Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Please welcome JJ Massa!

I was so knocked out by Cindy’s interview, it took me a day or two to recover. That woman wants to know ALL! LOL

Still, I’m thrilled to be here, so I’m going to share the love--

I’ve got goodies! 7 Winners!!

The prizes are(1)$5GC & (1)  copy of Metamorphose, (5) $2.00Amazon GC's –so Seven separate winners, all you have to do is comment. Easy Peasy, right?  RIGHT!

Thanks again for having me here, Cindy.

Thank you so much for being my guest today, JJ. I’m so thrilled to have a chance to sit and chat!

· You were first published in 2004, eight years later how do you keep your creativity flowing?
A) I always have a story in my head. Most of us do, I suppose.

To an author, especially a fiction author, inspiration can come from anywhere. Most of us find a second, wildly different story in every book we read, movie or television show, or even from overheard conversations. I have often thought that, for fiction writers, the air we breathe should be tax deductible. 

· What’s typical day like for you?
A) Lately, a typical day starts in bursts. I usually don't go to bed until five in the morning, sometimes six, so I wake up repeatedly as the rest of the world gets going. My daughter's Nanday lives with me for now, and he likes a little attention around nine most mornings. I make sure he has food and all that, then play a song for him before begging off and going back to sleep. I get up for real between noon and one. I make my cup of coffee and Pop-Tart (unfrosted strawberry), then book up the computer. 

I'm still in search of the perfect organizational system, so I use Hotmail and Outlook calendars and tasks. That's the first thing I check after my blood starts flowing--the email and calendar(s). In a perfect world, I've gotten time/dated things done in advance. Given that my world is not that idea, perfect world, I scramble to dash out things I have to do but haven't. 

After meeting those immediate tasks, I alternate between writing and managing email or social media responses. There are, of course, a million interruptions. People call or come by, a leaf might blow past, the dog might bark...you get the idea. Most of my writing gets done after midnight or in those snatched hours between-time. But those are my days. 

You can see why I'm in search of organizational help, can't you?

· Of all the sub-genres of erotic romance (such as paranormal, m/m, thrillers, etc), what’s your favorite genre to write and why?
A) I vacillate between them, to be honest.

In general, though, I'd have to say paranormal. There are no rules in paranormal fiction. While there are generally accepted traits for various entities, nothing is set in stone. You can build a world any way that you want. The sky's the limit--in fact, there's no limit at all. I don't do much with sci-fi, but mentally, I lump them together in the Who-Can-Say-Otherwise category.


· I read on your website (http://www.jjmassa.com/) that you taught adaptive technology to blind and visually impaired people. Do those experiences ever find their way into your books?
A) Yes, sometimes those experiences make it into books. Anyone who has read Love Like Blood might see several parallels between Julianna Gold, the female protagonist of that story and me. Throughout all of my books, you'll find tidbits or hints of my experiences. Even if nobody in the story is in need of special equipment or considerations, being blind and using such technology is a big part of my life. With that in mind, I analyze every situation and consider it as if the reader can't see or be aware unless I draw a complete word picture. I don't always manage it, but I do try. 

Various bits of memorable students show up here and there. Usually, they're supporting characters, but they do add to the story. 

· If you had to pick one book as your favorite, which one would you pick and why?
A) Right now, my favorite book is Civil Liberties at Torquere Press. I loved those characters, and with the clarity of hindsight, I realize that I could have done so much with that story and those people. I'll have to use them as a prototype for another book someday, I suppose.

I enjoy the emotions in it. I like that Denny isn't all that loveable, but is very much loved in spite of it. That's how love works, isn't it? Christian realizes before they meet that Denny could mean something to him. He recognizes that love just is, in spite of everything. What can I say? I like stubborn characters, sometimes. I've found a lot in that story, in rereading it, that I could explore. And there you have it.

That's why it's my current favorite.



And now for the rapid fire portion of our interview. Ready...get...go!

Name your favorites:
· Author (besides yourself, lol)? Jules Verne, I mean, A. Conan Doyle, I mean…Earl Stanly
Gardener…okay, let's go with Lovecraft, for the win…for now
· Book? Currently--Sliding on the Snow Stone, by Andy Szpuk
· Music? I'm eclectic, but Smooth Jazz prevails, I think.
· Band/singer? Right now, I'm way into Thomas Anders. He has quite a range of work, and what a rich voice.
· Movie? The African Queen           
· Actor? Humphrey Bogart
· Actress? Dame Judith Anderson
· Memory? I have two--holding my daughters for the first time.

Okay, time to commit--you can only choose one:
· Summer or winter? Fall
· Candy or French fries? Candy
· Ketchup or mustard? Mustard
· Tall, dark and handsome or golden boy? Tall, dark, and handsome.
· Early to bed or night owl? Night Owl
· Strawberry or chocolate? Chocolate
· Chains or whips? Chains
· Alpha male or sensitive guy? Alpha all the way

Guilty pleasure: Name one thing you love that you’re ashamed of. I listen to (and sing along with) doo-wop music.

What new or upcoming release do we have to look forward to? 

International Worlds Museum I: Metamorphose by J.J. Massa
Book One: Metamorphose:

Rand Cooper had no idea how his life had become so complicated. Suddenly, Elwynn Ravensdale, who had been the consummate pain in Rand's arse, was extremely attractive--especially his arse. If that wasn't enough, his teenaged charges were acting cagey and secretive. Worse than all of that, Wynn had an attachment to some woman, a very pretty woman, but a woman nonetheless. And there was a baby involved.

Where were the days when hostile otherworldly visitors were all that he had to worry about?

Excerpt:
Once alone, Rand turned to Livia. She obviously had something else on her mind…or still had something on her mind. Either way, they needed to clear the air once and for all.
"Out with it," he demanded, struggling to keep his tone level.
"Out with what?" she gasped, appearing surprised.
"What has you all stirred up? I thought we had come to an accord, but all the way up in the lift, you've been like a kettle just off whistle."
Livia fixed her narrowed eyes on him for a long beat. After one ringing note of silence, she exhaled heavily, actually stomping her foot. Rand lifted one brow and crossed his arms over his chest.
"Well?" he prodded.
"Okay, so you guys work for a museum, and you say it's dangerous?" Rand nodded, waiting. "Just how, exactly, is Wynn in danger every day. You're just trying to emphasize how well you know him and I don't! I've lived with him for nearly a year and with his sister for longer than that!"
Without a word, Rand reached into his jacket, pulling out a wallet. It was just marginally larger than most, not that size or space would ever be a problem when one had the gifts he and his colleagues were gifted with.
 Flipping the folded leather case open, he pulled out a photo. In the foreground, a creature straight out of a sci-fi action blockbuster had been caught mid-rage, bearing down on two men facing it. One man wore a look of horror, hand dangling at his side, his weapon dangling in the air just above the ground. Clearly, he'd been swamped with terror and dropped it, meaning to flee like any sensible person would.
"Why the hell is whoever just standing there taking a picture? I can't believe…"
"Look at the other man, Livia," Rand instructed quietly.
Throwing Rand a scathing glance, she turned her attention back to the second man in the picture. His foot was in the air as if he was walking slowly toward the angry thing. He wore dark pants, a white shirt, torn and singed as if burnt. In his hands, he held what she realized were pistols, orange flares showing right at the tips. He must be firing them continuously. Another look at the monster showed that his angry stance was off just enough that he could be jerking away from a gunshot. He had patches of green along his torso and dripping from him, puddling on the ground.
Studying the second man more closely, she was arrested by the fixed, unemotional expression on his face. Brow furrowed in total concentration, he seemed oblivious to everything but his guns and the creature.
When she gasped, clapping a hand over her mouth, Rand knew she'd recognized Wynn. He gently pried the photo from her shaking hand, slipping an arm about her shoulders as she shook her head in denial.
"His job is dangerous. He's become quite a legend in our little world. Livia, Wynn is a big boy. A big, dangerous boy. But he is vulnerable--a fact that I never credited him with until it was nearly too late. He loves us both and we are now magically joined with him."
"Are you…" she cleared her throat and started again. "Are you in danger all the time, too?"
"Not like this," he assured her. "Sometimes trouble does come to the museum. I won't mislead you about that. Most of the time, however, my trouble comes from the querulous teenagers who work for me, or the tedious middlemen from the head office. For the most part, I'm very safe."
Livia sniffled, brushing her forearm across her eyes and smearing her mascara, though he'd never tell her that. It made her a little more human, and Rand found it endearing.
"Do you think we can convince him to do a different job? If he's that good…"
The negative shaking of Rand's head halted her line of thought. "Wynn feels he is making an important contribution to the museum and the world, come to that." Wide-eyed, she opened her mouth to speak, but Rand continued on. "In point of fact, he is. The job he does is something very few other people can do. I believe there is one other person among the museum's very large bank of employees who does what he does. Wynn needs to feel useful and needed. All we can do is make sure that he has plenty of reason to come home safe and sound every night."
While Livia appeared to be thinking it over, Rand led her into the bedroom, handing her a complimentary toweling robe. "I'm going to shower before bed," she informed him tentatively.
"Don't be surprised if I'm already asleep when you come out, luv," he murmured, turning his back to her. "I probably need a wash, as well, but I'm knackered."
She nodded and turned, taking the robe and made her way into the bathroom. Upon hearing the water come on, Rand pulled out his wallet, taking a look at the picture of Wynn again. He kept it to remind himself of just how lethal Wynn could be if roused. Not only that, the picture served to remind him that the other man was often in danger, therefore, every minute with him was precious.


J.J. Massa
Here are places that readers can find me:



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Woo! That sounds like a good one :)  Thanks again for stopping by to play!

Cheers,
Cindy


4 comments:

J.J. Massa said...

Hey Cindy! Thanks for having me over today. Boy, every time I read something I wrote, I want to edit it. Now why doesn't that happen BEFORE I send it in?

I'll be in and out--Hope you have a great day!

Tina said...

HEY I am so glad to see your post. What is your favorite part of being a writer so far? Has anything in your life come out to be a story?

J.J. Massa said...

Wow, you're brutal! LOL

I love being able to bloodlessly delete (or painfully abuse) people I write --I can pretend whatever I want, right?

Perfect date? the one you can backspace away when it turns sour.

A whole lot of my life has come out in my stories. Family Doctor (which is in rewrites) begins with a trip to a doctor's office--almost every word of that scene was directly taken from a doctor's appointment with one of my children.

There are other things, too. The shopping scene in Nailed...little things, big things, they all show up.

You never know--you could be next!

Joanne said...

Thanks for sharing a what a typical day is like for you. Love you answers in the rapid fire portion of the interview. Congrats on Metamorphose. I look forward to reading it.

e.balinski(at)att(dot)net