1. Tell us about your newest release.
“Hunted and Haunted” is one of the stories in the anthology Rough Edges. It’s a fish out of water story, about a city girl who ends up on the run, hiding from the mob in a haunted cabin in remote Montana, under the protection of a sexy police officer. It’s equal parts steamy and thrilling, with just a touch of paranormal.
2. What was one of the most surprising things you learned in creating your story?
I learned that I can write fast if I need to! I’m usually a pretty slow writer, but I got the idea for this story all in a flash only a few days before the submission call deadline. I wrote every spare moment I had and barely got it done in time. I was frankly amazed that I did it!
3. Do you have any interesting or quirks or rituals?
I’m a “write in a coffeehouse” kind of person and have been since my creative writing classes in college. I love escaping to a local coffeehouse for a latte and dessert (there’s a place in my town that makes the best carrot cake!) and a couple quality hours of writing. For some reason I can think better in the middle of the bustle of a busy café than in my nice quiet home.
4. What authors or friends influenced you in helping you become a writer?
I read a book by Ann Patchett in my 20s and came away wishing I could weave words the way she does. I also love the way Jennifer Crusie effortlessly blends humor and romance. My current favorite authors are Courtney Milan and Deanna Raybourn. On a more personal level, I’ll always be grateful to my mother, who taught me to read at an early age, and encouraged me to write from the time I was old enough to put words on a page.
5. What does your family think about your career as a published author?
My husband is incredibly supportive, and always has been. Our Australian Cattle Dog, Gambit, is always ready to take me for a walk if I need to figure out a plot point. The cats are indifferent, though they like when I’m writing on my laptop so they can come and fall asleep next to me.
6. Besides writing, what other interests do you have?
I’m a voracious reader. I come from a theatre background, so I have a deep love for show tunes, but I’m also a child of the 80s, so that love extends to hair metal too. I run (slowly), and I’m very committed to animal rescue.
7. Can you tell us what is coming up next for you?
I have a contemporary romance novel that’s in the querying stages, and a lot of other ideas waiting patiently for their turn to be written.
8. How can readers connect with you online?
My website is www.jendeluca.com, and I spend far too much time on Twitter at @jaydee_ell.
They say write what you know. When Jen DeLuca was 6, she wrote stories about girls who had dogs, played tennis, and took naps. She’s branched out a little since then, and now her stories usually include some snark, some angst, and some kissing. A Floridian by way of Virginia, Jen loves Hokies football, latte-flavored lattes, and the Oxford comma. She no longer plays tennis but she takes as many naps as she can.
Rough Edges, cover copy
Work hard, play hard, love hard…
Nothing is sexier than someone who knows what they want and has the confidence go after it. This anthology is crammed full of hot romances featuring those kinds of rough-around-the-edges alpha personalities–stories about the kind of men and women who ride horses during the day and their partners at night, who speak few words but mean every one of them, and who would never break their own personal code of honor. We're talking about cowboys... and cowgirls.
This anthology contains seven romances with a Western theme that run the gamut from sweet to sizzling.
All Romance eBooks: https://www.allromanceebooks.com/product-roughedges-2002518-362.html
“Tell you what?”
“Tell me I’m safe. Tell me you’ll stay.” I had come out here because I was afraid, but that feeling was long gone, replaced with something much more primal. I wanted him in my room, in my bed, but my mouth couldn’t form the words.
Something must have shown on my face, because he started toward me. Slowly, deliberately, the soles of his boots like ominous music against the wood floor. “You’re safe,” he reminded me. “I’m not going anywhere. Nothing’s going to happen to you.”
His voice was a growling whisper, and I strained to hear it as he walked closer still. Heel, toe. Heel. Toe. Clomp-clomp. Clomp-clomp. The closer he came, the harder my heart thudded in my chest, a counterpoint to his footsteps. I didn’t shrink back at his approach, just kept my eyes on his as he came closer.
He stopped a scant inch away, the heat from his body radiating toward mine. The quick rise and fall of my breath brushed the soft fabric of my camisole against his chest in a barely-there whisper. He was a large man, and this was a very small cabin. With anyone else, I would have felt threatened, but this was Gabe and I wanted nothing more than to curl into his body.