Interview with Jamie Schulz, Author of Casanova Cowboy
08 Jun 2023
What’s the story behind the story? What inspired you to write Casanova Cowboy?
Well, technically, there are two stories. The book itself and me writing it. It all started with book one of the series. After having taken a trip with my husband to Montana, I started thinking about writing a contemporary, small-town romance. I wanted it to be a series about the rugged men of Montana. I wanted the books to all be standalones that had intertwined characters and beautiful Montana landscapes. I was inspired by other authors who have done this well, like Tessa Layne and Maisey Yates.
Having spent time in small towns in many different places, including Montana, I had an idea of how I would build it and was excited about the project. “Broken Cowboy” was the first book and it introduced Zack MacEntier. He only had a brief part in that book, but he seemed bigger than life to me. He stayed with me for months and when bits and pieces of scenes started filling my head, I decided Zack’s story would be next. He’s a very loveable guy but doesn’t see it himself. It made me sad that he was so alone, so I wanted him to find someone great. A strong woman who could see through the rumors and his charming facade. Izabel Silva was that woman. I really like her–which is ironic, since I didn’t like her at first and thought I’d have to rewrite her. I hope the readers will see what I do now, and root for her and Zack as much as I did.
The other personal story behind this book is that I had planned to finish it in June of 2022. Unfortunately, despite all my attempts to avoid it, I caught Covid at the end of May and I still had a dozen or so chapters to finish. Needless to say, I didn’t finish on time. In fact, the effects of long-Covid had me dragging for months. I had a hard time just hauling myself out of bed to go to my day job. I felt so drained, I couldn’t concentrate or think much beyond wanting to lie down and go back to sleep. It was awful, but the characters wouldn’t let me be. In December of 2022, the brain fog and confusion, not to mention the lack of energy, seemed to finally clear up and I was able to slam out a whole bunch of chapters over my Christmas vacation. Man was that a relief! I decided to give myself time to launch this book right and scheduled it for a June release.
If you had to pick theme songs for the main characters of Casanova Cowboy, what would they be?
Well, for Zack, I want to say “Cowboy Casanova” by Carrie Underwood because that’s what he was before Izabel comes along. By the end of the story, I think Trisha Yearwood’s “How do I Live” is a good definition of how he feels.
After leaving a disastrous relationship, Izabel wants love, faithfulness, and respect, so I think Madonna’s “Express Yourself” defines her–as in “I ain’t staying around if you don’t treat me right.” But, just like the song, by the end, he realized what he has, and she got what she wanted.
What’s your favorite genre to read? Is it the same as your favorite genre to write?
Romance for both questions. I switch around to different types. Lately, it’s been historical romance and sci-fi romance, but I like westerns, contemporary, paranormal, and other types as well. I do briefly branch out to other types of books, but always come back to the romances. I like the emotional interactions found in them.
What books are on your TBR pile right now?
I really don’t know. There are so many. Usually, when I finish one book, I go through my hundreds (yes, hundreds) of books on my Kindle or on my huge bookshelves to decide what I feel like reading next. Sometimes it’s the next book in the series. Sometimes it’s a completely different sub-genre. Lately, I’ve been reading a lot of historical romance, but just the other day I started back into sci-fi romances with gladiators. Very opposite sub-genres; rakishly polite vs. muscle-bound warriors. Next week it might be dragon shifters or something else. It just depends on what strikes my fancy.
I do have some favorite authors that I’ve discovered recently though, here are just a few of them: Jill Barnett (primarily the Victorians series–loved it!–especially book 2, though book 1 was the reason I was so exited to read book 2), Sabrina Jefferies, Erica Ridley, Darcy Burke, K.J. Jackson, Adele Clee, Stacy Reid, Merry Farmer, Sadie Bosque, Sally Britton (especially the Inglewood books), Jessie Clever, Kristy McCaffrey, Jo Goodman, Peggy L. Henderson (particularly the Second Chances Time Travel Romance Series–Book 3 is my favorite), Anna Lowe, and so many others. I did say I’ve been reading a lot of historical romances lately, but there were some Westerns and shifters in there too.
What scene in your book was your favorite to write?
I liked the movie-night scene. Especially his sister’s teasing and his mom showing up at just the wrong time. But I also like the scene where Zack breaks down and bares his soul. I just wanted to hug him.
Do you have any quirky writing habits? (lucky mugs, cats on laps, etc.)
I like to have my cat sit with me. I used to have an older kitty that would sit in my lap and purr while I wrote and another who used to talk through my scenarios with me. 🙂 He was very chatty. Lately though, it’s just been me and my cup of tea.
Do you have a motto, quote, or philosophy you live by?
Treat others the way I would like to be treated.
If you could choose one thing for readers to remember after reading your book, what would it be?
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Jamie Schulz is the author of the new book Casanova Cowboy
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