Thursday, October 23, 2014

Tatooed in Pink!

As a first-time contributor to the Shades of Pink romance anthology, I'm honored to be published alongside these other talented romance writers. As part of my promotion for the anthology, I'll be sharing my interviews with my fellow SoP authors.

There's nothing more fun than a romantic tale involving tattoos . . . except one that's written by a husband and wife team! My fellow Shades of Pink author JJ Ellis tells me what it was like to write her featured story with her husband.

NDG: So far, you're the only romance author I've encountered who writes with her husband. How cool! What was that like? And how did he as an optician, become interested in writing romance?
JJE: Writing with my husband was fun, hard, rewarding, and did I say hard?  The bonding time was great. The disagreements about what we liked and didn't like or what we wanted to do with certain characters was difficult. I would be lying if I said we didn't fight. But boy oh boy when the story clicked for us, it was one of the best feelings ever and it is great to share that with someone you love. 

NDG: Combining a military hero and tattoos makes for a very sexy story. Do you and your husband have ink as well?
JJE: My husband was in the Marines and the Army and he does have a tattoo. He's still trying to decide if he wants more. I may get one some day but I just can't make up my mind.  

NDG: When you are reading other romance novels, what makes you connect with the hero and heroine? 
JJE: I have a thing for everyday heroes/heroines - The guy/girl next door, the guy you want to take home to your family. I like characters that seem real. 

NDG: Did I read correctly on Kallysten's blog that you have self-published several of your books? What advice would you have for your fellow romance writers who choose the self-publishing path?
JJE: I have self published a series of 5 books and a standalone prequel for that series (This one with my husband). The biggest piece of advice I can give fellow romance authors is to research the industry. If you go into this adventure blindly, it will be really hard to keep your head above water. Know how long it takes the average indie author to start to sell books regularly, know how to find reputable editors, cover designers, formatters etc.  And make friends with other authors/aspiring authors. Without these great people I wouldn't have made it through my first year in the business. 

NDG: So what's next for you as a writer? Any more books planned with hubby?

JJE: Next up for me is a series of three books about the sexy Harper brothers. Each novel is a stand alone but all take place in the same town of Harper's Rock, WY. Many people will recognize the Harper Matriarch from my stand alone Prequel to my other series and there are characters from my first series who will make cameo's in this one.  I always say it's one big happy romance series family! And yes, my husband is co-authoring these too.  We have a great thing going and I don't want it to end.

Here's an excerpt from JJ's and TJ's story Tatooed Hearts:

Jack pulled away when he felt her trembling. “It’s okay sweetheart. There’s no reason to be scared. I’ll take care of you.” That was when he noticed the tears in her eyes. “Francesca, what’s wrong?” 
“I missed you,” she sobbed. “So much. And I’m so sorry…” 
“Shh,” he whispered, putting a finger to her lips. “It’s over and we’re back together. Please don’t do this to yourself.” 
“But I feel so bad,” she murmured through tears. 
“Don’t,” he stressed. “Please don’t. I love you Buttercup, and I missed you too, but that part of our lives is over. Now we move on. Okay?” 
Fran nodded and dried her tears. “Every moment that you were gone was like a year in hell. Sometimes I couldn’t catch my breath when I read your letters or looked at your picture.” 
“I know how much you missed me,” he smiled, gently taking her face in his hands. “Because I felt the same way.” 
Their lips met again, this time softly. When they pulled apart, Jackson took her hand and led her over to the bed. He sat on the edge and pulled her to stand between his knees. 
Fran reached out tentatively to touch his arms. She began to trace the outline of the tattoo of the buttercups and smiled. Looking to Jack, she could see him smiling too. “So, if this was to remind you of me, then why is there more than one?” she teased. 
“There’s one for each month I thought about you.”
“That’s so sweet,” she replied as she turned her attention to the other arm, running her fingers over the empty area. “Why is this area blank? If you don’t want to tell me, I understand.” 
“That is for my heart, whether whole or broken, to be decided when I got home," he replied as he ran his fingers up her side, sending shivers through her body. “Seeing you waiting for me completes my heart.”
You can find out more about JJ's books at You can also find her on Facebook ( and follow her on Twitter at @mommyof5crazies. 
All proceeds from the Shades of Pink anthology go to breast cancer research to help find a cure. A small donation of  $5 you can read all of our wonderful stories, here.

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