And now, an exclusive interview with Jasmine:
Jasmine: Thanks so much for having me. A little background on myself, as Jasmine Haynes, I write erotic romance for Berkley Heat and LooseID, and am the author of the paranormal mystery Max Starr Series. I also write funny romantic suspense as Jennifer Skully.
WPMP: Do you follow a strict writing schedule?
JH: Definitely. My day starts with my promo stuff, like Facebook, Twitter, my blog, guest blogs, and interviews. Then I start writing about 10 am. If I’m working on a first draft, my goal is to write 2500 words a day, and if I’m in the revision process, the goal is to revise 3 chapters a day. when I adhered to that schedule. I used to be an accountant and we’re very regimented, LOL!
WPMP: Do you write in an office?
JH: I have a home office with a lovely view. In fact, I was inspired to write my Rita finalist Somebody’s Lover while looking at the view outside my window. The book is about a family of tree trimmers and the view that particular day happened to be my very attractive tree trimmer climbing around in my trees, LOL!
WPMP: Do you listen to music while writing?
JH: I know a lot of writers are inspired by music, but I actually prefer silence when I’m writing. However, the song which inspired me while I was writing Dead to the Max was “You’re Gone” by Diamond Rio. Funnily enough, in Baby, I’ll Find You, my latest book under my pseudonym, Jennifer Skully, the title of the book is inspired by the song my hero writes.
WPMP: How long does it typically take you to finish a manuscript?
JH: I just finished The Principal’s Office, Book 3 in The DeKnight Trilogy, which took me a little less than three months to write and revise. It’s a full-length book at 90,000 words. Novellas like Kinky Neighbors, which is about 40,000, take six weeks.
WPMP: How do you decide on character names?
JH: I have a large file full of fun names. Many of them come from spam or reading the credits of movies! A writer is never bored, not even while sitting through credits or sifting through spam. I also have a cross reference file for all the books so that I don’t duplicate names. But ultimately, a name has to strike a chord in me. And sometimes it can be something quite random. I remember sitting in an airport, and hearing the name Angela Rocket over the loudspeaker. I got the ahah moment and knew that was the perfect name for a character in Power to the Max, the 4th book in the Max Starr series. LOL, later I heard the name repeated, and it was actually Angela Crocker, but I still used Angela Rocket because it was so right for my character.
WPMP: Do you ever suffer from writers block? How do you deal with this?
JH: I’m never short of ideas; I fall asleep by making up stories. So writer’s block to me is when the story just isn’t working. I push through and keep writing, but ultimately I have to figure out where I went wrong, what was the mistake I made in the storytelling and go back to fix that wrong turn. Sometimes it doesn’t even get fixed until revision time. In What Happens After Dark, Book 2 of the DeKnight trilogy (available Nov 1), there was something off with my hero, and it wasn’t until I discussed it with my editor that we both realized it was his back story. I completely changed it because it wasn’t working, and the story is so much better for that.
WPMP: Where is your favorite hiking trail?
JH: My favorite hiking trail is in Big Basin State Park, CA (fairly close to my house). You can walk from the top of the mountain all the way down to the ocean. It’s about 13 miles, and there’s a gorgeous waterfall along the way. Of course, that means you need someone to drop you off at the top and pick you up at the bottom!
WPMP: What Authors inspire you?
JH: Bella Andre inspires me, her stories are fantastic and emotional and her productivity is amazing. I’m also inspired by writers like Michael Connelly, Lee Child, and Robert Crais. They all create heroes that a romance reader can adore. I especially love Robert Crais’s Joe Pike character. He’s such a tough guy, and yet there’s always this soft spot leaking through.
WPMP: If you could be a guest star on a television show, what show would you choose? JH: I’d want to be on Buffy the Vampire Slayer. I know, it’s an old show, but I loved it! Every time it started to get boring, Josh Whedon threw in an amazing twist that turned everything around and made me dying for the next episode. But gosh, if I had to pick something new, then I’d like to be on Dexter, another of my favorite shows. Same thing, the writers of that show know when to throw you a curveball. This last season (which I just watched on DVD) almost made me cry. I think I’d like to be on the forensics team with Dexter.
WPMP: What is the best gift you've ever received?
JH: My husband bought me an MP3 player, and I’ve been hooked on audio books ever since! I love to read, but since I’ve become a published writer, my time is so limited that I was down to reading perhaps one or two books per month. But with the MP3, I now listen to at least three books a week, while I do my morning speedwalk, clean the house, do the dishes, and iron my husband’s shirts. The MP3 has given me my reading life back!
Jasmine: Thanks so much for having me! Readers can find me at www.jasminehaynes.com, www.jenniferskully.com, and they can read all about the Max Starr paranormal mystery series at www.jbskully.com. I’m also doing a free erotic read, a chapter every week, on my blog, www.jasminehaynes.blogspot.com. I invite everyone to come by!
A big thank you to Jasmine Haynes for allowing us to interview her for the Author Spotlight. We also want you to know that we've reviewed her book Past Midnight and Dead to the Max. And check out the Giveaways page for your chance to win a copy of Past Midnight!!