JAMIE BECK: ACCIDENTALLY HERS IS FILLED WITH ETHICAL AND MORAL DILEMMAS
Posted by Ognian Georgiev
This week Land of Books continues new interviews series with our former guests. This time Jamie Beck is returning with her new novel Accidentally Hers. The book hit the market on October 6 and as expected matched the positive feedback (av. 4.3 Amazon stars!) from her other two releases Worth the Wait and In The Cards.
If you missed the first interview with Jamie Beck you may check it here. It’s time for our second (and hopefully not the last one) meeting with the promising romance author.
– Jamie, welcome back to Land of Books, what the readers will find in your new novel Accidentally Hers?
– Thank you for having me again!
To answer your first question, Accidentally Hers is the first book in the Sterling Canyon series, which is set in a fictional Rocky Mountain ski town based on Telluride, Colorado.
In this first book, I hope readers will find a complex story filled with legal, ethical, and moral dilemmas. There are no easy answers or resolutions for either Grey or Avery. I’ve put Avery in a particularly sticky situation where, no matter what she chooses, someone she cares about (or who is counting on her) will end up hurt. Readers will also meet (and fall for) Grey Lowell, the extreme skier with a heart of gold. I love him.
The secondary characters in this book will eventually get their own books as well (Secretly Hers is due out in July, 2016).
– How did you decide to give life to a character like Grey Lowell?
– I get ideas for heroes in a variety of ways. Grey came to me for two reasons. First, I love skiing, and because there aren’t many romances that feature this sport, I thought that made it fresh. Secondly, I use music to help me come up with ideas. Billy Joel’s song, “And So it Goes” gave me a lot of inspiration for Grey’s character (musical and romantic) and his back story (former relationship). Once I have basic ideas about the character in mind, I go “shopping” on the internet for a picture of someone who fits my image. If readers are interested in seeing my vision for a story, I create Pinterest boards for each book, like this one for Accidentally Hers.
– To fall in love by an accident is a very popular theme in romantic movies. Did you experience by yourself such adventure?
– No, my personal love story is sort of boring. I married my younger brother’s friend! I knew him since we were teens, but we didn’t become romantically involved until our later twenties. We’ve been together nearly twenty years now, which is hard to believe (I don’t feel that old!). Come to think of it, I don’t know anyone in my real life who met their significant other through an accident.
– You mentioned in our previous interview that you are working on a companion book to Worth the Wait. What is the status of your work and when we may expect it?
– Yes, there will be two more books in the St. James series. Worth the Trouble, which will feature David’s sister Cat, and Jackson’s friend, Hank, is available for pre-order on Amazon now and is set to release on February 23 (http://www.amazon.com/Worth-Trouble-St-James-Book-ebook/dp/B014R7CC7A). Jackson’s book, Worth the Risk, will be the final book and tie up all of the open-ended series threads. That book is set to release in November, 2016 (and is what I’m currently writing now).
– Since our previous chat Worth the Wait became your most acknowledgeable novel beating In the Cards. What are your expectations of Accidentally Hers?
– Oh my, if I could predict how well (or poorly) any book would do, people would pay me a lot of money! I try not to set any sales expectations with my work. My goals remain very simple: try to entertain, and try to improve my craft with each book.
Accidentally Hers marked a departure from my prior work insofar as I aimed for something a little more sexy and, in some ways, fun. This series, for example, will not have overarching story threads that carry through from the first to the last book. In some ways, I think the Sterling Canyon books fit more squarely within the “romance” genre (whereas the St. James books blur women’s fiction elements with romance). So far, my publisher and I are pleased with the sales of this book, though. I hope readers who like it will recommend it to others. That’s still the best way to sell any book!
– With a total of three successful novels you are already an established author. What kind of changes you witnessed after your good run as a writer?
– I still feel very new to publishing (all three of my books have been released within twelve months), so there hasn’t been too much that’s changed in that time. I do think the romance space is very crowded now (thousands of releases each year), which makes it hard to get noticed unless a writer has a publishing team’s support or huge online following.
There are tons of experts who advise writers to be all over social media, understand metadata, hire independent promotional teams, cobble together street teams, hound readers for reviews, and so on. All of that is wonderful if someone can do it, but I continue to believe that the only thing I can truly control is the quality of my work. I don’t have the time to become an expert in all of those areas, so my primary focus remains on the writing (I attend a LOT of workshops). My theory (and advice to any new writer) is to put out a consistent product and slowly build a loyal following. I guess we’ll see if my plan works!
Thanks, again, for hosting me today. I hope your readers find this all to be interesting!