Thursday, June 14, 2012

SPOTLIGHT & GIVEAWAY: 'The Marriage Bargain' by Jennifer Probst

Today It is my Pleasure to welcome NYT and USA Today Bestselling Romance Author  Jennifer Probst  to HarlequinJunkie Romance Reviews.

First off, a huge thank you to Sara for having me here today. I have adored the previous interviews and love the site!

The List that started it all...

Hers :
1) A Mets fan,
2) loves books, art and poetry,
3) believes in monogamy,
4) wants children,
5) knows how to communicate with a woman,
6) loves animals,
7) has a morale code of ethics and believes in honesty,
8) a good lover
9) has a strong sense of family,
10) has $150,000 cash available.

His :
1) a woman who does not love me
2) a woman I do not desire to sleep with
3) a woman who does not have a big family
4) a woman who does not have any animals
5) a woman who does not want any children
6) a woman who has an independent career
7) a woman who will view the relationship as a business venture
8) a woman who is not overly emotional or impulsive
9) a woman I can trust

Tell us about the inspiration behind writing"The Marriage Bargain"

Jennifer: The writing inspiration behind The Marriage Bargain came from the idea of two characters who were forced to be together and wanted completely different things. I love pairing opposites and then slowly revealing how they fit to their happy ever ending. I wanted to write a funny, heartfelt romance that had a big family, animals, baseball and characters that would linger!

Sara: Can you tell us a little bit about yourself?

Jennifer: Sure! I have two boys aged 5 and 7, two rescue dogs, and the normal chaotic house. I live in a small town in upstate New York that I adore, love reading, doing day trips with my family, and helping out at the local animal shelter. I hate cleaning and cooking and love drinking wine!

When did you first start writing? Did it take a long time to get your first book published?

Jennifer:I began writing when I was twelve years old and penned my first young adult romance. I then proceeded to read it to my friends who passed it around the school! I wrote three more young adults books, and in my early twenties, decided to write an adult romance and get it published. Unfortunately, it ended up with rejections – many very encouraging – and  I kept at it. I wrote four more manuscripts, then finally sold my original one five years later! So yes, it did take a while!

What is your call story? 

Jennifer:The editor called to say she wanted to buy Heart of Steel way back in the day, and I was at home at the time with my parents due to lack of money or something – ha ha! I got off the phone and told my mom and dad someone had bought my book. They knew I had wanted to be a writer forever but I don’t think they thought it could happen. So they looked at each other and said they didn’t believe me! I had to convince them I really sold my book and would get money for it – they kept asking me how much I was going to pay the company! Hysterical. Then I just sat on the front porch for the next hour because I didn’t believe it myself. Pretty great when one of your dreams come true!

Take us through a typical day in the life of “Author”

Jennifer:Coffee. Check email. Check twitter. Check rankings. Write. Change DVD for son. Make breakfast for son. Check email/twitter/facebook. More coffee. Phone call. Write. Make lunch for son. Break to play or read with son. Check email/twitter/facebook. Eat. More coffee. Check rankings. Write. Pick up second son. Write. Make dinner. Bathtime, reading, playtime, etc. Check rankings. Check email/twitter/facebook. Drink wine. Write. Put kids to bed.And repeat.
How do you conceive your plot ideas? How do you get inspired for it?

Jennifer:I am constantly inspired by people and real life situations. I listen to conversations, daydream a lot, and am fascinated with life. I don’t have a regular process, I just find an idea that sticks more than the others and I start writing. I also adore writing fresh ideas on the popular tropes.

 How did you choose the genre you write in?

Jennifer:It chose me. I was in love with romance my whole life. The genre inspired me to be a strong woman, believe in love, hope and good things in life. I wanted to write those type of stories that made people smile and sigh at the end. So, I never had to struggle with what I wanted to write, and even did my thesis for my master’s degree on the happily ever after endings in romance novels!

How long does it take you to write a book? Do you ever experience writer’s block?

Jennifer: Four months is comfortable for me depending on how it’s flowing. Yes, I do experience writer’s block but I just blast through it. It sucks and it’s hard but I have no time for it, so I write junk for a while to relaunch myself and usually I find myself writing past it. 

What are 4 things you never leave home without (apart from keys, money and phone)?

Jennifer: Sunglasses. Kindle. Pen. Lip gloss.

Would you rather be ugly and loved or beautiful and lonely? 
Jennifer: Ugly and loved.
Find true love or be filthy rich? 
Jennifer: true love
Invent an item that everybody uses or a song that everybody hums? 
Jennifer: a song, as long as I don’t have to sing it.
Have a relationship with someone 10 years younger or 10 yrs older? 
Jennifer:older, please. Yum.
Be sentenced to death or 50 yrs in jail? 
Jennifer:jail – I can plan my escape
Sing in the rain or dance in the streets dance 
Jennifer:Dance because I’m tone deaf

 If Hollywood made a movie about your life, who would you like to see play the lead role as you? 
Jennifer: Rachel McAdams. I just love her!

If you had only six months left to live, what would you do with the time? 
Jennifer: Eat, smoke, give away my money, write letters to my children for them to open up over the years so it felt like I was with them, travel, drink lots of wine, and be grateful for every damn minute I had here.

If you won $20 million in the lottery, what would you do with the money? 
Jennifer: Give most of it to my friends and family, open up a huge animal shelter,  travel and have fun!

If you were a salad, what kind of dressing would you have? 
Jennifer: Parmesan peppercorn ranch! Nice and creamy and calories be damned!

Where is the most romantic place you've ever travelled?
Jennifer:Italy. Everything about the country calls to my soul and I can’t wait to go back.

Share one of your favorite indulgences with us.
Jennifer:Massage! I LOVE getting a massage, and I used to save furiously for that one indulgence. Oh, ha ha, let’s not forget shoes. I LOVE shoes!

What is your favorite recent Mills & Boon, Silhouette, or MIRA title by another author? 
Jennifer: I read two recently I really loved. Wendy S Marcus The Nurses Not So Secret Scandal. AND Aimee Carson’s How to Win the Dating War – both were awesome!

Where and how can readers connect with you? 
Jennifer: Don’t forget - stalking is always encouraged. For real.
Website and Blog:

One lucky commenter will be chosen at random to win a copy of 'The Marriage Bargain' 

Please enter your email in the Rafflecopter below and Post a comment Sharing "One of your favorite indulgences with us."

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  1. Expensive shoes are one of my favorite things to splurge on. I have a weakness for Christian Louboutins. I also have a few Jimmy Choos and Manolo Blahniks. They may be expensive but they will last forever. I keep telling myself it is an investment. LOL

    geishasmom73 AT yahoo DOT com

    1. Woman after my own heart...books and shoes :)

  2. Favorite indulgences include books, anything from Bath and Body Works, and M&Ms Dark Chocolate!
    PhoenixCarvelli at gmail dot com

  3. My favorite indulgence is books. No matter what, if there is a book I'm looking forward to I'll do just about anything to buy it. Also Japanese anime and manga, although, those I indulge in they are not something I will go almost crazy if I don't get. lol


    One of my two favorite indulgences is purses. I LOVE to go to Ross, Target, Kohl's, Burlington Coat Factory to bargain hunt for purses. My other favorite indulgence is romance books; I MAKE myself save my money so that I have enough money to buy as many books as I want/can afford. If I know a store is about to place the newest books on the shelves, I'll go everyday until they're actually displayed so I can pick & choose. Just about any romance book from Harlequin Presents/Desire/Blaze/Kimani/Kimani Arabesque to historical romances to Elloras Cave Pub. romance novels will make me happy.

  5. Apart from books, it's the time to read them. Time for myself would be my biggest indulgence.

  6. books, chocolate and facebook :)

  7. Books are definitely my favorite indulgence, although I like to treat myself to a pedicure every now and then, too!

  8. A bath, a book and no one else around.

  9. Hi eveyrone! I adore your list of indulgences and every time I read one, I add that to my list too! Chocolate, social media, books, pedis, baths, massage. much fun! Thanks for stopping in and visiting!

  10. Chick-flicks! I watch cheesy movies without apology!

  11. Thank you SO much for the awesome review of The Marriage Bargain! I am thrilled you loved it, and please stay tuned for The Marriage Trap, Maggie and Michael's story! I'm completely honored to be with Entangled and the incredible authors there! Thanks again for such an enthusiastic and thoughtful review!

  12. Thank you SO much for the awesome review of The Marriage Bargain! I am thrilled you loved it, and please stay tuned for The Marriage Trap, Maggie and Michael's story! I'm completely honored to be with Entangled and the incredible authors there! Thanks again for such an enthusiastic and thoughtful review!

    Micky Johnson (Renton's River Adventures, Inc.)