Six questions for NYT bestselling author Jenna Bennett
1) Tall, Dark, and Divine helped launch Entangled Publishing’s new Covet line. Can you tell us a little about the book?
With pleasure! Tall, Dark and Divine is about Eros, the Greek god of love, who’s on the rebound after the love of his life for the past three thousand years, Psyche, left him for a Viking warrior with more brawn than brains. Like any jilted husband, Eros drinks too much and neglects work. Of course, when Eros neglects work, the earth suffers, so the girls in the office—the Greek and Cretan minor and demi-goddesses who help him run his matchmaking agency—decide that the boss needs to get out of the house. They take him to Dionysus’s bar—yes, that Dionysus—where he runs into Annie Landon.
Annie is tired of looking for Mr. Right and is on the prowl for Mr. Tonight instead, and she decides that Eros fits the bills. But picking up the Greek god of love for a one night stand is easier said than done, especially when he’s determined never to get involved with another mortal. So Eros does his best to fix Annie up with Harry Mitchell from the accounting firm down the street instead, while Harry does his best to impress Britomartis, Cretan goddess of hunting, and while Brita has her eye on Dion, and Dion likes Ariadne, and Ariadne... well, you get the picture.
2) Tall, Dark, and Divine revolves around Greek gods. So fun! What was your inspiration?
I blame Gena Showalter for this one. I was reading about the Lords of the Underworld—Greek mythology-based paranormal series, quite a bit darker than anything I write—and thinking that it would be fun to write something like that, but light and funny. That’s where the original idea came from, for Eros and his modern-day New York City-based matchmaking agency. I guess even before that, it probably came from a long-held love of mythology in all forms.
3) You write in several genres—mystery, contemporary, and paranormal—and maybe even some I don’t know about! Do you have a favorite?
Let’s see now... you don’t know about the science fiction, or if you do, you didn’t mention it. Of course, there are those ideas for historicals floating around in the backbrain, too...
No, I don’t have a favorite. It depends on my mood. I can’t stick with anything for too long, in reading or in writing, or I want something else instead, which is why I try everything in turn. I’ve been writing nothing but romance for the past six or eight months, so I’m getting in the mood to write another mystery soon. I can feel the ideas starting to percolate. When you’re a mystery writer, you can only go so long before you feel the need to kill someone, you know.
4) You’re a super prolific author. What keeps you going when the well runs dry? (Though I’m guessing that doesn’t happen often for you, considering all your releases!)
LOL! There’s no such thing as a dry well. If I never have another original idea for as long as I live, I can spend the rest of my life writing the ones I’ve already had. Not that I’m worried; I have new ideas all the time.
I do need downtime, though. And I need to change things up. Too much of one thing and I hit some sort of wall and can’t keep going. The science fiction series is about as dark as I ever get in my writing, and after six months of writing nothing else, in late April, I couldn’t do it anymore. So I stopped writing halfway through the second book and started working on other things instead. That’s where the light paranormal romantic comedy and the contemporary romance came from: a change of pace from the darker subject matter of the science fiction.
5) Just for fun: Tall, Dark, and Divine includes a matchmaking agency called Made in Heaven. If you could design your own dream date, what would he be like? Any celebrity inspirations?
No real celebrity inspirations, I think. I’ve always had more literary crushes than movie or TV ones. Vicariously speaking, I tend to go for the bad boys. Tall, dark, dangerous. The kind of guy who—in real life—I’d last five minutes with, before I’d fall into temptation and smack him for his chauvinistic, bossy tendencies. In real life, I tend to be attracted to charm—not the smarmy kind—a sense of humor, kindness, an even temper... all the boring things that make a guy nice to be around.
6) Please tell us what’s next for you and where we can find you on the web.
Sure. Well, the 6th DIY mystery, Wall to Wall Dead, will be released September 4th. The 5th hit the extended New York Times list last year, so I’m keeping my fingers crossed we can do it again.
In October, my first contemporary romance will see the light of day. Friends With Benefits is a Cinderella type story about a pregnant waitress who marries her nice but boring next door neighbor for his health insurance—friends with benefits, see?—and who ends up falling in love with him.
And then in November, it’s the first science fiction romance’s turn. Fortune’s Hero is about Quinn Conlan, the captain of a smuggling ship called the Good Fortune, and his efforts to get his crew out of prison, his ship out of impound, and everyone out of orbit.
On the homefront, I’m doing a lot of promo for all the books that are being released, I’m in the editing phase of both Fortune’s Hero and Friends With Benefits, and I’m getting back into finishing Fortune’s Honor, the second SFR. After that we’ll see what’s next on the docket.
You can find more information about all the books and releases on my website, www.jennabennett.com, and I do yap on Twitter quite a bit when something exciting is going on. I have two twitter handles, and I do suffer from the occasional bout of split personality—i.e., I’ll tweet from the wrong one—so it’s probable safer to follow both @JennieBentley and @Bennett_Jenna. Other than that, I blog on The Naked Hero on the 21st of every month.
Thanks so much for visiting, Jenna! Now it's YOUR turn...comment for a chance to win!
Thanks so much for having me!
Purchase from Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Tall-Dark-and-Divine-ebook/dp/B008NKMLEW
Purchase from Barnes & Noble: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/tall-dark-and-divine-jenna-bennett/1112185596
About the author
Jennie Bentley is the author of the New York Times bestselling Do-It-Yourself Home Renovation mysteries from Berkley Prime Crime, while Jenna Bennett writes the Cutthroat Business mysteries for her own gratification. Jenna is also the author of the upcoming Soldiers of Fortune series of futuristic romances from Entangled Publishing. The first book in the series, Fortune's Hero, will debut in November 2012. In addition to futuristic romance, Jenna also has the first books in a contemporary romantic suspense series and a paranormal series coming from Entangled Publishing in fall 2012.