With: M.J. Schiller
Meet the boys of Just Short of Chaos! They’re the stars of my LOVE AND CHAOS SERIES, the first book of which was just released, ROCKED BY GRACE! It’s Zane, the lead singer’s story and will be followed by ROCKED BY LOVE, the lead guitarist’s romance. I like playing with names in my stories. Zane’s love interest is Grace, thus ROCKED BY GRACE. Rafe, up next, falls for a girl named Mia Love. Now, before you say nobody has a last name of Love, let me tell you that I knew a Joe and Kathy Love in college. In book three, the drummer has a thing for Zane’s sister. Ooh. That could be trouble. I’m not planning on playing with any names on that one. It’s titled ROCK IT TO THE MOON. The last in the series is about Jericho Tyler, the bassist. He is seduced by Salvation Jones, a preacher’s daughter who is trying hard to be a bad girl, but failing miserably. Her sad attempts touch Jericho’s heart, even though he has the worst reputation in the band. After meeting Salvation, though, he wants to make some changes. The title? ROCK OF SALVATION.
I also played around with names in other books. ABANDON ALL HOPE is about Hope and rock star Chase Hatton. In TAKE A CHANCE ON ME a cop ends up protecting a card dealer at a casino. Before he knows her name he thinks of her as Five-Foot-Two. Here’s a brief excerpt, I edited out some parts.
He glanced at her name tag.
Harper from St. Louis, Missouri. Well, Harper from St. Louis, I’d love to find out more about you than just your name and state of origin.
Cash’s gaze drifted to the boss, then back to her.
“So, Harper from St. Louis, how long have you worked here?”
“A couple of months.” She smiled. “Does it show?”
“No, no. You’re doing a great job. A real pro.”
She won again.
He sucked in a breath through his teeth. “Maybe too good.”
Harper cleared her throat. “So you know my name. What’s yours?”
She looked at the cards.
“Cash,” she sputtered, stopping mid-shuffle. “If you were giving me a fake name, at least you could come up with something more original than that.” She shook her head. “Cash. The Card Player.”
He laughed. “No. I swear. My mama was a huge Johnny Cash fan. Sang me “Folsom Prison Blues” as a lullaby.”
“Nothing like shooting a man to watch him die to put a baby to sleep.”
He laughed. He liked her quick wit and the twinkle of fun that never seemed to leave her eye.
“Your mama had good taste though. That’s an awesome song.”
“It is. One of my favorites. Behind “Sweet Child of Mine.”
She looked him straight in the eye. “I love that song.” She had a habit of engaging with him, then glancing away. Perhaps to avoid “fraternizing.” “And you know, I shouldn’t tease about the name. My mom was a huge reader. Guess what my last name is.”
Harper…what was the name of that chick who wrote To Kill a Mockingbird?
“Nope. Good guess, though. Mine’s worse. Harper Collins.”
It took him a second. “Like the publisher?”
She laughed. “I told you.”
In my chick lit series all the women have names with nicknames that are traditionally male. Max (Maxine), Sam (Samantha), Dani (Danielle) and Alex (Alexis). There are more, too. Cooper the copper (police officer) in THE HEART TEACHES BEST. I don’t know. There’s just something about the freedom of choosing a character’s name that makes me want to have fun.
So, names…do you like yours? My first name is Mary, which is kind of plain, but I like it because I’m named after my grandmother, Mary Regina (Queen Mary). Only I’m Mary Jean, or M.J. Have you ever met anyone with an interesting name? I heard of a woman named Therese Stump. That’s awful! Play the name game with us. Comment on one of these questions below, or anything else you want to add, and we will choose at random two people to win e-copies of TAKE A CHANCE ON ME.
I’ll leave you with a blurb for my newest release. Pick it up and get to know the boys of Just Short of Chaos. Only 99¢ for a limited time!
When videos hit the Internet of rock star Zane Sanders and a random fan performing what he says is a spontaneous dance, no one believes it’s unrehearsed in this sizzling romance from bestselling author M.J. Schiller.
Zane Sanders, lead singer of Just Short of Chaos, surprised everyone, including himself, when he plucked a fan out of the audience at one of his concerts.
I don’t know what possessed me to do it. I’d never done anything like that before. But something about Grace drew me to her. And within minutes of pulling her on stage, I knew I’d made one of the best decisions of my life. Since our drummer Devin’s overdose, I’d felt dead inside. Perhaps for even longer than that. But Grace was fun, sexy—and as I would discover later—good and selfless. And an irresistible magic surrounded us that made me feel alive again.
That is, until I blew it. In classic Zane style. Funny thing is, when I first got Grace up on stage, I had no idea what to do with her. Now I have no idea what I’ll do without her.
Grace Prescott was living out every girl’s fantasy.
Only thing is, fantasies ended, and I realized pretty quickly that I didn’t want this one to stop. Zane had a magnetism about him that was more than mere charisma. That was evident the moment I—the girl who normally had to be dragged out onto the dance floor—practically became a pole dancer in his arms. Then it happened. The moment everyone kept referring to as “The Kiss.” But it was all part of the show, right? It didn’t matter that Zane made more than my feet move. He stirred up feelings that scared the crap out of me. The depth of his sadness called out to me even more than his unbelievable sex appeal, and that was saying something.
But it could never work between us. He may have come from a small town like me, but he was all rock star now and totally out of my league. I was a flower shop owner, not his saving Grace.
Are some actions beyond forgiveness or will he be rocked by Grace?
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