How would you describe Jordan Reclaimed using no more than 140 characters (a la Twitter)?
A heart-wrench story of two broken souls, a ballerina and a bass player, one light and one dark, who find themselves by finding each other.
What will fans of your Second Circle Tattoos series find different about this new spinoff Preload series?
I think the first difference readers will notice between Second Circle Tattoos and Preload is that these stories are slightly darker contemporary romances, and not a romantic suspense stories like the Second Circle series. But I think they’ll still see the things they loved … steamy romance, believable characters you root for, a strong theme of friendship, and finding a sense of belonging.
Jordan Reclaimed and the rest of the Preload series revolves around the members of a rock band. If you were in a rock band, what role would you play?
Hmm… great question. I can carry a tune but don’t have the je ne sais quoi (the hard to define quality) that many lead singers possess. I spent time with a drummer while we were recording the original song for The Purest Hook and there is no way I have the co-ordination for that. Maybe lead guitar and song writer would work. Although in my past life I was a senior executive of a large firm leading marketing and strategy, so perhaps I’d be their manager and leave the musical talent to those who have a lot more of it than I do.
Were there any particular songs that inspired you while writing?
There were so many songs!! And the great thing about this book was that I got to listen to all kinds of music from classical to full blown metal while writing depending whose point of view I was in.
For Lexi, her very first dance is to Clams Casino’s I’m God, and Jordan records her a version of Bach’s Cello Suite Number One because it feels like something she might dance to. Plus, there was all the phenomenal songs from the ballet. I listened to a lot of Tchaikovsky given Lexi danced both The Nutcracker, and Sleeping Beauty during the story.
Jordan’s inspiration came from a lot of metal ballads, featuring Pop Evil’s Torn to Pieces, and Five Finger Death Punch’s Wrong Side of Heaven. But some comedic moments come in the form of the Queen classic, Another One Bites the Dust.
Where did you get the inspiration for Aleksandra’s character? Are you a fan of ballet?
I LOVE the ballet, and danced myself for many, many years. I watched a YouTube video of Polina Semionova with my daughter, and I loved the contrast of the decorative theatre with bare bones of the staging. It looked like somewhere a rock band would play and I started to imagine roadies wheeling in equipment around her as she danced. And then I dashed off to get my notebook because I wondered what would happen if a broken and lonely rock star met a brilliant ballerina.
Do you ever struggle with writer’s block? If so, how do you get over it?
There are certainly days when the ideas and words come faster than others. On the slower days, I’ll work out to clear my head, or try to get admin chores out of the way and see how I feel after that. I am a big fan of Nora Roberts and I believe she once said, “Just sit down and write!” So, I try to channel that, plonk my butt in my chair, and get on with it. Less words than target is still words.
Who are some of your favorite writers/the writers that inspire you?
I am inspired by so many great writers. From a career perspective, Jaci Burton, Laura Kaye, and Kathryn Le Veque have such incredible careers and longevity as authors. Authors like Selena Laurence, Kimberly Kincaid, and Robin Covington are incredibly gracious with their time when I have questions. Sidney Halston, who has an awesome new book, Kiss, Marry, Kill, out soon, is my writer BFF. And I love nothing better to read stories by Kylie Scott, Samantha Towle, and Jay Crownover.
More detailed playlist:
Clams Casino – I’m God
This is the song Lexi is dancing to in the studio the very first night she sees Jordan.
Stone Sour – Through Glass
The opening lines are “I’m looking at you through the glass, don’t know how much time has passed… forever feels like home, sitting all alone inside your head.” And it played as I wrote the scene where Jordan catches sight of his ballerina for the first time.
Bach - Cello Suite Number One
This is obviously made for strings, but Jordan redefines that for Lexi by playing it for her on his bass.
Queen – Another One Bites the Dust
One of the best things about writing a series is getting to write the relationship between the lead characters across all of the books. And the boys of Preload certainly know how to push each other’s buttons, including the use of this song!
Pyotr Tchaikovsky – Valse des Flocons de Neige
One of the opening scenes is Lexi at the ballet preparing to dance her role of the Snow Queen in the Nutcracker, and there is a great YouTube video of the actual National Ballet of Canada dancer of this role talking about the staging here:
Five Finger Death Punch – Wrong Side of Heaven
“… I stand alone. I’m no hero, I’m not made of stone.” Gah! This song reminds me of everything about Jordan is when I hear it.
Mason Williams – Classical Gas
This is another song that Jordan records for Lexi, but this is a little homage to my Dad who used to play this song all the time when I was younger.
Seether (feat. Amy Lee) – Broken
I played this song as I wrote a pivotal scene that takes place in the Art Gallery of Ontario that shows just how broken Jordan is inside.
Papa Roach – No Matter What
This song accompanies the final scene… can’t say any more than that!
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