Wednesday, August 24, 2011
Interview with Jessica Degarmo and book giveaway
**Giveaway is now closed**
Today, we have the lovely Jessica Degarmo visiting CLC. She is the author of four novels, including "Decisions" which is now available as in print format (as well as an e-book), as of yesterday. Jessica is a full-time wife, mother, and insurance broker/branch manager who recently earned her business degree. To top it all off, she's the lead vocalist for Department 24, a local classic rock band near her (rather small) town of residence in Pennsylvania. She claims that she's not photogenic, but her picture tells us otherwise.
Jessica has some e-books to give away to two lucky readers anywhere in the world. The winners even get to choose which of her books they would like to read. And anyone who doesn't win can still cash in on a great deal at Amazon, as two of her books are 99 cents for Kindle ("Hooking Up" is included in this sale).
To learn more about Jessica, find her at Facebook and Twitter.
MP: What is your usual writing routine?
JD: I really don’t have one. Writing to me is really a hobby. Granted, it’s a hobby I’d like to pursue full-time, but right now it’s just something I slide in when I can. Usually, I write on the weekends for a few hours when the urge strikes. In between writing jags, I mull. My stories are always in the back of my head. I’ll sit on them, ponder them, consider scenes in my head. If I can remember them by the time the weekend rolls back around, I’ll try to jot them down. Sometimes, the writing just happens, as was the case for "Six Weeks," my latest book. I was at work and the idea just hit. I feverishly scratched some notes and four days later, I had a rough draft. It was incredible.
MP: Which female authors have inspired you the most?
JD: I love LaVyrle Spencer and Nora Roberts, especially when she writes as J.D. Robb. They’re both amazing writers.
MP: What was the biggest challenge you faced while writing your novels?
JD: I think the biggest challenge would be time. When I first started writing, in January 2010,I was juggling my full-time job, a part-time job, a part-time college education, my husband and kids, and my band. It was tough to squeeze it all in.
MP: How do you deal with bouts of "Writers Block?"
JD: I do get writer’s block, but I’m discovering slowly that when that happens, there’s a reason for it. When I was writing my fifth book, I got stuck, but it was only because I was not as familiar with my subject as I needed to be. I pulled back, did research, including some field work with some wonderful firemen, and was able to push through. Writer’s block also might mean that I need to rethink a plot point or scene. If it isn’t flowing, there’s a reason.
MP: Do you ever base your main characters on yourself or people you know?
JD: Wow! That’s a tough question. In my first book, Quinn, my main character, is a lot like I would imagine myself to be if I were in her shoes. But none of my characters are really anyone I know, but they may have some traits that I admire, like loyalty, unconditional love, or a good deal of pluck.
MA: Which of your books would you like to see as a movie and who would you cast as the lead roles?
"How to Meet a Guy at the Supermarket" would be a great chick-flick! Drew Barrymore would be perfect as Quinn, and I don’t know his name, but the sexy Italian guy from "Under the Tuscan Sun" would be a great Trevor, minus the Italian accent. "Decisions" would be a great movie, too, and Gwyneth Paltrow would make a great Emma, or maybe that Leighton Meester?
MA: You are the lead vocalist in a classic rock and oldies band, Department 24. What is your favorite song to sing with the band? What song are you dying to sing but no one else wants to learn?
JD: Right now, it’d have to be “Fortunate Son” by CCR. It’s a real barn-burner! Ha! The song I'm dying to sing would have to be “I Will Survive” by Gloria Gaynor. I love disco, and she’s brilliant! I’m still working on it...
MA: What is your biggest obsession?
JD: Hm. I’m have to check my emails every morning when I get up and every night before I go to bed. I have this ritual that I go through every day and it bugs me when I can’t perform it. I’m e-addicted!
MA: If you were to take someone on a tour of Millerton, PA, where is one place you would have to take them?
JD: Oh, dear. You’ve never been to Millerton, have you? Our sign should say, “Population: more cows than people!” As they say, don’t blink, because you’ll miss it. In my little neighborhood, we have a lovely little one-room school house that I think is absolutely charming, so I guess I’d take my guest there. Beyond that, we don’t even have a traffic light!
MA: Since it's almost back-to-school time, what is your favorite memory from high school?
JD: Oh, high school...not my most favorite of times, but I did very much enjoy the Whale Watch I went on in 10th grade science class. To see those amazing beasts was a highlight of my life, not just my high school years. They were incredible.
Special thanks to Jessica for answering our questions and for sharing her books with some lucky readers.
How to win one of Jessica Degarmo's e-books (your choice):
Please comment below with your e-mail address.
(Please note: Entries without an e-mail address will NOT be counted. You can use AT and DOT to avoid spam. Or provide a link to your facebook page or blog if you can receive messages there.)
Bonus entries (can be listed all in one post):
1. Please tell us: What is your favorite classic rock song?
2. Please tell us: What is your favorite memory from high school?
3. Follow this blog and post a comment saying you are a follower (if you already follow, that's fine too).
4. Post this contest on Facebook or Twitter or in your blog, and leave a comment saying where you've posted it.
5. Join Chick Lit Central on Facebook. Edit settings if you don't want to receive a lot of messages at your e-mail account. Please read our posting guidelines, as well. (If you're already a member, let us know that too.)
6. Add a friend to our Facebook group. (Tell us who you added.) Be sure to remind them to edit their settings.
Giveaway ends August 29th at midnight EST.