This is a special treat this week as we visit with Paty on location in thegorgeous, yet danergous Guatemalan Jungle - the setting of her new series. To me, it looks like it could be filled with alligators, spiders and snakes so let's stay close. Paty's doing a giveaway at the end and the more who comment, the more she'll give away!
Deanna: Paty, I have to admit, this jungle setting is definitely different. Too bad I hate spiders and snakes because I do love the jungles. Let's get comfy beneath the canopy of trees here. I brought bug spray if anyone needs it. Okay Paty, thank you for taking the time to chat with us in the midst of writing more books! What else do you do along with your writing?
Paty: My husband and I own 350 acres in two different areas. On 70 acres where we live, we raise beef cattle and on the other 280 in another area (where I spend a good part of my summer) we raise alfalfa for hay. Our goal is to sell the 70 acres and be set up to raise alfalfa and have more months out of the year where we can travel. But I enjoy the summer at the “cabin” when I irrigate and help with the haying. There are less domestic chores to do and more time to write.
Deanna: That sounds like a lot of work! What do you do to relax?
Paty: It depends on the relaxation. I like to ride my horse, go for walks, and visit with family and friends. I also like to sew.
Deanna: As authors, we’ve sometimes been accused of being several people. How many personalities live in your mind?
Paty: Oh my! Now there’s a loaded question! ;0) I’m sure my husband would say I have four: The vixen, the loyal wife, the mother bear, and the b*#@*. LOL I am a hormone driven personality so he gets hit with all of these every month. Now if you ask me… diva, hermit/recluse, best friend, vixen, adventure seeker, and on my bad days, old lady!
Deanna: We all have bad days but here's hoping the vixen wins out more often! What is your strongest area in writing: plotting, character personality, dialogue, etc?
Paty: I believe my strongest area is character personality. I finaled in a contest years ago with my second historical romance because the editor loved my character, but I still hadn’t grasped GMC(Goals, motivation, and conflict). And usually in reviews it is my characters that get the accolades.
Deanna: Can you work on more than one book at a time?
Paty: I kind of do. I don’t actually write on two books but while I’m writing one, I’m always working up the idea and characters for the next one I’m going to write. It’s like an assembly line in my head. One I’m working on, one I’m discovering the characters, another I’m conjuring up the idea. And there is always one book in edits, while another is being written.
Deanna: That's a great way to describe the process! How long does it take you to write a book?
Paty: Without family and life interruptions I can write a book in three months. That’s having it already figured out in my head and doing a good part of the research.
Deanna: What is your editing process?
Paty: When I started I had a strenuous editing process, but now, after having written over twenty books (13 published), I begin writing, write a chapter, review it the next day and write the next chapter, review it the next day and write a new chapter. Start at the beginning a couple times before I get to about chapter five, then I start sending chapters to two critique partners and by the time I finish writing the book and they read the last chapters, I only have one more run through before I send it to a critique partner/editor who goes through it and I’m done. For self publishing then it goes through a beta/ proof reader before I publish the book.
Deanna: Many readers like these interviews that show them more of the authors they're interested in. What is your favorite way to connect with readers?
Paty: I enjoy connecting with readers anywhere. Either in person at events or online via email and chats.
Deanna: Tell us about a typical day in your life as a writer.
Paty: A typical day would be getting up at 6am, feed my husband and send him off to work by 6:30. I get on the computer and answer e-mails, do promotion, hit some blogs to comment until 8am. Then I dress, have breakfast and do chores. This time of year it’s break the ice on the water tanks and feed the animals hay and grain. I come back in and write or do promotion until noon. I take an hour lunch break. In warm weather I go for a walk. I sit back down and write until 4pm then I go out and feed again and when my husband gets home we feed hay off a trailer to the cows. We have dinner and I may get back on the compute for another hour or two of promotion related things.
Deanna: Hardly the life of a glamorous Hollywood author is it? You put in more than a full day's work, woman! Do your books have a common theme or are they all different?
Paty: The common theme in my books is justice prevailing or showing an injustice.
Deanna: We love your books but we're curious - what prompted you to sway from western romance to the action adventure?
Paty: I’d read a book dubbed “a female Indiana Jones” and was disappointed in the fact the first and last chapters were the only chapters set outside the U.S. So, after complaining to several people and having them tell me to write what I think one should be, I took them up on it after brainstorming with another writer. Through that brainstorming Doctor Isabella Mumphrey and DEA agent Augustino Constantine a.k.a. Tino Kostas emerged to be partnered in Secrets of a Mayan Moon.
Deanna: oooooo - I like the way you think! Take on a challenge and know you can accomplish what you set out to do! What setting outside the U.S. did you pick and why?
Paty: Having a DEA agent as the hero, I needed a country rife with drug trafficking and one that would have an ancient civilization for my anthropologist heroine to specialize in. With this knowledge and research, I came up with Guatemala. It has rain forests, drug trafficking, and the Maya.
Deanna: Is this the only action adventure you’ll write?
Paty: No, it’s actually the first of a trilogy with Isabella Mumphrey and Tino Constantine. The second book, Secrets of an Aztec Temple, will be available later this month. If the three books go over well and readers want more of Isabella and Tino, I could write more books.
What happens when a brilliant anthropologist is lured to the jungle to be used as a human sacrifice?
Secrets of a Mayan Moon is available at Kindle, Nook, and Smashwords
Child prodigy and now Doctor of Anthropology, Isabella Mumphrey, is about to lose her job at the university. In the world of publish or perish, her mentor’s request for her assistance on a dig is just the opportunity she’s been seeking. If she can decipher an ancient stone table—and she can—she’ll keep her department. She heads to Guatemala, but drug trafficking bad guys, artifact thieves, and her infatuation for her handsome guide wreak havoc on her scholarly intentions.DEA agent Tino Kosta, is out to avenge the deaths of his family. He’s deep undercover as a jaguar tracker and sometimes jungle guide, but the appearance of a beautiful, brainy anthropologist heats his Latin blood taking him on a dangerous detour that could leave them both casualties of the jungle.
Secrets of a Mayan Moon is available at Kindle, Nook, and Smashwords
Bio: Wife, mother, grandmother, and the one who cleans pens and delivers the hay; award winning author Paty Jager and her husband currently ranch 350 acres when not dashing around visiting their children & grandchildren. She not only writes the western lifestyle, she lives it. You can learn more about Paty at her blog; her website; or on Facebook; and Twitter - @patyjag.
Contest: Paty will give away a $5 Amazon gift card for every 15 people who leave a comment on this post.