Hi, Lisa, so glad to have you here today.Tell us a little about your new release. I love the cover.
Picture Me Naked is about an artist and her nude model who just can’t seem to keep his pants on. It’s a sexy, humorous jaunt into the vibrant world of art.
Z. Z. LAMBERT wasn’t born uptight, but someone needed to be the adult. Zee’s a “color-inside-the-lines” artist with a hippy mother, a mostly dead grandmother, and a cat named Isabella Rossellini. Add to her life’s palette a stunning new life model, Jagger Jones. Is it just her, or does all the air leave the room when he shows up? Good thing he’s just passing through. This is no time to fall in love, especially not with her model, no matter how perfectly knee-melty he may be.
Australian JAGGER JONES is a rolling stone. Living with nothing to tie you down takes talent. Posing without your britches is a piece of cake. He’s three years into his walkabout with only his dead father’s ashes for company.
But Z.Z. Lambert stops him faster than a croc in the mud. Her paintings of him are incredible. She sees past all of his posturing, past the flesh and bone and uncovers his heart. Zee understands the promise he made his father, and comes to love him enough to let him go. But does she love him enough to let him stay? His only other choice is a future without her. And he can’t picture that at all.
What inspired this story?
Believe it or not, this story (in fact, this entire series) was inspired by a smell. It was a few years ago when my son was visiting art colleges, and every time we walked into one, I was struck with the realization that they all smelled alike. I’m an artist myself, so I recognized the ‘studio’ smell immediately. I say it’s a combination of oil paints, clay, Gesso, wet canvas, etc. It’s very distinct and whenever I smelled it, I got a strong mental image of the classroom in my book.
Couple that with the fact that I was part of a life-drawing group, and knew some wonderful models. Jagger was born!
What are you working on now? Do you have any releases scheduled for this year?
I’m working on the next book in the Stoddard Art School series. All I can tell you is it’s about a sculptor with these ruggedly sexy hands and chiseled muscles from lifting heavy marble…*sigh*
Do you have any good news you’d like to share?
Well, I’m still in celebration mode. Picture Me Naked’s world-wide release was last week and it truly was the realization of a dream for me.
What are your writing goals for this year?
I hope to finish the next two books in this series, and I’d love to find a home for a historical trilogy I’ve been working on.
How do you come up with ideas?
Could be anything. A line of a favorite song, a dream, a character’s voice in my head. A great character name.
Can you share with us “the call” story?
I so wish they did still ‘call’…of course, given the ‘only-dogs-can-hear-me’ screaming I did, that could have been embarrassing! It started about a year before I was actually signed. I entered the first chapter and synopsis of this book in two contests. Same pages, same day. One contest which I won’t mention here, absolutely hated this book. I think I got a score of 32 from one judge who told me I should throw it away and start over. The other contest loved it. I won my category, and the final judge was Rhonda Penders of The Wild Rose Press. She requested a full and sent it on to her editors. They came back rather quickly and said that they liked the book, could I make it hotter? SURE, I can do that! It took me a little while not only to spice up the sex scenes in the book but also heat up the sexual tension between my characters. I sent it back in April, they said yes in June, Amazon ran with the book in September!
What do you enjoy most about writing?
Every book I’ve written, somewhere along the way, one of my characters surprises me. They totally take over and make a twist or turn that I hadn’t expected, and it thrills me to pieces.
Where do you start when writing? Research, plotting, character, or…?
I’m a true pantser. I start with brief character sketches, a very loose plot line and my opening meet. I let things run from there. I pick up my research along the way, at times. Thank goodness for Google! Most of the time, I write the dialog first in the scene and then build around it.
What is the best thing about being an author?
Knowing that I never gave up. I’ve worked hard to get here.
What did you learn from writing your first book or what do you wish you’d known before becoming published?
I learned that I had a lot to learn! But I also learned that I loved doing it. All of it. Even the parts that I complain through. All the hard work makes the writing better, and isn’t that the goal?
Do you have a favorite time of day for writing?
It’s all about the mornings for me, Babette. I’m up usually between 4:30 and 5:00. I even moved a coffee maker upstairs into my bedroom so I wouldn’t have to wander too far away from my writing space to get that first cup. I try to clear my way through emails, etc and put in a solid 2-3 hours of writing before ‘beginning’ my day. The best days are where I stop only long enough to feed the cats, kiss my husband, grab a bagel and head right back to ‘the cave.’
Do you have a favorite hero and/or heroine in your books and why?
Seems I’m madly in love with the hero of my current WIP….until the next hero of my next WIP! Who knew I was so fickle!
What is your favorite scene from this story and why?
So many to choose from…I think some of my favorite scenes are those where Zee steps out of her comfort zone and does something courageous. If you’ve haven’t read the book, there is a wonderful scene I call the ‘panty parade,’ where Zee is expressing her new-found sexuality in some skimpy new panties. If you can call a ruffle of lace and a whisper an actual article of clothing? It takes so much courage for her to simply walk past Jagger. Not only is she battling her issues with body image, but she’s putting her heart on the line as well. It was a very gutsy move on her part. I was proud of her!
How do you balance writing and everyday life?
Some days not as well as I hope to. Being newly published, I am shocked at the time necessary to keep up with promotions and networking. I’m still feeling my way through some of it, and I’m hoping to find a better routine that will allow me more writing time.
Where is your favorite place in the world?
I fell in love with Paris not too long ago, but that’s sounds so cliché. Before Paris, I would have said my favorite place in the world was a lighthouse on the coast of Maine. Portland Head Light. It is stunningly beautiful, and I have a deep, unexplainable emotional pull each time I go there.
What do you like to read?
I’m not a fan of horror, per se, because I’m an extremely visual person. I read pretty much everything else. I love when I find a new author or visit an old favorite and forget that I am a writer. I think we tend to read critically and clinically while we’re forever learning our craft. To stumble upon a book that is so well written and engaging, that it makes me slip back into the pleasure of just reading to read…brilliant!
Do you listen to music while you write? What are you listening to now?
I really work best in quiet.
Who first introduced you to the love of reading?
Reading was always a way to escape for me. A guilty little pleasure I would sneak away to do. I remember getting in trouble because I would lose track of time or forget to do a chore because I’d sit down in the middle of a pile of books and disappear.
Who influenced your decision to become a writer?
A wonderful woman/friend named Claire Robson. She knew I was a writer before I did.
These are few of my favorite things:
1. My men. They are my reason and my purpose
2. Laughter of my friends
3. Wearing my aunt’s ring
And now Lisa has a question for all of you: I really love Zee’s courage in this book. Sometimes it was baring her body as well as her soul. Sometimes it was confronting her abusive ex. What was the most courageous thing you’ve ever done?
“Artists, let me introduce Mr. Jagger Jones. He’ll be with us for the next several weeks. Make him feel welcome, shall we? Let’s not frighten him off on his first day.” Did Madeline just giggle? “Jagger, there is a men’s room down the hall, third door on the right. You can change down there.” She tipped her hand and checked her oversized watch. “We appear to be running a bit behind schedule this morning, so if you’d like to get us started, I think we’re ready for you.”
“Won’t be needin’ the men’s room, Maddie, darlin’. Can be naked in a blink of your lovely baby blues.” Jagger smiled at Madeline, dropped a beaten canvas book bag near the model stage and kicked off his sandals.
Zee glanced at Leah. She was practically drooling. “Yummy. Don’t you just love his accent?” Leah whispered. “And what a cool name.”
“Charming,” Zee muttered, trying to shut out the Australian lilt. She resharpened and organized her already sharpened, organized pencils. Next to her, she heard Leah gasp and exclaim under her breath, “Mercy.”
Zee looked back at the model’s dais. Oh… my… Mr. Jagger Jones may or may not be arrogant, but he was a beautiful example of the male form. His tall frame made his physique long and lean, yet his muscles were chiseled and well defined. She only had a view of his backside but it was one of the finest backsides Zee had ever seen.
And then Jagger Jones turned around.
You can find Picture Me Naked at:
Bio: Lisa is an artist/writer living in her dream house nestled among the lakes in New England. She loves getting lost in a steamy book, finding the perfect pair of sexy shoes, and hearing the laughter of her men. Being an estrogen island in a sea of testosterone makes her queen. She believes in ghosts, silver linings, the power of a man in a tuxedo, and happy endings.
You can find Lisa at: