Deconstructing LilaDL_500

Shannon Leigh

She’ll bring him to his knees…

Preservationist Lila Gentry returns to her small Texas hometown to restore the famous Chisholm Trail whorehouse where her great-great-grandmother was a madam in the 1880s. On her agenda is winning back Jake, the one that got away. But how do you rope a man who doesn’t want to be wrangled?

Jake lives by one creed: Keep it simple. His ex showing up in town complicates his life and makes him think about things he’d rather forget.

When Lila’s restoration project is threatened before it even begins, she turns to Jake for help. Working together stirs up old feelings, but while Lila and Jake always sizzle between the sheets—or wherever the moment takes them—it will involve some sweet-talking and finesse to bring these two together.



Excerpt Two

“Jake. Sweetie.” Her blue eyes shone with sharp-edged emotion. “I know you’re not stupid. You may want uncompli- cated, but when has life ever served up that particular dish? I for one have never had it easy. It’s always messy, in-your-face complex. I gotta deal with it. So I suggest you learn to handle it, too. Because I’m not going anywhere.”

Jake held his breath until her hand dropped away. He let it out in a long push as she stepped to the driver’s-side door and climbed inside.

It dawned on him she planned to boil his blood and then leave him stranded in the post office parking lot. Despite better judgment—not that he had ever possessed such a thing—he shrugged and figured what the hell?”

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I know everyone asks this but why did you decide to write romance?

 Because love, happiness, connection and the vulnerability that goes along with all of that are the BEST and sweetest things in the world.

What was the hardest thing you had to do when you started?

 Put words on the page. Get started. Write. And write some more. Write better. Write faster.

What was the easiest thing?

Falling in love with the characters and the setting. I’m Texas thru and thru and I LOVE writing about the people and places here.

How long did it take you to finish your first manuscript and where did the idea come from?

I wrote the manuscript quickly, in just a few months with my friend Candace Havens writing her own book alongside me. We started a thing called Fast Draft where we write as fast as we can until we finish the manuscript. It’s loads of fun. Hard work, but immensely fun!

The editing—now that took a while. The book went through several revisions and was much larger than it is today. I had three story lines working at once. J

Tell me about your first contract?

The contract from Entangled Publishing was a blessing. I totally dig Liz Pelletier and the folks there. Liz’s philosophy mirrors my own and I feel really good about where the company is headed and its strong growth. I hope to be writing for them for a while.

Do you base any of your stories on real people or places or events?

Hells yeah. The places are all real (names sometimes change). The history is all legit—I’m an historian and researcher by trade, and the characters are all based on people I know. I believe in writing what I know.

What gets you in the mood to write?

Daydreaming. Happiness. Love.

Where do you see yourself 5 years from now? 10 years?

Traveling. Writing. Reading. Enjoying the hell out of life. Pretty much what I do now. Just with more books under my belt.

What do you enjoy most about being an author?

Writing about love and emotion. People and places. Things dear to my heart. Sharing the power of vulnerability with readers and how it can lead to connection and joy.

Okay, quick fun questions:

Favorite ice cream: Ben & Jerry’s New York Super Fudge Chunk

Favorite music: 70s rock like Boston, Foreigner, Journey, Lynard Skynard

Favorite movie: of all time? Star Wars

Favorite time to write: early in the morning before the city wakes

If you could be stranded with a movie or television star who would you pick? Um, the boys from Supernatural: Jensen Ackles and Jared Padelecki

If someone played you in a movie who would it be and why? Sandra Bullock because she’s hot. Silly. Smart. Lovable. Compassionate.


Author Bio:

Growing up in Hell’s Back Forty, Shannon Leigh developed a fierce loyalty to all things Texas and pledged to share the romance of small town dance halls and the flavor of brisket BBQ with readers. Currently, she lives in Fort Worth with an extensive cowboy boot collection, a red and white, ’67 Chevy pickup and a mission to find the best taco stands in the city.

She’s been writing since Jesus was a small boy, but recently found a home with the uber wonderful folks at Entangled Publishing.

When she’s not writing fiction, she writes features for local magazines, sells real estate, and runs around with a particular 11 year old known as “The Boy.”

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