Today I’m so pleased to have my friend and fellow Carina Press author Rachel Johns visiting, to talk about her new release One Perfect Night!
We’re also giving away a $25 Amazon gift card in honor of the book’s release. Just leave us a comment to be entered in the giveaway. I’ll choose the winner by random drawing at Noon PST on December 23rd and announce the name here (and on twitter).
Rachael Johns is an English teacher by trade, a mum 24/7, a supermarket owner by day, a chronic arachnophobic, and a writer by night. She rarely sleeps. Rachael received The Call from Angela James telling her Carina wanted to publish her book on April Fools Day and, when she told her friends, half of them wondered if it was a big joke. Luckily it wasn’t.
Here’s the intriguing set up for what’s going to happen on that fateful night…
Peppa Grant’s fellow employees may call their new CEO Mr. McSexy, but she’s also heard that he’s aloof and distant. Cameron McCormac certainly seems cold toward Christmas when she meets him at the company’s annual party…but he’s also the sexiest man Peppa has ever seen. And when he offers to forgive the damage she accidentally caused to his expensive car in exchange for accompanying him to his family’s holiday get-together, she agrees.
Cameron needs a date to the family party to get his matchmaking relatives off his back. Their chemistry is instant and undeniable, leading to an incredible one-night stand. But Peppa wants love and family, while Cameron’s only interested in temporary pleasure. When their relationship takes an unexpectedly serious turn, will he run the other way—or will he give love a second chance?
And now for some Q&A with Rachel:
What do you love most about being a writer?
Ooh there are so many good things. Being able to work in my pyjamas (HUGE bonus), being always close to the fridge (not good for my hips), meeting so many awesome people through blogs and organizations, seeing your cover for the first time, the thrill of creating new characters, the thrill of finishing a book… I could go on and on. It’s my DREAM job – you can experience so many other careers without actually going and doing all the training.
Any advice to a new writer?
If you aren’t a member of a Romance Writing organization, join. Then meet up with other like-minded writers and develop networks. My writing friends are my support system and I wouldn’t be without them. Also READ, READ and READ some more in the genre you want to be published. I’ll go further to say if you’re targetting a particular line or publisher, read them too. And of course, you must put pen to paper or fingers to keyboard 🙂
What’s your typical day as a writer like?
I’m a mum and small business owner so I don’t have a typical day. I get one kid-free, shop-free day a week and on that day I try to write as much as I can. Other days I aim for 500 – 1000 words in the evening or while the littlies watch Playschool and Wiggles in the morning. I DREAM of having a typical day!
Who’s on your Must Read List?
So many authors that I don’t have enough time to read them all. Lisa Jewell, Susan Wiggs, Jenny Crusie, Liane Moriarty, Sarah Mayberry, Kelly Hunter, Heidi Rice and Shannon Stacey.
What do you love most about this new book and why?
You mean aside from the fact it was the first one someone ACTUALLY wanted to BUY? 🙂 I love it because it’s a Christmas story and also because I can relate very much to the hero and his difficulties sleeping.
What inspired the story?
I’m hoping my next Carina novel will be Hollywood Heartbreak, which was actually inspired by two different things. I read an article about a teenage paparazzi and decided I want a hero who was one in his past too. I also decided after Heath Ledger died and was nominated for an Oscar that I wanted to write about someone who was going to the Awards to accept an award of a dead family member. Somewhere along the lines, I realised these two ideas meshed perfectly together.
What’s next for you?
I have a single titled semi-rural romance coming out next June with Harlequin Australia. JILTED is about a runaway bride and the farmer she left at the alter.
What one thing would you take to a desert island?
Diet Coke (a never-ending supply) (VS sez Yes, folks, I can definitely attest to the fact that she’s a dyed in the wool diet coke lover!) and my e-reader. Whoops, that’s two things.
Who’s your favorite fictional character?
Mary Poppins – who wouldn’t want to be like her? Practically perfect in every way 🙂
Here’s an excerpt from One Perfect Night that will leave you wanting MORE, I guarantee:
“Are you two spending Christmas with your family?” asked Lisa, one of the other cousins.
Peppa opened her mouth to speak and, as she did so, she felt slight pressure of what felt like warm flesh against her stocking-covered calf. She looked up to catch a glint in Cameron’s eyes. So the collision hadn’t been an accident. “Um, yeah.” She hated lying, especially to his family when they’d been so welcoming and lovely. “I love Christmas and spend every one at my parents’ house in the Blue Mountains.”
“Oooh, I love the Blue Mountains,” said Cameron’s Uncle Norm.
Thankfully, discussion wandered to everyone’s tales of daytrips and school excursions to the popular tourist destination and, bar the odd well-placed smile and murmur of agreement, Peppa didn’t have to make much contribution to the conversation. It soon became apparent that Cameron’s fingers against her skin were definitely not accidental.
As the meal and conversation progressed, so did the boldness of his hand. Her mind ordered her to resist the sensations that flooded her body at his touch. Her body didn’t listen. It was all she could do not to visibly swoon as his fingers trekked slowly up her leg trailing a hot path and shooting a delicious heat right to her core.
“Can you pass the potatoes?” asked Cameron, his fist nudging between her knees.
She really should squeeze them together tightly, but two could play at this game and she wondered how far he’d go. Smiling sweetly and lifting the serving dish of crisp roasted potatoes, she opened her legs a fraction.
“Thanks.” He gave a dangerous grin as one hand took the bowl and the other slid up the inside of her thigh.
She gulped, her heart threatening cardiac arrest and sweat pooling under her bra-line. If his fingers trespassed any higher, he’d feel her desire through her stockings and know how hot she was for him. Her cheeks at fever-pitch, she pushed back from the table. “Excuse me, Rose, can you tell me where the bathroom is?”
Auntie Rose grinned and pointed down the hallway. “Second door on your left, sweet.”
Inhale. Exhale. Peppa monitored her breathing as she walked briskly down the corridor. She almost fell into the bathroom, trying not to slam the door as she fled to the sink. What the hell was she doing encouraging Cameron when she knew all too well the fallout that could come about from an office romance? Turning the cold tap on full blast, she bent over and splashed water against her cheeks. Thank God for waterproof mascara.
How was this happening? In three years with Tim she couldn’t once remember feeling so physically out of control. So bamboozled. Since their break-up she’d barely noticed anyone of the opposite sex, never mind this raging desire. She wanted Cameron more than she’d ever wanted anyone and if his little performance under the dinner table was any indication, he wanted her equally as much. His attention made her feel like a woman again. She closed her eyes and rubbed her temples, hoping to soothe some sense into her head. In no one’s planet was sleeping with the big boss a good idea. Not that the fantasy currently sending the blood rushing through her veins had much to do with sleeping.
A knock at the door sent her head spinning toward it. She held her breath, staring at the handle, frozen. In her haste, she’d forgotten to lock it.
“Penelope?” Cameron’s deep voice rumbled through the door. “Are you okay?”
One Perfect Night is available now at Carina Press, Amazon , Barnes & Noble. Visit Rachel’s blog Ramblings of a Romance Writing Mama!