Time for Spotlight Saturday again! Joining us today is R.L. Jackson. She writes contemporary romance. Let’s find out more…
Thanks for joining us on Love Indie Romance, R.L.! Please tell us a little about yourself.
Well, I’m from Florida, the very hot state of Florida where we wear flip flops and shorts year round and pray for Christmas weather every year to no avail lol. I’ve been writing since I was 12, starting with short stories which then turned into screenplays later on and now I’m diving into the novel writing world. I love my family fiercely and there’s very little I wouldn’t do for them.
Your debut novel, Crashing Into Me, has a headstrong nurse, Lana, and a wealthy, handsome guy, Kayden. Kayden’s dealing with the death of his brother. Death is never easy. Describe how difficult it was to portray that kind of character.
I think everyone has had to deal with death in some way or another, so for me, it was pulling from my own life experiences that helped me be able to express what he was going through. It, of course, brings up those experiences I’ve had which was tough at times, but I think having an outlet in any form helps you deal.
Crashing Into Me is book one. How many more books can we expect in this series? Will each be considered a standalone? When is the next book due out?
My plan is wrap up the story in Book 2 unless my characters have different plans by the time I’m done with it. This will be a continuation. Book 2 is due out in June.
When Crashing Into Me debuted (On Valentine’s Day) it was still ranking really great a few days later, especially in Books>Romance>Multicultural at #102. Congrats! Describe what kind of multicultural aspects a reader can expect. Would you say it was more difficult or easier to write? Why?
Thank you, I thought that was so awesome!!! For Multicultural, shes’s a Caribbean-born black female, he’s an American born white male. Other characters in the story share similar backgrounds as well. The differences of their skin and origins aren’t the central storyline, it’s more of a matter-of-fact thing.
I’ve always written stories about people from different backgrounds whether in script or novel, so it was easy for me. I grew up in a melting pot. Florida is home to every culture and race known to man and it was such an enriching way to grow up, learning about others, and befriending them, so that is the way I see the world and a trend I will continue in all my work.
You also showcase authors on your blog in Author Limelight. When did you start that? What’s your favorite part about doing that and why?
I started that in January as an idea, where authors can help one another, if they weren’t exactly getting that exposure on other blogs or elsewhere. I’m happy to say it’s been a success and is growing everyday! My favorite part is learning about the books and the people behind them. I also love seeing the views and shares, go up each week, for everyone, sales start to increase so it becomes a working machine propelled by other authors just looking to help one another out.
Your Amazon profile says you’re a seasoned screenwriter. Can you tell us what sort of screenplay’s you write?
I got my first break when a vampire trilogy I wrote was optioned by a major production company. Sadly it wasn’t made, but I continued writing. I have thrillers, suspense, TV PILOTS you name it, it’s in my portfolio. Actually no RomCom, though. I’m more on the darker side of things when it comes to scripts lol.
Describe the difference between screenwriting and novel writing, and what is your favorite to do?
There are a lot, but the major difference is in a script, it needs to be a fast read, very little description the shorter the better, with a low enough production cost that it may get made. With novels, it’s the opposite, because you have to have description and dialogue, but have a healthy combination. That was the hardest for me. Also in a script, you introduce a character by saying “R.L. Jackson, 28-ish walks into the room and flops down at the desk chair.” In a novel, we know very well that simple line can burst into a paragraph or two to get in the headspace of her and the room she’s in etc…
You create book trailers. Describe the process of creating a book trailer. What draws you in to create a book trailer?
That goes into my film making background as well. I see a blurb and I can see the movie trailer, most of the time. If I can’t then the blurb isn’t good enough and if I can picture the whole movie or novel through the blurb you’ve given away too much. When I do a trailer I take a blurb and shorten it, even more, then come up with the most theatrical type trailer I can. I do a mini storyboard and get hunting for pictures and stock video to make it come alive. I enjoy creating stuff like that so its second nature for me.
What is your favorite part being an indie author? Being in control of everything
What area do you find the most difficult?
Being in control of everything lol. You are responsible for so much in this industry and if something falls by the wayside, there’s really no one to blame for it. The responsibility is endless. You have to have a serious plan in place, study what it is you want to accomplish and work everyday at it. Unless you have the money to hire people, everything is on you: the manuscript, the cover, the blurb, the formatting, the marketing and advertising, social media management…I could go on and that’s just the the beginning.
Crazy question time! You’re snowed in with the person of your dreams. What three essentials do you have with you to pass the time?
Oh boy, I guess firewood, some good wine, and a cozy blanket. 😉
Any last thoughts?
This has been great. Thank you soo much. I really enjoyed your questions, it’s been a pleasure!
Thank you so much for joining us, R.L.! If you want to connect with R.L., or check out Crashing Into Me, just click those beautiful links below.