Meet Jesi Lea Ryan, A Woman Who Knows How to Escape!
** Jesi Lea Ryan is my guest today. She was kind enough to answer some questions for me. She had me at “spontaneous flight to England”. If only we could all do that!
What genre do you write and why?
My recent novel, Four Thousand Miles, is a contemporary women’s fiction. However, I am currently trying my hand at a YA paranormal romance. I’m finding the transition from adult to young adult interesting to navigate. Kids read much more sophisticated topics than they did when I was a teen.
Are you aware of any themes that run through your stories? If so, what are they?
Many of my stories have some element of escape in them. In Four Thousand Miles, Natalie is overcome with shock after losing both her career and her husband in the same morning. She deals with it by hopping a spontaneous flight to England.
What would you like readers to take away from your stories?
I’d like readers to be entertained. I don’t think all books have to be super deep or have major life lessons in them. There is a reason why commercial fiction sells. It is fun to read. Aside from that, I hope my readers will learn a little something along the way.
What inspires your stories?
I’m a compulsive day dreamer. Always have been! I think of it as writing in my head. I tend to think about my scenes in depth before I ever sit down to a computer. It also means I rarely have writers block.
Will you be attending any book or writing conferences this year? If yes, which ones? Where and when?
I attended Romantic Times for the first time this year. I wasn’t sure what to expect going in. I don’t read a lot of romance, and my book is really more women’s fiction. Anyway, I had a blast! RT was a great place to network with other authors, agents and editors. I’m hoping to be able to make it to the 2011 RT in LA, but not sure yet.
What is your writing schedule like?
I’m not a morning person at all. I usually use the morning to drink coffee and check my messages. I write best in the afternoons. Occasionally, I’ll do Word Wars with other writers as a way to motivate each other.
Do you have any other passions besides writing? If yes, what are they? Why?
I’m a very prolific reader. I can usually get through 3-4 books a week. I also really like trash TV, but I rarely get a chance to watch it anymore.
What is your best memory?
Easy…getting married to my husband. He is an amazing man, and I’m so lucky to have him.
What is your favorite comfort food?
Popsicles. Don’t laugh. I have a serious popsicle addiction. I’d rather eat them than real food.
What relaxes you?
Reading. When I read, I am able to tune out all of the other voices in my head. It’s a great stress-reliever. I also love to get massages.
What is your favorite guilty pleasure?
I love vampire novels. Never met a vamp I didn’t like. I don’t care if they sparkle in the sunlight or behave like total animals. When I tell people I know that I’m a writer, many of them assume I write about vampires—I don’t. I’ve thought about it, but I don’t know what I could add to the genre that hasn’t been done before. I’d feel like a fraud.
What decade has been your favorite? Why?
I was a child of the 80’s. I love the music, the fashion, the fact that MTV actually played videos… But really, I wouldn’t want to re-live it. I thrive on the newness of the here and now.
What is your favorite way to promote your work?
I’m having fun with the interviews. I usually don’t like to talk about myself too much, but this blog tour has been fun.
Where is your favorite place to write? Why?
I write at my dining room table. Yes, I have an office, but it is too far removed from the rest of the house. I like to feel like I’m in the middle of things.
What was your favorite vacation?
I love to travel, yet I hate tourists. Those two things tend to send me off the beaten path. My favorite vacation was when my husband and I went to Nicaragua a few years ago. Much of the country is undiscovered by American tourists. This gave us the opportunity to get to know the local people on a more personal level. Everyone was very friendly and open. I hope I get to go back someday.
If you had another career, what was it?
Well, I worked in the insurance industry in my former life. It might sound boring to some people, but I really loved my job. I don’t want to go back to it, but I like knowing that I have a fall-back option if I need one.
If you didn’t write, what would you do instead?
I’d like to teach creative writing workshops to adults. I’ve taught a few classes for middle-school kids, but I don’t have a teaching degree and I didn’t like dealing with the parents. I think I’d be better working with an older group.
If you could have one wish, what would it be?
Three more wishes? Just kidding. This might sound callous, but I’d wish for money. I’m not a super materialistic person, and I don’t spend much on myself, but I’d like to be able to help other people. I support several charities and always wish I could do more.
If you could describe yourself in only one word, what would it be?
Are you a cat or dog person? Do you have any pets and if so, please tell us about them.
I’m a total crazy cat lady! I have two, but I’m very close with my boy kitty. He’s fourteen years old and has OCD, but I love him! I also have an 18 inch long, plecostumus fish. He has an 80 gallon tank all to himself and loves it.
What is the one thing you most want to do that you haven’t yet?
There are so many places in this world that I want to see and people that I’d like to meet. I just want to travel. I also would like the opportunity to live abroad for a while. I’ve been to England and it felt like home to me. I can’t explain it, but I’d love to move there.
When the zombies take over, what will you do?
Hide under a desk!
Vampire or werewolf? Why?
Vamps all the way!!! They’re sexy. I’m just not a dog person.
Please tell us about your most recent release and where we can purchase it.
My new novel Four Thousand Miles will be available on ebook after November 7, 2010.
When Natalie Spencer loses both her career and marriage in the same morning, the emotional shock sends her on a spontaneous journey to England. There, she is nearly mugged in a Tube station, but an introverted songwriter named Gavin Ashby scares off her attackers. Recognizing Natalie’s fragile state, Gavin offers help and invites her to recuperate from her trauma at his country home.
As she adjusts to her new role and surroundings, Natalie finds healing by helping others. Gavin and his family begin to accept Natalie into their hearts, leading her to a choice…abandon her old life in the States and trust in a new chance at love, or flee once again?
Four Thousand Miles can be purchased off of the DCL publications website www.darkcastlelords.com, Amazon.com, or BarnsandNoble.com.
My publisher is DCL Publications. www.darkcastlelords.com.
My Facebook page is http://www.facebook.com/pages/Jesi-Lea-Ryan/152086598147945?ref=ts.
I also maintain a book review blog at http://diaryofabibliophile-jesilea.blogspot.com/. The purpose of the blog is to talk about the books that I read for pleasure. I’m not a professional reviewer. Some people find me mildly amusing. J
Is there anything else you’d like to share with your readers?
I would just like to thank people in advance for checking out my book. It’s amazing to think that anyone beyond my friends and family would be interested in anything I write. I’m truly humbled.
** Thank you very much for being here, Jesi! It has been a pleasure but I’m afraid to say, when the zombies come they will likely find you first thing. In the meantime, I hope readers will check out your book!