Storm Goddess Book Reviews proudly welcomes Paty Jager to the blog with an interview!
Tell me about yourself, and your writing.
I live in Central Oregon with my husband. We’ve been married thirty-three years and raised four children. We now have seven grandchildren who we try to see as much as we can when we’re not calving, haying, or irrigating. Our time is spent between seventy acres in the Central Oregon area and 280 acres in eastern Oregon where we raise alfalfa. Our dream is to eventually move to eastern Oregon.
I write because it is the best way for me to stay sane. Before I started giving conflict to characters in my books, I would envision all the worst case scenarios for my family members if they were on a trip or I hadn’t heard from them for a while. Once I directed that imagination into something as fulfilling as writing, I no longer fantasize bad things about my family.
How long have you been writing? How many published books do you have, and what genres?
I’ve been an avid reader my whole life and after seeing the power of the written word when an English teacher read my assignment about a historical character to the class and no one not even the class clown made a noise, I was hooked. My story was Joan of Arc’s point of view as she was being burned at the stake. While I didn’t go to college as an English or journalist major(my dad felt those were not money making occupations) I kept my love of writing alive and after I married, I took several writing classes through the local college and community ed programs. After one program, where the instructor beat over our heads to believe in our writing, I landed a job with the local paper as a freelance human interest reporter. With the encouragement of that job, I began to write novels and I sold my first novel in 2006 to The Wilde Rose Press a POD and ebook publisher of romance. They published ten of my books. Four are still with them. I have since had rights returned to some of them which I Indie published and have added five new releases to my Indie list. I like the ability as an Indie author to publish books as soon as they are ready—no waiting list—, I have full input on the covers, and I can price my stories so more people can afford to read them. I write historical western romance, contemporary western romance, historical paranormal romance, contemporary action adventure romance and will soon start a mystery series to add to the collection. The one thing in all my books that stays constant is either a western or Native American theme.
Do you write in multiple genres or just one? If just one, do you ever consider straying outside your genre? See above. Multi-genre.
Are you a plotter or do you write from the seat of your pants?
I’m a plantser. ;0) I do what I call stewing and brewing. Where I get an idea and work it around in my head coming up with a tighter premise and the main characters. Then I sit down and write a half to a full page about the hero and the heroine. Then I mull it around some more, run some scenes through my head and once I know the beginning of the book, a couple of turning points and the ending, I start writing and write toward the turning points and end.
What is a typical writing day like for you?
2-3 hours of internet promotion, 3-6 hours of writing. But the day starts with getting myhusband off to work at 6:30 am, then I get on the computer and do promotion until 8, then I eat breakfast and do outside chores. I come back to the computer at 9. If I have something like a blog tour or workshop I’m teaching coming up I work on those till noon, if I don’t have that I work on the WIP. I take an hour off at noon, to recharge and sometimes will go for a walk, or this time of year check to see if there are any new calves. I’m back at the computer by 1pm and write until 4. Make dinner, feed hubby and sometimes I have to go out and help with things if not I’ll hit the computer for a couple more hours with internet promotion. If I have a book finished, I work on editing, proofing and formatting to publish.
Who do you love to read? Favorite authors, favorite books?
I have many favorite authors and books. Agatha Christie, Dorothy Gilman, and Sue Grafton gave me the love of mysteries. Phyllis Whitney, LaVyrle Spencer, and Victoria Holt made me love historical romance, and Nora Roberts pulled me into contemporary romance. My favorite authors now are Lauri Robinson, Nicole McCaffrey, Karyna Rose, Devon Matthews, Barb Cool Lee, Alison Bruce, Jessie Crockett, Lori Foster and the list goes on.
What is something you'd like to accomplish in your writing career next year?
I want to publish a mystery novel and an anthology of my short western stories.
If you could have one paranormal ability, what would it be?
To get people to buy our house. I’m ready to move to the quieter lifestyle of our eastern Oregon property.
If you could keep a mythical/ paranormal creature as a pet, what would you have?
An Indian spirit like in my spirit trilogy.
Tell us a little about your latest release.
My latest release is Secrets of a Mayan Moon. It’s an action adventure romance with a genius doctor of anthropology who idolizes Indiana Jones and is seeking her ancestors and an undercover DEA agent who is out for revenge. The two sizzle with chemistry but both harbor pasts that make them skeptical about the growing attraction. This is all set among the Guatemalan jungle and a doomed archeological dig.
Child prodigy and now Doctor of Anthropology, Isabella Mumphrey, is about to lose her job at the university. In the world of publish or perish, her mentor’s request for her assistance on a dig is just the opportunity she’s been seeking. If she can decipher an ancient stone table—and she can—she’ll keep her department. She heads to Guatemala, but drug trafficking bad guys, artifact thieves, and her infatuation for her handsome guide wreak havoc on her scholarly intentions.
DEA agent Tino Kosta, is out to avenge the deaths of his family. He’s deep undercover as a jaguar tracker and sometimes jungle guide, but the appearance of a beautiful, brainy anthropologist heats his Latin blood taking him on a dangerous detour that could leave them both casualties of the jungle.
What is something that you absolutely can't live without? (Other than family members)
Something to write with either a pen and paper or a computer.
Could you ever co author a book with someone? If so, who would you choose, and what would you write? I have co authored a book. Lauri Robinson, another historical western romance author, approached me with an idea about two sisters who are adopted by different families after their parents die while in route to the gold country. She wrote one sisters journey to get reunited and I wrote the other sister’s journey. The book is titled For a Sister’s Love and is available in ebook.
If you could spend a day with anyone from history, dead or alive, who would it be, and what would you do? What would you ask them? I would like to spend a day with the old Chief Joseph a Nez Perce chief of the Wallowa band. I’d like to ask him his thoughts on the whiteman’s greed and how he found the inner peace he needed to deal with them.
What are some of your other hobbies outside of writing?
Baking, riding my horse, sewing.
If you were on the staff to have a book adapted to movie, what would you pick? I’m actually trying to get my spirit trilogy into the hands of some people to help me do that to my books.
What is a talent you wish you had, but don't?
Singing., I love to do it, but my brothers always told me to not sing out loud. So, when in public, I lipsync.
Weather: Hot or cold?
Cold so I can wear warm and snuggling sweatshirts.
Favorite place to read?
Anywhere I have a book.
One with lots of family.
Favorite non-alcoholic drink.
Hot chocolate. I have it every day like others drink coffee.
If you could travel anywhere and do anything, no limits or money holding you back, where would you go? I want to see/visit/walk upon a tropical beach of white sand and blue ocean.
Thank you for having me here today!
Excerpt for Secrets of a Mayan Moon
Isabella climbed out of the boat, keeping as much distance between her and Tino as possible. He’d humiliated her, and she couldn’t get away from him. They were stuck together tonight and all of tomorrow until he delivered her to the dig. His taunting her with a kiss and then drawing away as if she were some vile creature hurt as deeply as the things Darrell Rutley had said to her face in grad school.
She walked into the forest, hunting for a place to have a few moments to herself.
“Do not go far,” Tino called in his seductive Latin accent.
She cursed her reaction to his voice, raised a hand acknowledging his order, and tromped deeper into the trees. The murmur of the river faded away in the steady drone of mosquitoes. She slapped at the leaves on the plants and wandered deeper. Rustling in the underbrush shot her heart into her throat. Jaguars were nocturnal weren’t they? A small, furry, pig-like animal trotted across her path, followed by five smaller versions.
She giggled at her jumpy nerves and the animals’ comical parade as she watched the last one disappear through the greenery. The waning light enlarged the shadows. Reluctance played war with her logical self. She should return to the boat before darkness descended and she couldn’t find her way back. But her pride, something she usually didn’t consider, wouldn’t let her face Tino.
It was stupid to believe he wanted to kiss her. Tino was handsome, virile, and so unlike any of the men she’d met during her college days or professionally. Exactly the type who toy with women like me. His chivalry and her attraction to him made her feel attractive, something she rarely experienced. But the way he brushed her off after he’d initiated the kiss... He’d only proved he could kiss her and not that he wanted her. She mentally slapped herself at her stupidity and virginal cravings.
The walk hadn’t settled her anger. Reliving the event only escalated her rage.
How could one be a genius yet stupid about life lessons?
She pulled out what she now considered her knife and hacked at the plants along the way. With each swing she lopped off something of Tino’s. Blue penetrating eyes. Devastating smile. A hand, so good at soothing her. The other hand. Her smile grew, and her frustration turned to the healthy exhaustion of an extensive taekwondo class.
Isabella wiped a sleeve across her sweaty brow and heaved a sigh of contentment. The vigorous exercise worked wonders on her disposition.
A fierce roar vibrated through the trees.
Wife, mother, grandmother, and the one who cleans pens and delivers the hay; award winning author Paty Jager and her husband currently ranch 350 acres when not dashing around visiting their children and grandchildren. She not only writes the western lifestyle, she lives it.
Her contemporary Western, Perfectly Good Nanny won the 2008 Eppie for Best Contemporary Romance, Spirit of the Mountain, a historical paranormal set among the Nez Perce, garnered 1st place in the paranormal category of the Lories Best Published Book Contest, and Spirit of the Lake, the second book of the spirit trilogy, was a finalist in the Gayle Wilson Award of Excellence.
You can learn more about Paty at her blog; www.patyjager.blogspot.com her website; http://www.patyjager.net or on Facebook; https://www.facebook.com/#!/paty.jager and twitter; @patyjag.