Tag Archives: By Design

Something Wot I Made


Oh noes I’ve discovered Pinterest. Ruuunnnnn! Run, before I pin again!

But while you’re here, g’head and check out my board for By Design. I usually operate back-asswards, so I didn’t use it to collect ideas for the book—I kept those in my head as I was writing—instead, I put it together afterward, just for fun. I’ve got some pics of celebs who kind of look like some of my characters, as well as some of the houses that play such a big part in the plot.

Although By Design isn’t out for a few more weeks yet, I’ll be really interested in hearing from readers later whether they pictured the elements and characters of the book the same way I did, or totally differently.

So okay, here’s my first foray into Pinterest. I have a sneaking suspicion it’s not going to be my last…


Calling All Fellow iJunkies!


Hello. My name is Jayne Denker and I’m an iJunkie. I write my novels on my beloved MacBook Pro, which I got after I murdered my MacBook several years ago. Okay, that was manslaughter—one drop of water dribbled into the keyboard and…and…I—I’m sorry. I can’t talk about it even now. So let’s move on.

I have an ancient iPod (turquoise) that I can’t bear to part with, so it’s collecting dust in a drawer. An iPod Touch. An iPhone. An iBoob (iMac) that I still use occasionally, although it’s dog slow. I dream of getting an iPad, but my bank account laughs at me. Someday, though—someday!

I should note that I am bilingual when it comes to computers. I know how to speak PC and I will use one if I have to, but I prefer not to. I’m a sucker for happy little Apple products, and I’m not ashamed to admit it.

So imagine my joy this afternoon when I found out that my books are going to be available through iTunes for iPads, iPod Touches, and iPhones! (Wait…how can you possibly read a book on a phone? I wouldn’t, but it’s nice to know it’s possible.) It’s true! I can’t give you a link, because they’re not listed on the Apple site yet, but if you go into your iTunes, open the Store, and throw my name into the search, there they are, under Books>Romance>Contemporary! It’s a miracle, I tells ya!

So if you’re one of those lucky individuals who has an iPad, just know that, thanks to my iEnvy, iHate you. But you’ll be able to read both By Design and Unscripted on your beautiful tablet when they’re published. If you read them on your iPod or iPhone, well, you’re a far, far braver person than i. (See what i did there?) But enjoy, all the same.


By Design: An Excerpt


I hear that it’s always a good idea to put out a little sample of a soon-to-be-published book. Since By Design is coming out pretty soon, like May 16 (have I mentioned that lately?), now might be the perfect time to post an excerpt.

So, without further ado, here’s Chapter 3. Drop a comment and let me know if it gives you a hankering to read the whole thing. (You don’t have to tell me if it has the opposite effect. 😉 ) If you like it, mark it “to read” on Goodreads and say hey on Facebook (Jayne Denker Author) or Twitter (@JDenkerAuthor).

Emmie slouched across her desk at work, the heel of her hand mashed into her cheek to keep her head propped up. Her night on the sofa hadn’t been very restful. At all. Of course, she could have reclaimed her bed. She could have moved Kyle if she’d tried hard enough. She could have made him sleep on the couch. She even could have woken him up and sent him home, no matter what the time of night. But she hadn’t. Sometimes she wondered if she even knew how to make demands on other people. Maybe she could ask Trish to give her a few lessons in assertiveness.

Right now, however, her only goal was to stay awake without the assistance of caffeine. Wilma never let her make a pot of coffee unless there were clients in the office, and though he was out at the moment, she didn’t even think of disobeying. The most daring thing she could do was to allow herself to slouch like this—Wilma would have murdered her on the spot if he saw her looking so unprofessional. He was worse than a headmistress at a finishing school. Sit up straight, don’t chew your nails, smooth your hair out, be more polite, speak proper English, act like an adult . . .

Emmie’s eyelids drooped. She rolled her shoulders and tipped her head to the left, then to the right to keep herself awake. She wished Wilma didn’t insist on having classical music playing in the office—it wasn’t helping. She had to do something, get herself moving. Was there any pressing work to be done? Nothing that couldn’t wait, said her drowsy brain. Maybe if she just shut her eyes for a moment . . . just one teeny-tiny moment . . .

The clanging noise reverberated in Emmie’s head like a fire alarm. She lurched up and glanced around wildly. Had she actually let her head rest on the desktop, even for a split second? Then she realized the fire alarm hadn’t gone off—it was just the antique brass bell over the door of the shop, and it was far quieter than it had seemed through the haze of her impromptu nap. When Emmie first brought Wilma the bell, which she had found at a flea market one weekend, he had dismissed it as tacky, but she had convinced her boss that customers would like being greeted by its quaint, friendly jingle instead of an electronic sensor’s beep. Now, however, she hated the thing; she never thought it could scare her half to death like that.

She tried to calm her thumping heart as she rubbed her blurry eyes. Yes, someone had come in and was standing by the door. But there was no screaming. That meant it wasn’t Wilma. A man, but taller than Wilma. And definitely quieter, she noted.

“Can—can I help you?” she stammered.

“Er, I hope so, yes,” the man said, in a melodious baritone that woke Emmie up completely. She’d never had her nerve endings put on high alert by a mere voice before (unless she counted the negative physical reaction she had whenever Wilma spoke), but she felt a distinct tingling now. “I’m looking for . . . John, is it?”

The man came closer to her desk; Emmie did her best to smile. She suddenly realized the side of her face was wet, near the corner of her mouth. What . . .? Drool? Dear God. She’d have preferred it if someone had shot her and the dampness was blood instead. Blood was dramatic; drool was just pathetic. Read the rest of this entry

Got a Nook Instead of a Kindle? No Problem!


By Design for the NookBy Design has hit Barnes and Noble. If you have a Nook instead of a Kindle, go git it!




My own personal meteor hit today. What up, Russia? We should hang, yanno?

Anyway, in the meantime, By Design, my first of three novels with Kensington Publishers, is now up at Amazon! Go forth and preorder!


Oooh. Exciting!


It’s the little things that get me all twitterpated. I just screencapped this from ChickLit Club‘s 2013 releases page. (Thanks, Stephanie, CC goddess!) Silly? Perhaps. Did it anyway. 🙂


The Next Big Thing (Week 27)


*insert British narrator voice here* Hallo, and welcome to this installment of The Next Big Thing blog hop, wherein authors share info about their books, then send you on to visit other blogs to read about even more nifty things to read. You likely arrived here from Gina Salamon’s blog. Welcome! If you haven’t visited Gina’s blog, go there and give her some love and find out more about her book, Sleepless.

Here are my answers to the blog hop questions, about my upcoming contemporary romance, By Design, which will be e-published in May:

1. What is the working title of your book?

By Design

2. Where did the idea come from for the book?

I’ve been a writer all my life, and have made my living as one for the better part of the past couple of decades, but I’d never attempted to write a novel (not for publication, anyway) since a misguided attempt at a YA paranormal back in the mid-’90s that I never finished. After I quit my last full-time job about five years ago to stay home and raise my son, my husband said I should “knock out a few dozen romance novels over a couple of weekends” to get filthy rich. Hah! He’s a funny guy. In a misguided kind of way. Still, the idea of getting back to writing fiction after many years in the nonfiction biz was intriguing.

This book actually started out as a NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month) project, but since I decided to join at the last minute, I didn’t have time to research unfamiliar backgrounds, professions, and settings. So I followed the old adage “write what you know” and made the main character an interior decorator, because I have a lot of first-hand experience renovating houses (and the scars—and empty bank accounts—to prove it). I made it a comedy because I love nothing more than making people laugh. Plus I am full of snark, and it’s gotta go somewhere or I’ll blow up like Violet in Willy Wonka.

3. What genre does your book fall under?

It’s classified as a contemporary romance. I’ve always referred to it as a contemporary romantic comedy, because I am all about the specificity thing. If we were still allowed to use the term “chick lit,” I think it would apply, although I don’t give a toss about designer shoes or handbags.

4. Which actors would you choose to play your characters in a movie rendition?

I tussle with this a lot. (Hey, I’m optimistic and like to plan ahead.) I’m not sure who I’d like to play Emmie, my main character, although in my mind’s eye she looks a lot like Georgina Reilly, who plays the caustic standup comedian Sabrina on The L.A. Complex. I also like her husky voice—it’s a nice change from squeaky heroines. Graham, the hero, is easier: I brazenly stole (okay, appropriated) British TV presenter James May’s amazingly unusual deep blue eyes. Graham’s core stillness and poise—his presence, I guess you could call it—was inspired by Jack Davenport. (But not as dickish as his character in Smash, of course.)

5. What is the one-sentence synopsis of your book?

One sentence? Oh no no no—not for a rambler like me! How about several? It’d still be shorter than anything else I’ve come up with yet:

Emmie Brewster, “Doormat,” has a nice ring to it. Well, okay, it’s not very nice, but it is truthful. Surrounded by less-than-admirable individuals of the male persuasion, including a freeloading boyfriend, a tantrum-throwing interior designer boss, and a rather selfish dad, Emmie’s about ready to snap. Until she meets Graham, a charming architect who believes in her more than she believes in herself. Of course, he’s not without his own problems, but Emmie learns that if she digs deep enough, she’ll discover enough strength to save herself and her “hero in distress” as well.

6. Will your book be self-published or represented by an agency?

I’m represented by The Most Amazing and Excellent Agent in the World, Jordy Albert, of The Booker Albert Literary Agency. I have a three-book deal with Kensington Publishers. The first, By Design, will be published  as an e-book in May 2013.

7. How long did it take you to write the first draft of your manuscript?

About a year and a half, off and on. I wrote the first half for NaNoWriMo ’09, wrote a little more a few months later, then finished it during NaNoWriMo ’10. That left me with a stupid-long MS, so I edited the hell out of it between December 2010 and July 2011, when I started querying agents. And then of course I edited it again…and again…and again after that!

8. What other books would you compare this story to within your genre?

Oh, a little of this, a little of that. I think any romance writer who has a rather hapless main character who tends to embarrass herself and make a few bad decisions, like my Emmie, can hearken back to Bridget Jones. I discovered Kristan Higgins’ books after I’d finished my first or second draft and realized that there really is a market for gentle humor and sweet romance. She doesn’t know it, but her books really reassured me. You could say I enjoyed her company! (That doesn’t sound stalkerish at all, does it?)

9. Who or what inspired you to write this book?

Aside from the stuff in my answer to question 2? I guess I didn’t know it at the time, but I was following more standard sage fiction-writing advice: write what you want to read. I  was desperately searching for satisfying, fun novels that I’d enjoy the way I enjoy well-crafted chick flicks. I didn’t find many, so I decided to see if I could write one.

10. What else about your book might pique the reader’s interest?

My book is one hundred percent vampire-, werewolf-, shapeshifter-, zombie-, angsty teen-, apocalypse/dystopia-, and erotica/ménage/BDSM-free. Wait, I think I just alienated most readers. Darn it! But if there’s anyone else out there who’s looking for a straightforward contemporary romance that will put a smile on your face and maybe elicit a few laughs (I hope), try By Design.

Tagged for next week (Week 28) are some of my very talented writer friends. Check out their blogs next Wednesday, December 12, when it’s their turn to post answers to these same questions about their own works-in-progress!

Robert K. Lewis: http://needlecity.wordpress.com/

Matt Sinclair: http://elephantsbookshelf.blogspot.com/

Okay, to business!


Well, lookit that—it’s my first official blog post! Isn’t that exciting!

Okay, it’s not up there with skydiving, but it’s a bit of an accomplishment, all things considered.

Anyway, welcome to my “official author blog”. Like it says on my “About” page, I write contemporary romances, the first of which, By Design, will be published by Kensington in May 2013.

I hope you’ll visit often—I’m going to try to post frequently (why yes, I am an optimist—how did you guess?), and when I have more news about my novel, I’ll shout it from the rooftops here, on Facebook, and (if I remember I have an account) on Twitter. Like the munchkins always say, “follow, follow, follow”! Er, please. (I can haz manners?) 🙂