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Nothing Like a Little Added Deadline Pressure!

I don’t know what I was thinking when I emailed my editor and told her I’d love to do one additional book with her this year. 

I adore this editor and we work really well together, but as is the case with indie editors, you need to plan well in advance to line them up. I’d already done two books with her this year, and had long ago scheduled another terrific editor for three more books. But when she offered to squeeze in one more with me, well, I couldn’t help but give it some thought. Of course this happened just as I was brainstorming some new series ideas, and then I thought, well, if I start another series I’d better get three books ready to launch at once, and well, that would mean it would be just perfect to have that extra edit lined up!

At the time I’d just finished a book and had what I madly viewed as idle time in front of me for a few weeks. Sure, I had a crazy May lined up: my youngest graduating from UVA undergrad, my oldest graduating from UVA with 2 Masters degrees, and my middle coming home from halfway around the world in Australia for a very infrequent visit to coincide with graduations. Throw in some 18 people staying at my house for graduation (I think I was in deep denial about that). 

Oh and did I mention our house is on the market and there’s all sorts of extra work involved with keeping a house clean and organized for any sudden showings? No worries…All under control…

But 5 weeks ago, this was hardly on the horizon! I had time on my hands, baby! I was going to crank out that additional book in no time flat and be in bed by midnight! Not only that, I’m going to confide in you my little secret: I was also planning to resurrect my all-but-dead daily mindfulness-based stress reduction meditation practice and also get my fat ass off the couch (where it’s been parked writing books) and resume my anaerobic interval spin workout so I could try to get back in shape. And maybe get back to regular yoga classes. Let me tell you, people, I was going to be Wonder Woman (minus the metal breast plates)!

Um, er, well…Graduation is this weekend. I’m too stressed without free time to do any stress reduction (I had been doing it! I swear it!). Finding a daily hour for the bike workout? Are you kidding me? I have been running around like a crazy person preparing for the onslaught of houseguests and graduation and graduation breakfasts for 20 people both mornings before the ceremonies and then the combined graduation party mid-day Saturday for some 50 people as well as lunch mid-day Sunday for another 30 and, yeah, very little writing has happened. 

Plus, I am releasing a book in less than a week and kind of need to figure out my marketing strategy for that, eh? 

So just now, instead of writing? I gave my dog a bath. In my defense, with all of these houseguests showing up, we don’t want the poor thing to be shunned because she smelled like, well, dirty dog.

Ah, well…the good news is I was the girl who pulled all-nighters studying for exams in college and self-conditioned to crank out papers one after the other shortly before their due dates. It must be the former journalist in me, but I definitely thrive under time constraints, so…the good news, is I just sort of lit a fire under my butt, which isn’t such a bad thing after all. Now if I could figure out how to burn the fat in that butt with the fire now scorching it, I’d be good to go!

Hope you can check out my upcoming release: It’s Getting Hot in Heirbook 7 in my It’s Reigning Men series! 

It’s available for pre-order, coming out May 24! You can get it here: iBooksKindleKoboGooglePlay


And I tell you I really am writing book 8! Just not as fast as I’d planned to. Here’s the cover–what do you think? It’s available for pre-order here:   iBooks      


Oh and for a limited time I’ve got an awesome free book for you if you sign up for my newsletter: Something in the Heir, book 1 of the It’s Reigning Men series! Sign up here  and you’ll be first to hear about deals and giveaways.



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Categories: News

K is for Kick-ass...welcome to the Chick Lit A to Z scavenger hunt!

K is for KICKASS…I love a good kickass heroine, and I think you find them a lot in chick lit novels, which is likely why I was drawn to chick lit so many years ago.

Over the years the genre has evolved considerably: no longer is it the exclusive domain of the lonely-young-woman-in-the-city-with-shite-boyfriend-and-crap-job-and-expensive-shoe-habit-and-trusty-gay-male-best-friend-who-helps-her-get-her-act-together. Instead chick lit offers protagonists of all ages and stripes, and sure, they’re flawed–though often they’re funny and strong and determined and maybe a little misguided–but that’s why we love them, right? 

I’m one of millions who fell in love with the chick lit voice with books like Bridget Jones’s Diary. And while Bridget was indeed extremely imperfect, she was also hilarious and honest and charmingly self-deprecating and totally kick-ass because she didn’t let those flaws get in her way when she wanted what it was she wanted (and who wouldn’t, if the prize was Mark Darcy?). 

I read a lot of British chick lit books in the early days of the genre, and that funny, smart aleck-y, strong, kick-ass voice totally spoke to me, and it’s what drew me into writing my first novel, Sleeping with Ward Cleaver, a coming-of-middle-aged novel about a woman who married Mr. Right only to wake up years later to realize he’d become Mr. Always Right. My heroine in that novel, Claire, had to totally kick some ass (including her own, sort of) as she reconciled herself with where things had gone completely wrong in her world, but she does it, and does so with aplomb. 

Nowadays whatever genre I’m writing in, I migrate to that same type of protagonist in my novels, because I love a little bit damaged women who are not afraid to take names and kick some ass. 

Thanks so much for stopping by! Oh, and before you move onto the next site in the scavenger hunt, don’t forget to sign up here for my newsletter and you get a great prize: a digital copy of Something in the Heir, book 1 of my It’s Reigning Men series!  

GRAND PRIZE – Want to win a Kindle Paperwhite + a $100 Amazon gift card? Visit each of the 26 stops on the #ChickLitMay A to Z Scavenger Hunt and collect the alphabet word at each stop (A, B, C, D, etc.), then submit the A-Z list of words via e-mail to with the subject line “A to Z Scavenger Hunt Entry.” Entries will be accepted until Sunday, May 22nd at midnight E.D.T. A winner will be chosen on Monday, May 23rd. Good luck!

The next stop on the Scavenger Hunt (the letter L) is here.

If you’d like to start back at the beginning of the Scavenger Hunt (the letter A), go here

Oh and I’ve got a book coming out May 24! It’s It’s Getting Hot in Heir, book 7 in my It’s Reigning Men series! I hope you’ll check it out as it’s available for pre-order:

iBooks                  Kindle                     Nook                       Kobo                Google Play


Sometimes falling in love can be a royal pain…

Gabriella Puccini, Contessa of Castiglione Girasole, is tired of having to sacrifice everything for the men in her life. So when she finally realizes that her fiancé would rather be married to his career than to her, she decides to go back to where it all began to figure out why she keeps settling for the wrong men, only to encounter her childhood crush, who couldn’t be more wrong for her…

Edouardo Squires-Thornton has been decidedly down on his luck. Unceremoniously sidestepped for the family inheritance upon his beloved father’s death, Edouardo has spent months adrift, feeling lost and confused, barely mustering the energy to do much but watch bad reality TV in his boxers. But when he’s tricked into an unexpected meeting with childhood sweetheart Gabriella, will Edouardo decide it’s time to pull on his big boy pants and figure out his life?


Categories: Bridget Jones's Diary, Chick Lit, contemporary romance, Jenny Gardiner, writing