JoMarie DeGioia is our guest today. JoMarie writes historical romances with a touch of mystery for Lachesis Publishing. And her books are always on the racy side. Her Dashing Nobles series follows the love lives of four male friends in Regency London. When did you first realize you wanted to become a writer and why?
I’ve always written, even when I was a child. I was an early reader, thanks to my mom, and loved to make up my own stories. I didn’t start writing toward publication until after my youngest daughter was in school full time, though.
Describe your favourite place to write?
I prefer to write on my laptop, usually at the desk in my office. Since I’ve had to travel more lately, to visit family, I’ve found I can write anywhere. I just bring my trusty laptop with me!
What would I find on your desk at this very moment?
The phone to my left, and on my right too many pens in too many containers, some natural crystals for clarity, anti-stress, and attracting fortune (if only!) and a scented candle. Oh, I also have a big, chunky Himalayan salt lamp that is always lit. Need those ions, baby!
What is your tea/coffee beverage of choice when you’re writing?
Now that it’s warm down here in Florida again, I’ve made the switch to iced coffee. Mocha or caramel vanilla, thanks!
What do you love to read?
Romance, romance, and more romance! I’ll sometimes cross over to humorous mysteries if there’s a romantic element but I don’t do literary fiction. I like the people I’ve become invested in to be alive and well and happy by the end of the book. I don’t care what road they have to take there or how many obstacles they have to overcome. Heck, that’s what makes them worth rooting for!
What is some good advice you can give to an emerging writer?
Well, people tell you to “write what you know.” I write what I don’t know. What I want my story people to be. Am I a Regency miss forced to marry against my wishes but in love with an impossible man who doesn’t know when he has a good thing going? Am I a willowy blond who runs a cupcake shop and is irritated by the hot roofing guy who also happens to play jazz piano? Nope. But I thought of that last scenario on the fly and I bet I could make it work! So write what you like to read, I think. If you enjoy it, your future readers will.
What do you do after you finish a book? Do you celebrate or take a nap?
The first thing I do is post about it on Facebook! I don’t nap but I do decompress. Watch some soaps or old movies. Treat myself to some chocolate. That’s my way to celebrate.
Oh, from the first time I glimpsed the Regency era in movies I was in love. The clothes, the manners, the sophistication. And the men! Jeebs, I love a man in breeches, waistcoat and cravat. He can leave off the jacket. Maybe roll up his full sleeves. The ladies’ dresses are wonderful, too. I think readers love that time because it’s so civilized, yet you can’t just pick up a phone and straighten things out. Nope. You have to write a letter or ride your horse over to make things right. So much more effort than a “my bad” text, if you ask me!
You wrote a short novella called Just Perfect, part of the Dashing Nobles – about a young lady of quality who decides that she needs to learn a few tricks before she can tempt the man of her dreams into marriage. Hilarity ensues. How did you enjoy writing comedy and will we be seeing these characters again in the future?
That little book snuck up on me. I was kind of stuck after the first chapter and then one morning I woke up with the entire story in my head! The snappy dialogue, the outrageous antics. It was like I couldn’t write it fast enough, and that’s so very rare. The comedy came quite naturally and I loved writing it. Yes, I have a series in mind for Constance’s cousin Sarah and her scandalous family. It should be a lot of fun to write.
What are you working on next?
The Hideaway is the first book in my Regency Private-Eye series. It’s definitely darker in tone and it’s been that way since it first came to me. Very little social niceties or fancy balls, to be sure. Our hero is a nobleman who people count on to solve their problems. But even as he can’t turn away anyone who needs his help, he refuses to see that he needs help too. He’s hiding his own wants, needs and heart. As for our heroine? She’s on a mission and she won’t be denied. It’s very romantic but there is a strong thread of mystery and danger in this and the other books in the series. I’m hoping people will love these characters and want to see more of their piece of the world.