The Write Way Café welcomes author Paty Jager, whose books for the holidays take readers back to times that were romantic in their own way.
When did you first have the thought you'd like to write a book? Was that first thought related to writing romance?
I’ve been writing since I was a youngster. My first attempt was writing plays for my stuffed animals to act out. It was when my children were small that I thought about writing books. The first books I wrote were children’s stories. I attended a Highlights for Children writer’s conference and was told I wrote too adult. Since my first love is mysteries, I wrote two mysteries. I had trouble finding help with the craft of writing through any mystery groups. I started reading Nora Roberts and then LaVyrle Spencer and that’s when I decide to try and write western romance. I found Romance Writers of America. They helped me hone my craft and learn the business of writing.
What was your path to getting this book written and published? What type of research did you do?
This novelette is a compilation of two short stories that started in two different ways. The first story, The Christmas Promise, started as a paragraph using five words that Maggie O, the manager of a Western Romance Kindle Forum, tossed out for the authors on the forum to write a western paragraph. The second story, New Year’s Eve Kiss, was written as a short free read on the website Free Reads from the Genreistas. This blog has a new free short read up every month by the authors of the Romancing the Genres. This book is a self-published book.
Why did you pick the setting you did?
I’ve found writing historical western romance stories not only gives me a chance to do research on a time period I am interested in, but it is easy for me to get into the character’s POV because I’ve lived rural my whole life.
Are your main characters completely imaginary or do they have some basis in real people? Do they reflect aspects of yourself?
Many of my characters either main or secondary have something that I’ve witnessed in others or found interesting in other people. They depict the good and the bad people that I’ve ran into during my lifetime. I tend to make my heroines more bold and outgoing than I am but there is usually a bit of me in them.
What have been surprises you've encountered while writing the book and after?
There wasn’t any surprises while writing, but trying to get the book free at Amazon took much longer than I thought it would. I don’t understand why an author can’t make their book free if they want to give it as a gift to readers.
What did you learn? For instance, what did you learn about yourself, your process, the writing world; about historical western romances, the holidays, and wedding proposals?
I enjoyed finding a game that was played in the late 1800s that would work like the current “Spin the Bottle” game. It was a rather risqué game for the time.
What are some of your favorite books and why?
I enjoy Lauri Robinson’s historical westerns. Her characters are unique and the humor is subtle. Kathy Otten’s historical westerns are always unique with main characters with foibles and downtrodden lives. Diana McCollum’s fantasy romance stories have good witches as the main characters. I’ve always been interested in good witch stories since reading Mary Stewart’s Witch of Blackbird Pond.
What are you working on now?
I’m currently working on a mystery series. The first two books are written and I’ve started the third. The amateur sleuth is a Native American Potter who lives in a resort community. The handsome county detective who catches her at a scene of a murder become interested in her for more than a suspect. The first book, Double Duplicity, will be out in pre-order November 15th and will release January 10, 2015.
What aspect of writing gives you the most trouble?
Promotion! It takes so much time away from writing and uses a completely different set of creative skills.
I hope you take advantage of my FREE novelette. My Western Holiday Duets is free on all ebook outlets.
Western Holiday Duets
Two historical western romance short stories.
Christmas Eve Promise
Sheriff Jubal Denton promises Suzie Harper they’ll marry Christmas Eve. Two weeks before Christmas a breakout at the Willow Bend jail sends Jubal across the state in an attempt to capture the outlaw. Christmas Eve arrives. Other members of the posse have returned, but where is Jubal?
New Year’s Kiss
Edda Rae Bartlett is pacing back and forth on New Year’s Eve waiting for her beau, Cort Haywood. He said he had something important to tell her before the end of the year. And there are only a few hours left to this year. Her best friend arrives, dragging her to a party and into a game her friend learned while traveling. Edda Rae likes the fact she is elbow to elbow with Cort, but soon learns everyone in the room knows something about the game but her.
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