EDITOR's NOTE: You all missed a treat last night. We chatted with LaConnie and it was a blast. She shared her journey to publication and some tips on the business of writing. It was so much fun talking with LaConnie. One of the questions I asked was if the song When I’m With You by Tony Terry inspired the title of her book and to my surprise it did.
It is always a treat to help promote someone who is excited about their book and passionate about writing. LaConnie's enthusiam helps me remember why I promote writers and their books.
I know you’re going to call her books keepers. I look forward to reading this book and the one coming out next year. If you haven’t picked up her book, what are you waiting for?
LaConnie Taylor-Jones holds advanced degrees in community public health and business administration and has written several scientific research publications for the past fifteen years. When not writing, she’s involved with the Contra Costa Alumnae chapter of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc., the African American Community Health Advisory Committee, and Black Women Organized for Political. An active member of the San Francisco Area and Black Diamonds chapters of RWA since 2003, Ms. Taylor-Jones has combined her writing skills with a twenty-five-year passion for reading romance in the completion of two full-length multicultural romance novels, When I’m With You and When A Man Loves A Woman.
What aspect of writing do you love the best, and which do you hate the most?
I absolutely love sitting down in front of a blank computer screen and begin the process of bringing my characters and story plot to life. I’m very meticulous with this process because it’s important for me to give my readers a quality product. I want them to not only enjoy the story but understand the characters and their plight the way I do. Believe it or not, I also enjoy working on the revisions from my editor. She’s fantastic and so far, we’ve been able to work in total sync to take my writing to the next level.
Perhaps the one thing that I can live without is the tight turn-around deadlines I face once my book enters the production process. Sometimes, my revision deadlines come at a not-so-convenient time!!!
What do you feel is the key to writing convincing characters?
An author must know every aspect of their characters. I don’t simply mean know their external characteristics (i.e. physical make-up), but an author must be intimately familiar with their internal characteristics - their thoughts, their likes, dislikes, and what they would and would not do in certain situations. Once this happens, it’s very easy to translate this on to paper to the point the characters become so vivid, readers momentarily have a hard time figuring out what’s real and what’s Memorex.
What should a new writer know about the publishing business?
Aspiring writers should be aware that the publishing industry doesn’t move at the speed of light, so patience must become their best friend. It could take several weeks, if not months, for an agent or editor to make a decision on whether there’s an interest in their work.
What inspired you to become a romance writer?
I’ve been an avid romance reader since I was a junior in college. In fact, I flunked an organic chemistry mid-term because I stayed up all night to finish reading my first romance novel. So, let it go on the record that the genre chose me!!
How do you feel about critique groups?
I feel critique groups can be extremely beneficial to an author, but authors must be willing to accept the feedback that’s given — good, bad, or indifferent. All too often, an author only wants to hear the positive feedback relative to their stories and sometimes become testy when the group offers suggestions or recommendations for improvement. Conversely, critique groups should provided unbiased feedback, regardless to how well they know the author.
What is a favorite book from your childhood?
There are two: The Scarlet Letter (Nathaniel Hawthorne) and The Catcher In The Rye (J.D. Salinger)
What was the last book to keep you up at night reading it?
The Hunted by L.A. Banks. It’s an awesome read and one I highly recommend!!!
What was the last movie you saw?
Oh, my, with four kids, I’m afraid I’m into kiddy movies these days!! The most recent was Walt Disney’s Enchanted.
What's your secret to balancing career and family?
Learning to prioritize. Oftentimes, this means saying N-O to requests at the bottom of my meat chain and not feeling guilty for doing so.
What do you do to make time for yourself?
Weekly visits to the beauty salon and monthly appointments to get the nails and toes pretty. Sometimes, I manage to treat myself to a ninety-minute deep tissue massage.
How can readers get in contact with you? (mail, email, website)
I always enjoy hearing from readers. My website address is: www.laconnietaylorjones.com. Also, readers can follow the link on my contact page and drop me a note via e-mail at: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Plus, there’s also my snail mail address, which is 3377 Deer Valley Road – Antioch, CA 94531
When I’m With You
Publisher: Genesis Press
When your life has been terrorized by violence, how do you manage to go forward, looking over your shoulder at every turn? This is the daily question that haunts Caitlyn Thompson. She has been in hiding from an ex-boyfriend for three years, always careful not to slip up and allow him to find her again. Working for a neighborhood youth center, she has found her niche. This is something she believes in, having grown up in inner-city New Jersey herself. Submitting a grant request to a wealthy philanthropist foundation, Caitlyn is soon to meet the man who will make her want to stop running, want to trust and love again; Marcel Baptiste. It will take a will of iron and a courage she didn’t know she possessed to battle her fears and open up to the wealthy entrepreneur. But when violence comes knocking again, will she have the courage to face her biggest nightmare?
Check out the trailer: http://www.laconnietaylorjones.com/WIMW_trailer.php
eTour Stop #1:
Marguerite Press website where avid readers, writers, event planners, and literary organizations will find the Speakers Bureau, and the ever-popular, Around2It Talk Show with host, Delores "Queen of Promotion" Thornton.
eTour Stop #2:
Let's Talk Honestly, a site of African American opinion, poetry, news, and literature all hosted by George Cook host of his weekly online talk show LTH WEEKLY. Join us to check out great poetry and author interviews.
George L. Cook III author of Let's Talk Honestly Vol. 2 A book of poetry and essays on African American Issues Read ebook for free here:
Lets Talk Honestly
eTour Stop #3:
Sexy Ebony BBW African American Book Club is dedicated to reading and discussing literature by black authors. Our goal is to create a forum where readers can explore African American authors and the books they are creating for our reading pleasure. We also want to create a community of readers ready and willing to share their love for reading and just a bit of themselves with like-minded individuals.
Anyone interested in joining can visit our website.
Sexy Ebony BBW Book Club
eTour Stop #4:
SORMAG is the blog to click on to meet the hottest multi-cultural authors hitting the book shelves. We have reviews of their latest book releases and we keep you current on what’s happening in the literary world. The best part, it’s interactive. You can leave a comment for a chance to win a SORMAG goody bag. Click on our link and tell us what you think.
eTour Stop #5:
LeRue Press, LLC is committed to helping writers publish and promote their work. Writers benefit from both Internet and traditional publishing and promotion including Marguerite Press Author eTours. With a variety of poetry, children's books like "Pick Me, Pick Me!" by Elizabeth Horton, and opportunities to write and be published in the "History of", we invite you to join LeRue Press, and find your voice and your chance to be published.
We here at LeRue Press are thrilled to be a part of eTours with Marguerite Press! And, we would like to offer the eTours authors' books for sale on our site. Our listing service is free. If the author's book sells, we handle the entire process. All they need to do is read and sign our agreement at:www.leruepress.com/bookagreement.html and forward a copy of the book.
The agreement lists the terms of sale. We only ask 9% of the sale price (less the Pay Pal fees). Our agreement clearly outlines what we expect. We hope this is a win-win for the author and for us. We hope by including the book along with the eTour, the authors will sell more books!
eTour stop #6:
C&B Books caters to aspiring and self-published authors who tend to have limited capital and resources. We researched and discovered others who shared our mission. More than just promoting and supporting, C&B is a resourceful research center as well. We refer authors to our network of contacts, such as book clubs, publishers, editors, reviewers, radio stations, public access television, book fairs and expos. Our primary goal includes, organizing book signings, delivering press kits, promotional materials to bookstores, and agents.
eTour stop #7:
Nevaeh Publishing Dwan Abrams is a full-time novelist/publisher/speaker. She's the author of Only True Love Waits, The Scream Within and Favor (short story appearing in The Midnight Clear: Stories of Love, Hope and Inspiration anthology). Dwan is the founder, publisher and executive director of the newly formed Nevaeh Publishing, LLC. Nevaeh Publishing is a small press independent publishing house. Nevaeh Publishing was established to assist aspiring African-American Christian/Inspirational writers with getting published. Our goal is to become the premier literary Web site for Christian readers and writers.
eTour stop #8:
Book Nibbler Reader's Community So how do you read a good book? One “nibble” at a time! Book Nibbler is a targeted reader’s community currently covering ten genres. You choose what type(s) of book you would like to read and Monday through Friday, we’ll send you a preview—no longer than five minutes out of your day—to “nibble” on. It IS that easy.
Founder/ Cassandra Vaughn
eTour stop # 9
Delores Thornton The home of Delores "Queen of Promotion" Thornton
eTour stop # 10
Margie Gosa-Shivers, author of, "Once Is Never Enough"If you had a whimper of a chance to win back the love of your life, would you grab it? Against all expectations, a Chicago homicide detective who's ready to move for a career with the FBI finds himself wrestling with the notion when he agrees to face danger once more to prove a suicide was really a homicide.
Margie Gosa Shivers
eTour stop # 11
At APOOO our mission is to expose readers of all ages to a good book in any genre; to support African American authors, books, literary events and bookclubs; and, to promote literacy within the African American community.
eStop # 12
Roux in the Gumbo Blogspot