Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Author Interview & New Release: Her Unexpected Detour (Checkerberry Inn #1) by Kyra Jacobs


Her Unexpected Detour
A Checkerberry Inn novel #1
By: Kyra Jacobs
Releasing September 14, 2015
Entangled Bliss

Buy Links:  Amazon | Barnes & Noble | iTunes | Kobo | Amazon UK | Amazon Canada


Sometimes it’s not the destination, but the detour…

Kayla has the perfect strategy for a broken heart: work, work, and more work. Then a storm sends her car skidding off the road, stranding her in Mount Pleasant. Fortunately, rescue comes in the form of the incredibly handsome but gruff Brent Masterson. And he’s hot enough to tempt Kayla into doing something she never thought she could do…

Brent Masterson swore he would never give into the fierce attraction that’s been sizzling between him and Kayla since they first met. He has his own demons, and he won’t risk his heart again. Not even for someone as gorgeous and amazing as Kayla. So…how exactly did he end up in Kayla’s bed last night?

But sometimes all it takes is an ice storm to show two broken hearts the way home…


    They mounted the stairs, her before him. He stayed close, as though unconvinced she could make it on her own, and his cologne tickled at her senses. Senses that became more alert with each step she took. Brent remained silent, an unspoken yet palpable tension growing between them.
    What was it about this man that left her so unsettled?
    Kayla reached the landing and continued on to the hall. A few more steps and she’d be away from the tension, away from the scowls. But when they reached her suite she paused, torn. Behind the closed door was a night full of what so many before had held: loneliness. And for the first time in forever, she longed for something more. A playful grin tugged at her lips.
    “So, you’ve been assigned the room beside mine, huh?”
    Oh, she was playing with fire, and she knew it. But desperate times called for desperate measures.     She couldn’t spend all evening in there, alone with her thoughts and worries. Brent stared down at her and said nothing, his right brow raised but eyes unreadable.
    “Oh, that’s right. It’s her inn.” She was taunting him now, and enjoying the heck out of herself.     “You know, she’s got you both trained quite well.”
    She took a step forward and felt an unexpected surge of confidence when Brent remained in place, albeit with narrowed eyes. Still, he said nothing.
    “I am curious, though.” Kayla placed her hands upon his chest. His oh-so-solid chest. “That whole thing about treating me like royalty? Just how far does that extend?”
    “I’m the groundskeeper, nothing more.”
    “Hmm. But you’re off the clock now, correct?” Kayla took another step closer, pressing her body lightly into his. “So what do you have planned for after-hours tonight, Mr. Masterson?”
    Brent’s Adam’s apple bobbed. “That depends,” he said after a moment, his voice low, rough. “Is this you asking, or the wine?”
    Kayla’s gaze shifted to his lips. Definitely not the wine, she knew as her pulse quickened. It may have lowered her defenses, but her mind was clear as a bell. A bell that desperately needed a grand distraction. She stretched up on her tiptoes and brought her lips a whisper away from his.
    “Me,” she breathed. “Definitely me.”



Author interview

I'm delighted to have Kyra join me to anwer a few questions for the blog. Please give her a very warm welcome ...

Thank you for having me here today!

Where are you from?
I’ve lived in and/or around Fort Wayne, Indiana my entire life. But I love it here, and have fun working Indiana references into each of my stories.

(Deanna): I love when an author is local to the area she writes about. It makes it so much more personal. There's a certain quality to writing in a setting that you know intimately.

What are your current projects?
I’ve got the second book in this series drafted, so for all you Miles fans out there, he’ll get his time in the limelight soon enough. Book three ideas are starting to come together, too. In addition to that, I have a fantasy romance series involving dragons and wizards (think Game of Thrones meets Thor) tentatively slated for release in 2016, so stay tuned for that as well!

(Deanna): Yay! I love a series!!

What is your favourite positive saying?
“It’s all good.” My friends and coworkers groan when I say it, but it’s true. Good, bad, or ugly, it’s up to us to make the best of every situation. If we want life to be good, it will be.

(Deanna): Are you sure you're not Australian? We say something similar all the time. "No worries, mate!"

What genre are your books?
My first two books (ARMED WITH STEELE and FLIRTING WITH FIRE) are romantic suspense novels set in Fort Wayne. Both were written from the heroines’ viewpoints.

With the Checkerberry Series (HER UNEXPECTED DETOUR) I wrote from both the hero and heroine’s viewpoints. And I have to say, getting into Brent’s head was a blast, and working with Miles in book 2 has been a lot of fun, too. The novels in this series are sweet contemporary romances, which allowed me to focus less on suspense and more on the characters’ relationships.

After writing Brent and Kayla’s story, a scene involving a modern-day woman stumbling into an alternate reality where men can change into dragons came to mind. I tried to brush it off, but the story demanded I write it. Bending the rules of reality and building new worlds has been both entertaining and educational for me as a writer. Do I plan to stick to one genre or the other? Nah, I have too much fun writing each. Besides, it’s been fun, going back and forth between contemporary romance and fantasy—kind of like getting the best of both worlds.

What is your most recent book about?
HER UNEXPECTED DETOUR is about learning to find joy again after grief. Both main characters had lost one or both of their parents, as well as had failed past romantic relationships. Instead of moving on, each dug into work and avoided dealing with their grief. But when an ice storm hits Mount Pleasant, Michigan while Kayla is in town visiting her brother, she and Brent will collide and then heal while learning to love again.

Give us an insight into your main characters. What does he/she do that is so special?
Kayla is a hard worker, but also a people-pleaser. The first is a good thing, the second can grow into a bit of a curse. After spending a week butting heads with grouchy but irresistible Brent, she begins to see the repercussions to her “please-everyone-but-me” habits.

Brent is also a hard worker, and very dedicated to his family. His grandmother Ruby (who’s an ornery, hopeless romantic and was a trip to write) and cousin Miles are all he has left, and so he is fiercely protective of them. But his time with Kayla helps him realize just how much of his own life he’s wasting away while worrying about everyone but himself.

Do you work to an outline or plot or do you prefer just see where an idea takes you?
While I would love to say I’m a dedicated story outliner, I struggle to stick to them. No matter how well-planned my stories are, every one of them so far has gone down a path (usually a major one) I didn’t expect. Which usually results in me tossing the outline aside because that new path will lead to another, and another… I suppose that makes me somewhat of a hybrid plotter/pantser. A “plantser”, perhaps?

(Deanna): Plantser! Love it! Perhaps you are a new breed of writer? :-)

What is the hardest thing about writing?
Not second-guessing yourself. And it seems I’m not alone—even Jill Shalvis was commenting on Twitter recently that she struggles with the same issue around Chapter 19. For me it happens in every story, usually around the ½ to ¾ mark. I start worrying that the plot is weak or the motivation isn’t strong enough. I used to be really bad about going back and revamping (or doing a full-out overhaul) every time that fear struck, but I’m learning to keep moving forward and see where the first draft ends up. It’s a much smoother process, and easier on the ego when I discover most times I stick fairly close to my original concept. ;-)

(Deanna): That happens to all of us in our chosen professions, I think. I know I did it at work when I was running those big, complicated projects and we run into a snag.

If this book is part of a series, tell us a little about it?
Yes, this book was written to be the first in a series based at the Checkerberry Inn. Between the Owner (Ruby), her two grandsons (Brent and Miles), and a handful of secondary characters, love is certainly in the air there. Book one (DETOUR) focuses on Brent and Kayla learning to find joy beyond their grief. Book two (as it currently stands…things could always evolve) centers around Miles and “the one that got away”, two individuals jaded by the institution of love. Book three is slated to involve Maddie, the inn’s chef, and a new arrival to town—both of whom are misunderstood but deserve love, too. Of course, if my readers clamor for more, then TJ’s story would appear in book four.

(Deanna): I need to read DETOUR to find out about all these characters you are talking about!

Do you let the book stew – leave it for a month and then come back to it to edit?
Ha, no. I’ve read over and over that experts recommend you should leave your first draft sit for a month or a week. Heck, I have a hard time letting it sit for a day. Once I type “The End” I step away and do a happy dance, but then want to dig in on turning that draft into a well-crafted novel. So sometimes I’ll go binge-read a novel or two as a reward for completing the draft, which also serves as my “stewing”. After that, it’s clean-up time. Once the novel’s in good shape, I send it out to my wonderful group of beta readers and wait to receive feedback. While they’re reading, I start plotting and drafting the next novel.

What wonderful insights into you and your writing. Thank you for stopping by.


Author Info

jsKyra Jacobs is an extroverted introvert who writes of love, humor and mystery in the Midwest and beyond. When this Hoosier native isn’t pounding out scenes for her next book, she's likely outside, elbow-deep in snapdragons or spending quality time with her sports-loving family. Kyra also loves to read, tries to golf, and is an avid college football fan. Be sure to stop by her website www.KyraJacobs.wordpress.com to learn more about her novels and ways connect with her on social media.

Author Links:  Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads


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  1. Thank you so much for hosting me on your amazing blog today, Deanna! I tried to post earlier, but the gremlins apparently ate my response. LOL I thoroughly enjoyed your Q&A, and totally chuckled on your Aussie comment. My dear friend Gabrielle with Trailermade Productions is from there, and I do so love to listen to her amazing accent!

    1. Kyra, you are so welcome. I loved having you here. I know, sometimes there are blog gremlins. I've been told that but I don't know what to do about it. I've checked all my settings. :-/

  2. Oh all this sounds very interesting - I will have to add some of these to my TBR. But I am most interested in that fantasy romance! There are not enough of those around today - I am always looking for a new one!

    1. You are so right about fantasy romance. There aren't enough good ones out there.

    2. Bambi and Deanna - be sure to watch my Facebook/Twitter feeds (KyraJacobsBooks) - I'll be posting the cover art for book 1 in that fantasy series soon. And ooooooooooooo do I love it! Between DETOUR's beautiful cover and this one, I am certainly getting spoiled lately! :-)