Thursday, September 1, 2011
Welcome Anna James
Anna, please tell us a little about your book:
Isabella’s Dilemma is a contemporary romance novella. It is 93 pages long and is now available from Sugar and Spice Press. http://www.sugarnspicepress.com/index.php?main_page=product_info&products_id=81
You can also find it at Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Isabellas-Dilemma-ebook/dp/B003X9573A/ref=sr_1_1?s=digital-text&ie=UTF8&qid=1314875124&sr=1-1
And Barnes and Noble: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/isabellas-dilemma-anna-james/1029827144?ean=2940013198470&itm=1&usri=isabella%2bs%2bdilemma
The story revolves around Isabella Sheridan. Isabella is twenty-four years old and has just lost her beloved father. On top of dealing with his death she has to deal with Jake McAllistar. Jake is now Isabella’s business partner. To make matters worse he owns more of the Sheridan Advertising Agency than she does. He is difficult to work with, has a hostile attitude toward her and makes business decisions without consulting her. So why does she respond with so much passion when he kisses her?
Jake McAllister does not like Isabella Sheridan. As far as he’s concerned she’s shallow and without moral values, both in her personal and professional life. So why is he so attracted to her? You’d think he’d know better based on past experience. And why, after just one passionate kiss, is he ready to give her the benefit of the doubt and become involved?
What inspired you to write this book?
The story is the result of an idea I had about a young woman who had been secretly attracted to one of her father’s business associates.
How did you choose the title for this book?
Actually, I didn’t. My mother did. I was having a really hard time coming up with a title for this story so I asked her what she thought the book should be called. Since the story deals with Isabella’s dilemma over Jake McAllistar, I thought it was a good title.
Can you share an excerpt from the book with us?
Absolutely! Here is a taste to whet your appetite:
Amy glared at her and she glared back, a mutinous look on her face. You wouldn’t look at me that way if you knew what he thought of me, she told her cousin silently. He’s a lousy rat! How dare he think so badly of her? And she never would have known if she hadn’t overheard a conversation he was having in his office one day. As a matter of fact, it was that conversation that had made her finally decide to leave the agency altogether. Well, it hadn’t been her only reason for leaving, she conceded wryly, but it was the final straw as far as she was concerned. He actually thought she was sleeping with their clients! She still couldn’t believe it. Had he always thought so little of her?
Her mind drifted back to the first time she’d met him. It had been at a Christmas party. Her father threw one every year for his employees. In addition to the advertising agency, her father had numerous other business interests. Jake had been there as a representative from one of them. She’d been eighteen on that occasion and had just started her first year of college. He’d been introduced to her as one of her father’s protégés; a financial wizard with a reputation of a man that got the job done—no matter what. He was the person her father was counting on to turn around his latest acquisition. There had been something about him, even back then, that had affected her on the most basic level, she admitted now. But, to him, she’d meant nothing. She had been merely someone to be polite to if he wanted to get ahead in her father’s organization. She hadn’t seen much of him since then, until recently, as he had never been involved with the advertising agency in the past. He was now, though, and she still didn’t know why. Compared to his responsibilities within the rest of Sheridan Industries, running the advertising agency was small peanuts.
But they were business partners now it seemed. It was a shock finding out that Jake not only worked for her father, but, was actually his business partner; owning a significant chunk of stock in the agency as well as the rest of the business empire. Which was why he was able to force me out in the first place, she thought angrily. He didn’t force you out, a little voice inside her taunted. You left of your own accord. “He’s an extraordinary man,” her father used to say. “Not only in the business sense but personally as well.” Maybe you thought so, Dad, but I certainly don’t!
“Care to dance?”
Isabella looked up with a start. She had been so preoccupied with her memories that she hadn’t realized anyone was talking to her. “I’m sorry. What was that?” She looked around her nervously. “And where are Amy and Nick?”
“On the dance floor,” Jake replied dryly, his eyes leading hers to where their figures were swaying together in time to the music.
“Which is why I asked if you’d like to dance.”
“With you?” she mocked. “Why don’t you ask your lady friend? I’m sure she’d be more than happy to join you.”
“Why Isabella, if I didn’t know better I’d think you were jealous.”
Her eyebrows arched. You’ve got to be kidding, she thought derisively, and was about to say just that when a thought occurred to her. Her lips curved mischievously. “Why, Jake, I’d love to dance. I thought you’d never ask,” she replied sweetly, and standing, led the way on to the dance floor.
If Jake was surprised he didn’t show it. He simply took her in his arms and they began to sway in time to the music. A tingling sensation ran down Isabella’s spine when his hand came in contact with her back. It felt—No! She dismissed that thought right from her head.
“Isabella, I’d like to talk to you about something,” he began. “It’s about Sheridans.”
The sensual sound of his voice washed over her and she leaned in closer to him. “I’m listening.”
If he noticed anything different about her behavior, he didn’t let on. “Yes, I’d like—”
She inhaled deeply and let her hand glide up his arm and come to rest on his shoulder, pressing her body against his lean frame. “What is that cologne you’re wearing?” she asked breathlessly. “It smells wonderful.” When her head came to rest on his chest, his whole body tightened in response.
“Isabella,” he grated through clenched teeth. “I don’t know what you’re playing at, but I’m warning you…”
She looked up at him, her blue eyes wide and luminous, and her lips parted and kissably soft. “Jake,” she whispered breathlessly.
“Isabella,” he warned again.
This really is quite intoxicating, she acknowledged somewhere in the far reaches of her brain. She could easily… Don’t blow it now, she told herself sternly. In a few seconds you can toss him a dirty look and tell him exactly what you think of him!
Without warning his lips crushed hers in a passionate kiss. It took her totally by surprise and shocked her to her very core. Which is why she began kissing him back with a hunger that not only matched his—it surpassed it! My God! I’ve never been kissed like this in my whole life, she thought dazedly. Had never responded to a man like this, ever. She could feel the blood as it raced through her veins; hear it roaring in her ears. Her heart beat wildly. She was on fire. Helplessly she clung to him. She couldn’t think; didn’t want to think, only feel…
Reality set in. This isn’t supposed to be happening, she thought frantically. She’d just wanted to teach him a lesson, for goodness sakes. Yet here she was practically devouring the man. Oh God! She didn’t even like Jake McAllister. She couldn’t possibly want him…could she? No! She ripped herself free from his embrace. “What do you think you are doing?” she asked in an anguished voice. What had happened to her just now? She had lost complete control of the situation. Jake had kissed her, but her reaction to that kiss—to him— Panic set in and she turned and fled the dance floor without waiting for his response.
He raced after her and caught up with her on the street outside. Grasping her shoulder, he whirled her around to face him.
Now can you please tell us a little about yourself?
Sure. I am an author of contemporary romance stories that allow women to take a break from reality and get lost in a world filled with passion, drama and romance. I have been writing for about twelve years now but have only been recently published. I have a degree in Mechanical Engineering and worked in that field for a number of years before I went into Marketing, which is my day job these days. I have four books that have been published: Isabella’s Dilemma – Sugar and Spice Press, Guilty As Charged – Book 1 Bradford Sisters Trilogy – Sugar and Spice Press, Coming Home – Melange Books and Visions – Sugar and Spice Press. I also a short story entitled A Picture Perfect Christmas that was included in Christmas Collectibles – Melange Books.
What do you think is the most important to remember when writing romance?
For me a story has to have passion, drama and romance. When there are paranormal elements included I also love suspense. It’s that leap into the unknown that gets me interested as a reader. Lastly, and maybe the most important to me, there has to be a happy ending.
How much of your personality and life experiences are in your writing?
I would say there is something from my life in every book I write. For example, in Isabella’s Dilemma, the hero and heroine visit San Francisco. My family and I first visited all of the places I mentioned in the book when I was 10. I also went back as an adult with my husband and children. A Picture Perfect Christmas - Christmas Collectibles (now available from Melange – Books) takes place mainly in New York City. It’s one of my favorite places to visit. My cousin, sister and I make an annual pilgrimage to the city around Christmas time to see all the decorations. To Love and Trust Again (Available January 2012 from Melange-Books) takes place in Buffalo, NY and Boston, MA. I lived in both places. Additionally, the heroine in that book is a mechanical engineer, which I am as well.
What were you doing when you received your first contract?
My husband and I had just gotten home from eating dinner at a local restaurant. I had been checking my email for a reply from the publisher obsessively for days by that point. I had checked before we went out and again when I got home but it was after 7 pm so I didn’t think I would hear anything more that evening. What I didn’t realize was that the publisher was in a different time zone so there was a response when I checked. To say I was ecstatic would be an understatement. I think I called practically every member of my family and close friends that night to tell them my good news.
What are you working on now?
I’m just about done with Shattered Dreams. This is book 2 in the Bradford Sisters Trilogy. I also have a couple of other works in process. They are currently untitled.
Where can readers learn more about your books?
On my blog: http://annajames1.wordpress.com/
Do you have any words of encouragement for unpublished writers?
Believe in yourself and in your writing. The road to publication is littered with rejection letters (or e-mails as the case may be). If you get rejected find another publisher and keep at it until you have a contract!
Is there anything else you’d like to tell us?
Thanks for having me as a guest on your blog. I enjoyed being featured here.
You can find me at my blog at: http://annajames1.wordpress.com/
or on Facebook at: http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100001402819536
And remember to leave a comment with your email address to be entered for a chance to win a free ecopy of Isabella’s Dilemma.
Posted by Wicked Muses at 7:09 PM