It's my pleasure to welcome contemporary romance author Jennifer Bernard to the Romance Dish today. Jennifer has had an interesting journey to her current romance author profession. A self-admitted geek with parents who didn't understand her love of romance fiction, Jennifer nonetheless inhaled books by Nora Roberts, Susan Elizabeth Phillips, Victoria Holt and more from an early age. After graduating from Harvard with a degree in History and Literature, Jennifer worked for Macmillan Publishing writing encyclopedia updates then moved to a fishing island in Maine where she wrote screenplays with her college roommate. She eventually ended up in Los Angeles where she wrote news copy, screenplays and short stories. It was during a difficult time in her life that she turned to romance novels for comfort and, for the first time, considered focusing her writing talents in that direction. She now writes contemporary romances about sexy firemen for Avon. You can find more information about Jennifer and her books at her website.
Please give Jennifer a warm welcome.
When your good friend calls you up and says, “Hey, I went to a fireman bachelor auction and bid on a firehouse dinner! Want to come with me?” … it’s hard to say ‘no.’ I’d always had a secret crush on those strong guys whizzing past in their shiny engines. In my mind, they were the perfect manly-men, daring, gutsy masters of the elements – fire, water, chemistry. Especially chemistry. Lord have mercy, they were sexy in their turnouts!
But how could real-life firefighters sitting around a dinner table measure up to what my fantasy had created? I worried about having my illusions destroyed, but decided it was worth the risk.
Little did I know that one dinner would end up changing my life completely; that my writing career would be born that night.
It was such a fun dinner, and it completely upended all my expectations about firefighters. They were down-to-earth, gracious, eager to show us around, delighted to tell us about the pranks they liked to pull on each other. Their dedication to their work and their pride in their firehouse shone through in everything they did. And the food was fantastic! Those guys could really cook.
Fast forward to three years later, when I’d finally decided to try my hand at writing my favorite genre, romance. That dinner came back to me, those fun, brave guys, and I knew my hero absolutely had to be a fireman. And since he worked at a firehouse filled with other handsome firemen, it cried out to become a series. And so the Bachelor Firemen of San Gabriel were born.
Of course I had to pay tribute to the original inspiration by including a bachelor auction. That’s how my first hero, Captain Brody, met the love of his life, Melissa. In my latest novella, DESPERATELY SEEKING FIREMAN, they’re back, along with another captain at the firehouse, Jeb Stone, who gets stranded on an island with beautiful press secretary Nita Moreno.
The moral of the story is, if you ever get invited to a firehouse dinner, don’t hesitate. Say yes. I can guarantee you won’t regret it.
Readers, have you ever attended a firehouse dinner?
Are you a fan of firefighter heroes?
What do you think it is about a man in uniform that draws in readers?
Have you read Jennifer's Bachelor Firemen books? Do you have a favorite?
One randomly chosen person leaving a comment will win a copy of the first book in Jennifer's Bachelor Firemen series, The Fireman Who Loved Me.