Monday, February 21, 2011

Jamaica Layne

What is your favorite thing about being a romance writer? I think my favorite thing is knowing that my books entertain and inspire people. Whenever I get a piece of fan mail from a total stranger who gushes about how much they enjoyed reading one of my books, it’s the greatest feeling in the world.

What genres and authors would we find you reading when taking a break from your own writing?
I never take a break from writing, but I do try to read every day. I read widely, across all genres and topics. I particularly enjoy historical fiction and nonfiction (especially biographies) since I’m such a history buff. Some of my favorite contemporary authors include Alexander McCall Smith, Nora Roberts, Stephen King, Jodi Picoult, Sheryl Woods, Sara Gruen, Alison Weir (historical nonfiction), Phillipa Gregory, Katie Macalister, and Sherrilyn Kenyon---but are by no means limited to these. I’ll read just about anything. I also love the classics, including Dickens, the Bronte sisters, and Jane Austen.

What was the hardest part of writing your book?
One of the hardest parts about writing any book is the time that it takes to complete. It takes discipline to finish writing a novel. You have to write every single day, for one---even when it’s painful----and it can still take months or even years, with revisions. I often find I get too emotionally attached to my characters and have a hard time letting go of them. And of course there’s research, and outlining, and plot development. And once you’ve written the book, you have to go about finding an agent and/or publisher, and that’s when the REALLY hard part begins---I call it The Waiting Game.

The Waiting Game is what happens after you’ve completed and polished your novel, and have it out on submission with agents and publishers. It can take literally years before some novels see publication. That was the case with my current release, TENDER IS THE KNIGHT, which is now available from Decadent Publishing (; also available at,,, and everywhere ebooks are sold). I finished writing this book almost six years ago, but for various reasons it didn’t find a publisher until now, even though I had agent representation the whole time, and several of my other novels sold in the meantime. Because TENDER IS THE KNIGHT is a “niche” book----it’s a romance novel set against the background of medieval historical reenactment---it took a while to find the right publisher. But Decadent has been a great home for this book and they did a wonderful job of editing, and their work getting it out to the masses has been great. It’s selling steadily in ebook format, and the print version is coming out any day now.

If I was a first time reader of your books, which one would you recommend I start with and why?
I would recommend you start with my current release, TENDER IS THE KNIGHT ( It’s a “sweet” contemporary romance that includes elements of time-travel (the historical reenactment part) as well as a lot of comedy and intrigue. This book showcases a lot of the qualities you’ll see in some of my other books. It’s also not super-sexy (though it’s definitely romantic!) so if you’re skittish about reading some of my erotic romance titles, you can start with this one first. Some of my other bestselling titles include KNIGHT MOVES, which is a red-hot medieval time-travel/erotic romance, which is due out in mass-market paperback later this year (the ebook is available at as well as all the major ebook distribution sites), and my VITAL SIGNS erotic medical romance series, which was featured on national television last year.

Describe to us your typical day.
I’m a full-time freelance writer. I do write novels for some of my living, but I’m primarily a journalist. Plus I’m a stay-at-home mom to a toddler (though he’ll be entering preschool soon). A typical day will include getting up around seven, getting my son his breakfast, then spending an hour or so catching up my email inbox. Depending on what articles I have due as a freelance journalist, I’ll conduct interviews, pitch story ideas to my editor, and do some article research and writing---all the while watching and playing with my son. When my son’s naptime rolls around in late afternoon, I can spend some time writing fiction. Then it’s time to cook dinner, which I have hot and ready on the table when my husband comes home from work. After dinner I try to either get in a workout or maybe do some crafts, then it’s time to get my son in bed. After everyone’s in bed, I’ll do a little more writing, then I’ll tuck myself in to bed and read for a while before falling asleep just before midnight. Whew!

Please share any links you would like listed in the Interview. Website, Myspace, blog, facebook, yahoo group etc.

What song would best describe your life?
“She Works Hard For The Money,” by Donna Summer

If you could be a paranormal creature, which one would you be?
A fairy.

What’s a guilty pleasure you have?
Cheesy retro pop music, like Barry Manilow, John Denver, ABBA, and Air Supply

What sound drives you crazy?

If you came with a warning label, what would it say?
WARNING: This lady is very intelligent, has a smart mouth, and LOVES a good argument----and by the way, she usually wins.

Who’s more fun, bad boys or perfect gentlemen and why?
I love a perfect gentleman with a secret “bad boy” side----like a guy who races motorcycles or flies jet planes, but still opens doors for you and defers to your every wish when you’re together.

What is your favorite candy bar?


  1. Well, I have an IMperfect gentleman with a bad boy side. I like it. LOL He's definitely fun to have around, opens doors and the whole deal but surprises me all the time!

    Good interview, Jamaica. I am going to check out some of your spice!

    Decadent Publishing

  2. Well, I won't fall asleep around you, since it bothers you. LOL I can't imagine.

    Strange but I never learned to like John Denver's music until he was gone, and then I cried for several days, and listened to the beautiful sound. Sometimes his voice was like an canyon of echoes.

    Great interview.
    Love and blessings

  3. LOL! Love that warning label. I think I need one of those:)