September 7, 2013

Jane Toombs

Sail the High Seas with Jane Toombs


Jane Toombs, the Viking from her past and their calico grandcat, Kinko, live on the south shore of Lake Superior in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula wilderness. Here they enjoy refreshing Springs, beautiful Summers, colorful Falls and tolerate miserable Winters. Jane is edging toward ninety with her published books and has over twenty-five novellas and short stories to her credit. She’s been published in every genre except men’s action and erotica, but paranormal is her favorite. She’s a member of a closed twelve author promo group called Jewels Of The Quill, where she’s “Dame Turquoise". 

Could you please start by telling us a little about yourself? 
I’ve returned to live in the small town I grew up in. Some years ago, when I was still living in upstate New York after my second husband died, an old classmate of mine called me to tell me I’d spelled my Swedish hero’s name wrong in my latest book, because en was Norwegian—on was Swedish. It turned out he was living in Nevada. As we talked, we discovered in the next month I was attending a family wedding in lower Michigan, and he’d been invited to a family reunion in lower Michigan on the same weekend, in a town only a few miles from where I’d be.  So he told me he’d drive over to see me.  He’d never before kissed me, but when he left after his visit, he did. Wow! We’ve been together since shortly after that. 
I grew up intending to become a writer, but wound up an RN instead due to WWII. When I finally returned to writing I was married with five kids. I dabbled in it at first, but finally wrote my first book, a rather dark gothic romance that sold to Avon. For some reason this upset my doctor husband (his opinion was I was writing trash) and we eventually divorced. I met my second husband in a writing class. After we married, he decided if I could sell a gothic, he could.  So he wrote one and it did sell. So then we both were writing. We never collaborated, but we did edit each other’s work until he died unexpectedly.
Elmer doesn’t write, but cheers me on. At 88, he now has Parkinson’s, but is up and about in a W/ C. I’m now his caretaker, but he’s able to help me a lot. I’ll be 87 in December, and still writing. Slower, though. 

Please tell us a little about your new release without giving too much of a spoiler away.
I’m finishing up my fourth and last book in my Dangerous Darkness Series, Stranger On The Shore. This series traces the lives of four Special Op guys after they return to civilian life, believing the fourth guy has been killed. Well, he has and he hasn’t and the last book is his. These are paranormal suspense romances and the first three, Shadow On The Floor, Watcher At The Door and Trouble From Before are available from my website:  

What was the hardest part of writing your book?
Trying to find a logical way to keep the hero of the fourth book alive, when all three of the heroes of the other books saw him riddled with bullets. Luckily being an RN was a help. 

What comes first: the plot or the characters?
They all come together for me. I do a synopsis for each book and use it to keep myself on track, though I deviate from it a lot.  

Do you plan all your characters out before you start a story or do they develop as you write?
Until I do the synopsis I don’t have any characters. And, yes, they develop as I write because I get to know them. 

Do you have a ritual when it comes to writing? Example….get coffee, blanket, paper, pen, laptop and a comfy place.
Nope. Butt in the chair in front of the computer is all I need. 

Do your books have a common theme or are they all different?
Other than good overcoming evil, I can’t think of a common theme. 

How long does it take you to write and then edit a story?
That varies with each book. Some seem to flow from my fingers and others definitely do not.   

How do you go about naming characters?
I give them names that seem to fit them. Have no idea how I do that. 

What so you see for the future of publishing and e-books?
E-books are gaining in popularity, but I do believe holding a book in your hands won’t ever go out of style completely. 

What are your current books out right now, and what are the books coming up for release?
I’ve been doing a lot of scanning of old rights-back books, which I then send to Books We Love, Ltd. to turn into ebooks. I’m no techie, so I wouldn’t dream of trying to put them up myself. BWL provides editing and great covers. The latest one up is Love’s Odessey, and Bride of The Baja will soon be up. Both are historical romances. 

What do you like to do when you’re not writing?

Is there anything else you would like to tell the readers we have not touched on?
If it wasn’t for my father, who gently critiqued all my early writing, I doubt I’d be published today. He taught me how to accept well-meant critiquing, which is a priceless gift. Unfortunately, he didn’t live long enough to see me succeed. 

Where can the readers learn more about you and find your books on the web? 

This is the story of a sixteen-year-old American girl who is orphaned when her father dies and she is sent to live with her English uncle. Unfortunately he falls out of favor with the king and is killed. This is where she meets Adrien who saves her from a dire fate by taking her to Holland to live with her mother’s sisters.
They sail to Java on the same ship, but Rommel and Adrien are fated to be torn apart again and again. She has only her courage and her beauty to keep her alive—and her impossible love for Adrien. He never gives up searching for her, even after she is abducted by a Chinese pirate and taken to Amoy. He’ll need all his ability as a swordsman to survive long enough to rescue her.
This is truly an odyssey for Rommel and Adrien as he keeps losing her and must set off to find her once more. Travel is by Dutch East India ship, by junk and by raft. 


Tia Dani said...

Jane, Wonderful interview. Loved getting to know about you and your books. Thanks!

Anthology Authors said...

I think it's fabulous that you are still following your passion and how your "found" your third husband. :) Great interview, Jane. :)

Anonymous said...

Tia and "anthology authors" thanks for your comment. Appreciate that you took the time. And I'm glad I found Elmer , too! Janer Toombs

Ann Herrick said...

Lovely interview and love the beginning of your relationship! :)

Rhobin Lee Courtright said...

Very interesting interview. The Dark Dangerous Series sounds intriguing.

Anonymous said...

Thanks Ann and Rhobin Lee. Just think, if I hadn't written that book, Elmer and I might never have found each other again.
Also, I'm thinking of taking that that "Dangerous" series back from the publisher who doesn't keep up with royalties like all my others do. Jane Toombs

Kathy Fischer-Brown said...

Lovely interview and book presentation. Wishing you all the best.

Heather Haven said...

Very interesting interview. Had no idea Jane was such a romantic! No wonder you write books about it! And take your Dangerous books back. With the way things are today, there's no reason for not having more control.

Anonymous said...

Thanks Kathy and Heather.I've never thought of myself as a romantic, being of a practical bent, but in some ways, maybe I am. And I intend to get my rights back. Hate to admit I made a mistake about this publisher because I lke her personally. Jane Toombs

Marilyn Meredith a.k.a. F. M. Meredith said...

Hi, Jane! So glad to hear that you are still out and about...and writing! Miss seeing you here and there.

Anonymous said...

Marilyn: Yeah,I don't get around much anymore. Buying groceries, going to the PO, pharmacy and to get my hair cut is about all I'm up to these days. Jane Toombs