Please welcome Romance writer Jaycee Ford to the Book Country Member Spotlight this morning! Jaycee, who lives and writes in New Orleans, Louisiana, is working on a series called the “Love Bug” books, and she’s earning fantastic reviews and a serious following. Learn more about Jaycee below, and connect with her on Book Country!
Lucy Silag: Tell us about how living in the Big Easy informs your identity as a writer.
Jaycee Ford: New Orleans itself is a character. Being born and raised in a city like no other, you become the city and the city becomes you. New Orleans teaches you to step out of your comfort zone. You do things here that you wouldn’t or couldn’t do in other cities. When I moved away to the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains in North Carolina, it was beautiful and I loved living there, but I missed home. This is where I began toying with the idea of writing and came up with a story, even started jotting down ideas. I still have that one plotted out, but I never did write that story. I think I lacked the inspiration. When I moved back to New Orleans, the city’s aura buzzed through my veins, and I came up with a story about a cowboy. A few months later, WATCHING FIREFLIES was born.
LS: So is WATCHING FIREFLIES the first book of yours that Book Country members should read?
JF: WATCHING FIREFLIES starts off the Love Bug series and introduces Tom McCloud and Jordan Hawthorne; a country boy and a city girl. While their love begins to fly, two secondary characters come to grips with their love; naturally, it’s also a country boy and a city girl. DRAGONFLY AWAKENING tells the love story of Paul Harris and Ellie Caldwell. Their love has been years in the making and becomes parallel with Tom and Jordan’s story.
LS: Tell us about your experience as a writer using social media to connect with other writers and readers.
JF: I joined a writing group over a year ago on Facebook where the genres encompassed everything from romance to science fiction to fantasy to paranormal. It helped me open my eyes with my writing by attempting to break the mold of boy meets girl, boy loves girl, boy marries girl. Everybody likes a happily ever after, but why not make it a little more bumpy?
LS: I get a lot of sensory details about the landscape in the Love Bug books. Do you have any tips for writing descriptively?
JF: As a reader, I like to be able to feel the environment around me. Mountains were a new thing for me in North Carolina. I grew up relatively below sea level in New Orleans. So, I view it as you have to describe it for someone who doesn’t know what it is. It’s about making the imagination tangible. That’s how books should be.
LS: During the day you work at a law firm, and by night you’re spinning romantic Southern tales. Do your coworkers know about your writing? Does your job ever play a part in your books?
JF: Oh, yes. My boss even read it. It’s been great to share the experience with friends and have a support group outside of the writing group that only meets on the internet. My third story in the love bug series – which I’m in the process of editing, actually – takes place in a law firm. The country boy moves to the city. Naturally, there’s a country boy.
JF: The South . . . it’s the epitome of home. It’s a land buried in roots. It’s a land of possibilities. It’s a land that’s so easy to fall in love with and a land so easy to fall in love in. The south has its own culture, yet each section of the south is unique in its own way.
Some things are just indescribable. My love for the south and all things southern is one of them. This is a show versus tell situation. I can tell you all the great things about it, but you can’t truly appreciate it until you see it yourself.
How do you create your world in your writing? Join the discussion on Book Country.