Shortly after she joined The Book Reading Gals Janon told me I needed to read Lorelei James Rough Rider’s series. So I got the first book, and then spent the weekend ignoring my children (who weren’t teenagers at the time) reading all the books in the series. I then moved on to her other books. In the space of a week I read everything by her I could get my hands on. When I saw she had a new series with NAL/Signet Eclipse I was excited, and what a great series it is.
That being said we’re super excited to welcome Lorelei to TBRG. We plan to ask her the hard questions.
TBRG: Welcome Lorelei to TBRG.
LJ: Thanks for having me—already suggestive, aren’t I?
TBRG: Are you ready for the hard questions?
LJ: Hit me.
TBRG: Are you adjusting to having a smart phone?
LJ: I love it. I still only have one email account on it, not my main account. No Facebook or twitter or Instagram. But I love the weather app and the Facetime with my girlies who don’t live here. And I found a great bartending app J
TBRG: Now that the hard questions are out of the way, are you ready for the easy ones?
LJ: Bring it on.
TBRG: Who has been the biggest influence on your writing?
LJ: Stephen King, Laura Ingalls Wilder, Sue Grafton, JD Robb and Margaret Mitchell.
TBRG: What is the one thing your readers would be the most surprised to know about you?
LJ: That I don’t own a ranch, a horse, or that my husband isn’t a cowboy and the only part of me that’s cowgirl is my collection of boots.
TBRG: Where is the one place you have always wanted to go, a place on your bucket list?
LJ: Greece, Australia and Japan. Wait, I was only supposed to pick one? See? I’m already knuckling under and getting confused from these hard questions <g>
TBRG: What was the first romance book that you read?
LJ: An excerpt in Good Housekeeping magazine called “The Night of the Hurricane” which was so…not Nancy Drew or Laura Ingalls Wilder!
TBRG: Who are some of your go to authors, and what are you reading right now?
LJ: Go to authors are: JD Robb, Kresley Cole, Dennis Lehane, Sue Grafton, Robert Crais, JR Ward. I’m currently reading nonfiction for research—boring, huh?
TBRG: If you weren’t writing and keeping us in books (thanks for that by the way), what would you be doing?
LJ: Who knows? That’s like a nightmare scenario for me because I don’t have a lot of other skills. In my dream world I’d be a yoga instructor.
TBRG: What is your guilty pleasure?
LJ: I think because of Facebook and twitter many readers know of my love of Oreos, peanut butter M&Ms, flavored vodkas, but my other guilty pleasure food wise? Almond milk. I have some every day and it’s the one thing I consume I don’t feel guilty about.
TBRG: Do you listen to music or have TV on in background when you’re writing? If you listen to music what’s on your playlist? If it’s TV what is on?
LJ: No music or TV or sound of any kind when I write. But when I’m in my car? Totally jamming to something fun. This week it’s been Earth, Wind and Fire, Godsmack, Audioslave, Pistol Annies and Luke Bryan.
TBRG: Are you a planner, a fly by the seat of pants or a combination of both?
LJ: A combination of both. The publishers I write for need to have more than a paragraph to know that I know where I’m going with a story before they’ll pay me for it, which is a valid point because oftentimes what sounds like a great idea isn’t and the only way to know that is to try and flesh it out. I don’t like writing synopses, but I do it. That said, I deviate from them greatly. I can’t plan for the surprises that pop up when I’m writing which is the fun/cool part of my job.
TBRG: How did you come up with The Blacktop Cowboys Series?
LJ: I was already writing the Rough Riders series, and I couldn’t get enough hot cowboys and the women who love them so I decided to do another series. These books focus on a group of friends from Muddy Gap, Wyoming, rather than one ranching family like the McKays in the Rough Riders series. So some of the books are set around that area in Wyoming and some of the books take place on the road—where the blacktop takes them. The titles in this series are more “standalones” titles than the Rough Riders western saga which takes place over several years and several books. So if a reader picks up the latest Blacktop Cowboys book they won’t be lost and need to have the backstory to enjoy the book.
TBRG: Tell us about Turn and Burn, the newest book in this series?
LJ: TURN AND BURN is a barrel racing term so it fits the story since Texas cowgirl Tanna Barker is a world champion barrel racer. She’s down on her luck after an injury and she’d working in Muddy Gap to try and get her head on straight. That’s where she meets August “Fletch” Fletcher, a veterinarian and friend of her friends. Fletch is in an odd place in his life, seeing all his buddies married off and as much as he’d like that, he’s too busy in his veterinary practice to take time to have a life. So even though the sparks fly between them immediately, they’re both used to relationships that last one night. Figuring out they want more from each other is the fun and poignant part.
TBRG: If Tanna and Fletch had to describe each other using 5 adjectives what would they be?
LJ: Sexy, funny, sweet, driven, thoughtful, raunchy
TBRG: What are you working on now?
LJ: I just finished BOUND, the 1st book in the new Mastered Series which debuts in January 2014 and I’ve started on UNWOUND, the 2nd book in that series which will release in March 2014. Then I’m working on DOCTOR FEELGOOD in the Wild West Boys series, that one is out in December, and then I’ll jump into book 6 in the Blacktop Cowboys series, HILLBILLY ROCKSTAR, which is scheduled for August 2014.
TBRG: We want to thank Lorelei for stopping by today and telling us a bit about her and this series.
LJ: Thanks for inviting me 🙂
Tanna Barker is a world champion barrel racer. But her personal life has been less of a success, and she’s feeling adrift. After her mother’s unexpected death, her father has remarried, and sold the Texas ranch she called home. Now a rodeo injury has left the restless spitfire holed up in Muddy Gap, unsure what her next move should be.
Until she meets her match in a wild, wild cowboy
Veterinarian August Fletcher has always put his job first. He’s never found a woman who could handle his on-the-road lifestyle. But when sassy, sexy Tanna blows into town, he finally finds the woman of his fantasies. And there’s something between them, but she claims she’s been burned by love ’em and leave ’em road dogs before. How can Fletch prove that he’s in it for the long haul, and that their sizzling relationship is better than winning any rodeo medal? It’ll take some sweet persuasion to convince Tanna that Muddy Gap is where she belongs
About the Author:
When New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Lorelei James is not squirreled away behind her laptop in the Black Hills of western South Dakota, she can be found reading, shootin’ her .22, watching the Professional Bull Riders tour, and running a kids’ taxi service, all in the guise of avoiding housework and rustlin’ up vittles. Visit her online at Visit her online at www.loreleijames.com, www.facebook.com/lorelei-james, and www.twitter.com/loreleijames.