Search This Blog

Monday, November 18, 2013

Be My Guest - Author Jan Romes

Please welcome author Jan Romes to my blog. Jan Romes grew up in northwest Ohio in the midst of eight zany siblings. Married to her high school sweetheart for more years than seems possible, she's also a mom, grandmother, and mother-in-law. Jan writes stories with sharp, witty characters who give as good as they get. When she's not writing, Jan likes to read all genres, find new ways to stay fit and healthy, and while she in no way has a green-thumb, she likes to grow pumpkins and sunflowers.
Lucy, I am truly honored to be on your blog talking about The Christmas Contract! Thank you for having me here today!

Christmas is a magical time of year filled with religious significance and love for others. In that frame of mind, I wanted to write a sweet romance with a pure heart. I wanted love alone to drive the story. There’s chemistry but it’s simmering instead of boiling.

This particular tale is not only about finding that special someone, it also involves love for family, friends, and community (especially those in need). 
 The best way to introduce you to The Christmas Contract is with the blurb:

Millionaire Dax Dawson is a world-class philanthropist and grandfather. While he's generous with his money, he also makes the community work for it. He's the same with his family. No free handouts. What he gives has strings attached. Dax decides it's time for his fiercely independent, almost-thirty year old granddaughters to settle down. He wants them to find love and give him great-grandchildren before his lights go out. And he knows how to make it happen.

Prompted by love, guilt and a desire to own their own business, the Dawson triplets -- Joy, Noelle and Christi -- enter into a Christmas contract that will change their lives forever.

Finding true love is a unique adventure, so each girl has their own story. The outcome for all three, however, funnels into one giant happily-ever-after.


Joy -- the bookworm and accountant
Noelle -- the fashionista who works in a high-end boutique
Christi -- tomboy and fitness trainer
Luke -- playboy and car salesman
Turk -- grease monkey and all around nice guy who repairs cars
Michael - strictly business/uptight guy who owns a realty company
Dax - silver fox and well intentioned manipulator

Let the fun begin!

Here’s an excerpt from the story

Joy carried a box of canned French-cut green beans to the veggie aisle and began stacking the cans in neat rows on the shelf. She sighed with contentment. Helping out at the food pantry brought a unique calm. The last week and a half had been stressful, but in the big scheme of things, she didn’t have any problems. The food pantry always put things into perspective. There were folks out there with real issues; losing their jobs, not enough food to make it through the week, getting behind on their mortgages, and worst of all, health problems. So why was she making such a huge deal out of how things had gone with Luke Urban? He was a playboy for crying out loud. A playboy with math problems. A fixer-upper. Instead of wasting precious time worrying about him, she needed to focus on finding love to fulfill her part of the contract. You can do it, Joy. Take a deep breath. Focus. Do it for the restaurant. Do it for your sisters. Do it for Gramps. Do it for… No. No. No. Doing it for Luke made no sense. She exhaled like a tire losing air. Grr. The pressure of that darn contract had turned her sharp brain into a tub of applesauce. 

Joy continued to stack the cans, but now she did it with a clunk. The tiny inner-voice she tried to ignore got louder. Take it easy on the green beans. They’re not the cause of your problems. Really? Not the green beans? Sarcasm was having its way with her, while reality tried to ruin any chance of having a quiet day. She hated when the truth surfaced because she usually didn’t like what it had to say. And right now it was telling her that she wanted Luke. But wanting him made no sense. They were complete opposites. She was a bookworm, for crying out loud. While opposites were known to attract, she was too far one way. “You’re forgetting something very important…he’s not interested,” she mumbled under her breath.

“Who’s not interested,” Marie Collingsworth said.

A tinge of heat found Joy’s cheeks. It was hard to explain the comment. “Just venting my thoughts.”
Marie was close to her grandfather’s age, and just as wise. She patted Joy on the shoulder. “I wouldn’t go back to the dating age if someone paid me.” Her aged gray eyes glistened with knowledge. “Kids these days play head games with each other. They pretend they don’t like the other person as a way to reel them in. In my day, if you liked someone you let them know.”

Joy chuckled. “You’re right. We not only play head games with the other person, we play them with ourselves.”

Marie studied Joy. “Well stop doing that and go get your man. Go after your happiness.” 

Joy cocked an eyebrow. “Are you a plant?” 

“I’m not following you, dear.”

Joy wrapped an arm around the sweet woman. “Have you met my grandfather, Dax Dawson?”

It was Marie’s turn to blush. “I know Dax. Very handsome man.”

Marie was a widow who spent most of her free time at the food pantry. She had a big heart for those in need, just like her granddad. “Yes, he is,” Joy agreed. If ever there was a light-bulb moment, this was it. She would invite Marie to Sunday dinner sometime. 

A buzzer sounded at the back door announcing another donation. Joy was about to rush away to answer it, but Marie was five steps ahead of her.

Joy changed routes and headed to the storage room. She loaded a case of canned corn and a case of red beets in her arms and hurried back to stock the shelves. Marie was dead-on when it came to dating and finding the right person. It was a grueling game where the odds of winning were slim. And the only way to bring an end to the nonsense going on in her head was to wear herself out to the point of exhaustion. If she was too tired to think, maybe the madness would stop. She began stacking the red beets with a vengeance.
From the back door, Marie hollered, “Joyyyyy.” 

“Be right there.” She finished putting the last few cans of beets on the shelves and went to see what Marie needed. 

Standing in the doorway with at least six plastic grocery bags filled almost to the point of breaking, was Luke Urban.

Joy’s mouth dropped open. “Luke?” The sight of him made her heart rate spike. 

Luke smiled, small at first, but the corners of his mouth tipped higher until it was a full-fledged grin. “Wanted to make a donation.” One by one, he handed the bags to Joy who in turn handed them to Marie. 

It was hard to contain her confusion…and delight…at seeing him. Was this food donation a coincidence, or something more? “Umm, that’s great, Luke.” She shifted in place and her gaze moved from Luke to Marie.
Marie inclined her head toward Luke, like she was prompting Joy to continue the conversation. A peculiar look in her eyes said, “No games.” 

“Would you like to come in for a cup of coffee?” Joy asked.

Marie jumped into the conversation. “We’re out of coffee.”

“We’re not out of…” Awareness dawned. Marie wasn’t immune to games either, it would seem. Sitting on the counter in the space they’d renovated to be a kitchen, was almost a full can of coffee, and the coffeemaker was gurgling with completion of a new pot at that very moment. The mouthwatering aroma filled the air. 

“Would you like to go somewhere for a cup,” Joy asked, surprising Luke…and herself. Joy didn’t risk a look at Marie for she knew what she’d find – a satisfied smile.

If you’d like to read more about Joy, Noelle and Christi Dawson’s contract to find love you can find it at Amazon -

You can follow Jan at:
Twitter - @janromes


Anonymous said...

Sounds like a book I will be adding to my Christmas reading list. Jan's books are always fun.

Jan Romes said...

Thank you so much for having me as your guest today, Lucy :-))

Anonymous said...

Sounds like a book I will be adding to my Christmas reading list. Jan's books are always fun.

Deanna Lynn Sletten said...

I'm reading this novel right now and am really enjoying it! Great post. Wishing you all the best with this new book, Jan.

Jan Romes said...

Thank you, Onisha (oldthingsrnew) - for stopping by and your sweet comment about my book :-))

Jan Romes said...

Deanna, thank you for reading my book :-)) Hugs!!

William Kendall said...

I like the excerpt, Jan! Congratulations on the release!

Jan Romes said...

Thank you so much, William! :)

Jo said...

Just bought the book for my Kindle which is somewhat overcrowded but hopefully I will read it very soon.

Dody said...

Absolut-positively delightful, Jan (as I knew it would be!). I've had your story on my 'download list' since I began tweeting - finally took the time to visit Lucy's blog and tune in more to the delight that I knew was waiting for me. Congratulations, Jan!