Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Giveaway & Interview with Romance Author Jessica Scott

I'm delighted to have Jessica Scott here today. I've read two of her stories and they were wonderful. She's out and about this month touring on behalf of her new short story, "Anything for You". It's a beautiful, gut-wrenching love story that shows why she is such a good writer. She's also written two full length novels; all three stories are part of her Coming Home series. She also recently published "To Iraq and Back", a non-fiction collection of posts from her blog concerning her 2009 service in Iraq.

Jessica is a career army officer, mother of two daughters, three cats and three dogs, wife to a career NCO and wrangler of all things stuffed and fluffy. She is a terrible cook and even worse housekeeper, but she's a pretty good shot with her assigned weapon and someone liked some of the stuff she wrote. Somehow, her children are pretty well adjusted and her husband still loves her, despite burned water and a messy house.

She's written for the New York Times At War Blog, PBS Point of View Regarding War, and IAVA. She deployed to Iraq in 2009 as part of OIF/New Dawn and recently stepped down as company commander at Fort Hood. Oprah has called her. True story. 

Her debut novel "Because Of You" launched Loveswept, the first Random House digital imprint. More recently, she's been featured as one of Esquire Magazine's Americans of the Year for 2012.


Find Jessica online:

Goodreads




 Okay, grab a drink, use the facilities, and get cozy; Jess and I had lots to chat about. :)


Bea: Please tell us a little about your new release, "Anything For You".
Jessica: Anything For You is a short story about Shane & Jen from Because of You. They got together when both of them were vulnerable: Shane healing from injuries sustained in combat, Jen healing from breast cancer. Fast forward a year and we get a little glimpse into their HEA. 

Bea: Why writing? Would you continue to write if you were no longer published?
Jessica: Yes, I would keep writing because the voice in my head would make me. I love writing. It’s something I do for me and I get to explore big questions.

Bea: What’s coming up next for you with your writing? Are you working on your next book? Can you tell us a little about it?
Jessica: I’m finishing up Laura & Trent’s story in "Back To You" and Reza’s story in "Come Home To Me". After that, I’m taking a different route and writing something completely not romance. It’s really dark and I’m kind of loving it! (Oooo, I wanna know more! ~ Bea)

Bea: Any plans to write a romance that isn’t military? What about other genres? You’ve done romance and memoir, what’s next?
Jessica: Next up is a dark fiction. That’s all I can really say about it b/c it’s a sekret, lol!

Bea: Why romance? What do you like about it?
Jessica: I love that romance is about relationships on all levels. After all, everything we do is about relationships. If more people remembered that, maybe the world would be a little bit nicer to live. 

Bea: Like many authors, you juggle writing and all that entails, and a day job. How do you manage that? Do they ever conflict?
Jessica: They don’t conflict but they do take a lot of time. This weekend, I allowed myself to just sit on the couch and watch the super bowl and surf twitter. It was the first time I’d allowed myself to just sit and chill out in a long, long time. 

Bea: You mentioned once that your co-workers don’t know about your writing. How have you kept them separate? Do you anticipate ever sharing with them?
Jessica: No, I don’t anticipate sharing them. I write under a pen name because when I’m at work, the military is the focus. I don’t have time for someone asking me about getting published or to read their manuscript. We’ve got a job to do, you know?

Bea: Does your family read your books? What do they think?
Jessica: Mom, yes, everyone else, no. Mom is a big supporter!

Bea: What is your favorite part of writing?
Jessica: Honestly? I love revising. I absolutely love seeing the raw material transition to something readable. 

Bea: When you write, do you outline or just wing it?
Jessica: I’ve started outlining and writing synopsis. I find it helps tremendously to know where a story needs to head. It keeps my good idea fairy under control, lol!

Bea: You recently published "To Iraq and Back", a collection of blog posts about your deployment to Iraq in 2009. What prompted you to publish this book? Have you gotten any flack for it?
Jessica: I’ve been really surprised by the support for To Iraq and Back! It spent almost 5 weeks on the Amazon top 100 for military biographies - paid! I was so flattered and surprised. 

I’d decided to publish it because there were lots of folks who weren’t along for the ride when it first started out. And because my time in Iraq has influenced my writing so heavily, I figured I’d package it for people who were interested to see. 

Bea: Do you see yourself leaving the military to write full-time? What are your dreams for both careers?
Jessica: I’d love to command a battalion in the army but that’s a long way down the road. And honestly, I’d like to just keep writing. Eventually, my dream is for my husband and I to be retired and to travel around the country with him fishing bass tournaments and me writing, living out of an RV. I think that sounds awesome. 

Bea: Do you prefer ebooks or print, or do you enjoy both?
Jessica: I enjoy both but I’m forced to admit that most of my reading is done on my ipad these days. It’s just so much easier to read on that while I’m working out. But I still buy print books for my keeper shelf so it makes me sad when books are only digital. 
 
Bea:  If you could be a character in any book – lead, villain, sidekick, etc – who would you be and why?
Jessica: I’m the lead, except that I have to say, I make a really good sidekick, lol!

Bea: You’ve been published traditionally and you’ve self-published. Do you have a preference? Will you do more self-publishing? 
Jessica: Honestly, there are strengths and weaknesses to both self publishing and traditional publishing. I don’t think my self publishing would be as strong had it not been for being traditionally published. It all depends on where an author is and what their goals are, honestly. Yes, I do see me doing more self publishing.

Bea: Does your family read your books? What do they think?
Jessica: Mom, yes, everyone else, no. Mom is a big supporter!

Bea: I know you’ve been busy applying to graduate school; what will you be studying?
Jessica: I’m going for sociology - hopefully - if I get accepted!

Now for some fill in the blank questions:
  1.          The first book you ever loved was: Dragonflight by Anne McCaffrey
  2.          My perfect day is: a day on the lake fishing with my husband
  3.          My guilty pleasure is: lounging around a bookstore
  4.          My favorite meal is: Mellow Mushroom Pizza (I'm not sure what this is but I'm intrigued! ~ Bea)
  5.          Books are important because: they are the transmission of our culture, they allow us to escape and the offer us hope
  6.          My favorite book is: oh wow, there are too many to name
  7.          The book or author that inspired me to write is: I honestly cannot remember, I’ve been doing this for so long,lol!
  8.          The best advice I’ve ever received was: life is all about relationships. Remember that.
  9.          The authors, dead or living, that I’d most like to have dinner with are: Anne McCaffrey or Chuck Wendig. Because Anne is someone I look up to and Chuck just seems like a really funny guy 
  10.       My dream man is: don’t roll your eyes but my husband: he’s funny, he makes me laugh when I want to cry, he’s sexy as hell and he’s a good dad. (Awwww, that's sweet; he's a lucky man. ~ Bea)

Thanks for taking the time to answer my questions and best of luck with “Anything for You”.

Thanks so much for having me Bea!

*****************************************************************************

Jessica is giving away a digital copy of "ANYTHING FOR YOU" as well as Shane & Jen’s first story "BECAUSE OF YOU" to one lucky commenter! Just leave a comment below; giveaway ends 11:59PM EST on Feb. 28th. I'll use Random.org to choose a winning comment. Please read my Giveaway Policy.


Blurb from the author ~

From the author of Because of You comes an all new Coming Home short story. Sergeant First Class Shane Garrison has spent a year recovering from his combat injuries. A year spent in the arms of the woman of his dreams. But loving Jen comes with a price: every time he touches her, he faces the uncertain fear that loving her might mean losing her forever. Jen is a breast cancer survivor and with Shane, she’s found a man who loves her despite her scars. But her scars may be too much for their love to survive. As their love grows, so does the risk to Jen’s life. And Shane must make the toughest decision any man can make to save the woman he loves.

Buying Links:  Amazon  Barnes & Noble  Smashwords

 Below is the official excerpt!


Anything for You: A Coming Home Short Story Excerpt
by Jessica Scott

4 comments:

  1. Nice to 'meet' you, Jessica. Your books sound wonderful! I'm going to check them out. I enjoyed this interview.
    I just have to say I admire you keeping the home fires burning and protecting us all too. Thank you and all your brothers and sisters for all your service. :)

    ReplyDelete
  2. Congrats on the new release and thanks again for all of the service and sacrifice by your family.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Your book sounds Awesome Jessica! What a great interview. Thank you for writing for us and for your service.


    MinDaf @ aol.com

    ReplyDelete
  4. This sounds like an awesome book. Thanks for sharing the fantastic interview. She is definitely one busy woman.

    Jenea @ Books Live Forever

    ReplyDelete

Thanks for taking the time to comment, I enjoy hearing from my readers.

Due to a huge upswing in spam comments, I had to disable anonymous commenting. If you have trouble commenting, you can use the Kontactr form at the bottom of the page. It won't show publicly but I'll still get the comment.