Welcome to Jennifer Ryder who stops by on her Spark Blog Tour.
Where are you from and where do you live now? I’m an Aussie girl, born and bred. I’m in my dirty-thirties (my prime if you ask me), and I’m married to a man who can put any book boyfriend to shame. With our two cherubs, we live on a rural property a couple of hours from Sydney, Australia.
Tell us about your books: I write erotic romance, with the stories based in Australia. My debut novel, Spark, is book one in a five part series, the heroes, for the most part, centering around the Motocross world.
Here is a blurb for Spark: Not many people know that I, Eevie Lawson, have a problem. An addiction to romance novels. I eat them for breakfast. I hide it the best I can, but I need them to breathe. It’s how I cope.
I’ve had a swag of book boyfriends, but now that I’m free from the responsibility of caring for my three younger brothers, it’s time to find one in the flesh.
In real life, no girl meets their hero on page one, or even at the end of chapter one. I should know.
My journey is real. It’s not perfect, and it sure as hell isn’t easy—but the fight for something worthwhile never is.
Who or what are your inspirations/influences? I absolutely adore Abbi Glines and Jamie McGuire, but more recently I have found such great books through talented Aussie Indie published authors. Their stories rival those published through traditional means, and shouldn’t be valued as any less. Of those Indies (and I’ve already mentioned Belle Aurora), I love the work of David Michael, Lola Stark, Carmen Jenner, Lauren McKellar, Kasey Millstead, Bella Jewel, Lila Rose, Max Henry, Rebecca Berto, the list goes on. And they are also beautiful people, who I like to think I can call a friend.
Do you have a favourite character? If so why? I love all my characters, and Eevie should be my favourite being her journey, but I love writing Aidan Stone. He’s totally swoonworthy, funny, devilishly handsome of course, but he’s a down to earth guy, a country boy, with a heart of gold who’s loyal to his family and friends alike. He’s your typical Aussie bloke, but since a young age he pushed himself, in his career as a Cabinetmaker, as well as a professional Motocross rider. I think he’s very different to any hero I’ve ever read, and I hope people love him as much as I do! *whispers* I have my own Aidan Stone at home.
Are your characters based on real people? Yes, most definitely. This book will probably be more personal than any other book I will write. I can relate to Eevie in more ways than I will publicly admit. So yes, I’m funny, a little quirky, love M & M’s and totally have that sexy librarian thing going on! No, really, in all seriousness, when I think back to what my life was like at twenty, I sometimes wonder how I coped. Writing aspects of this book has been good therapy, but there are of course, events in the book that are fiction.
Research can be important in world-building, how much do you need to do for your books? Do you enjoy this aspect of creating a novel and what are your favourite resources? LOVE research! It is one of my favourite parts, and it’s crucial to get things right. In writing the Spark series, I’m lucky to have some amazing friends and beta readers. It certainly helps to have a former detective from the Australia Federal Police as one of my closest friends, as well as nurses, experts on drug analysis and a hubbie who rides dirt bikes (and taught me!). I’ve watched countless Motocross clips on YouTube, much to my four year old son’s delight. It certainly gives me a break when the writing gets too much!
Is there a message conveyed within your writing? I guess, hope to find that Spark with someone. Sometimes life doesn’t go to plan, but it’s important to be positive, and always hold hope for something special with someone. I believe that there’s somebody special out there for everyone, it’s just sometimes the journey to get there is a bumpy road.
In what formats are your books available? (E-books, print, large print audio) Are you intending to expand these? (If applicable) Spark is currently available in ebook on Amazon and Kobo, and paperback through either myself or Createspace. My husband keeps asking me when it’ll be in Audiobook, as he’s not one to sit and read. He even offered to be the voice over for Aidan Stone.
Do you self-edit? If so why is that the case? Do you believe a book suffers without being professionally edited? I used a professional editor, Lauren K McKellar, and I cannot recommend her highly enough. I think it is important to have someone edit your work, as well as go through a beta process, because you have an idea in your head of how the story is, and how the characters are perceived, but having someone review it from a fresh perspective is gold. I’ve had close to ten people read Spark, at varying stages, and it would be where it is today without that valuable input.
What are your opinions about authors commenting on reviews? How important are reviews? I think reviews are literary gold. I am lucky to have received some beautiful 4 and 5 star reviews for Spark. The only comments I have made on those reviews, have been to thank those people for posting a review. I’m grateful that they have taken time out of their day to do it, as our lives are already so busy. I understand that my book may not be for everyone, and I respect that some people may not rate it as highly as others. Everyone is entitled to their opinion, and I’m just grateful that people have taken a chance to read my work in the first place.
What experiences can a book provide that a movie or video game cannot? Imagination. It is SO important! Different people interpret a character in so many different ways. I like being able to have my own personal vision of a character. Myself, I almost always prefer the book.
What three pieces of advice would you give to new writers?
1. Plan to write every day, even if it’s only 100 words. I know it’s not always practical, but if you keep your head in the story every day, the words come easier, and of course, typing ‘the end’ on your MS happens that much quicker.
2. Another tip is not to self-edit when you’re writing your first draft. Even if you think your writing is complete drivel. The idea is to let the words flow while you have the inspiration, and not get bogged down with commas, and formatting, etc. That slows you down, when you’ll be editing down the track anyway. So gag and tie-up that inner editor until it’s time to edit! Then let her have her way.
3. Read! Sometimes you can get into a rut with your writing, but trust me when I say reading can help with that. Try something different to what you are writing, get a feel for other author’s writing style. I read at least 1-2 books a month, sometimes more, and it inspires me to do better! Even gives me fresh ideas!
Most authors also like to read, what books do you enjoy? What book(s) have you just finished? I mainly read erotic romance, but I’ve started to branch out into paranormal and contemporary romance. Really, any story that can capture my attention, has a good flow and a storyline that keeps me turning pages is a winner. I love to read to break up my writing.
I recently finished RAW by Bella Aurora (amazeballs!), but am now reading a paranormal romance by Max Henry called Battle to Become.
Book links, website/blog and author links:
Amazon AU: https://www.amazon.com.au/dp/B00IOQQECA
Amazon US: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00IOQQECA
Amazon UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B00IOQQECA
Official facebook author page, www.facebook.com/jenniferryder01
Top ten book boyfriends
Jared Ryel from the Providence Series by Jamie McGuire
Travis Maddox from Beautiful Disaster / Walking Disaster by Jamie McGuire
Brayden Carmichael from On Dublin Street by Samantha Young
Beau Vincent from The Vincent Boys by Abbi Glines
Cage York from While it Lasts by Abbi Glines
Drew Evans from Tangled by Emma Chase
Rush Finlay from Fallen Too far by Abbi Glines
Elijah Cade from Welcome to Sugartown by Carmen Jenner
Nox from Willing Captive by Belle Aurora
Christian Grey from Fifty Shades by E L James
Five fun facts about Jennifer Ryder
- I got married in a little white chapel at the top of a hill on Hamilton Island in the Whitsundays, Australia.
- I can ride a dirt bike. No, seriously.
- My favourite cocktail is a caprioska – vodka, sugar, fresh lime… delicious!
- I would rather shop for books than for clothes.
- I once had a job a security guard, and fell asleep on the job. Luckily, no one noticed!
“Thank God I didn’t drop the towel. I would have literally died from embarrassment,” I mutter, shaking my head. We stand in such close proximity in the narrow hallway, barely clothed and dripping wet. Aidan’s tongue darts out, wetting his bottom lip, my eyes unable to move from his luscious, now wet, lips. Fuck. I step back towards my bedroom, trying to make my getaway.
Aidan raises an eyebrow, and leans up against the doorway to the bathroom. “Yeah, that would have been somethin’ else,” he says in a gravelly voice.
My eyes skim over his firm, muscular torso.
Ryan Gosling, eat your heart out.
“There are spare towels in the cupboard if you want to dry off. I … I need to get dressed.”
“No worries, I’ll sort it.”
“Night, Aidan,” I mutter.
“Yeah, night,” he says softly. I struggle to pull my gaze away from the longing in those dreamy eyes. Fuck, that look is doing wicked things to me. I revel in the moment briefly and then remember … yet again, that I have a boyfriend, he has a girlfriend, and I smile politely, and march into my room. I let out the loudest of sighs as my back thuds against the back of the door.
What the fuck just happened?
Did I run over a black cat? Did I royally fuck someone over in a past life? The tall, dark, handsome stranger in the very next room, has upset the basic rhythm of my heart, and has me craving things I shouldn’t … not with him. This is cruel. So very cruel