Tuesday, June 3, 2008

Tall Tales with Jane Graves

by Suzanne Welsh

Jane, welcome back to the Bandit Lair, pull up a chair and make yourself comfortable. As you can see we've done a bit of remodeling since your last visit. Over there is the Golden Rooster's nest, and those gentleman bearing trays of drinks and decadant chocolate desserts are our Vrai Anna's hockey hunks and Joanie T's Roman gladiators, aka the cabana boys.

Thanks for the welcome. Nice remodeling job. Send one of those cabana boys my way.

Your newest book, Tall Tales And Wedding Veils, was just released on May 27th. It's your second contemporary romance for Grand Central Publishing. Can you tell us a little bit about this story?

Heather's a straight-laced woman who never met a detail she didn't like. Tony's a sexy charmer who never met a woman he couldn't seduce. After a chance meeting in Vegas, she ends up helping him win the $20,000 he needs to buy the business of his dreams. They wake up the next morning with hangovers from hell and their names together on a marriage license.

Through a crazy turn of events, they're forced to stay married for a month pretending to be happy newlyweds when nothing could be further from the truth. But it isn't long before the playboy and the plain-Jane begin to see each other in an entirely new light!

We first met the hero, Tony McCaffrey, as the skirt-chasing lothario of the repo shop in Hot Wheels And High Heels. How has his life changed since we last saw him?

He's decided to go into business for himself by buying a bar & grill. He figures it's a helluva deal. He can do what he's best at - drinking, chasing women, and being the life of the party - and get paid for it at the same time. But he's going to figure out really fast that there's a big difference between sitting on a stool in front of a bar and working behind it. The heroine of Tall Tales And Wedding Veils is an accountant, Heather Montgomery. She doesn't seem like the kind of woman Tony would be attracted to. Why did you choose to match her with him?

Simple answer. Conflict. That's what you read for, isn't it? You don't want a story about a hero and heroine being nicey-nice to each other. That's a bore. And as an author, the easiest way to shake things up is to put two vastly different people on the page together and watch the fireworks.

But the thing is, when you have two people so incredibly mismatched, the challenge is to come up with a way to keep them together long enough for each of them to see the value in the other and ultimately to fall in love. In Tall Tales, it begins with the "oops" wedding in Vegas and goes from there.

Tall Tales and Wedding Veils is a fun romantic romp. One of your reviews for it compared it to a Jennifer Cruise book. Do you think romantic comedies are making a comeback in the market?

If they are, it's not nearly fast enough for me. Doesn't anybody want to LAUGH anymore?

Seriously, I'm not sure. There was a time in the late 1990s that romantic comedy was king. But these days, those of us who write comedy are getting nudged aside in favor of romantic suspense and paranormal authors. Why is the market saturated right now with dark and dangerous stories instead of light and fun ones? If anybody has an opinion, I'd love to hear it!

Since you were last in the Bandit Lair you've taken on a new PR project. Care to give us any hints about it?

Sure. My daughter and are are starting an online promotion business, part of which will include author promotion. We're making widgets.

Exactly what is a widget?

Our widgets are small, portable, multimedia presentations packed with information that can be picked up and put anywhere on the web. Because a widget streams from a single source to multiple sites (like a television signal streams from a single source to multiple sites) it means a widget isn't stuck at one web address. Instead, it can be in hundreds or even thousands of places at once.

And here's the good part. With only a few clicks, anyone can add an author's widget to their website, blog, or social networking site, or email it to anyone they choose, which gives a widget the kind of viral capacity authors have only dreamed of up to now. Click "get or share" on my Tall Tales widgets below and email it to a friend to see just how easy it is to share:


And be sure to keep an eye on those widgets. They're alive! If you're a reader who has embedded one of our author's widgets, whenever they have a new book out or the content of the widget changes in any way, your copy of the widget changes, too, and you don't have to do a thing.

As cool as they are, widgets are only a part of what we have planned for author promotion. If you're an author and you want to get in on the ground floor of the hottest trend ever in Internet marketing and drastically increase your presence on the web, send me an email at jane@janegraves.com and we'll let you know when we're open for business.

Another project you've been involved in for the past three years is the annual Richardson, Texas "Buns And Roses Tea". This is your second year as Chair for the tea. Can you fill our readers in on details for this year's tea and what the proceeds support?

Buns & Roses is back, bigger and better than ever! We're thrilled that Sherrilyn Kenyon is joining us as keynote speaker, as well as thirty three fabulous romance authors as table hosts.

Widgets aren't just for author promotion. They're for event promotion, too, or for anything else you need to get the word out about! Click on the image to check out one we just launched that tells you everything you need to know about Buns & Roses.

Thanks so much for inviting me into the Lair. As always, it's been a blast!

So, what about you guys, any of you ever done something spontaneous, like Tony and Heather, you either loved or regretted later?

Jane is giving away a signed copy of Tall Tales And Wedding Veils to one lucky commenter.


p226 said...

Oh yeah.

p226 said...

To the GR: You're back in MY house now. Saddle up, poultry. It's zero dark thirty, and you're ten klicks from your checkpoint. You shoulda been moving yesterday.

Hmmm... now that the GR is off to find a grid square... something spontaneous.

For me, it's more like, what's *not* spontaneous. I'm seriously prone to just, well, do stuff. No warning. No planning. Just go. An example would be many years ago. I'd just come back from doing a bunch of stuff in a hot dry place far away. I'd been home for about ten hours total. After getting all my gear together, and running a couple of errands, I came back home and stared at my walls for about ten minutes.

"Screw this. I'm going to the beach." I call the first number I find in my wallet. She answers. "I'm headed to the beach. Coming?"
"What beach, how are you getting there, blah blah blah, I have to work, blah blah blah, I can't go blah blah blah."
"Well ok then. I'll call you when I get back."
I call the next number in my wallet. "I'm going to the beach. Coming?"
"What beach?"
"In North Carolina?"
"That's the one."
"I have to work."
"I see." And I prepare to get off the phone and call the next number. Her work number, even. But then I would've started dialing randomly out of the phone book, I think. Anyway, she interrupts my thoughts.
"It's only a job. What time will you pick me up, so I know when to quit."
"Quit what, your job?"
"Yep. Screw 'em. You're back, and apparently I'm going to the beach."
"I'll be there in an hour to pick you up."
And she didn't even bat an eye when I pulled up on a bike. Five hundred miles, on a whim, on the back of a bike. QUIT HER JOB on a PHONE CALL INVITE to the beach. Yeah, that was a fun week. I married that girl.

I mean, so much of what I do is spontaneous. I went in the Marines on a whim.
*ring* *answer phone*
"Yes, this is Sgt. Williams with the United States Marine Corps. We noticed you scored very highly on the ASVAB test. We'd love to talk to you and show you the opportunities the Marines can offer you."
"hahahahah" *click*. I hang up. But my dad's sitting there.
"Who was that?"
"The Marines."
"What'd they want?"
"Me to join, I guess."
"Did you have some other plans this summer?"
"Hmm... good point."
And I looked up the number, called back, and a few weeks later I was on a bus to Parris Island.

Honestly, it'd be easier to enumerate the stuff I DIDN'T do on a whim.

flchen1 said...

Wow--congrats, p226, on the GR, and your extremely exciting life :) I, for one, love reading about it (I'm am horribly unspontaneous...)

But Jane, I do love, LOVE light and fun/funny--I am going to go out and find your books--they sound right up my alley! (No offense to all those writers and lovers of dark and dangerous ;))

Amy Andrews said...

I'm hearing you Jane. So sad that the comedies aren't having their day. But then as you pointed out they were king and I guess each sub-genre gets a turn. Publishing is a funny, funny game, isn't it?

I bought 5 acres once after about 2 minutes consideration. But that's kind of boring. I like P226's story better. What I want to know is would he have married the first girl had she gone instead???

p226 said...

Not a chance. At least I hope not. I might have dated her a bit longer, but marriage was not in the cards. She had more than a touch of the "psycho girlfriend" in her. And if you knew how crazy I was myself at the time, you'd realize how much weight such a proclamation carries.

Anna Campbell said...

Oh, no, it's combat duty for the GR!!! Actually, P226, I think he needs the exercise. I've noticed a bit of flab creeping around that avian middle lately. Everyone's just been too NICE to him!

Saddle up, poultry? The mind boggles! I suppose you're sending him off for some egg-sercise.

By the way, your wife sounds like FUN!!! I admire a woman who'd ditch a job in favor of a hot date!

Anna Campbell said...

Jane, all this nonsense aside, welcome back to the lair. Your new book sounds great. I LOVE a great romantic comedy. I wonder if they are making a comeback. A good friend of mine has just sold one to Berkley as her debut. I agree - we need to laugh as well as cry and angst. I also love a book about opposites attracting. The strait-laced one and the wild one falling in love is one of my favorite types of story so I'm sure I'll enjoy Tall Tales.

I wonder if, aside from the widget, you can tell us what sort of promotion activity you think is most effective for authors.

Christine Wells said...

Hi Jane, welcome to the Lair! I love the sound of your new book. Those opposites attract/marriage of convenience plots get me every time. Thanks for the fun interview, Suz.

I love good romantic comedy, but I guess these things go in cycles don't they? People were saying the market was saturated with cartoon covers a while back and then it swung the other way. But I love me some romantic suspense, too. *especially* DARK AND DANGEROUS romantic suspense. Right, Duchesse? ::Wink, wink::

Hmm...spontaneity. Hmm... Let me think about it for a few days and I'll get back to you.LOL

Looking forward to reading your Tall Tales and Wedding Veils, Jane!

P226--Seriously, if you're going to write a book it should be your memoirs. Love those stories! Welcome back! We've missed you. And the GR was getting soft:)

Jane said...

Congrats on the GR, p226.

I'm loving all these stories. I don't think I've ever done anything spontaneous in my life. My cousin got married in Vegas. It was shotgun wedding, but it took us several days to book the flights and hotels.

jo robertson said...

Great interview, Jane and Suz! And welcome back to the Lair, Jane, sounds like you have lots of good things going with the promo widgets and all.

I love your titles! I was wondering if they were your OWN or the pub house's. And the premise of TTAWV sounds just my cup of tea.

P226, I'm still ROTFLMAO -- where have you been, dude? We've missed that wild and crazy spontaneity.

Hmmm, spontaneous. Nope. Not me. I'm a Tawny Weber clone, lists and more lists, lists just to have something to cross off on the list.

Well, maybe seven kids in eleven years SOUNDS spontaneous . . . er, uh, maybe something else. Wait a minute while I check with Dr. Big.

Jane, I've just put TTAWV on my Amazon order. I wonder if the reason romantic comedies have fallen by the wayside is that for a while there we got a whole slew of them that weren't so much funny as silly. I think writing RC is very difficult, walking that fine line between clever and witty and just downright . . . well, silly.

Can't wait to read yours!

Helen said...

p226 you crack me up have fun training the GR I agree with Anna he probably needs it

Great interview Ladies these widgets are fantastic I have seen a few love them.
The book sounds great I haven't read a romantic comedy but I am going to change that I really think everyone needs to laugh it is very healthy not that I would give up my historicals or romantic suspense or paranormals I have just started to read.
I sadly am not spontaneous at all but I really admire people that are to have that sort of energy and get up and go I wish.

Have Fun

Bunny B said...

LOL! Great interview! Sounds like a fun, funny book :)

hrdwrkdmom aka Dianna said...

Sounds like yet another great book to add to my TBR. I like conflict in someone else's life.
Congrats P226, the GR is really getting soft without you to give him some incentive.

PJ said...

Hi Jane! Welcome to the lair. I love comedies and adored Tall Tales and Wedding Veils. I received an arc to review for RNTV last month. It was my first Jane Graves book but I can guarantee it won't be my last. Everyone should pick up a copy of TTAWV. It's terrific! Here's a link to my review.


Great interview,Suzanne. Jane, does your detour into author promotion mean you'll be writing less? I sure hope not!

PJ said...

p226, loved your story!

I have moments of spontaneity but I'm more of a list-maker/planner. Ironically, I tend to be spontaneous with the big things in life, like picking up and moving to a new city.

Buffie said...

Congrats to p226 on the GR today!!! Way to go!

Jane, it is so great to have you here today. I can't wait to read your book. I love romantic comedies and anything in Vegas is a definite read! Plus, if PJ recommends it, you know I'll be buying it!

Caren Crane said...

P226, what the heck? You stay gone on missions for weeks at a time, then sneak back in to nab the GR?! I suppose we should expect that from you by now...

Jane, welcome back! We look forward to your invasions. *g* The widgets sound really interesting. EXCEPT, the whole "viral" advertising thing sounds so...disease-laden. Can you expand on just how the widgets "propagate"? I mean, it's not like sending someone a bug or an annoying pop-up or something, is it?

Jane Graves said...

Hey, everybody!

It's great to be back in the Lair. You guys have one of the very best reader/writer blogs on the Net!

Caren, about widgets and their "viral" capabilities...viral refers only to their ability to be easily spread from one person to another. No popups or other nasty things--widgets have nothing to do with anything like that. Click "get & share" on one of mine and with only a few clicks, you can put it in a number of places. It's no different than posting a book trailer to a blog or website a MySpace, only these are more interactive and easier to share from one reader to another. And from within the widget, you can even email it to a friend.

The link on the blog entry isn't quite complete to get to my Tall Tales widget. Try this:


We'll be launching our business in a few weeks. Stay tuned!

Jane Graves said...

Oh, wow. You guys talking about your spontaneous (or not) experiences hits home. PJ, you talked about tending to be quicker to make big decisions than small ones. A long time ago, my husband, a petroleum engineer, lost his job (hard to believe in today's climate, but there was time when oil WASN'T all that profitable). In no time, we'd made plans to sell our house and move to a new city so he could go to graduate school in another area of study. Just like that. I've spent less time angsting over a restaurant menu.

And p226, that was hilarious about the Marines. After all, it's not a job, it's an adventure...

Jane Graves said...

About romantic comedy. I think it will always be around, but for some reason people are really glomming on to dark paranormal stuff these days. And it isn't just in books. Look at TV shows, and at the culture in general. There really has been a huge shift. Remember when most of TV programming was sitcoms? How many of them are left now?

Oddly enough, romantic comedies are always popular at the movies. Because of that, I'm never quite sure why romantic comedy between the covers of a book isn't as popular. Harder to execute, maybe?

Jane Graves said...

Jo, what you said about a lot of romantic comedies being silly is probably a valid point. What happens, I think, is that a subgenre gets hot, so they buy like crazy, and after a while, a lot of it ends up being mediocre. When readers start to sour on it, the pendulum swings the other way.

I remember back when I wrote for Harlequin Duets, Brenda Chin used to say, "I wish authors would realize that a cowboy falling off his horse isn't funny."

Joan said...

Squeeeeee...total fan girl moment!

Jane, I fell in love with your writing after picking up "Hot Wheels and High Heels" last year at National so I was psyched when "Tall Tales" came out last week. I made a special cross county trip to the bookstore to get it. The Waldenbooks people hadn't put it out yet! I marched right up to the desk and MADE them go back and get one out of the storeroom.

I am loving Tony and Heather's story.

As to spontaneous....sigh...not so much.

Glad to have you and your widgets back in the lair!

Jane Graves said...

Anna...effective promo? I think that changes as time goes on. There was a time when bookmarks were really cool and got a lot of attention, because only a few authors were doing them. Now they're the baseline. Then came websites. Now every author has one. The newest phenomena are Facebook and MySpace and other social networking sites, which can be very powerful if they're done well. But now everybody is hopping on that bandwagon, too.

What I cringe at is authors spending untold amounts of money on stuff that's a one-shot, like expensive ads. Romance Sells is the exception--it's highly targeted with a really nice presentation of the books, and it's well worth the expense. I've advertised there many times. But other advertising? I'm not so sure.

Blogging is a very good thing. Anything free that brings in readers is great, assuming it's not a time-suck for you. If so, guest blogging is the best of all worlds.

It all gets down to bang for the buck. Or for the time spent. In the end, we'd all like to see a direct correlation between our promo efforts and book sales, but sadly, that's nearly impossible to determine. All you can do is make every effort to increase your presence through various promotional avenues in hopes that readers will see you and your books enough times that, when they get ready to plunk down their money to buy a few books, yours is the one they remember.

Jane Graves said...

Joan...thanks so much for making a special effort to pick up Tall Tales. So glad you're enjoying the story!

Dina said...

I'm sure I've done something spontaneous, just can't remember, lol, but I don't do it often.

Jane Graves said...

Jo, about my titles. The first one--literally--took months to come up with. My working title sucked. Then they came up with something that I really didn't think fit the book at all, so we went back to the drawing board. Finally a friend of mine gave me something with "heels" and "wheels" and it became "Hot Wheels and High Heels."

Then when it came time for Tony and Heather's story, I emailed my editor and said, "How about 'Tall Tales and Wedding Veils'? She came back five minutes later and said they loved it, so that's what they were going with.

I hate titles. Seriously. I'm bad, bad, bad at them. Are titles hard for you guys? Do they just come to you out of the ether? I see so many great ones, and I think, "Now, why can't I come up with something like that?"

TracyG said...

Hi Jane!
Love the widget idea. It's a great marketing tool.
Spontaneous? Me? I make a list of what to pack before she goes on vacation. hahahahahahah...
Tracy G.

TracyG said...

Oops, that should have been before I go on vacation. I need more coffee!
Tracy G.

Beth said...

Welcome back, Jane! Tall Tales and Wedding Veils sounds wonderful! Can't wait to get a copy (note to self - a trip to the bookstore is in order)

I was a lot more spontaneous when I was younger but even now I do tend to just go with the flow :-) I love trying new things and having my own adventures -- and honestly, with three kids, I feel like I'm just along for the ride anyway ;-)

Jane, I think it's sometimes easier to make those bigger decisions such as moving or changing jobs. Much less time to agonize over the decision *g*

Billie Jo said...

Hi Jane!!

Great interview! I love the title of your new book.

I will be at Buns and Roses again this year. I had a blast last year.

I have done many spontaneous things in life and have lived to regret and enjoyed some of the antics.

Billie Jo

terrio said...

Anyone else interested in seeing how the GR salutes? Congrats on the nab, p226.

Like PJ, I've always been a bit spontaneous about the big stuff. Decided in May '94 to move to Nashville, got there first couple days of June and found an apartment 24 hours AFTER arrival. But I admit that was easier to do at 22 and single than 30something and a single mom. Though I did a similar move in 04 with a 5 yr old.

I love Romantic Comedies and would love to see them make a comeback. And I've wondered that same thing about Romantic Comedy movies never going out of style the way the books did. Though many of today's RC movies are the same script just re-hashed. That kind of stinks.

That widget sounds like the wave of the future. Congrats on getting your keyboard in the door first! And I'll be looking for this book while I'm out there hunting down the Banditas' books.

MsHellion said...

I'm not sure why the market is saturated with goth and paranormals and hardly any single title romantic comedies! It's depressing! Heck, it's a lot harder to make someone laugh than it is to make them scared! That should get some respect!

Impetuous things I regret. Hmmm. I SAY a lot of impetuous things I end up regretting. (Pirate.) They just sorta fly out of my mouth, clever and amusing, but OH, so naughty. I mean, there are just places you should say stuff at. Like weddings. Or funerals.

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

P226!! You spontaneous devil you. You popped in on a whim and captured the GR! Grins. Had to laugh about the list being short if you HADN'T done it on a whim!

Welcome Jane! Thanks for being with us. Since I writer dark and dangerous - that's the title of my Debut btw, out this week! - I'm glad there's a market for it! However I have to say I miss a good comedy. I'm going to go get yours on my next B&N trip! Yeah!

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

That should have been I WRITE, rather than I writer...then again I WROTE Dark and Dangerous for Kensington so...

Is that a shameless hussy promotional moment? I think so. Sorry!

Jane Graves said...

Jeanne...ha! You really did write "Dark and Dangerous!"

And oh, my. What an incredible cover. Did you just faint dead away the first time you saw it?

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

**Winking right back at you Christine!**

Spontaneous. Urg. Sometimes I've done it really, really well and it's turned out great. Then again...but hey, it's all good in the long run. Either you have fun or ya' learn something. Heehee.

I'm kind of like Ms. Hellion too, though. I sometimes let those naughty bits slip out at the worst possible times. Its a twisted kind of humor, but... ^5-ing Ms. Hellion, it works for us, right?

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

oMGosh, You bet, Jane! I got the cover art and nearly had palpitations. Grins.

I love yours too. That bright yellow just pops off the shelf and says "hey! look at me!" I picked it up before I even realized it was you!

Then again, I think the cover fairies have been incredibly good to the Bandita's all the way around. Did you see Beth Andrew's and Donna MacMean's new covers? Wow. And Christine's is fab too. Tawny's just went up on the sidebar as well. She PAID the cover fairies, I'm convinced of it. All her covers have been great.

p226 said...

I tend to be spontaneous with the big things in life, like picking up and moving to a new city.

Oh, me too.

Lessee, I've done the "move to a new city on a whim" thing.

Joined the Marines on a whim.

Volunteered for overseas / combat duty on a whim. On the spot even. Over the phone.

Quit jobs on a whim. Taken jobs on a whim (even though I've been at my current gig for 8 years)

And relationships? Oh god. Talk about spontaneity. (prior to being married of course) I mean.. lol. I was terrible. I mean, I'd just up and decide "ok, this chick is nuts." And *poof* I was gone. I did that once and forgot half my stuff when I bailed. When I returned to pick it up, I found that she'd used it to build a life-sized p226 out of my clothing, gear, and a spare motorcycle helmet. When I rounded the curve, she tosses a match into the gasoline soaked p226 mock-up. I saw the orange flash of the gas going. *foop* I am the only person I know who has been burned in effigy. Sometimes, spontaneity ticks people off. *g*

I sat bored in the house one day and said to my wife, "I think I'm going to go fishing." She was fine with it. What she was not so fine with was when I got back from fishing. Because I did not leave the house with a boat, but I returned with one.

I did go fishing after all.

Suzanne Welsh said...

Good morning everyone!

Congrats p226 on nabbing the GR today. Remember it's summer, so be sure that bird has plenty of water for his mission. We want no dehydrated chickens running loose.

And I have to tell you, you make some pretty serious spontaneous decisions! I'm thinking the Marine thing would've taken a few more days of planning for me to decide. I seriously considered the Navy after nursing school, but then that whole motion sickness problem reared its ugly head, so that ended up a no.

Suzanne Welsh said...

Hey, Flechen! You'll love Jane's books. If you find some backlist of Jane Sullivan's Harlequin Temptations, those are Jane Graves other books, too! She was sort of incognito for those.

Suzanne Welsh said...

Hey Amy! There does seem to be cyclic factor to the publishing industry. Do you think it goes with readers, too? Like our interests change every few years, so the publishers try to give us what we want, or do we read what they give us only because they saturate the market with it?

And what did you do with the 5 acres of land?

Suzanne Welsh said...

Mornin' Anna! How are things down in Oz?

Congrats to your friend on the sale to Berkley. Let me know when it's coming out as I love romantic comedies, too!

Suzanne Welsh said...

Hey, Christine! Is it my imagination or did you girls from down under sleep in a bit today...or is it stayed up late today? I'm never quite sure.

And I KNEW someone would come up with the Dark And Dangerous reference today!! hehehe

Suzanne Welsh said...

Jane, (the one in NY), how exactly does someone have a shotgun wedding in Vegas these days?

Suzanne Welsh said...

Hey, Jo!

You should have seen the e-mails flying fast and furious when Jane was trying to come up with the title for "Hot Wheels And High Heels"! And believe me, some of them were pretty bad...mostly my suggestions!!

Suzanne Welsh said...

Hey, Helen! Wow, you need to add some comedy to that reading pile! Definitely start with Jane's books, then add Susan Elizabeth Phillips and Vickie Lewis Thompson. They're both great at romantic comedy!

p226 said...

Jane, (the one in NY), how exactly does someone have a shotgun wedding in Vegas these days?


1 potential bride
1 extremely nervous groom
1 minister
3 angry parents
1 extremely angry father of potential bride
1 shotgun
6 rounds of 00 buckshot
1 cake (optional)
Season with guests to taste

Mix well and recite stuff ending in "I do."

Am I close?

Suzanne Welsh said...

Hey, Bunny B! Welcome back to the Lair!!

Suzanne Welsh said...

Hey, Dianna! I think that's why romantic comedies are so great. I'd much rather read and laugh about someone else's conflict than face my own.

Suzanne Welsh said...

Hey PJ, wonderful review!! I so love RNTV and the new reviews they've been doing are fabulous. If you have any pull with the powers-that-be over there, Jane is a fabulous speaker and would make a lovely video interview for them...hint, hint, hint!

Suzanne Welsh said...

Good God, Buffie, warn me when you're going to have half naked...er naked men that I can ONLY see half of as your avitar!! WHEWW...where do you come up with those pics?

Keira Soleore said...

Jane, it's so much fun to have you here at the lair. I'm so looking forward to your TALL TALES.

Conflict. That's what you read for, isn't it?

That's the most perfect summation of what draws readers to read a novel and stay with it to the end. I've saved that in my collection of quotes. Thanks.

What a fabulous idea to sell widgets (the macros of the 90's were hardly as full featured as these small software applications) to do various PR jobs. Love the idea!!! So, is your company going to create the widget end-to-end or will you provide a widget that can then be customized by the author?

Congrats to P226 on nabbing the GR. Easy does it, OK?

Suzanne Welsh said...

Hey Joan! Uhm, talk to me at National and I'll introduce you to Jane, just no heavy drinking before your fan girl moment, okay?

Keira Soleore said...

PJ, fabulous review!! If I weren't a fan already, I'd run to the store to get my first Graves and be on my way to being a fan.

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

P226, didn't you hear the thing about "Resist the impulse to buy a boat?" And wow on the being burned in effigy. Yikes!

Jane, you said: we'd all like to see a direct correlation between our promo efforts and book sales, but sadly, that's nearly impossible to determine.

I say this too! But I try in every ad I do to put in some way to track it, either a contest or some sort of incentive. It helps me track things for effectiveness.

Suzanne Welsh said...

Hey, Dina! I don't do too many spontaneous things, either. When my husband asked me to marry him, I did say "yes" immediately and we'd only been dating a month. That was 27 and a half years ago, so it was a pretty good sort of spontaneous decision.

Minna said...

Spontaneous. Sure, even I am sometimes spontaneous.

Pat Cochran said...

Hey, P226,

Congratulations on the GR, I can tell you where some of that flab came from! He devoured my chocolate stash when he "visited" last! I had to replenish my supply after he left!

We have one of those "Semper Fi" Marines in our family now! Nice guy! He (before he married my
niece), she, her ex-husband, and
a nephew were all over in the hot
dry place far away at the same
time. They all returned safely
to their respective families.

God bless all who have and are
currently serving our country!!

Pat Cochran

flchen1 said...

Suz, thanks for the heads-up about Jane Sullivan being Jane, too! *going out to track down her books*

Pat Cochran said...

Hello, Jane,

It is so nice to have you visiting
with us today! I've just added your book to my to-be-purchased list. It should help tighten up my abs, I read recently that laughing is good exercise!

Spontaneity, hmmm! Not much in my
life! My family calls me the Queen
of Lists, looks as if Tawny and Jo
and I share a lack of spontaneous
behavior. I think P226 has our

Pat Cochran

catslady said...

I'm not very spontaneous. I think my upbringing hammered that home too well. I do try and sometimes succeed but it's not easy lol. Your book sounds like a fun read!

doglady said...

The GR terrorized my cats and chihuahua so I think a little discipline is in order, p226!

Hello, Jane. I LOVE your titles. They're simple and the tell you what you need to know. Definitely adding those two to the TBB list.

I love a good romantic comedy. Those are what I read after a really frustrating day at work when I really need to laugh. I think it is the "I wish I had said that" feeling you get when a heroine lets a hero have it!

I have my current home because of a spontaneous act. My dh and I lived in Montgomery (about 20 miles from where I am now) and we were thinking about staying in the area, but moving out of the city. We came out to look at this five acres with a trailer on it and said "It's close to the lake. We could retire here." We bought it but never lived here together. He died in 1993 and I wandered around a bit and about three years ago I decided I wanted to live here. By that time the land was paid for and I only owe a few more months on the trailer. As long as I can come up with the taxes (pretty low here) I have a place to live!

Entering the Avon FanLit thing was another thing I did on a whim. My local bookseller sent me an e-mail about it and suggested I try it. I signed up at the last minute and now almost two years later I have finished one novel, am working on another, and I am looking forward to meeting all of you at Nationals.

About that shotgun wedding recipe, p226. Voice of experience?

Nancy said...

Jane, hi!

Congratulations on the release of Tall Tails and Wedding Veils! It's on my list of books to buy tonight!

Congrats, too, on your new business venture! Widgets sound as magic as electricity and cable to me, but I've seen yours and they are amazing. You're so multi- talented!

I've done some spontaneous things in my time, but not so much anymore. Heck, I'm at the computer three-fourths of the time! (Yikes, must get a life!)

As for titles, I stink at them. I think I get too close to the story or some darn thing, but I go brain dead.

I also adore romantic comedy, and am alwasy, ALWAYS up for some healthy laughter!

p226, Semper Fi. I'm a Marine daughter.

Good to see you, Jane! Suz, another faboo interview! I'll catch ya'll later!

Nancy Haddock
La Vida Vampire

Jane Graves said...

Back from lunch with Suz and the girls and a trip to Barnes & Noble. Jeanne, I scored a copy of Dark and Dangerous--the cover's even better when I'm holding the book!

p226 said...

About that shotgun wedding recipe, p226. Voice of experience?

Not personal experience, no. But I do live in WV. And well...

Jane Graves said...

Keira, we'll be building the widgets for authors and launching them in multiple locations, as well as making them available as Yahoo! Desktop Widgets. And in the next several months, we'll be adding all kinds of interactive features.

But in the end, we recognize that where readers are concerned, it's all about the writing. We have a fun new way of showcasing that, too, that we'll be launching right along with our widgets.

Jennifer Y. said...

Hi Jane! The book sounds great!

Although, I am sure she doesn't remember it since she met many people and it has been a couple of years, I met Jane in Atlanta at the literacy signing at RWA 2006...after Suzanne dragged me away from the wall and started introducing me to authors...LOL.

To answer the question, I am not much of a spontaneous person.

Hmm...Although, I guess you could call my escapade on the monkey bars when I was in kindergarten spontaneous. After about a minute of thinking about it, I decided to do a trick on the monkey bars to impress a boy and fell and broke my arm.

Anna Campbell said...

Jane, thanks for that. A wonderful commonsense approach to the whole promo jungle!

And by the way, I like coming up with titles and blurbs and log lines. It's writing the book I have trouble with ;-) Your titles are SOOOO clever!

Hey, guys, Jeanne aka Duchesse has a wonderful interview up today on Writers at Play. Well worth checking out - and she's giving away PRIZES!

Anna Campbell said...

Suz, no release date for my friend's book, but it's fantastic - like an old screwball comedy with Cary Grant. I'll invite her to Banditas when the time comes! And she can tell you all about it herself.

Hoping for a sunny day here. We've had floods lately! No wonder the Rooster never wants to visit me any more.

I think Jane's right about the market getting saturated with less than satisfactory product and then the whole genre suffers because people vote with their wallets. It certainly happened with chick lit.

Anna Campbell said...

Pam, where you live sounds lovely! And Fanlit sure paid off for you!

I have a wild woman inside me who WANTS to be spontaneous but MOST of the time I manage to control her. She's really scary when she gets out!

Keira, lovely to see you back here!

Susan Seyfarth said...

Hi, Jane! Thanks for swinging by the lair today! I'm a huge fan of romantic comedy--or at least straight contemporaries full of witty, interesting people--so I'm putting your stuff on the top of my TBR pile.

As for spontaneous stuff I've done? Practically nothing. Except for the time--oh about six weeks before I moved from Minnesota to Michigan for a job--I said yes when a guy I'd met only once before asked me out. I should've said no. I was packing already. Pulling up stakes. Cutting ties. But I thought, hell. I'm not doing anything else. Besides, if it goes badly (my first dates had a tendency to go badly), I'd get to move out of the state in a couple weeks, right?

So a year later I moved BACK to MN to marry that guy.

But if I were really the spontaneous sort, I'd have quit the job before I ever started & saved myself a year's worth of phone bills & plane tickets.

Jane Graves said...

jennifer...yeah, Suz has a way of doing dragging people around to socialize. She's just so shy, bless her heart. We're trying like crazy to find a way to get her to come out of her shell. No luck so far...

Jennifer Y. said...

LOLOLOLOL, Jane. Yeah, Suz seemed really shy when I met her ;o)

robynl said...

I so hope 'make you laugh' books are still going to be published; I love the humor in books and need a laugh whenever I can get one. This book seems as if it promises laughs!!
I said no to a date with this guy and 2 hrs. later we were going out for supper and a date; quick change of mind there. Now 19 yrs. later this July 29th we are still married and happy. Got married 7 months after first date.

Cheri2628 said...

Jane, your book sounds like a fun read! I love romantic comedies...books and movies. I look forward to reading this one.

Loucinda McGary aka Aunty Cindy said...

Jane, so good to have you back in the Lair!
It appears that blogger ate my early post. Oh well, basically I said, how does one follow a story by p226? You don't! :-P

I really hope the market doesn't get over saturated too soon with those dark, dangerous stories, since I another who writes them...

GREAT to see so many familiar faces around here today!

hoping this one goes through

Suzanne Welsh said...

Hey Jane and Jennifer, I resemble those remarks! If there's a shy gene, it doesn't run in my family tree!! hehehe

Suzanne Welsh said...

Tracy G is in da house! HEHEHE, I love saying that! How are things up in Missouri and your new puppy? Was he a spontaneous buy?

Suzanne Welsh said...

p226, LOL on your recipe for a shotgun wedding! But I'm thinking any couple who fly to another city for a "shotgun" wedding could just as easily fly to oh Fiji.

Suzanne Welsh said...

Hey Beth! Are you getting excited about your debut book this month? I am!

I'm thinking all our Bandit authors need to sign up for the Buns&Roses tea, maybe for the book signing the night before, and you'll all get to see ME!

Suzanne Welsh said...

Hey, Billie Jo!

Wasn't the tea grand fun last year? Did you click on the Buns & Roses logo in Jane's interview? It takes you right to her widget for the tea. Super cool! You can see all the authors coming in for the tea, including Jane, Lorraine Heath, and Sherrilyn Kenyon!

Kathy Sullivan said...

Hey Jane,

Congratulations on Tall Tale and Wedding Veils. I can't wait to read it. Best of luck with the "widget" business, too. I'm just not technical-minded enough to do things like that. Shoot, I can barely get the day job done, much less do more computer-related promotion.

Okay, after a long day of "you know what", I'm brain dead. Going to rest up a few minutes before I start writing.

Again, congrats on the latest release.

Kathy Sullivan said...

Sheesh, told you I was brain dead. I meant Tall Tales and Wedding Veils.

And Suz, shy!?! Yeah, right...that's about as true as me being a size 2!!!

Thanks for blogging today. (By the way, Jane, did you see my new website?)

Trish Milburn said...

Hi, Jane. Thanks for hanging out with us today. Congrats on your release and good luck with your new promo business. I'm looking forward to the Buns 'n' Roses Tea since it'll be my first time.

Natalie Hatch said...

I met my hubby on a Tuesday trip, the following Tuesday he flew up and proposed. Eight weeks later we married, ten years later it's still getting better (thanks to Anna, Christine and a few others hot and sordid tales... ;-) )
p226 I dated a Marine once, and yeah crazy life is one word for it. Certainly was fun though. Hope that woman of yours has your balls on a plate so you don't go flitting off somewhere.
Jane I love comedy, think there needs to be a resurgence don't you?

Natalie Hatch said...

Jeanne, great cover!

Natalie Hatch said...

Anna, we know you've got a wild woman inside you, just look at how she escapes when you get behind a keyboard... someone get her a cold shower! *g*

Anna Campbell said...

Goodness, Natalie, what a romantic story! Congratulations! Oh, dear, my wild woman petticoat is showing ;-)

p226 said...

Hope that woman of yours has your balls on a plate so you don't go flitting off somewhere.


Yeah, they're on a plate. And decorated. With fingernail polish. She went with a paisley polka dotted scheme. I really wanted racing stripes. But ya picks your battles.

Natalie Hatch said...

Anna as I was getting into the car to go get married my mum turns to me, all dolled up and asks if I wouldn't prefer to go fishing instead. She was adamant that I wasn't thinking with a functioning brain. I told her we really should turn up to the ceremony because it took soo long to get dressed. She grew to love him but he was s virtual stranger come to steal her daughter away.
p226 well won't the boys in your unit have fun with those polka dots! Don't ask don't tell? Here's a question though, do you write? There's a definite market out there look at Bob Mayer...

p226 said...

Yeah Natalie, these crazy Banditas inspired me to have a go at it. I have about 12 or 13 chapters down... maybe 75 pages single-spaced... It's progressing slowly, and in spurts, but it's progressing.

I have no idea who Bob Mayer is. I'll google for him. But it may not matter much, because what I'm actually writing is nothing like the stories I post in comments here.

Kirsten said...

Hope I didn't miss ALL the fun! Jane, your books sound awesome and I can't wait to add one to the pile! I love to laugh, never been huge on the dark, creepy paranormal or violent stuff...but I understand that trends come and go and great writing survives. :-) And your titles are amazing. I am the absolute WORST at titles. Thank goodness my CP is better than I am.

As for why romantic comedies do better as movies, I think it's because so much of comedy is physical. It's incredibly hard to capture in words the flick of an eyebrow, quirky half-smile, stumble and recovery, all those little adorable mannerisms that someone like Hugh Grant does so well. But they shine on a movie screen.

Oh, and I don't do anything spontaneously. I'm way too dull for that. But I say spontaneously stupid things all the time. I wish I could put my mouth on a time delay, KWIM? Does that count? :-)

Natalie Hatch said...

p226 Bob used to be Green Beret, so many of his books are action/war/assassin types and actually are a damn good read. He teamed up with Jennifer Crusie (google that name) to do two books and I think a third on the way... They're great, she injected humour into his writing, he injected action and pace into hers. Great stuff.
15 chapters is nothing to sneeze at. Good luck with it.

Caren Crane said...

Kirsten and Ms. Hellion, I'm glad I'm not alone in spontaneously saying things that prove VERY unpopular. My tongue races way ahead of my brain. WAY ahead!

Jane, thank you for being with us and explaining more about the widgets. I actually knew about them, but thought people who didn't know might shy away from the "viral marketing" speak. I still think that is the worst term ever. And from marketing people, who really should have a clue! *g*

We're looking forward to seeing you in SF!

Caren Crane said...

P226, I cannot comment on your decorative balls...Can't...comment...

Joan said...

Oh, p226!!!! What great news!

Give us SOME idea of what it is about, please! Are there Banditas in the story? Roosters?

p226 said...

No, I don't want to talk about it yet. You guys will know when it's done though.

kimmyl said...

What a great post and a great book.

Anna Campbell said...

Hey, P226, way cool on all the chapters down!

Jane Graves said...

Kathy...hey, girl! Good to see you here. Yep, know all about that day job (Kathy and I worked together all those years ago). And I saw your new website. It's gorgeous! Check this out, everybody:



Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

Yeah P226! You're a natural storyteller

Jane Graves said...

Nancy...hey! Good to see you here. Y'all need to check out her debut release, La Vida Vampire. A humorous paranormal mystery that you'll really love! It's on the shelves now--saw it today at B&N.

Jane Graves said...

robynl....I can relate. My husband and I met one June, started dating in August, were engaged at Christmas and married in May. Too quick, right? We just celebrated our 26th wedding anniversary!

Cherie J said...

Thanks for guestblogging with us Jane. Tall Tales and Wedding Veils sounds like a great story. As for me, I remember admitting to a coworker that I wish I was not still single and just about to turn 30. She talked me into letting her fix me up with what she considered were prime specimens. Boy did I ever regret agreeing to that. I still shudder when I think of these awful guys she fixed me up with.

Elyssa Papa said...

Wow. I need to get these books. It's frustrating because my first book is a romantic comedy, and it's getting its foot in the door but it's still that perpetual bridesmaid right now.

People claim they're looking for romantic comedies but I highly doubt it since I've been shopping my book since January... and I can safely say that my book is funny. Well, at least I think it is. LOL

It's frustrating to be writing something that doesn't seem to be "hot" but tides change... hopefully. Or really why can't everything be hot all at once???

kim h said...

sounds great. congrats o n teh great review and 41/2 stars from RT.
love romantic comedy

kim h