Jen: Help we welcome J.M. Powers to Romancing the Book. J.M., will you share a short bio with us?
J.M.: J.M. Powers harbors an alter ego of a normal woman named Jeannie. (Her editor is still on the fence about the whole ‘normal’ thing.) Jeannie’s proficient at research, gluten-free cooking, and embarrassing her teenagers by wearing skinny jeans to the grocery store. J.M., the author-ego, plunges so deep into her writing; she forgets life outside her creations still goes on. She can be found at:
Jen: Please tell us about your newest release.
J.M.: Jewel of Ramstone will release on Friday, November 14. Here’s the blurb:
A maiden, unable to recall who she is, must battle evil to regain the memory of her past and the hope of a future.
Awaking in the forest, a young maiden recalls naught—including her name. Equally conflicting is her desire to both slap and kiss Sir Galeron, the knight who claims to have protected her while she was unconscious. Much to her chagrin, he dubs her “Ruby of the Forest” due to her red hair, and insists she find refuge at his home of Ramstone. Prickling at his demanding ways, but with no other option, she accepts his offer. And although his kiss flames her attraction even more, Galeron dashes it with a confession. The brute is trothed to another.
Ruby’s journey is filled with laughter and weeping, daydreams and discovered abilities. But never does she feel complete. Her heart longs for a future that her past may destroy. Evil lurks, treading on each tidbit of memory she recovers. Will Ruby ever recall her past? And after an attack in the village that sparks a horrific nightmare, does she even want to?
Here’s a short excerpt:
“Ask me anything. Mayhap I can help.” His deep voice broke the silence.
How was he to help? “Pray tell, how did we come to share the forest?”
“I shall explain.” He bent and picked up a twig, then proceeded to peel the bark off. With each curl he tossed aside, she grew more frustrated.
‘Twas better to allow mistrust. Stand strong. She gasped. Unexpected, the thought rang with such clarity, it seemed someone else had spoken. “Perchance you should be honest. Did you drug me? Spell me?”
He tossed the twig aside. Though his eyes remained on her face, her whole body felt his scrutiny. “‘Twould do you well to hold your tongue.”
“I am beginning to dislike you,” she said, knowing full well the opposite was true. She truly wished her insides would cease…prickling? And her head. Damn, it ached so. Tingles and pain aside, she tried to focus. “Do you intend to explain or not?”
“I seek a means to tell you gently.”
With a slight shrug, she said, “No need for gentleness. You already tossed me about.” She grinned despite the truth in her statement.
He sighed. “It appears you are lost.”
“God’s eyes, knight!” She shook her head. “You must be a great sorcerer to possess such insight.”
“Your tongue shall be your undoing. Best you still it.”
Twice he attempted to stifle her. She clenched her teeth. “Still it?”
Galeron’s jaw twitched and she wondered if he were quelling a smile. “I found you here in the woodlands. I did not hold you captive, drug you, or harm you.” He blinked slowly. “Hold to that.”
She nodded. “Forgive—”
“Nay need. I understand. You now stand a day’s ride from Ramstone. Have you heard of it?”
He pushed off the tree and came to sit beside her, his thigh nearly touching her own. Nearly. It took a moment for her answer. “Nay, I do not recall Ramstone.” The fact she did not recall much of anything choked off the rest of her response.
“Odd,” he said, more to himself than her.
Sighing, she realized how badly her masquerade of bravery was faltering. Out of the corner of her eye, she saw his hand come toward her. Surprised at the urge to lean into his touch, she remained still and allowed him to brush back the wisps of hair from her brow. His hand lowered in a fist, yet his voice was laced with tenderness.
“It pains me that I cannot give you answers.” His gaze strayed from her face, lowering to her neck.
Covering the neckline of her tunic with both hands, she glared at him. “Focus elsewhere.” He sees me as a woman after all. She dashed the thought away. Almost.
“I intend nay disrespect. The bruising on your neck concerns me.” Gently brushing her hand aside, he took a closer look. “Fingerprints.”
It took all she had not to cry out. Who harmed her?
Jen: Are there any other writers, published or not, in your family?
J.M.: My sister, Cheryl Hart, is a published author. Her story is featured in Chicken Soup for the Soul: Finding Your Inner Strength. Cheryl is an nostalgic evocative, writer, while I’m more dramatic and character driven. We are in the process of co-authoring a book, so the different writing styles prove quite interesting.
Jen: Describe your writing in 3 words.
J.M.: Intense. Dramatic. Historical.
Jen: How do you remember ideas that come to you at odd times?
J.M.: I’ve been known to write on my car window with eyeliner.
Jen: How do you come up with characters names?
J.M.: In my contemporary romances, I use common modern names. However, In Jewel of Ramstone, I used medieval names and researched their meanings. For instance the antagonist, Talbot, means messenger of destruction. On the flip side, the hero, Galeron, means knight. Ruby, the heroine’s name, means red…the color of her hair…yeah, that one is kind of obvious.
Jen: What’s been the highlight of you career to this point?
J.M.: It’s a tie. The day Breathless Press sent a contract for Jewel of Ramstone. And the day award winning author, Deborah Macgillivray, read and reviewed and endorsed Jewel of Ramstone! Whooo hooo! *clears throat and acts normal again*
Jen: What’s next for you?
J.M.: My newest release, Jewel of Ramstone, is a medieval romance. It centers around Ruby’s quest to regain her memory. Fear, unrequited love, doubt and a horrible attack on the village hampers her search, but she doggedly moves on.
I am currently writing book two of the Ramstone series.