JB Heller - Romance With a Healthy Dose of Humor

JB Heller - Romance With a Healthy Dose of Humor
author of the day

When JB Heller isn't busy being a domestic goddess and super mom, she writes romance novels that contain a healthy dose of humor. As our author of the day, Heller chats about how her book, Undeniable Attraction surprised even her, why a book hero has to be perfect and reveals a romantic story from her own life.

Please give us a short introduction to Undeniable Attraction

Undeniable Attraction was actually going to be a standalone spin-off from another story I wrote- The Morgan Sisters Duo. 
But once I started writing it, it just kinda flowed into three books and its own series of Standalone's. 
In UA you meet Gabe who's trying to drink away his sorrows after being rejected by the chic he thought he was in love with. When his assistant has enough of his crap and him neglecting his PI firm she snaps and accidentally admits to being in love with him while she's telling him off. 
This is a huge shock to him and he finds it hard to believe because he feels that's she's way out of his league. 
Enter a creepy stalker who takes notice of Ivy and Gabes protective instincts kick in. That's when things get really interesting. 

Tell us a bit about Ivy's character. What makes her so special?

Ivy appears to be a shy, innocent wallflower initially. But throughout the book you learn that she's actually pretty kick-arse and has overcome a lot of crap to get to where she is in life. She's strong, determined and she's always packin'.

Apart from being a successful author, rumor has it that you are also a domestic goddess, super mom and a spunky wife. How do you manage to balance writing and family life?

Ah home life is always hectic. Between my own health issues and juggling school drop off and pick up plus my boys... Oh my goodness, my boys are one year, one month and one day apart. And they are typical boys in every sense of the word. The older of them, Olli, has just turned 5 and takes his big brother role very seriously. And that's a blessing, because it means he's always around Alec, keeping an eye on him- aka getting into mischief with him. But their bond means they're happy to play together without needing me to participate as much. So I usually sit on the couch and write while they play or watch movies. 

Photo left: Attempting to work with my boys...

Photo right: My signed paperback shelf. I have many, many more books- but these are all the signed ones.

Despite being a Romance (we all know they have to end up together eventually), your book was very unpredictable. How did you pull this off?

In all honesty, there was something that took place in this book that surprised even me. I'm what they call a pantster- I write by the seat of my pants using only a rough outline and let the story take me where it needs to go. 

In the book, Ivy goes through a big transformation. Why, do you think, do people love transformation stories so much?

Transformations show people in the real world that you can always turn things around. You can always decide you don't like the track your life's on, and make the necessary changes to redirect things. I think that equates to hope for some people. It does for me. 

What inspired you to throw a stalker into the mix?

The stalker was Gabe's turning point. If things had  continued on without a major event to force Gabe to open his eyes, he very well could have lost Ivy. 

One of my idols and I in Vegas last year- Amy Harmon

Why did you find it important to also work comedy and suspense into your story?

I LOVE a good rom/com. Life is too serious already, we read to escape that, and the comedy helps lighten your spirits. It also makes the suspense easier to deal with for those that aren't into intense suspense. Like me for instance. But I still wanted that element of suspense to give the story more life, more grit. It's hard to explain, but I felt it was necessary. 

What do you think is the most important part of creating seductive heroes readers can't get enough of?

Oh, umm... He has to be better than life/reality. We all wish for certain things in a man, but let's face it- real blood and bone men aren't perfect. But neither are we. So book-boyfriends have to tick all the boxes that our husbands may not. 

Name a book or a story you wish you'd written, and why

Oh god... I've never thought about this one. Umm... The Law of Moses by Amy Harmon. That book is so beautiful and moving, it makes you feel so many emotions and lightens your heart at the end of it all. It's simply a breathtaking story. 

Did you write your books for yourself, or do you write them with a particular reader/audience in mind?

I write the story as it forms in my mind. I like the freedom of writing what I want, and telling the story how it wants to be told. I'll probably cop flack for this but I think it's kind of a cop out to cater to an audience. It shows that the book was written strictly to make money. As opposed to being written because you can't not write it. 

When working on a new book, what’s the first thing you do?

New books for me always need a title first. As the idea is rolling around in my head so are potential titles. And I always find as I'm writing it, the reasoning for the title reveals itself as I'm going. 

Me between two of my idols and loveliest women I've ever met. Jamie McGuire and Elizabeth Reyes.

 

What is the most romantic thing you have ever done for someone or had someone do for you?

A few years back my husband and I had been going through a really rough patch in our marriage. And one day I decided enough was enough, we had to sort our shit out and work things out. I went and bought him a card and a bunch of roses, I poured my heart out in that card and told him he was the best decision I ever made. That day when I got home- he had done the exact same thing. A card and bunch of roses were waiting for me. That moment will stay  with me forever. 

What are you working on right now?

Right now I'm working on a book called What If It's Right? About a girl called Victoria, who became the legal guardian of her 8 year old nephew Finn, when she was 18 years old. Flash forward 14 years and Finn's best friend Weston has found himself in love with Victoria.

Where can our readers discover more of your work or interact with you?

I try to update my website as often as possible- www.jbtheindie.com
I'm also on Facebook quite often. And I love hearing from readers, so emails are definitely welcome- [email protected] 
My books are available on all major retailers- Amazon, iBooks, Barnes & Noble and Kobo.

This deal has ended but you can read more about the book here.
Kimberly Packard - Love, Identity and Determination in Tornado Alley
FEATURED AUTHOR - Kimberly Packard is an award-winning author of women’s fiction. When she isn’t writing, she can be found running, asking her dog what’s in his mouth or curled up with a book. She resides in Texas with her husband Colby, a clever cat named Oliver and a precocious black lab named Tully. Her debut novel, Phoenix, was awarded as Best General Fiction of 2013 by the Texas Association of Authors. She is also the author of a Christmas novella, The Crazy Yates, and the sequels to Phoenix, Pardon Falls… Read more