I’d like to welcome our guest today, Jade Lee. It’s a pleasure having you come visit us at Much Cheaper Than Therapy, where chocolate is plentiful and advice is free. So grab some chocolate and a lounge chair. Your therapy session has begun.
Before we start, I’d like to tell you a bit about myself. I love LOVE. Yeah, I know, who doesn’t? But I mean, I love love stories, I love falling in love. I love HOT SEX. And I love all the interesting character twists that go with dropping your baggage so you can step into your happily ever after.
SO…it comes as no surprise that I write romance. Historical romance, fantasy romance, urban fantasy romance, contemporary romance…basically ROMANCE. I’m known for really, really, really sensual romance. Not graphic, per se, but one of my greatest strengths is creating the mood and atmosphere of …well…a really good love scene. It’s just what I’m good at.
I also started in screenwriting, so my dialogue has always been fun. But apparently, it’s my love scenes that really put me on the map in terms of publishing. So…there you go, that’s a nutshell about me. Right now I’m writing in to sub-genres. Fantasy romance with DRAGONBOUND (dragons and love, what could you want more?) and historical romance (regency era). My latest one is titled The Dragon Earl about a Englishman trained in China who shows up in saffron robes at his wedding. Bride is understandably confused as she thought (a) he was dead and (b) who the hell is barefoot and in saffron robes in England????
I understand you have a new release out called
DRAGONBOUND. Can you tell us a little bit about your fabulous new book?
From the moment I read Lord of the Rings when I was a kid, I’ve wanted to write fantasy romance. Why? Because Tolkien did not, not, not know how to do women. And I really wanted a good love story! So…years ago, I wrote a book of my heart title DRAGONBORN. It’s a love story with DRAGONS! Woo hoo! I loved, loved, loved writing it. The book came out to a great response. Guess I wasn’t the only one who liked dragons and love stories. So…demand was high enough that I wrote the next book in the series…DRAGONBOUND. Yeah, I know the titles are similar, but that was a publisher decision. Now, before you ask, you can read the books out of order. I try to go as stand-alone as possible, but it’ll be more fun if you read them Born then Bound.
DRAGONBOUND is a very interesting title. How did you arrive at that name?
In the first book, Dragonborn is someone who hatches a dragon egg and is tied mind-to-mind to their dragon. They become “dragonborn” because the joined mind is a new person.
Dragonbound was because my hero and heroine are tied to the past and to each other…much as they both hate and love one another. They have to break with the old ties—even the ones to each other—and form a new link. Or not. That’s a tough order for anyone to follow.
What are your favorite fantasy research books, and why?
Truly, the best way to learn how to write fantasy is to read in the genre. A LOT. I have worldbuilding books, but nothing takes the place of just reading and understanding how others have accomplished it before you. (Or me, in this case) And also…basic understanding of ecology, physics…you know, the sciences. My kids are in high school now, so I’m getting that from all over! (Gawd, and frankly, what these kids have to learn today is WAY harder than what I studied in high school).
Which character did you like writing about the most, and why?
The relationship between Cordain and Sabina (hero and heroine in DRAGONBOUND) is just the most incredible thing I’ve ever written. He used to be a dragon and she was his dragonmaid. (That was my original title for the book, but it was changed.) She took care of him, but she also did a whole lot more. And there was a skanky villain back then who abused her while the dragon had to sit chained up and watch. Ooooh, I can’t tell you how many readers have commented on how much they both liked and hated the skanky villain sex! Anyway, they have a whole history as maid and dragon, but then he becomes a man. Can they release the bonds of her childhood abuse? Can he show her who he is as a man, not a dragon? Can he BE a man and not a dragon? I so loved writing this book! I love complex people!
Tell us about how you develop your characters. Do you create character sheets, do interviews, that sort of thing? How does your research and world affect your character development?
Character sheets, imagery sets, notes, EVERYTHING! And then I throw it all away. The people have to be real to me. All the note-taking and interviews and stuff is just a way to make them real. Once they settle in, I can start writing. Then the real work begins because I always, ALWAYS discover a ton more about them as I go further.
How do you go about building your world? Do you use maps, charts or drawings?
Do you mean I SHOULD use maps, charts, and drawings? Um…yeah. But my notes are very sketchy. My stories are about people, not places. Yes, since the three countries are gearing up for war, I kinda had to put them somewhere—north, south, east, west—in releationship to each other. Bit by bit, land shapes and characters appear, but that’s mostly because the characters and story demand that I figure them out. Not because I really like doing it. I know people who get really detailed in their geography. That’s not me!
Do you have any authors that inspired you?
Too many to name. Right now Jim Butcher’s Dresden series is just flat out incredible. And Jacqueline Carey in terms of worldbuilding. In romance, there are so many… I love Gina Showalter, Elizabeth Hoyt, Nora Roberts, oh…wow, I could go on and on and on!
What do you feel is the most effective promotion you have done for your book?
Nothing is really effective except writing a good book. Of course, I spent tons on give aways. Bookmarks, tee shirts, free books. But…in the end, it’s all about writing the best book you can.
What do we have to look forward next?
In September, I’ve got a Blaze coming out titled IN GOOD HANDS. That’s fun contemporary romp with good sex. Hey, I call it like it is! But I’m hoping to write more in my base: Regency-era historical romance and fantasy romance. I love them both, so that’s where I plan to hang out!
To celebrate her book release, Jade Lee is offering a free book of Dragonborn to one lucky commenter on today's blog. (check back on Monday night to see who wins) She's at the RT convention in Orlando, but she's assured me she has internet access. I'm sure some of you have questions or comments for her, so please ask away...
A USA Today bestseller, Jade Lee has made her mark with sizzling romances. She adores unique settings, dark characters, and erotic, exotic love. And if she throws in a dragon or a tigress here and there, it’s only in the name of fun! An author of more than 25 novels, she adores the fabulousness that is love! She calls her books sexy treats and hopes you find them equally delicious!
She loves hearing from readers. Visit her at www.jadeleeauthor.com or email her at firstname.lastname@example.org
Check out author’s website at www.jadeleeauthor.com Buy Dragonbound at http://www.amazon.com/Dragonbound-Love-Spell-Fantasy-Romance/dp/0843960477/ref=pd_bbs_sr_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1239036247&sr=8-1