Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Ellora's Cave Author - Cindy Jacks

   Today my guest is one of the darlings of Ellora's Cave Publishing - Cindy Jacks.

  Prior to becoming a writer of romantic and erotic fiction, Cindy went to college at the University of Hawaii at Manoa and graduated with a BFA in Art. After a brief attempt at an art career, she decided the ‘starving artist’ life wasn’t for her. She worked for ten years in the corporate arena, but now spends her days as a full time author.
Her first published work--The Point of Distraction Series--was inspired by a collection of short stories she wrote to entertain her best friend. Since then she's explored her inner bad girl, producing books full of humor and packed with real emotion.
When not chained to her laptop, she enjoys belly dancing, international cooking, and making jewelry. She and her family make their home in the Washington, DC area.

·    So Cindy, which of your books is your personal favorite and why?
My favorite book is definitely Landlocked. It was my first attempt at a non-contemporary erotic romance. Set in the near future in an alternate reality it was so much fun to build a new version of the world and explore the characters struggles and triumphs. I also have a huge crush on the hero, Captain Brett Logan. He’s part cowboy, part pirate and all alpha male. The heroine, Kate, is definitely up to the task of keeping Brett in line. I loved writing about these characters much I pitched a series of books revolving around them and their growing family. I feel so fortunate that Ellora’s Cave has contracted two more books in this series. Smuggler’s Blues is due out this fall and Sailor’s Knot should come out in early 2013.

·         The hardest lesson you learned as an author.
The hardest thing I had to learn is that simply because you write something you love, it doesn’t mean the public will love it, lol. I do write thinking of myself as my first reader. I write what pleases me, what turns me on and what I find interesting. That being said―if I only intend to satisfy myself there’s no point in publishing. I sought to get my work published because I wanted an audience with which to share my voice. Unfortunately as a fairly new voice not every book is going to sell well, no matter how hard I’ve tried to craft a good story and get the word out about it. The good news is the more I publish, the more I get out there and connect with readers online or at conventions, the more fans I earn. And I use the word “earn” because that’s really how I think of my job as a writer. If I don’t give readers the best story I can produce in exchange for their hard earned money and if I don’t take them on a memorable emotional journey, I have no business putting my writing out there for purchase. Becoming an author with a solid fan base is a marathon, not a sprint and I’m still out there running :)

·         Describe your perfect day.
My perfect day begins with breakfast with my family and lots of really good coffee. Then I’d write uninterrupted (hey, I can dream can’t I?) for a few hours. After writing, I’d take my son to the park or to the beach for a picnic. In the late afternoon, I’d do a bit more writing. Then, we’d have dinner as a family, watch a good movie and my son would go to bed without complaining about it (still dreaming here). Later, I’d fall asleep in the arms of the man I love with all my heart. Oh and all this would take place in a beach house in Maui or Portugal. Hey, if I’m gonna dream, I might as well dream big, right?

·         Your bucket list. 
What have you done and what’s left to do? Great question because I just recently crossed an item off my bucket list. As ridiculous as this sounds, I’ve been terrified of roller coasters that go upside down my entire life. No matter how many times I faced one down or who promised to accompany me on the ride, I just couldn’t do it. Chickened out every single time and it made me feel like there was something wrong with me? Why couldn’t I enjoy something so many other people clearly do? So this summer, after much begging and pleading from my son and chickening out three times, I rode a monstrosity called The Joker’s Jinx. I hated every second of it, it scared the bejesus out of me but at least I did it. As for the remaining items, I’d love to become a bestselling author (working on that one!), backpack through Europe and get my doctorate in women’s lit. I’d also like to cross Chris Hemsworth off my “hall pass” list, but he’s yet to return my calls, lol. I’m gonna keep trying though.

·         My guilty pleasure is:
A three dollar bottle of cabernet sauvignon. A couple of years ago, my life partner was unemployed (thank you, housing bubble, grrrr). Anyhoo, we were celebrating our anniversary and I wanted to surprise him with a home-cooked meal and a bottle of wine. Thing was I didn’t have enough money for the entree I wanted to cook and a decent bottle of wine. Then I saw the three dollar bottle and thought, hell, if we drink enough of it, it won’t matter how it tastes, lol. So I purchased it and found it actually quite drinkable. More than drinkable, it had a surprisingly rich and layered flavor, especially for only three bucks. So now, even though we can afford pricier wines, we still get that cabernet as a table wine, but every time I buy it I feel like the cashier is judging me and then  I think why do I even care if he/she is? I’m sure it’s all in my head, but I want to scream, “I’m not a wino looking for a cheap fix. I like the way it tastes!” I figure that won’t help my case much so in general I just keep quiet and avoid eye contact, lol.

Book two in the Pirates at Heart series.

The year is 2017 and all is quiet on the eastern front. Good news for the war weary Republic of Texas…bad news for weapons smuggling pirate Captain Brett Logan.

A landlocked pirate is a dangerous creature. Logan's been a surly handful since war’s end—not to mention a rather perfunctory lover—and his wife, Kate, has had about enough. When his first mate proposes a business venture, Logan is eager to get back to outrunning and out-gunning the enemy's navy. There's only one problem—his shoot first and ask questions later attitude lands him in jail. It's up to Kate to bail him out.

On their way home, the couple gets stranded in enemy territory, but it's just the shot in the arm Logan needs. Now in his element of excitement and danger, he becomes the roguish daredevil Kate fell in love with. Their passion for each other is hotter than ever—spurred on by the thrill of the chase—Logan finally finds himself rid of those pesky smuggler's blues.

“You plan to do what?” Kate’s eyes flashed in the firelight.
“I don’t plan to do anything yet. It’s Jacques’ idea. He just needs my vessel.”
“And you expect me to believe you won’t be on that vessel?”
Logan held up his hands. “I never said that.”
“Then Jacques’ idea has become your plan so I repeat, you plan to do what?”
“It’s not as risky as it sounds.”
“Smuggling bootleg whiskey into the RSA isn’t as risky as it sounds? Oh good then because I thought you intended to do something crazy. And stupid.”
“It’s not crazy. No crazier than running guns to the American rebels but you never seemed to mind me doing that.”
“I minded. Of course I minded. I was sick with worry every time you left, but at least I was worried for a good cause. You were trying to resurrect the United States of America, but now that fight is over and we lost. There’s the Republic of Texas, the Reformed States of America and never the twain shall meet. So tell me, why would you voluntarily put yourself in that kind of danger again?”
“You’re being dramatic.”
“Am I? Seems to me you’re being reckless.”
Reckless. The word echoed in his ear. He shook his head to clear it, but he knew she was right. He longed to be reckless. And foolhardy. And daring. And violent. He missed the bloody mess that was once his life.
Kate didn’t understand—she couldn’t and he lacked the words to explain himself—but this unending domesticity was killing him a day at a time. He needed this business venture. He’d die without it, of this much he was sure.
She sat on the sofa, the fire in the fireplace licking at her olive complexion, dancing in her eyes. He hated that she would be worried. He hated that the boys would miss him, but when she’d met him, Logan had been an outlaw—she herself had labeled him a pirate. She had to understand that much, didn’t she?
Brushing a lock of black hair away from her face, he pressed his forehead to hers. He took her hands in his and kissed her cheek softly. “Kate, I don’t mean to sound harsh, but you need to reconcile yourself to the idea because…because I’m going to do this.”
Her jaw set and she jerked her hands away from him. She stormed upstairs, Logan numbly watching her retreat. He’d go up in a few minutes and smooth things over. But before he got the chance, she marched down, a pillow and blanket in tow.
“And you need to reconcile yourself to sleeping on the couch until you come to your senses.” She threw the bedding at him and stomped upstairs again.
Setting the pillow and blanket aside, Logan sighed, the air puffing out his cheeks before it escaped his pursed lips. He rubbed the back of his neck and shook his head. Apparently she didn’t have to understand anything.

Buy-it-link for Smuggler’s Blues: http://www.jasminejade.com/m-683-cindy-jacks.aspx
Cindy's web address is http://cindyjacks.com and her EC link is  http://www.jasminejade.com/m-683-cindy-jacks.aspx .


  1. Thanks so much for having me as your guest today, Brenna! HUGS!

    1. Loved having you. You're so much fun. Too bad you don't live near Austin. I can imagine the hell that would break out if you were.