Coming Full Circle by Jae (Plus a FREE BOOK!)

Under a Falling Star_JaeCongratulations to Lucinda Hughes! She is the winner of Under a Falling Star by Jae.

It’s Wednesday morning and that means we have a fabulous guest blog for you from the prolific and much loved author Jae. It also means that I (Jove) completely missed my turn to blog yesterday, but I’m hoping you’ll all forgive me since we’re having some seriously stormy weather here and the power has been playing hide and seek all over town.

This is, if I’m not mistaken, Jae’s first time blogging at Women and Words and I’m feeling mighty fancy to have her with us. She has a new novel, Under a Falling Star (check out that sexy cover), and it’s available now from Ylva Publishing.

You can buy a copy directly from Ylva HERE. Or from Amazon HERE.

And, because Jae is especially awesome, she’s also giving away an ebook copy of Under a Falling Star! Yeah, you can totally cheer out loud. The people around you will understand. To enter, all you have to do is leave a comment below. I’ll draw the winner on Friday, 11/14/12.

Good luck!

Coming Full Circle
by Jae

By now, I think pretty much everyone and their dog knows that I’m German, but many people seem to assume that I either live in the US or at least spend a lot of time there. It’s a fair assumption, really, since the nine books I have published so far are all set in the US.

I had my characters go on a desperate search that leads them from North Carolina to the streets of New York City in True Nature; pick grapes in Paso Robles, California, in Something in the Wine; travel along the Oregon Trail in 1851 in Backwards to Oregon; experience the highs and lows of Hollywood in Departure from the Script; and run from shape-shifters in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula in Second Nature. Yet before this year, I had never set foot in the US.

My former job as a psychologist didn’t allow me to take off more than a week—not enough time to get on a plane and travel the US. But after taking a leap of faith and becoming a full-time writer last December, I decided that it was finally time to visit the country I’d been writing about.

I spent nearly six wonderful weeks on the West Coast, finally meeting my critique partner, RJ Nolan, and her Great Dane in California; conducting thorough research into American ice cream (and gaining five pounds in the process); almost running out of gas in the middle of a desert; attending the Golden Crown Literary Society conference for readers and writers of lesbian fiction; and accepting an award for Beyond the Trail, a collection of short stories that are set in Portland, Oregon.
I found this fitting because the main characters in the first book I published, Backwards to Oregon, ended up in that very city, and Portland was also the city where the GCLS conference took place this year. Somehow, I had come full circle.

My newest novel, Under a Falling Star, is also set in Portland. Here’s a sneak peek:
Austen, the main character, has just started a new job as a secretary in a games company. To prove herself, she volunteers to decorate the Christmas tree in the company’s lobby.

All goes well, until Dee, the company’s workaholic, demanding COO, who is nicknamed “Attila the Hun” by her employees, finds it necessary to reposition the lights on the Christmas tree—and gets hit by the star-shaped tree topper. Nice person that she is, Austen takes her to the ER and then drives her home. Pretty soon, she falls in love with Dee, not knowing that she’s practically her boss.

The novel takes them on a (literal) roller-coaster ride that includes amusement parks in Los Angeles and rose gardens in Portland, so I used my time in the US to do some research (and I’m not talking about my ice cream research). I was able to visit the Peninsula Park rose garden when the roses were in full bloom. In Under a Falling Star, Austen and Dee meet at the fountain in the middle of the rose garden after Dee loses track of time at work and stands Austen up on their first date.

rose garden1

I also had the opportunity to visit Universal Studios in Los Angeles, as Dee and Austen do, and I got just as wet as they did during that last eighty-foot plunge at the end of the Jurassic Park ride.Jurassic Park ride1 Despite these wonderful experiences, what I will always remember most about my trip along the West Coast is the people I met. Some of them were friends that I’d made online through my writing—readers, beta readers, and fellow writers—and others were complete strangers. I was blown away by how friendly most people were and how easy it was to start conversations.

In Cambria, where I finally got to see Moonstone Beach, which plays an important role in my romance novel Something in the Wine, a 90-year-old woman started a conversation with us at the beach, and she invited us, total strangers, to her home for breakfast the next day. Over breakfast, she asked us what we do for a living.

One of my traveling companions is a writer of erotic romances. She hemmed and hawed for a minute, not wanting to admit to a nice little 90-year-old lady what kind of stories she writes. When she finally told her, the 90-year-old lady clapped her hands and exclaimed, “Oh, I love erotica!”

Well, as we say in German, sometimes life writes the best of stories. If I get to make a wish “under a falling star,” it will be to write many more stories and experience many more adventures in the US.
rose garden3BIO: Jae grew up amidst the vineyards of southern Germany. She spent her childhood with her nose buried in a book, earning her the nickname “professor.” The writing bug bit her at the age of eleven.

She used to work as a psychologist but gave up her day job in December 2013 to become a full-time writer and a part-time editor. As far as she’s concerned, it’s the best job in the world. When she’s not writing, she likes to spend her time reading, indulging her ice cream and office supply addictions, and watching way too many crime shows
Twitter: @jaefiction



  1. Hi Jae,
    It really is hard to believe you had not been to the U.S. until now.
    I have been reading your stories for years.
    I was shocked to learn you were not from the U.S.
    I’m glad you are able to write full time….so that means more stories:-)


  2. Have read all your books and enjoyed them all! Was surprised to learn that she had never been to the U.S., the Internet is an amazing resource for research I am sure!


  3. Love all Jae’s books! Please enter me for a chance to win her latest.
    Jae, thanks for sharing your about your US visit; glad you had a good time.


  4. So glad you were able to visit us here. Next time come to the east coast. I love all your books and the move to a full time writer was a good one. Excited to read this one. 😊


  5. I thoroughly enjoy reading Jae’s books! My favorite is Backwards to Oregon. My question for Jae is…what’s your favorite flavor of ice cream? 🙂 PS Hope I win!!


    • It’s impossible to choose just one, but at the moment, I’d say anything with peanut in it. Maybe it’s because that flavor is rare in Germany. Other than that, I like hazelnut, walnut, coconut, banana, malaga, caramel, …


  6. It is a testament to your talent, attention to detail and editors that you could write so many and such varied stories set in the US without so much as a visit. Looking forward to even greater results since your visit. Definitely going to read Under a Falling Star.


  7. Another wonderful book by Jae. Thanks for taking the time to blog. I think I had almost as good a visit in Heidelberg as you did in Portland.


  8. Have been reading novels by Jae for years now; in fact re-reading most of her books and still enjoy them immensely. Especially love the historical fiction. So thank you for giving us readers so much pleasure.


  9. As ever whatever you write Jae creates an oasis of the moment that we can relate to, be it your novels (I have lost count of the times I have read Backwards to Oregon) or when you blog about your trip to the USA, we are there in that moment with you. Thank you


  10. This is a wonderful blog. I’m glad you finally got to visit some of the places you describe in your books. Having never physically been to the US, I still feel like I have been there from the description in the books I read. Especially yours Jae, they are so believable. I am a huge fan and am saving up to buy some more eBooks, yours is first on the list Jae.


  11. Hi Jae,
    We met at the GCLS conference in Portland. I hadn’t read anything of yours so I bought Conflict of Interest and really enjoyed it. I recently read Departure from the Script and would love to win a copy of your latest.

    I’m curious. How did you end up with an American critique Partner


    • Well, the Internet is a wonderful place to make contact with people from all over the world. RJ and I started publishing at the same time (in 2007 with L-Book), and our mutual beta reader introduced us. We have been critique partners ever since.


  12. Love your books, Jae! I’m glad you finally had a chance to visit Oregon. We love living here and especially loved Backward to Oregon. We’re looking forward to reading your latest and hope there will be many, many more!


  13. I love your writing and would love to win a copy of your newest masterpiece! I wish i had been able to make it to GCLS last year, cause i would love to meet you! Oh well, hopefully sometime soon! Thanks for the contest and your writing!


  14. I already have the ebook and it’s a great read as always. Jae’s writing is always absorbing because her characterisation is so good.


  15. I’ve never had a chance to read one of your books, Jae, but I’d love to start with this one. It’s a fun, interesting premise.


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