so curious about it!


message 48: by Jess (new)

Jess Michaels (jessmichaelsbks) | 50 comments Mod
I know! They translated out of order for you guys. I hope they'll grab Penelope's book (I love that book) and then grab the Samhain books. :) Crossing fingers that will happen soon!


message 49: by Patrícia (new)

Patrícia (patyy) Exactly!! I have Beatrice's book here wainting for Penelope's! That will be an excelent idea. Do you like our covers? I love Taboo's, is gorgeous!


message 50: by Jess (new)

Jess Michaels (jessmichaelsbks) | 50 comments Mod
They are the BEST covers on any translation. So gorgeous.


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