Friday, December 14, 2018

Today in The Loft: Romance author Stacy Juba!

Joining me today in The Loft is author Stacy Juba. A former journalist, Stacy writes a wide variety of romantic tales with characters that range from theme park princesses to hockey players. She is the author of the Storybook Valley Series and is the founder of the Glass Slipper Sisters, a group of authors who write fairy tale-themed romance. 

Author Stacy Juba

SK:  Good morning, Stacy!  Thanks for joining me today in The Loft. 

Tell me, where do you do your best thinking?

SJ:  Sitting in the brown memory foam recliner chair in my living room.

SK: (chuckles) I have two recliners, but they're always occupied. I never seem to be able to outrun the teenagers around here. At least they're reading when they curl up in those chairs. Kind of prevents me from tipping them onto the floor!

Why do you write romance? 

SJ:  I like to write about happy endings.There is so much negativity in the world that I want to provide an escape for readers, and creating these worlds also gives me an escape.

SK:  Do you write only romance or do you have an alternative occupation?

SJ:  I’m a freelance developmental editor, helping writers with their manuscripts.

SK:  (nods)  Not surprising. As a former journalist, I also lend my skills to editing. It seems like a natural fit when you have experience on both sides of the page.

If a genie granted you one wish, what would it be?

SJ:  Lifelong health and happiness for my family.

SK:  Do you have a favorite day of the year?

SJ:  (nods)  Christmas. It brings so much excitement to my kids, and I look forward to giving out gifts.

SK:  Christmas is pretty magic when kids are around. Their excitement is enthralling and sometimes, overwhelming.

Tell me about "Fooling Around With Cinderella," which is book one in your Storybook Valley Series.

SJ:  Sure. Here's the blurb--

Ever wondered what those cheerful theme park princesses are really thinking? When twenty-five-year-old Jaine proposes a new marketing role to the local amusement park, the general manager Dylan charms her into filling Cinderella’s glass slippers for the summer. Her reign transforms Jaine’s ordinary life into chaos that would bewilder a fairy godmother. Secretly dating her bad boy boss, running wedding errands for her ungrateful sisters, and defending herself from the park’s resident villain means Jaine needs lots more than a comfy pair of shoes to restore order in her kingdom…

SK:  (smiles) Ah, a new twist on an old fairy tale! I can't wait to find out how it turns out! It's hard not to root for Cinderella.

Where can readers buy your book?

SJ:  It's available at all major booksellers, including--

SK:  Stacy, thanks so much for joining me today in The Loft! Readers can learn more about Stacy at--

Glass Slipper Sisters Facebook Group:

Next week in The Loft:  Adriana Kraft!

Friday, December 7, 2018

Today in The Loft: Romance author Mia Frances!

Joining me for coffee this morning in The Loft is Mia Francis. Writing under several pen names, Mia's works span a broad range of genres, from science fiction to erotic romance and romantic suspense. She is also the author of numerous children's books and a contributor to the "Chicken Soup for the Soul" books. Mia lives in New York with her husband, Frank.

Author Mia Frances

S:  Good morning, Mia. Thanks so much for joining me today!

Tell me, where do you do your best thinking?

M:  Lying in bed in the middle of the night. I'm a hopeless insomniac so I spend the time awake plotting my books, scene by scene, and figuring out the descriptions and dialogue I want to use. I go over and over it in my head, making adjustments and refining everything so that the next day I can write it all down and incorporate it into the story.

S:  You're not alone in doing your best thinking at night. It seems many authors can't turn their minds off when they're supposed to be sleeping. However, I'm amazed that you can remember anything in the morning. I get up and dictate my thoughts right away because I know I will forget by morning!

What should people know about you?

M:  That I write in several different genres using various pen names. In addition to writing steamy romantic suspense and erotic romance novels, I also write science fiction, dark fantasy/horror, mainstream fiction, and children's picture and chapter books.

S:  That's pretty amazing! Complete this sentence, "When one of my books is released, I..."

M:  I open a bottle of champagne and my husband and I celebrate, then I proceed to have a near nervous breakdown questioning every word I wrote in it and worrying whether or not readers will like it. It's equal parts jubilation and terror.

S: (smiles) You're certainly not alone in that. What's your favorite day of the year and why?

M:  Easter Sunday. It's the day that friends and family gather in my house to celebrate  the holiday. We usually have 17 to 23 people at the dinner table that day. I make baked ham, roast leg of lamb, and a lasagna. I make stuffing to bring to my nephew's house for Thanksgiving every year and I bring Calibrese style zeppolini (an anchovy wrapped in dough and deep-fried) and scallops wrapped in bacon as my contribution to Christmas Eve dinner at my brother's house, but Easter is my holiday. I love the baskets, the pastel colors, and the promise of the coming spring.

S:  You write such a broad range of romance. Do you believe you only fall in love once?

M:  No. You can fall in love more than once. I'm proof of it. I thought when I met my ex-husband he was the love of my life. Four years later, we divorced. I thought I'd never love anyone like that again. I was disillusioned with the whole idea of love, romance, and happily ever afters. I went back to college to finish my degree and one night while I was out celebrating the end of the summer semester with a classmate, I tripped over a man. He caught me as I was falling. I thought he tripped me on purpose. He insists it was crowded and I was just clumsy. Long story short...we got married less than a year later and four decades later, we're still together.

S:  That's such a sweet story. In essence, you fell for him before you even met him! 

Tell me about your book, "Little Girl Lost."

M:  Sure, here's the blurb--

Wyoming sheriff Zac McHenry is fit to be tied. A new "working girl" just showed up at a local truck stop, ruining his stakeout. There's been an influx of transients passing through his county lately. Bringing an epidemic of drugs, crime, and vice with them. The last thing he wants is another hooker setting up shop in town. He's determined to send her packing. He's 6' 4" and she's a little bit of a hard could it be? Turns out getting rid of her isn't as easy as he thought. When he barges into her motel room, she thinks he's an attacker and wallops him with her purse. She's arrested for assaulting an officer and hauled off to jail.

Zac soon realizes things aren't what they seem. Ali Bellabonafortuna is no hooker. She's a youth librarian from upstate New York. Much to Zac's chagrin, Ali is well connected. She knows several state and federal judges who intercede on her behalf. He's forced to let her go. Thinking she'll leave as soon as she's released, he checks her out of her motel room, but Ali's not going anywhere. She's staking out the truck stop too, looking for the man who picked up a 13-year-old runaway named Peeky. The girl participated in a program for at-risk teens at Ali's library. She disappeared from the truck stop and hasn't been heard from since. Ali's not leaving until she finds her. There's a rodeo in town and her room's been rented out. In fact, there are no rooms to be found anywhere in the area for four days. Ali's temporarily homeless and it's Zac's fault! There's only one thing to do--she'll just have to move in with him until another room opens up. Zac thinks his house guest is a foulmouthed, ill-behaved hellion. Ali thinks he's an interfering, arrogant bully. But when they work together to investigate a case of kidnapping, human trafficking, and murder...sparks begin to fly. Is this any way to start a romance?

S:  Wow, that sounds complicated! Where can readers buy your book?

M:  It's available from all major booksellers, including-- 

Barnes and Noble:

S:  Mia, thanks so much for joining me today. Readers can learn more about Mia at--


Next week in The Loft: Author Stacy Juba!