02 January 2017

Q & A with CJ Bower!

Hello CJ!  Thank you so much for visiting Written Butterfly with me today!  It’s such a pleasure to chat with you.  So tell me…

Q) Is this book part of a series?  If so, can you tell us about it?
            Icing the Competition is book two of my three-book series, Caked with Pleasure, after On Track with Icing. In this story Jacqui’s best friend Persephone Williams has a secret crush on Jacqui’s fiancé Nick Barrister’s best friend, Shawn Sheldon. They meet at the beginning of On Track, when Nick and Shawn go into Jacqui’s corporate suite at the Charlotte Motor Speedway to thank Jacqui for the bachelor party cake Nick orders from her.
            Shawn’s marriage doesn’t work out and he meets up with Persephone at an art gallery showing six weeks after his divorce is final, but he doesn’t get her name. Their paths cross again at Nick and Jacqui’s party, where they are finally properly introduced.

Q) Can you give a fun or interesting fact about your book?
            This book is dedicated to three amazingly talented cake artists, Richard Ruskell, Elisa Strauss and Collette Peters, who have all competed on the Food Network Challenge cake decorating competition. Richard has competed eighteen times, and has won six gold medals.
            I have also included homage to a long-time racing broadcaster who lost his battle to cancer in April 2015, Steve Byrnes. His commentary always made the races fun to watch, because one never knew what interesting tidbit he’d discover or crazy antic he’d catch on camera.

Q) What gave you the inspiration for your book?
This book came about because after I finished On Track with Icing Jacqui’s best friends decided they needed their own story. I actually started writing Camille’s story first, which starts out with Jacqui and Nick’s wedding.
I knew Nick wanted Shawn as his best man, but Jacqui would never have had asked Lisa to be maid of honor. That’s pretty much when I decided that she had to go (and how her character evolved from airhead, bimbo, trophy wife to scheming gold-digger).  It turns out that Persephone was a much better match for him. He had to work hard for her affections, which was something he hadn’t had to do since he was in high school.

Q) Do you have any habits that get you in the writing frame of mind?
            I just try to clear my thoughts and focus on the voice of the character I’m trying to work with at that time. I also try to make my environment as distraction-free as I possibly can, though I do need to have some kind of noise in the background, whether it’s music or television.

Q) Do you plan all your characters out before you start a story or do they develop as you write?
I’m a pantser. The characters seem to just leap to life on the page as my fingers fly across the keyboard.
However, I did have to do some planning as On Track with Icing evolved from a one-off into a three-book series. I created a mini bio for every character name that appears in the series. At last count there were 65 characters in the series, and about a third of them appear in all three books.
Peri’s story was pretty much inspiration and writing as the story carried me away.

Q) How much real life do you put into or influences your books?
Tons! My three main heroines, Jacqui, Peri and Cami, all took on several of my own characteristics, and Jacqui ended up with my medical history (though my story ends happier than hers). I spent 4 years working in my family’s bakery in Western Wisconsin, so they all have my work and creative experience.
I’ve also infused personality traits of my best friends into several of the other characters. And I’ve told anyone who spends any length of time in my company that anything they say or do may be used as book fodder, which has seriously worried one of my aunts. J She’s concerned that I’ll include family squabbles among my characters.

Q) What are your upcoming projects?
I’m currently working on book three of the series, Knotted Up with Passion, which is Camille’s story. I haven’t officially revealed who her love interest is yet, but there are small clues in the first two books. I have a positive feeling that the readers are going to love who she ends up with. Let’s just say that sparks have already flown, and the flame is threatening to burst into an inferno. I’m surprised their heat hasn’t made my laptop spontaneously combust! J
I also have another major project in the works, which is at minimum a 5-year project. It involves 50 stories, one for each state in the country. Two stories have already been completed, and I’m working on three more.
In addition to those projects, I’m also polishing up an erotic fantasy piece about a woman whose husband surprises her on their 10-year-anniversary by making one of her sexual fantasies come to life. It’s hotter than anything I’ve ever written before. 

My website:       www.cjbowerauthor.wordpress.com
Facebook Group Page:      https://www.facebook.com/CJBowerAuthor/

NASCAR driver Nicholas Barrister thinks he's going into Jacqui's Bakery to order a cake for his friend's bachelor party. He didn't count on falling for the woman behind the counter.

She's everything he wanted in a woman…except for one thing. 

Plus-sized bakery owner Jacqui Jacobson's confidence is at an all-time low after her public divorce and her ex-husband's despicable accusations. So the last person she expects to show interest in her is racing hot-shot Nick Barrister. But when the two click over her risqué cake designs, it seems like icing on the cake. 

However, Jacqui hasn't told him that not being able to have children was the main cause for her marriage ending. As her relationship with Nick turns from casual to serious he expresses his desire for children, and now time is running out. Can she tell him first before her ex-husband, who has reared his ugly head and is determined to destroy her new-found happiness, beats her to it? And will Nick still want her once he finds out? 

Content Warning: contains lots of steamy sexual content and exciting racing action 


While recovering from his divorce, NASCAR driver Shawn Sheldon focuses his energy on his racing career. However, a chance encounter with the innocent Persephone has him thinking about trying again. But can Peri handle Shawn’s high-profile life and the media circus that goes with it?

Can the innocent beauty heal the arrogant stock car driver’s heart?

Shawn Sheldon comes home early from Daytona and discovers his wife Lisa in their bed with two men. He immediately kicks her out and files for divorce, but the hits keep blindsiding him like a high-speed crash at Talladega. Shattered by Lisa’s betrayal, Shawn takes a self-imposed sabbatical to let his heart heal. However, a chance encounter with the beautiful Persephone encourages him to try again.

Persephone Williams has harbored a secret crush on Shawn since their introduction a year ago. While she’s dated in the past, she’s never had a steady boyfriend, and none of them inspired her to punch her V-card. After one hot, steamy kiss with Shawn, she finds herself giving in to the desires of her heart. He is arrogant—cocky, even—but he proves that he has a soft side too.

When Shawn’s ex-wife resurfaces and tries digging her red-lacquered talons into him again, he shows Peri that she’s the one he wants. But can Peri handle his high-profile career and the media circus that goes with it?

Content Warning: contains steamy sex and hot racing action
Genre(s): Contemporary Romance


Despite the fact that her parents remind her of a 50's-sitcom, Camille Coulson didn't have an easy life. She spends the first three years of her adult life as a sub for a man she thought she knew.

When the relationship takes a turn for the worse, she gets out and moves back in with her parents and younger brother. To get back on her feet, she obtains her degree in marketing and takes over the bookkeeping and promotions management position for her best friend.

However, the one thing Cami didn't count on when she started working at Jacqui's Bakery is the undeniably strong attraction for the one man who is completely off-limits to her...



           Francesca “Frankie” Cuttino relocated to the baseball-obsessed town of Kingston, Rhode Island to start a new life. She’s been taking refuge in her teaching job and indulging in binge watching TV. Welcoming the break from her three-time ex-fiancé, she takes comfort in the much needed alone time. But her sexy new neighbor has her rethinking the single life.
            Professional baseball player Jed Silver is on the hitting streak of his career. He’s the newest member of the Kingston Crushers and the town’s latest obsession. He’s enjoying his rookie status and all the attention it earns him with the women. That all changes when he stumbles onto his gorgeous next-door neighbor, who doesn’t have a clue who he is.
            As baseball fever overtakes the town these two heat up the sheets, making for one explosive summer, until Frankie’s past catches up with her.


            Sabrina Aleninis a self-assured young woman who has a clear plan for her future. As a YouTube blogger who is gaining momentum, she needs the right type of man to help her reach her goal of creating her own empire. A wealthy older man who likes hot blondes. Mixed Martial Arts fighter Silvio Almeida does not fit the bill, no matter how infuriatingly irresistible she finds him.
            In Training for his upcoming MMA fight, women aren’t on Silvio’s radar. Seeing firsthand how easily life can change in a single moment, he’s decided to live life not looking too far into the future. But his path keeps crossing with Sabrina’s, and he can’t get the beautiful blonde off his mind.
            When love throws them from their determined paths they will have to discover if the best future is the one unplanned.


            When Maggie’s ten-year-old son joins a soccer team she hopes it will be an opportunity to meet new people and move forward from the disastrous past months. After all, a broken marriage and returning home to live with her parents wasn’t quite how she envisioned her thirties.
            Agreeing to play soccer herself as a part of the parents’ team, Maggie’s lack of skill requires a little extra coaching. Leo is happy to assist, and Maggie becomes captivated by the former professional player, who ignites feelings she thought had disappeared forever.
            But as Maggie’s ex-husband pressures her to rekindle their relationship, Maggie’s guilt reaches overdrive. How can she possibly consider a future with Leo when there’s a chance of putting her family back together?


            Kelly Atkins has dedicated her life to caring for the horses at her off-track Thoroughbred rescue. When she’s forced to sell part of her land to cover mounting expenses, she’s shocked by who steps in to buy it – her high school sweetheart, Dustin. She didn’t even know the man had moved back to town. Seeing him brings back memories of the most painful time of her life. Not only had she lost the man she thought she’d spend forever with, she also lost her twin brother. And for years she held Dustin responsible for his death.
            Dustin, a former rodeo bronc rider, has plans to start a retired rodeo horse rescue. As he and Kelly start to rekindle the love they once shared, he fears what will happen when she learns his secret. A secret that could drive her away forever.


            Football superstar Wade McKinney is crushed when he’s cut from the team. How did this happen? In order to make a comeback, he needs to focus on becoming the best player he can possibly be. Leaving town for a fresh start, he takes a job as a sports reporter for a local news station. With no room for anything else in his life, Wade denies his attraction to co-anchor Rebecca Ryan.
            Since tragedy struck mere ten months ago, Rebecca has become the rock holding her family together, leaving her no time for a personal life. But there’s something about Wade McKinney that has her wondering what his story is.
            Wade only sees a future in football and Rebecca hasn’t the time for a relationship. But when fate steps in, Wade and Rebecca find something they weren’t looking for in each other.


            Racing is all Catalina Bryant ever wanted to do. She’s spent the past fifteen years climbing the ranks and paying her dues, which included fighting off slurs and innuendoes regarding her gender. Overcoming many setbacks, she has finally made it to the highest level in NASCAR and is on the eve of starting her rookie season.
            Her new crew chief, Chad Kiesgen, is incredible. He has a strong work ethic and amazing integrity. Just the guy to help her achieve her goal. However, she hits a speed bump when the sizzling chemistry between them carries over to their personal lives, which could damage both of their careers.

            There’s another man lurking in the background who wants Cat for himself and will stop at nothing to claim her. Will Cat find love in Victory Lane, or will her career crash and burn before she leaves the starting line?

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