Bio: Joanne Kennedy has worked in bookstores all her life in positions ranging from bookseller to buyer. She is a member of Romance Writers of America and Rocky Mountain Fiction Writers, and won first place in the Colorada Gold Writing Contest and second place in the Heart of the Rockies contest in 2007. Joanne lives and writes in Cheyenne, Wyoming where she is working on Tall, Dark and Cowboy (Releasing in November 2011). For more information, please visit http://joannekennedybooks.com/.
1- Do you write specifically in the Western Romance genre? If so, what made you focus on cowboys?
I've written other things, but I moved to the West years ago and fell in love with this world-and cowboys. My interest in horses makes that genre even more fun for me, but mainly I see cowboys as a symbol of my heroines stepping into a new and different world. She knows from the start that the man in the hat and boots isn't what she's used to, and the reader knows he's likely to have old-fashioned values they can admire.
2- Do you have a WIP? If so, can you tell us about it?
I just finished editing my November release, Tall, Dark and Cowboy, about a runaway former trophy wife who flees her ex's crooked business associates and ends up in a small Wyoming town. And I'm working on a fifth Western romance called Once a Cowboy that takes readers into the world of rodeo, ranching, and modern Wyoming boomtowns.
3- Have you always wanted to be a writer?
Yes, but I had to start really working at it before I succeeded! I've always read everything and anything, and when I was a teenager I wanted to be a writer-but I didn't really have a story to tell. I had to wait until I grew up. Now I have so many stories I could live forever and never tell them all! I wish I'd started sooner, but I just wasn't ready until I'd had some life experience.
4- Was it difficult getting your first book published?
It was challenging, but it wasn't difficult because I was doing what I loved. I worked very, very hard at both the creative and business side of writing and I faced a lot of rejection, but I never stopped enjoying it because I was confident in my ability to work hard enough to achieve my goals. Besides, there were so many good people in both writing and publishing who took the time to help me along the way. I try to pay that forward when I can.
5- Do you have any plans to write other types of romance or in other genres?
I have a couple of paranormals to polish up, and some ideas for romantic suspense and young adult novels. But for now, I love the cowboy stories. I think I get better and better at making that world resonate with readers, and I'll keep writing about it as long as folks want to read them.
6- Do you enjoy reading? If so, what types of books do you prefer reading and do you follow a particular author?
I've always loved to read, and writing makes it even better as I learn while being entertained. I've worked in book selling all my life, so I've had the chance to sample just about everything. I read lots of romance, of course, but lately I'm addicted to thrillers. I love Harlan Coben and Linwood Barclay. I also read lots of Western nonfiction, from history to horse training.
7- What or who has had the most influence on your writing?
My husband. He's always believed in me and encouraged me, even though life would probably be easier if I had a "normal" job. He's definitely the reason I write romance novels.
8- Tell us something about yourself that the readers may not be aware of.
I've lived in the West for twenty years, but I'm a New Englander by birth. I grew up in Massachusetts and all my ancestors are from Maine. I think being a transplant helps me see what makes the West so fascinating to readers from all over.
9- What do you do for fun and relaxation?
I write! Writing lets me live in a world of my own creation, where I'm in control (for the most part; those cowboys don't always behave). I'm lucky enough to do what I love, and I'm happiest when I'm working on a story.
10- How can the readers contact you? (website, Facebook, Twitter, blog, etc.)
My website is http://www.joannekennedybooks.com/. I'm also on Facebook under Joanne Kennedy Books. I'm always happy to make new online friends and hear from readers!
COWBOY FEVER BY JOANNE KENNEDY- IN STORES APRIL 2011
She Thought She Had It All...
A modeling contract with Wrangler got this Miss Rodeo Wyoming a first-class ticket out of town, but somewhere along the way Jodi Brand lost her soul. When she gets back to her hometown, her childhood friend Teague Treadwell's rugged cowboy charm hits her like a ton of bricks...
He Believed He Wasn't Good Enough...
Teague is convinced Jodi's success lifted her out of his reach. Now he's got to shed his bad boy image to be worthy of the girl next door...
But whoever heard of a beauty queen settling for a down and dirty cowboy...
To be entered for a chance to win Cowboy Fever:
1-Leave a comment in the comment section along with your email address so I can contact the winners(there will be 2 of them) to get your mailing address.
2-The contest will remain open until Saturday April 16, 2011 at midnight EST.
3-The winner will be announced sometime on Sunday, April 17, 2011.
4-The winner will have 48hrs to send me there snail mail address. If you do not contact me in that time frame, I will draw another winner.
5-If no email address is provided, you will not be entered in the drawing.
6- This contest is open to US and Canada only because Sourcebooks is providing a paperback copy of the book.
7-You do not have to be a follower of my blog to enter. It would be nice; but it is not mandatory. If you are a follower, it will not increase you chances of winning.
Thank you all and good luck!