Fellow award-winning author, Peggy Jaeger, is here today to talk about why she loves writing small town romance and to introduce her new release Today, Tomorrow, Always!
Why does Peggy love writing about small town romance?
I’m often asked by readers – and writers – why I write small town romance stories. People have so many misconceptions about small town life that it makes me laugh. Didn’t the world learn anything with the publication of Peyton Place?
People think life in a tiny town is boring, or that nothing ever happens. They believe since the town is small it is insular and no one new ever moves to the area. I even had one reader tell me that she thought it was inconceivable that you could find love in a small town when you’re surrounded by people you’ve known since birth. You can’t just wake up one morning and find that you love the boy you sat next to in math class.
Um…yeah, you can!
Like I said, misconceptions, one and all.
I live in a small town so believe me I know of what I write! Hee Hee.
Small towns are a hot bed of political intrigue, rumor-rampant tales of conspiracy, places where secrets run long and deep and citizens can be suspicious of outsiders.
But…the beauty of living in a small town is vast. Everyone knows you; people actually smile, say hello, and ask after your family when you meet them on the street. You can go into your favorite diner for breakfast and the waitress – who you probably went to grade school with – knows what you want before you order it. When you walk your dog, your neighbors stop, pet him/her and when you go through the drive-thru at the bank, the teller actually gives your dog a biscuit she keeps in a container under the window.
You never have to wait in line for anything. People look out for one another and actually care about their neighbors. I used to tell my daughter that if she sneezed on Main Street, I had five phone calls before she got home asking if she was feeling better! That’s no lie.
I invented the tiny town of HEAVEN, NH for my Match Made in Heaven series with my own town as a guide stick. Yes, the people have all known each other since the cradle and gossip can be the town pasttime. But the warmth, friendliness and acceptance of one another is the bedrock of the town.
So when people say to me that small town romance is dead or boring or that every tale that can be told has been, I just smile and let them think what they will while I continue to tell my stories.
TODAY, TOMORROW, ALWAYS
Lawyer Cathleen O'Dowd wants to break free from her boring image. Widowed young, she's toed the good-girl line but now wants a little fun and laughter in her days…and nights. Living in a small town, though, she can't do anything that would tarnish her professional reputation.
Mac Frayne's tragic past has turned him into a sullen loner. In town to write a book on the city's founder, his plan is to get it done, then head home to his solitary existence.
When circumstances force them to work together, their opposing personalities clash, but the sexual attraction between them is palpable.
Can a simple affair with an end date be just the thing to brighten up their lives?
READ AN EXCERPT
Frayne was alone at one of the computer workstations, sheets of paper and files scattered
about the desk next to him. I took a moment to observe him before announcing myself. Thick-lensed reading glasses perched on the very tip of his nose, a millimeter from falling from his face. For the life of me, I couldn’t understand why that was so endearing, but it was. His hair fell over the collar of his shirt, today covered with a jet-black pullover. A tiny moth hole crossed over his bicep. The notion he needed someone looking out for him, caring for him, making him take care of himself, bounded through me.
The story Maureen related spilled back to me, and my heart sighed. I knew the emotional devastation losing loved ones could wreak, and since I was now aware of what had happened to Frayne’s family, I understood the perpetual grief in his eyes.
Another striking thing about Frayne was that for all his awkwardness, some might even say shy demeanor, he was an extremely attractive man, and the very fact I noticed it was astounding. I hadn’t looked at nor thought about another man in all the years of my marriage, even while Danny had been away for years on end on active duty.
The only man I’d ever loved, ever considered being with, ever looked at, was Danny Mulvaney. Picturing Mac Frayne as someone I could see myself getting to know on a purely personal and physical level was behavior so far out of my emotional wheelhouse it startled me.
“I’m sorry I kept you waiting.” I tossed my coat and bag on a chair “I came as soon as the ceremony ended.”
Frayne peered at me over the tops of his glasses through eyes a little unfocused, a little startled, and a whole lot of befuddled cute.
He blinked, and then his gaze swept from my face down to what Maureen calls my marriage duds. When I officiate, I pair a plain white silk blouse with a black double-breasted jacket and either a black A-line skirt or trousers, depending on the season. On one lapel of my jacket, I always wear a 14-karat-gold, single rose pin, gifted to me by Colleen, to symbolize the love and affection of the couples I marry.
With a quick flick of his hand, Frayne swiped the glasses from his face, and tucked one of the bows into the vee of his sweater. His gaze made its way up to my face again, and he cocked his head in a move I was coming to recognize signaled he was going to ask a
question. “You didn’t stay for the reception?”
“Like I told you yesterday, sometimes I do, but most times I simply sign the paperwork, take a few photos with the happy couple, and then let them have their party. If I stayed at every wedding, I’d never get anything done on the weekends.”
“I’ve been to my share of weddings”—he stood and tilted his head to one side—“but I’ve never had to sign papers at one, other than my own. Are there that many people you know getting married that your weekends are typically so full?”
A grin split my face at his words. “They are when I’m performing the ceremonies.”
It took him a second, then the cloud of cute confusion cleared in his eyes. “You’re a wedding officiant?”
“Technically, I’m a justice of the peace. But yes, I officiate at weddings. I came here from Inn Heaven after performing a ceremony.”
“Well, that certainly explains it.” His lips twitched at the corners, and for a brief moment, an image of pressing my own against them burned quick and bright in my head. “I saw them setting up the ballroom for some kind of event before I left this morning. Your sister was everywhere.”
“I know that’s the truth because I’ve seen it for myself. Maureen is exceptionally organized, a trait that runs rampant in our family.”
His gaze swept down my attire again, the small grin tugging on his mouth, broadening. “I spotted another redhead in commando mode, too. She resembled you and Maureen.” His grin grew. “I’ve never actually seen someone bark orders before.”
“The barker was Colleen, my middle sister. She’s a wedding planner and was in charge of today’s event. I officiate at a lot of her non-religious ceremonies.”
MEET THE AUTHOR
Peggy Jaeger is a contemporary romance writer who writes Romantic Comedies about strong women, the families who support them, and the men who can’t live without them. If she can make you cry on one page and bring you out of tears rolling with laughter the next, she’s done her job as a writer!
Family and food play huge roles in Peggy’s stories because she believes there is nothing that holds a family structure together like sharing a meal…or two…or ten. Dotted with humor and characters that are as real as they are loving, she brings all topics of daily life into her stories: life, death, sibling rivalry, illness and the desire for everyone to find their own happily ever after. Growing up the only child of divorced parents she longed for sisters, brothers and a family that vowed to stick together no matter what came their way. Through her books, she’s created the families she wanted as that lonely child.
When she’s not writing Peggy is usually painting, crafting, scrapbooking or decoupaging old steamer trunks she finds at rummage stores and garage sales. A lifelong and avid romance reader and writer, Peggy is a member of RWA and her local New Hampshire RWA Chapter.
As a lifelong diarist, she caught the blogging bug early on, and you can visit her at peggyjaeger.com where she blogs daily about life, writing, and stuff that makes her go "What??!"
CONNECT WITH PEGGY JAEGER
Amazon Author page: http://www.amazon.com/-/e/B00T8E5LN0
BUY LINKS FOR TODAY, TOMORROW, ALWAYS
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