Author of Contemporary Romance

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~Upcoming for 2017~

The New Year is always the best time to get a “big picture” of what next to write and where all my series are at or will be going. I use this timeline to schedule my editors, arrange book covers and advertisments, and also to keep my writing schedule on track. I’m so much more motivated if I know what’s next in line and especially if it’s a book I’m highly interested in working on. Right off, this year, I’ll be releasing two books from two different series on February 27 and 28th. They are both in various stages of editing, so I’ll have those to review the next month.

River’s Lost (River’s End Series)- February 27th– On Pre-order now.

and Melissa (Daughters Series)- February 28th — On Pre-order now.

In between reviewing and making edits of these two books I have just started writing Emily which will finish out the Daughters Series. I have all kinds of ideas where this book is going and I can’t wait to dig into it and find out if I can make it all happen. Honestly, each book feels like a brand new experience and this apprehension fills me each time: can I pull this story line off? Even as this is the 26th book I’m starting, it feels as exciting as the first.

Once Emily wraps up, I’ll be done with the Daughters Series and exit the Hendricks family who are the basis of six books: The Other Sister, The Years Between, Christina, Natalie, Melissa and Emily. I have a huge soft spot for this family as I’ve spent so much time working with them and from various angles. Their stories take place over the course of 40 years, from the start of The Other Sister to the end of Emily. There’s a suspension of reality in the timeline as The Other Sister took place in 2004, because Will Hendricks served in the war in Afghanistan and so I had to set this book around that time period. From there I eventually explored the lives of their daughters, and they had to age to make that happen. I feel like these four are my own daughters as I’ve spent so much time thinking about their lives, their connection to their parents, and each other.

Emily – Daughters #4

Once I finish the Daughters I will bounce back to The Sister Series and finish the last of this series:  Book #8  The Lost Sister and then Book #9 The Step Sister. I believe (as of now) the series will then be complete… but there is a chance… I have one last sister I might, maybe, sort of, think about writing a book about. But I haven’t totally made up my mind…

This is what my brain does and how I end up with series that are supposed to be 2 or 3 books long and instead turn into 10 book series. The further I get into a series, the more characters I’m introduced to and these characters often catch my interest and then my imagination feels like it catches fire… and then more stories burn through me to be told.

Kind of like what has happened with River’s End. I’m down to the last advertised book in that series to write about… but, well, I had to add 3 more books to it. HAD TO. They were driving me nuts, begging for their stories to be told. So what can an author do but listen to these voices in her head?! I have the covers ready and I’m working on their blurbs, so stay tuned into the start of this year for more details about what I’ll be adding to River’s End. Just a hint I’ll be delving into Caleb’s life (Kailynn’s brother) and Hailey’s two kids, Brianna and Jacob.

And I digressed… so after the two Sister Books I plan to get back to River’s End and finish this series… all 4 books back to back. This far into a series, it goes so much quicker to write them continuously because all the people and places and events and the timelines are so fresh in my mind, it feels like I merely step further into it all with each book.

This should all eat up the next year… and after that?

Oh the ideas I have!

I’ve already started on some new books and projects. I have some covers already… they are far out in my future, but this is how books and series start with me. They percolate for months or even years so that by the time I physically sit down to write the stories I’ve had them run through my head like scenes from a movie, and I then get the pleasure of putting them all together into a book. This too, is how I can write so many books a year. The more I am writing, the more it fuels my imagination and the faster and more complete the books are “inside” my head. By the time I write them, they feel almost done to me, even though they aren’t put into words yet.

I don’t write so many books to meet some kind of quota or because I feel I have to. No! The opposite! Doing this, writing all these books and series is my absolute DREAM COME TRUE! I pinch myself to have the pleasure to do this as a career. At any given time I have up to 10 books in my mind’s eye. And I as soon as I finish one, I can’t wait to get to delve into the next. I usually finish the first draft on a book, and then let it ‘sit’ for a few days before I start the editing process. In the mean time… you guessed it, I start my next book.

I don’t take a lot of time to celebrate “the end’, because to me, the celebration is getting to move onto another story! And I hope I never lose this enthusiasm for my ‘next book’ and the satisfaction and enthusiasm I feel to be writing each and every novel I create and in all stages of the process.

The Midnight Circle~FREE today!

TheMidnightCircle

Clara Winters, a non-practicing witch, has been living the life of an old woman in the body of a twenty-two-year-old ever since fated to everlasting life in 1919. With the unexpected death of her beloved aunt, the easy life on her southern plantation is over. Grief awakens hiding ghosts—in the form of age-old magic and thirsty vampires.
Long ago, powerful magic entangled and stole Clara’s great love, Wesley Russell, when he became a vampire. Wesley rises from banishment, forcing Clara to resist the temptation of a renewed life together by reminding him of the consequences that come to those who defy the spell of the Midnight Circle.
Mysterious mountain visions and guidance from her deceased aunt lead Clara on a journey to friendship and love, reintroducing her to the passions of youth. But as evil lurks and the Circle shows signs of unraveling, Clara becomes desperate to escape the spell without harming those she holds dear.

My Review:

The Midnight Circle starts off with an intriguing spell and a dying witch and her niece who is frozen in time (1919) due to a glitch of being exposed to a vampire. Clara Winters, because of the spell, kills any vampire who bites her and makes gravely ill any vampire who ventures too close. Clara is a lovely, kind “nature witch” who is frozen forever at the age of 22 and who takes the reader on her unforgettable journey through the Midnight Circle and how it affects her epic romance with Westley Russell. And I mean epic, because Westley is a vampire. Their love started over a century ago, and has been nothing short of tragic. Westley’s first entrance into the book had me swooning. I loved him! He comes alive and off the page being both dark and light. I can’t even describe him! He’s so well written and when he shows up later on… it’s one of my favorite scenes of all times in any book. He loves Clara, she physically makes him ill, and yet he still comes after her.

After her beloved aunt’s death at the start of the book Clara has clear visions of the Grand Tetons and feels compelled to travel to Wyoming even though she has no idea what she is going there for. Once in Wyoming she meets four friends who become center to what her visions are about. Oh, how this author weaves around a story of suspense, betrayal, love-both romantic and familial. There is vampires and witches and spells but also such a realistic telling of them that you feel you are there with Clara and Westley. How the visions, the spell, Westley and Clara ultimately collide… left me breathless and unable to tear my eyes away from the page. In a word? Excellent. The ending is resolved and so satisfying… but left with just enough hints of the next book… that I CAN NOT WAIT FOR IT!!

 

This is Jaylene Jacobus’s debut novel and the first in her Midnight Circle Series.

Author Bio:

Jaylene Jacobus is the author of the literary paranormal romance The Midnight Circle. A few of her treasured literary influences are Bram Stoker, Jane Austen, Margaret Mitchell, and Shakespeare. She loves blurring lines with cross-genres and was lured to the nonfiction side to co-write 101 Questions For Single People and 101 Questions for Couples.

Jaylene lives in the foothills of the Cascade Mountains in the Pacific Northwest. She enjoys the progressive atmosphere of Seattle and never tires of wandering through the Emerald City drinking an Americano from the original Starbucks. Most of the time she can be found at home, spending time with her family or walking through the forested mountainside, dreaming up sentences worthy of writing down.

Her website is jaylenejacobus.com.

 

 

Book Bub! ~The Years After~

YearsAfter_Revised_CVR_MEDThe most popular and amazing (for an author) marketing publication is BookBub and for the first time they are featuring The Years After as a one of their New Adult Free deals. It’s a huge experience to be featured as they only pick about 20% of the books submitted to them. I think this is the 9th time in the last two years that one of my books has been picked. Each and every time I get accepted, you will find me literally dancing around my house! It’s that amazing of a boast. The Years After was released just over a year ago and it’s neither been free or on sale before. So enjoy!

The Lost Sister (Sister Series, #8) New Addition!

I was typing along on The Broken Sister this last winter, when my main characters, Tristan and Kylie were discussing Tristan’s sister Tara, who had runaway years ago and had not been heard from since. From that first time “Tara” popped up as a conversation topic, my brain has been shuffling her around. Who is she? Why did she leave? What happened to her after she left? Where is she now?

This is how my brain works. This is why I have up to 8 books at any given time, in my head, I want to write. They start formulating even if I don’t want them to. I don’t always intend to turn secondary characters into their own stories, but often, it happens. I had envisioned Tristan having a sister strictly as part of his backstory and to skew his perception of Kylie. I had no intentions of a book… but since the moment I wrote down Tara’s name… she’s been calling to me. I’ve lain awake at night thinking about her character.

And so… I simply had to add her to my series. She won’t leave me alone until I do! What does this mean for the series? Her story slides in after The Perfect Sister and has become Book #8 and The Step Sister (about Julia Lindstrom) is now Book #9. So here is another addition to The Sister Series!

LostSister_CVR_SMLThe Lost Sister

Misery at home made seventeen-year-old Tara Tamasy run away from her upper crust, dysfunctional family, with just the clothes on her back. Drawn into the dangerous, unforgiving world of the streets, hunger eventually made Tara turn to any means necessary to survive. Years later, she managed to escape, and scrape together a new life, trying to bury from everyone decent, all she did to survive.

Tara lands in a small town working in a diner where she meets Fish and Wildlife Officer, Ryder Kincaid and his young son Wyatt. Instantly, she is drawn towards them and soon starts to believe there is something more between them. Something almost resembling what a family should be.

Ryder suffered through years of dysfunction at the whims of Wyatt’s mom. He vowed he was done for good with relationships after she finally disappeared. The only drama he will allow in his life is that which will come from raising his son. Until Tara Tamasy starts to melt through his carefully crafted defenses. He thinks he’s found something real and lasting with her. Until her long-lost brother finds her. Now, the family that sent Tara fleeing to the streets is trying to draw her back into it, while exposing her past and her secrets, to the one person she will do anything to keep it from.

Three Years Later…

Just over three years ago Poison was released, my first published novel through The Wild Rose Press. It was a roller-coaster ride of learning every facet of not only writing professionally, but marketing and promotion. I took to some things easily. Others? Not so much. I started a blog. Stopped it. Started it. Then let it go for a couple of years.

So here I go again with my blog!

I’m not sure why I don’t do it more. Because honestly? It’s just writing. And who better to have a blog than an author? Even if almost all of us have them! But it’s my name on the website so I have to assume (hopefully) if someone is visiting it they are curious about what I write.

So here I go again. The very first post I wrote I didn’t even have a book for sale. I felt very odd writing it. I mean I was blogging as an author, without a book for sale. Today shouldn’t it be a little easier? Twenty books and three years later, I guess it is. I used to cringe over every word I wrote. Now? I figure I have over a million words published so stressing about every single one? Kind of impossible. I used to be a control freak about what I wrote. No one was allowed to read it unless I physically gave them the printed manuscript. I’ve had to let that go. Realizing I wanted to publish books so I could write more books, I had to get over my phobia.

It has been an incredible three years. And I went for it: self publishing and all.

I have learned so much, hopefully gotten better at it all (even writing). I don’t think I’d change any of it however, even the mistakes. I made some big ones too. But each one? I not only learned, but I lost a little more of my fear of making the mistakes. That fear almost crippled me. It almost made me never even try to put my novels out there. I desired it more intensely than anything in my life; yet I almost didn’t go for it. For a decade I refused to go after it or even tell anyone I wrote because I so feared the mistakes I would no doubt make. I dreaded other people’s comments or criticisms. It was that control thing. Well, when you give up freaking about every possibility, and even kind of embrace your own imperfections…  it makes you willing to try a lot more things. And trying this? Pretty much changed my life and more importantly gave me my career. Not just any career but the one I’d been striving and dreaming about for more than half my life.

I try and own all the mistakes I make as well the accolades I get. And then? Take neither of them too seriously.

A Year in Indie Publishing~September 29, 2014

A year ago today I uploaded The Other Sister to Kindle. Honestly, it was just about the worst moment of my life. I kept wondering, what am I doing? A year before I would have never looked into self-releasing a title. I could not believe I was doing this. It took me month to work up the courage to actually publish it. It was an accident really, that Other Sis is the book that ended up being edited and released before the others. And it was a lucky mistake as it’s still by best selling book. I had waited for 5 months for this editing appointment and in the mean time submitted Zenith (my other complete series) to another publisher. The only book I had available was Other Sister. So I went ahead and edited it, wondering what the heck I was doing. I was 100% convinced it would NOT do well because of the content matter in the book. I was pretty sure the reviews were going to come in wondering why I had written such a book. Plus, I started publishing with a series I had not yet written (though had plans to) so it wasn’t my best route.
But I decided only a very small portion of people knew who I was from Poison’s release so really, what did I have to lose? I didn’t count on much from it. The first night it sold 4 copies, surprisingly. But I just kept thinking, this can’t be good. What are people going to think of this twisted tale of mine? I was totally unsure what route I wanted to take next with my books. I had 4 books contracted with The Wild Rose Press, but another 6 written. It would take years for a publisher to get through all my books, and I’d quickly learned the only chance I had for any kind of actual success was multiple books… which I had, just not edited or with covers.

So I decided I’d try releasing them myself. I truly had no idea what I was doing (still don’t, sometimes). Within a week, I realized I had mistakenly uploaded an earlier version of Other Sister, that had a major error in it (I’ve since changed my process so hopefully this doesn’t happen again.) It was a really blatant error, that did get reviewed on. Luckily I found it quick enough, but I still once in a while get emails regarding it. I guess after that, I decided I’d already made such a big error and survived it … I could just keep trying this. It has been the craziest year. I didn’t expect most of it. The reader emails/messages (mostly appreciated). The reviews. The criticism. I’ve learned there is no way of pleasing everyone. That no matter how many ways I put warnings on my books, I’ll still get comments and emails regarding the fact that I use swear words when I write. This is the criticism I hear about the most, which honestly, was a huge surprise to me. I read a lot in the genre I write and I always considered my books light on swearing and sex… but I still get the negative reviews and emails about them. I’ve had a few times one or another of my books took off a little. It’s been an amazing ride, I hope it continues. I didn’t expect to like self publishing so much. I LOVE it! I have complete control of what I do and how much I do it. I decide what I want in my books or not and what covers represent what I write. I hope to continue writing and publishing and hopefully, someday I’ll figure it all out.

A few goals

20140402_174159When I published last year, I made three goals I considered to be almost unattainable: I wanted to get a hundred reviews on one of my books, make #1 on a best sellers list and the pie-in-the-sky goal: make it into Amazon’s top overall 100 kindle books.  I truly figured it would take me years, if ever, to accomplish, as I’m a very small fish in the giant ocean of Amazon’s authors.

Shocking to me perhaps more than anyone (because who watches this stuff but the author of the book??!!) I’ve almost accomplished all 3. Both sister books have over 100 reviews. Other Sis made #1 in the New Adult (a big category that really made my year!) and both books, along with Zenith Falling have sat on the top 10 of several best sellers lists for weeks at a time.  The Other Sister even made it to 111 overall in the kindle store. So closer than I ever dreamed.

20140430_063226I have never released a book before and had it make 3 best sellers list the same day, and #2 in one of the hot new releases categories. New for me. As all of this is. The Best Friend sold more the first day than Poison did for several months. It feels surreal. It’s hard to imagine the numbers on my sales dashboard correlate to actual people buying my books!

I have even found a few fans and the one’s I have, are so amazing and wonderful! Their support has been the biggest shock of publishing for me. I had no idea it would feel so awesome to get messages about my books. Especially heartfelt are the one’s in response to both Sister books. What I’ve had said to me about those books… the stories readers have shared with me… have at times brought me to tears. I had no idea when I wrote them they would affect anyone beyond a quick read for entertainment. I have to say that is the absolute best thing that has come from this last year. It all feels like I might blink and it will disappear. Being an author who has actual readers is something I dreamed about for a decade. To be living that dream now… is even better than I had ever fantasized, and I don’t think I could  ever express how grateful I am for it.

At the end of the day…

The Good Sister has surprised me with how well it did this week in sales (but so then, did the reaction The Other Sister). I have no idea what makes one novel sell over another, especially when they are just released. I’ve had some take off right from the first day it’s released, and others go much slower and more steady, and others dribbles. Why? No idea. Cover? Blurb? Title? If I figure it out I’ll bottle it and try to repeat it.

The Good Sister is the first novel I’ve written with any kind of expectation that anyone would ever read it. Seriously. I wrote 11 novels with not a soul reading them. I would write it, edit it, and move on to the next. Pretty much unconcerned if it ever “made” it or not. I didn’t have a lot of time to write, and I rarely took writing time to pursue publishing. Which, really, has helped with the ups and downs of releasing books. Negative opinions? Oh, I don’t love them. But I always think to myself, well I didn’t write it for anyone or with any kind of expectation in mind…so it is what it is.

There was something freeing in writing before. I never dreamed anyone I knew would read my words, so I didn’t filter them or “worry” what anyone thought. For ten years, my husband, parents, sister, and kids were pretty much the only one’s who knew I wrote. When I first let on I was publishing a book, most around me thought it was “a book,” not a life’s calling (for me personally) I’ve been doing for 11 years.

So, that part has changed a little. But GS was the 12th novel I sat down to write, and so I just wrote it as I always have. That’s the biggest thing I’ve learned the last few months, wow, is there a huge array of opinions. I feel the strong urge to apologize to someone when they give a book of mine a low rating or opinion, I then remind myself…I didn’t write it to offend them. I didn’t really write most of my books for any opinions. I’m one of those people who hate disappointing others, but I’m learning real quick, that is not how it works in publishing. There is no way to please all tastes. One person thinks you’re a brilliant writer, the other thinks you suck. I wasn’t prepared for either reaction. So, I guess to evoke any kind of response is worth something. And at the end of the day, I just genuinely love to write, and that’s truly the only reason I’m doing any of this.

A little too long in between…

I did it again. I meant to write long ago, but I got busy getting The Good Sister, and Zenith Falling ready for release. And as I’ve proven, I’m not a natural blogger. My problem is if given the choice of working on writing/editing or promotion/marketing, I tend to split my time about 85% for the first, leaving only a paltry amount of time on things like promotion. It’s not that I don’t care. I do. I just don’t have a natural flare for it. If I needed to stand on a street corner and try and sell my books with my sales skills, well, I probably would not have even given away a book, let alone sold any.

It’s always seemed a bit counter intuitive to me. As a writer I create entire fictional worlds and characters and in order to do so I go off alone, for hours and hours, to write it, otherwise I’d never have a book to sell. But then, if you go by all the different ways an author is supposed to “make” it, one must be an awesome blogger, FB poster, tweeter, and do Pinterest, Instagram… on it goes! All of which is social, and being the complete opposite of all the skills that make me a writer. Not that I’m complaining. I know that for every job a person has their strengths and weaknesses. I just know that my salesmanship, is so not where it needs to be. I love writers who know they are awesome and can easily post it all over their social media along with their reviews and reader’s comments. I envy that. Again, not my strength.

I am still surprised when I am contacted by readers. I absolutely LOVE it, but still extremely shocked. In all honesty, I’m still shocked if anyone reads my books. It’s still really new for me, and you’d think after 10 months, I’d get used to it…but I have not. It still feels kind of surreal. I spent a decade writing for no one. It never particularly bothered me. Now, to get paid and get some positive feedback (and even a few fans) is completely crazy feeling to me.

The only good thing about not publishing for so long, is there really is no sophomore concerns of can, I do this? Can I write another one? I’m starting to write my 13th novel. My “debut” novel, was not in fact my debut. They are being released in a crazy mix that does not reflect when I wrote them. There is not a lot of fear in me of how they will be received. I always hope for positive, but I also know, I wrote most of them awhile ago, and they are what they are. Good or Bad. Sink or Swim. All I can do keep writing!

 

 

Books…

Notorious, happily is finally out to kindle on November 25, 2013. It will be everywhere else & in print by March 14, 2014. My hope is Secrets will be only a few months behind these dates. There was a longer-than-I-hoped for lead time between Poison/Notorious. My publisher was backlogged.

I have been busy getting my other books ready for my editor (not my publisher). I swear it takes longer to do the revising/editing to get a book polished than it does to get it written. I really hope to have 2 books out towards the last week or two of December. For sure it will be the first Zenith book. The second title, I’m not 100% sure on yet. I am hoping to get The Good Sister ready to be edited & released a little earlier than I had first scheduled. But it will depend on if I can get the revisions done in time. If I can’t, then the Zenith Book #2 will be released.

I did some things backwards. The Zenith Trilogy has been finished for several years. But I didn’t have the covers ready as soon as I did The Other Sister, so I went ahead and released it, even if the series isn’t finished. That has been the freedom of indie publishing (and which really suits my personality) I can do what I want and when I want to!

The Other Sister to date, has been received way better than I ever dared hope for. I was pretty sure it would be loved or hated. I was prepared for both because it wasn’t your run of the mill book and it has A LOT in it. I knew it could be off putting to readers or something that would resonate. To be honest, I didn’t really ever plan to publish it. I wrote it, and had decided I’d just keep it to myself. I was terrified how it would come across, because I know how brutal reviews can be. The very first review it got on Goodreads was a long list of everything wrong with the novel, and I sat down and thought, well this is how it’s going to be taken by readers. So, kind of heavy-hearted I decided…oh well, I won’t apologize for it: It is what it is. But…that was the only one (to date) that has seemed to have so many problems with it. Not that I won’t find more reviews like that, but I have been overwhelmed with how positive TOS has been received, and I am, of course, completely thrilled.

I’ve been asked quite a bit, why do I have all these books to release over the winter? I’ve been writing for eleven years. I have as many novels. The first few years, I spent learning how to write. I had no business trying to publish at that point. And as most writers I didn’t have a lot of time to write. So, over the years, any time I could set aside to work on writing; I wrote. My kids were babies and left me with little down time. But…they are now at school and I finally have the time to see what I can do with my novels.

Writing novels, for me, is something I do. No matter what. Even if no one reads them, or likes them. Don’t get me wrong, it is surreal, amazing really, to be selling some books and getting more than I hoped for positive reviews. I was not prepared for them. I was prepared for the worst. I really had no idea how all this would all go. But I also knew, good or bad, I’d always write, so why not try and publish them?

I had no idea if I could even sell a book. Really. I was not sure I could. But after Poison came out, I figured I could probably sell at least one…and I have all these novels finished…so why not release them? That is why I seem to come out of nowhere with a bunch of novels. And so, fingers crossed, here it goes…