Jill James on creative ideas…

And here she is, contemporary and paranormal romance author Jill James–

Where creative ideas come from.

As Stephen King has been known to say, we pluck them from the ether. It’s magic.

Of course, it isn’t magic. Everyone gets ideas; writers just do something with them. Everyone plays ‘what if’.

What if Suzy Homemaker across the street is a soccer mom by day and CIA assassin at night? She tucks the kiddies into bed with a babysitter and jets off to Istanbul to take out a third-world dictator there for an arms deal.

What if the CIA decides she and her kids are a liability with the picket fence, Fluffy the cat, and Spot the dog? What if they send hired killers to take out Suzy, the kids, and the pets?

What if she grabs the kids goes on the run to Little Town, USA and hides out? But, Hunk the Sheriff can tell there is something different about Suzy and her giant weapons stash.

Wait! I have to go write this down.

Just like that stories are born. Writers play ‘what if’ a lot. We do it alone, with critique partners, with a group of writer friends. One idea can spill over into a dozen more. One idea can fuel a different story for every member there doing brainstorming.

Reading the newspaper can spark an idea for a story. My local news had the story of J.C. Dugard and her 18-year kidnapping ordeal. How did she stay hidden for so long? How well do we know our neighbors? Suddenly an idea like Suzy the assassin doesn’t seem so far-fetched after all.

In Tempting Adam, I wanted a femme fatale heroine. She is a corporate raider who makes no excuses for what she does. She goes on the inside of companies and pulls them apart, looking for weaknesses to exploit, to take down the CEO, and make the company ripe for the picking. I couldn’t change who she was and have the same story. I had to change how she saw what she was doing from the inside out. She had to grow a conscience.

Tempting Adam started with just a little idea to have a businessman in over his head in the Hollywood movie studio system and a corporate raider determined to take him and his company down. I knew I wanted Adam to be a good man. And for Yvette to try to destroy him, only to discover what she truly wants in the end.

Ideas come from nowhere and everywhere. The magic is snatching them up when they do come and doing something with that little germ of an idea. Making a story and characters come to life. Writer’s magic.


They both want the same thing – St. Eden Studios.

Corporate raider Yvette Giardino intends to bring St. Eden Studios to its knees. It’s a job. One her grandmother’s health depends on. That Adam St. Eden will suffer isn’t personal. Until he awakens her sympathy and stirs her body in ways she can’t explain.

Adam wants one thing and one thing only – to protect the dream his grandfather began. But when the board demands he work with stunning Yvette, a woman he’d mistakenly indulged with in a little after-hours play, his world turns upside down. Missed meetings, unhappy clients, and nights of intense pleasure – he can blame one person.  Yvette.

With his corporation crumbling around him, can Adam rise above the fallout and see his sexy temptress for what she really is – a victim of manipulation and a woman who desperately needs his love?

Jill has loved to write since she first began putting on puppet shows in her garage for a nickel a person.  Her first love  was poetry until she picked up her first romance novel, Lily of the Valley, after that it was all romance.  She writes  contemporary romance, romantic suspense and paranormal romance.  She is a member of RWA since 2004 and a  member of the From the Heart chapter, Black Diamond chapter, Kiss of Death chapter, and ESPAN chapter.  She has  been writing romance for a few years with a few poetry contest wins and a published short story, Lunch Break. She  lives in Northern California with her husband, the inspiration for all her heroes.

A little peek at Tempting Adam…

Yvette pulled herself together with a jolt.


It’s a job. It’s a job.


She repeated the mantra in her head in an endless loop, gazing into deep, blue eyes. This close, she noticed the subtle lines near his eyes from his outdoor living. If he had grown up in Hollywood, he would have had a facelift or two by now, instead of the natural look he pulled off quite well.

Adam helped her rise, his warm hand cupping her elbow. A tingle shot from her arm, to her chest, and to regions much farther south. A sexual moan almost escaped her lips. Yvette shook her head to clear the mental images of her and him and the hotel room. It didn’t help. Memories of that night still had the power to stir her senses. They hit Yvette in a place she didn’t think existed—her emotions.

His eyes darkened to indigo, and he leaned nearer. His fresh, evergreen scent enveloped her. Her head swam, and she tilted on the heels of her shoes. She berated herself for her juvenile behavior, unable to believe the She-shark of business might have met her match. At least in the sexual arena.

Adam wrapped an arm around her shoulders, led her to the bench outside the door, and sat beside her. “I hope you’re doing okay. I would’ve found you a seat inside, but they were getting back to work. I didn’t want anything else to delay the work schedule.”

Disbelief flooded Yvette while she replayed what had just happened. She needed to get a grip on herself and this job. Adam was nice enough overall, and was great—make that fantastic—in bed.

However, he was no ruthless businessman and knew next to nothing about Hollywood. He wasn’t the first CEO she’d taken down, and he wouldn’t be the last.

It wasn’t personal.

Tempting Adam will be available in just a few days! Watch for it February 16, 2011 from The Wild Rose Press

Jill’s Links

Website: http://www.jilljameswrites.com

Blog: http://www.jilljameswrites.com/blog

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/pages/Jill-James-author/172814579396783

Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/jill_james

Group Blog: http://www.trulymadlydeeplyromanceauthors.blogspot.com

Thanks, Jill!

All right all you sassy readers…don’t forget to leave a comment. There are still prizes to be won and other blogs to see.

I’m with Amy Corwin this week talking about all my “what ifs.”  http://amycorwin.blogspot.com/

And don’t forget to visit the rest of our Valentine’s Day Blog Tour

Meet romantic suspense author Kat Duncan at http://authorjenniferjakes.blogspot.com/

Meet contemporary YA and adult romance author Linda Kage at http://www.ajbooks.blogspot.com/

Meet paranormal and historical romance author Caroline Clemmons at http://lynneroberts.blogspot.com/

Meet historical and paranormal romance writer Lilly Gayle at http://maevegreyson.blogspot.com/

Meet erotic western historical author Jennifer Jakes at www.jilljameswrites.com

Meet author AJ Nuest at http://www.katduncan.net/writeabout

Meet author Lynne Roberts at http://lindakage.blogspot.com/

Meet paranormal romance author Maeve Greyson at http://carolineclemmons.blogspot.com

Meet author Amy Corwin at www.lillygayleromance.blogspot.com

You can leave a comment on each site for more chances to win!  Thanks for coming by today! <3


29 thoughts on “Jill James on creative ideas…

  1. Hi Jill,

    I think people might think we compared notes before posting.

    You nailed. There are ideas everywhere, a writer is someone who thinks about it and asks what if.

    If I haven’t told you before, I love the premise of TEMPTING ADAM! I can’t wait to read it.

  2. The “what if” is best part of being a writer. Driving down the street, and you see someone walking across the street and wondering what their story is. Are they that assassin, with the 2.5 kids and fluffy the cat? Imagine, just by watching someone cross the street.

  3. Today I was watching a show about JL Rountree–the oldest known bank robber. He was in his 80s when he started robbing banks. When they caught him, they loaded his conservative white sedan on the back of a tow truck. It made me think…how many times have you passed one of those trucks with a car on the back? Getting ideas for the Characters blog!

    1. Amie, Wow! 80 is awful old to take up a life of crime. Or was he still at it? Was he so sucessful that he wasn’t caught until then? See, lots of what if!!!

  4. When he was 93 he was convicted and sentenced to 12 years–which of course was a life sentence. He served his prison time in TX. And no, he *started* robbing banks when he was in his 80s. Said he loved doing it! He was so interesting to me. But watch out, you’ll hear about him again in my Interesting Characters blog week after next!

  5. Great post, Jill. I really liked how you said you had to “changed who she was from the inside”. AHA! I’m always telling aspiring writers. Delve deeper into this character. Now I can’t wait to read Tempting Adam!

  6. Jill–Thank you so much for stopping by today! And thank you everyone who came by to visit us!Don’t forget…Tempting Adam comes out next week! So we don’t have long to wait until we can read the rest of this intriguing story. I adore a book where love changes someone for the better–especially if it’s against their will . That’s what it’s all about! <3 AL

  7. I’ve written a story from a newspaper events title, the name of a band, and from something that happened to me on a trip to Italy with my brother and sister. I love seeing where an idea takes me.

    And I’m really looking forward to Tempting Adam, Jill. It’ll be the next book I read on my Nook during my lunch hours. :) Congratulations!

  8. Jill, your line “Everyone gets ideas; writers just do something with them reminds me of the best book I’ve read in 2010. Lilly Gayle’s OUT OF THE DARKNESS. Great concept and writing!
    TEMPTING ADAM sounds like a great read by your post and excerpt!

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