Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Spotlight Author with Joanne Rock

It's my first blog for the last month of the year. Wow! So hard to believe. It's almost Christmas. Is there any better way to prepare yourself for the holiday than to sit in front of the fireplace, favorite blanky on the lap, a warm cup of hot cocoa in one hand and a steamy romance in the other? Well I have just the thing for you! Joanne Rock's latest title UNDER WRAPS. Here she is to tell us all about it!

Tell us a little bit about your latest release UNDER WRAPS.

Under Wraps (Blaze 12/10) is the third book in the “Lose Yourself” miniseries that I penned with Debbi Rawlins and Jo Leigh. Each book takes a heroine on a road trip adventure. Mine ends up at a steamy, adults-only hotel where she’s working undercover with a sexy PI.

If you had to pick one character in your books, who would be your favorite? And why. Or if you don’t want to pick a favorite… which one do you connect with the most? And why?

I don’t think I could write my books if I didn’t identify with each and every heroine in some way. There’s a piece of me in all of them! I think the heroines I most enjoyed writing were the heroines in Single in South Beach – an early series for Blaze and Temptation – because I purposely created a group of friends for heroines that reminded me of my own friends. Therefore, writing the South Beach series was like sitting down with my girlfriends – so fun!

Do you pick your characters? Or do they pick you?

A little of both! Often, I’ll start with one character who has chosen me – the hero, perhaps- and then I’ll choose his heroine by thinking about what kind of woman could present him with the most trouble.

Often time’s writers describe writing a love scene like being an intruder in something so very personal. Do you feel this way and how do you get through the dreaded love scene?

Maybe because I’ve written for Blaze for so long, I feel like I’m very much a part of the love scene. In fact, I look forward to those moments for the characters since I spend so much time writing the conflict and the tension and the longing that the love scenes feel like rewards for us all! Love scenes give them a chance to act on all that tension and enjoy a few stolen moments before the conflicts return – even stronger than before.

What’s one thing that you know now that you wished you knew when you started your journey as a writer?

Always double space your manuscript submissions. Seriously, I was so excited about submitting my work that I failed to do some homework on the logistics and protocol of submitting to editors and I made some really rookie mistakes! I wish I’d been in RWA chapter or writers group that could have helped me avoid some of the pitfalls on those early submissions.

What is the most important advice you can give to aspiring authors?

Exercise those writing muscles by writing often. The more you practice your craft, the stronger your skills will be. Also, we all get rejected so don’t let a few rejections stand in the way of your success. Write work that you’re proud of and keep submitting.

How long did it take before you got “THE CALL”?

About five years. The first two were less focused, but the last three were very intensive. I wrote five – no, six – full manuscripts before selling one. Some writers keep revising a couple of manuscripts when they get rejected, honing their projects until they’re just right, but I kept writing new ones.

Now tell us a little bit about Joanne. Who are you? What do you do when you’re not writing hunky heroes and romantic love stories?

I’m the mother of three school-age sons and I spend a lot of time at games and practices as they are all three-sport athletes. When we have downtime between seasons, we like to travel and although I usually wrangle a Caribbean or Florida trip each year, we also spend a fair amount of vacations at professional sporting events. We’ll make road trips to see to see our favorite teams each year. It’s a good thing I like sports, and it’s always a pleasure to have a new idea for a sports hero in one of my books. When I’m not rooting on a team, I’m a bit of a homebody and enjoy time spent on home improvement projects so we can host lots of family and friends in our own backyard.

Thank you, Joanne for stopping by Micole Writes Romance. It has been a pleasure.

Where can we find out more information about you and your books?

Visit me anytime at or at my Facebook page Thank you for having me, Micole!

Happy Holidays friends, make sure to give yourself a rest through out this crazy season. Take a few minutes to come and check out the blog! See you next time!




Catherine Mann said...

Good morning! Love the cover for your book, Joanne!! Love, love, love the insides of the book too. :-)

Joanne Rock said...

Thank you!! So nice to finally have a full fledged Christmas book out!

Jeanne M said...

Joanne -
Just wanted to let you know how much I enjoy your books. It was fun hearing about your family and having two boys myself I appreciate the time you spend taking them to games, practices, etc. When my boys were in High School we also had a Spanish foreign exchange student. I loved having a housefull of teeenager boys and it was fun for the one year having a 16, 17, and 18 year old all at once!

Your book sounds great and the cover is terrific. Merry Christmas to you and your family.

Catherine - Thanks for having Joanne with you so we could find out more about her.

Joanne Rock said...

Thank you, Jeanne! This makes me smile as, this evening in particular, I spent HOURS trucking from one end of town to the other and back, so many times, for three different kids' events and a team dinner on top of it. But I do love the reward of having them so involved and seeing the good friendships that come out of sports for them. Plus, it's really nice to know all their friends!

Thanks so much for stopping by... I really appreciate that! Happy Holidays to you, too :-).

Micole Black said...


Thank you so much for being a guest on my blog. You have some great advice. Happy Holidays to all of you.