We’d like to give Jill Shalvis a warm welcome to our blog today! Jill is the bestselling author of over four dozen romance novels, including her upcoming sexy contemporary romance RUMOR HAS IT, book four in the Animal Magnetism series set in the small town of Sunshine, Idaho. Jill is known for stories that are sexy, fun and full of heart. The 4-time Rita nominee and 3-time National Readers Choice winner makes her home near Lake Tahoe. Visit her website at www.jillshalvis.com for a complete book list and daily blog.
Q: Can you tell our readers a little bit about the Animal Magnetism (Sunshine, Idaho) series, and where your inspiration came from?
A: I’ve always wanted to write a series where I could incorporate cute animals. Cute animals and sexy heroes together, who can resist that. So I came up with a series about a set of wildly alpha brothers running an animal center in Sunshine, Idaho at the base of the Bitteroot Mountains.
Q: What is your favorite thing about writing this series? The sexy men, the heroines, or the animals?
A: All of the above, but okay, let me admit the truth – the combination of hot guys and adorable animals is pretty much irresistible for me.
Q: What do you think makes romance readers and the romance community so strong?
A: I think what makes the romance community so strong is that romance readers are awesome. They’re loyal and dedicated and always so willing to help support our community by talking about the books and making it okay to read whatever you want, may that be straight contemporary, romantic suspense, erotica, whatever. I love that. As far as having a strong presence, that is an accidental cause of working alone most of the days out of the year. Reaching out to romance readers and writers via social media is just a really great way to not always be alone. ☺
Q: Are contemporaries your favorite genre to read as well as to write? If so, can you give our readers some of your favorite recommendations?
A: Yes, though I love to read everything, across all genres. Heck, I’m happy reading the back of a cereal box. But as for my recommendations in the contemporary genre, you can’t go wrong with Robyn Carr, Kristan Higgins, Carly Phillips, Susan Mallery, Lori Foster, Rachel Gibson…
Q: Do you think reading romance makes us expect more from our own romantic partners? What effect do you think romance has on those that read it?
A: We’re writing fiction. Not nonfiction. But made up stories, fantasies really. I’m not writing “How To Have A Hot Romance.” Or “How To Train Your Significant Other Into Being A Perfect Mate.” I’m writing a fictional tale. I think our readers are sharp, and are well aware and capable of knowing the difference between a pat Happily Ever After and real life. If I can provide someone with a fantasy, a little escape from her reality, then I am considering it a job well done.
Q: You write so many wonderful contemporaries, how do you keep each novel fresh and exciting?
A: Keeping it fresh is a constant battle, and I struggle with that daily. I just love writing, and this genre, and work hard to do the job so I can keep doing it and pleasing readers. Also, I find that stalking neighbors and friends, and being extremely nosy about their personal lives and conflicts is very helpful. ☺
Q: What’s your advice for a first-time pet owner?
1. Read up on your pet, on the specific breed.
2. Be patient.
3. Be patient.
4. Be patient. ☺
5. Oh, and if there’s training issues? Chances are it’s you, so revisit #1.
Q: The interactions shared between you and Alpha Man always entertain; what is a recent “He Said, She Said” between you and Alpha Man that we may not have heard yet?
What are you eating?
Him (mouth full):
It smells like Oreos.
Are you … eating Oreos? I thought we were out of cookies!!
There’s only four left.
I need two.
I’ll give you one.
No! You can’t eat just one cookie!!! There’s a rule!!!
Show me the book where this rule lives.
I’LL WRITE YOU THE $%#!#$!@ book, give me a second cookie and no one gets hurt!
Is it possible that you need something to go with that cookie?
I was thinking Midol…
Q: Your friendship with Kristan Higgins and your friendly battle for “Man Wars” has become infamous. Why do you two connect so well?
A: I think our chemistry translates well because it’s genuine. You can’t fake a real friendship. We connect on lots of levels, such as competing for readers (kiddin!), and because we’re both raising aliens—er, teenagers.
Q: What’s next for Jill Shalvis?
A: If you read RUMOR HAS IT, you may notice a new vet is working at Belle Haven. Dr. Wyatt Stone. He and his two sisters, Darcy and Zoe, are each going to get their own story next year. ☺
He’ll help unleash the new woman in her…
Special Ops soldier Griffin Reid doesn’t exactly have happy memories of growing up in Sunshine, Idaho. He’s only come back to recover from a war injury, and while he refuses to admit he’s in a weakened state, he finds comfort in the last person he’d expect.
Kate Evans teaches fourth grade science in Sunshine, the place she’s always called home. Dreaming of graduate school and a happily-ever-after, she’s desperate to break out of the monotony of Sunshine. Luckily, a certain sexy man has just come back into her life.
To Griffin, Kate as always been his little sister’s friend, but now he’s finding her to be so much more. As both attempt to forge their paths, they must decide if their passionate connection can turn into something lasting…
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