Hi Chicklets Fans! This week we have another debut author, the incredibly delightful Jaye Garland!! Jaye writes for Soul Mate Publishing and is talented as she is sweet. But don’t take my word for it, pull up a chair and read about her (and her fabulous debut) for yourself!
GFG: What’s your favorite food?
Jaye: Coffee/Cheerios/Cheeseburgers/Dove Chocolate/Greek Yogurt/Apple Pie. Wha-at? You didn’t think I’d pick just one thing, did you? This IS a foodie blog, right. LOL!
GFG:It certainly is! And you’ve just proven you totally belong here! Now tell us, what’s your least favorite food?
Jaye: Sushi. To this down-home ranch girl, that’s just bait on a plate.
GFG: What three books influenced you the most in life?
Jaye: The Bible has to be first on the list. Without getting preachy here, living a good, productive, and happy life begins with a solid foundation. It’s the best source I know for guidance and support. Next would be the Nancy Drew series. I devoured those stories like they were popcorn at the movies. I learned I could go anywhere, do anything, and be whoever I wanted—simply by turning those pages. My third choice has to be three books by Kathleen E. Woodiwiss: The Flame and the Flower, Shanna, and The Wolf and the Dove. Those novels were set in romantic historical eras. Where Nancy Drew left off, Woodiwiss carried me to places that let my adventurous spirit and imagination flourish, and led me to the writer’s path.
GFG: What an intriguing selection. I have to admit, I’ve never read Kathleen Woodiwiss. But Nancy Drew…yep, definitely read those! 🙂 Now, what turns you on?
Jaye: Walks in Mother Nature, babies taking their first steps, a kid who’s earned his first real paycheck, puppies and kittens tasting milk from a saucer for the first time, and that day when Captain Bulldog cleaned the whole house for me because my last parent was dying and he didn’t know what else to do to make it better. Yeah, he’s my rock.
GFG: That was so wonderful of him! Okay, so we know what you like…what turns you off?
Jaye: Drivers who expect to be ‘let in line’ at the very last minute when the rest of us have queued for the last three miles; monster-size dogs with and even bigger growl, running unleashed but with the guy who just laughed like it was funny; trying on clothes in the dressing room and then leaving without buying a darned thing…because, well, you know why; and milk that’s gone sour.
GFG: I can definitely relate to the dressing room drama. 🙂 So, when you have a bad day shopping or when you’ve had a rough week, what’s your go –to book or movie or activity to relieve stress?
Jaye: I’m hooked on the bridal shows: Say Yes To The Dress, SYTTD-Atlanta, I Found The Gown, Randy To The Rescue, etc. The shows are set to record so whenever I need to zone out, I hit that play button. Captain Bulldog has even gotten into the Bridesmaid series. He’s not fooling me, though. What guy wouldn’t enjoy seeing bright, flowing, gowns on gorgeous young women? Ha!
GFG:Ha indeed! Guess his secret’s out. Let’s even the playing field a bit. What’s a fact most people couldn’t guess about you?
Jaye: I’m an open book. Hmmm. There must be something…. Oh yeah, for about 15 years, I was allergic to cashews. I’d blister like I’d been burned if I just touched a nut. For whatever reason, that went away and I’m loving the cashew treats again. Yea!
GFG: Wow! I didn’t know you could lose an allergy. That’s like a vampire no-longer allergic to the great flaming ball in the sky. Which brings me to my next question. Vampire, werewolf, zombie, ancient warrior, cowboy, or ghost?
Jaye: I’m such an American Western fan. It’s gotta be cowboys. It’s okay if an occasional ghost pops by now and then. I had my flirtations with Medieval, too, but I keep coming back to my cowboys. Gotta love ‘em!
GFG: What first inspired you to write?
Jaye: I’ve heard this from a lot of authors and it’s the same with me. I’d read one too many books with an ending that let me down. This one dropped me like the proverbial anvil hovering over Wiley Coyote. Yup, that book hit the wall and I swore, “I could write better than that!” Uh-oh. I’d just dared myself, so I had to pick up the pen and give it a try. It wasn’t so easy, though. More determined than ever, I studied the craft like I was earning my Masters, and gained a healthy respect for all those who’ve gone before me in this wonderful career of writing.
GFG: Yep, I’ve heard that before from other writers, too. Glad to see you stuck with it and have a published novel now! What subgenre do you write?
Jaye: My strength lies in American Westerns, both historicals and contemporaries. They say, write what you know. Well, I grew up on a ranch… ‘Nuff said. Ha!
GFG: Alrighty then… What’s your writing schedule like?
Jaye: In a word, sporadic. I scavenge time from my whole day for reading, brainstorming, plotting, drafting, editing, revising, and polishing. I’m like one of those plants that takes forever for the seed to germinate and pop through the earth, but once the first leaf unfurls, it becomes a small bush—like overnight—and then the bush just seems to expand daily. That’s me, seedling-to-bush-to-hedge-to-tree, but my seedling and bush stage lasts the longest.
GFG: Interesting analogy! Let’s keep going. In one word, describe your perfect day.
GFG: Woot! That would be today!! What’s your latest book about?
Jaye: The 25th Hour is a time travel historical romance. Chased through time by her father’s murderer, an architect lands in the arms of a 19th century rancher. The two lovers realize they must find the killer before another life is taken…and the window of time separates them, forever.
The excerpt below is the scene that sets up a major hurdle for the ‘current day’ heroine, Sheridan Wells. She’s now in 1877 and is attempting to bring the hero’s five year old daughter, Angel Rose, out of a sudden and unexplained funk.
When I needed to write that scene, I had to find out how those pies would turn out because in the next scene, the heroine realizes she’d been duped by a five-year-old. Would the pies be similar to a baked apple dessert? Would they even be edible? I didn’t know, so yes, I actually baked a pie without peeling the apples. Just cored and sliced them. The result? Let me just say that my hubby told me to never do that again to his favorite dessert. Ha!
GFG: That’s pretty funny! But Jaye isn’t just here to share an excerpt. As she mentioned, this is a foodie blog. So Jaye has generously agreed to share the real apple pie recipe!
Recipe: Jaye’s Award Winning Apple Pie
Jaye’s Plain Pastry (for one double-crust pie)
Sift salt & flour together. Cut shortening into flour with pastry blender till pieces are pea-sized. Pour half the water into “well” of flour and fold flour/shortening mixture into water. Add water, working quickly, until dough is proper consistency. Kneed 2-3 times only. Divide dough into halves. Lightly dust rolling pin and board with flour and roll out bottom crust. Position in pie tin and fill. Roll out top crust. With table knife, mark top crust with steam slits and position over filling. Seal. Crimp edges and bake.
Jaye’s Award Winning Apple Pie
Bathe apple slices with 2-3 tbs. Lemon juice (to preserve color and to add tartness.) Sift spices with flour and sugar. Sprinkle mixture over apple slices coating each slice well. Mound all the apples into bottom pie shell and dot with butter. Adjust top crust, moisten edge with milk and crimp edges together to seal crusts. Brush top with milk then lightly dust with about 1 Tbs. of Sugar. Line bottom of oven with tin foil because the pie will bubble over. Bake at 400° F. for 40-50 minutes—or till apples are done. (Crust should be golden brown.) Enjoy!
Author Blurb: Born and raised on the Great Plains, Jaye Garland thrives on ‘what-if’ scenarios by turning ordinary ranch life events into novels steeped in adventure on the American West. Her award winning first novel, THE 25th HOUR, is available as an eBook on Amazon.com as of August 28, 2013. You can find Jaye around the web through the links below.
Your turn, readers! If you could go back in time, where would you most like to visit?