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Guest Blogger: Emma Jay
Friday, July 12th, 2013

Like any writer, I love to read. I was a reader way before I was a writer, but I didn’t come to romance until I was out of college. And then I couldn’t get enough. I started with historicals, buying them at the grocery store and Target and Walmart. Then I discovered used book stores and started stockpiling books. I ALWAYS had bags of books to trade in, and by the time the store closed, I had credit like crazy.

Then I discovered Paperback Swap, a website where you can request books, in exchange for sending off books of your own. There were wrappers to print, and I probably spent a billionty dollars in stamps and the mailman hated me because I was always sending or receiving books (and my mailman has to walk!)

Next I discovered Amazon and its one-click evil. Now the UPS guy hated me, but I was able to preorder the books I wanted.

And then I got my first iPhone. I was so excited because even though I was an ebook author, I didn’t have a way to read ebooks! Now I could order Kindle books or Nook books. I discovered Fictionwise and its wonderful, wonderful discounts. I still have books from them that I haven’t read, lol!

But one of the joys I found with ebooks was novellas! My grandmother would always get  those collections, you know, the anthologies that come out at Christmas? That seemed to be the only time you could get novellas in print form. One author–I think it was Julie Garwood?–released 4 tiny print books, then a novel. They made a movie about the series. Brothers and an adopted sister. Anyone remember that?

ANYWAY, back to novellas. I LOVED reading novellas. Most of the time they just focus on the romance, which is, after all, while I read romance. I mean, I love a meaty historical, and a twisty romantic suspense (not too gritty, please), but sometimes I just want a quick happy ending.

I love writing novellas for the same reason—I focus on the romance and can get my characters to a happy ending all the faster.

I’m writing a series now about a group of hot shot firefighters, starting with the by-the-book crew chief who falls for a rookie on his crew in All on the Line, available at Amazon  and

All on the Line Final 1400x2102Jaci Nichols thinks nothing can make her feel as alive as fighting wildfires–man against nature, standing up to danger every day.

Until her crew chief, Cal Sinclair, kisses her after a close call on the fire line.


Now she’s craving more, but he wants to keep his distance.

Cal Sinclair doesn’t want to screw up his first year as crew chief, so he keeps his distance from the members of his hot shot crew. Hard to do when the sexy rookie gets under his skin. Something about her draws him, and makes him want to put it All on the Line.

Standing on the line 1600x2402The second book came out the weekend the Granite Mountain Hotshots died. Standing on the Line is also available, and Crossing the Line will be out this fall.

Do you like novellas, or do you prefer more meaty stories? What kind of novellas do you like to read?

13 comments to “Guest Blogger: Emma Jay”

  1. Anne
    · July 12th, 2013 at 10:14 am · Link

    I used to like only full length books, but I’ve learned to enjoy novellas, usually romance. I still don’t bother reading short stories unless they focus on secondary characters from series that I know and enjoy because then you already have more of a back story, but no stand alone shorts.

  2. Teresa Hughes
    · July 12th, 2013 at 10:20 am · Link

    I love novellas for short reads when time is limited. If its a meatier book I won’t want to put it down when duty calls in my real life.

    Thanks for sharing with us!

  3. Laurie P
    · July 12th, 2013 at 12:50 pm · Link

    I like novellas for a fast read, to check a new author out. I used to always buy anthologies for that reason. But I really like the full novels best.

  4. Karen C
    · July 12th, 2013 at 1:25 pm · Link

    I’ve developed a real appreciation for novellas. They fill the need when time is limited. I also enjoy them when I’ve finished a full length novel and not sure what I want to get into next. And all that I’ve read are darn good stories!

  5. ronnie cornett
    · July 12th, 2013 at 1:45 pm · Link

    I love novellas, especially if time is limited! 😉

  6. Judy Stone
    · July 12th, 2013 at 3:20 pm · Link

    I’m a word nerd and I read novels, novellas, and short stories in either print or Kindle format. The written word and literacy are my passions. I read most anything from classics (Euripides rocks!) to romance, but I especially enjoy HEAs.

    “Standing on the Line” sounds fascinating, and I’ll add it to my must have list.

  7. Emma Jay
    · July 12th, 2013 at 5:13 pm · Link

    Anne, what an interesting take. I hadn’t thought about how novellas build on novels. I haven’t taken that approach yet.

    Teresa, I’m more likely not to want to put a novella down, i think, because I figure it doesn’t take much time.

    Laurie, I like full novels best, most of the time. But I like Karen’s idea of reading a novella while trying to decide what to read next.

    Ronnie, I have definitely developed an appreciation for them. Have you read Courtney Milan? She writes great novellas.

    Judy, that is so cool! I read a lot of classics when I was younger, but now it’s mostly romance. I know, I need to expand my horizons.

  8. Susan W.
    · July 12th, 2013 at 6:40 pm · Link

    Take out the writer part and your post could be mine! My mail carrier actually asked my husband to have me stop ordering books from Amazon! LOL!

    Novella’s are great for lunch time reading or when you don’t have time to get sucked in to a longer novel. But I also love those longer novels that you just can’t put down no matter what. I’ve found several great authors just by reading a novella.

  9. Emma Jay
    · July 12th, 2013 at 8:10 pm · Link

    WOW! I can’t believe the mail carrier asked your husband that! What I did, which I wish I hadn’t, is order them faster than I could read. I still have a ton! (We won’t talk about what’s on my Nook.) Hey, that’s another good reason to order novellas–you can archive them faster and get them off your overcrowded device.

  10. sharon chalk
    · July 12th, 2013 at 8:16 pm · Link

    I like both novellas and full length books,because sometimes you are too busy to read a full book but you have a spare hour so a novella is perfect and if its a day Im free then I want a full length novel cause I can get really involved.I must be honest and say that I am getting sick of the books where they are 20 to 30 pages and then 2 or 3 months later is the next episode and this goes on for 3 to 6 books and the first one is usually free and you get involved but then the others are from 2.99 to 4.99 so you can end up spending like $20 for 200 pages and that I do not like at all and sadly it means that there are going to be some authors out there that are really good,but that Ill never know about because I already follow some serial authors and its getting to expensive so I can’t start with new authors that do the same thing and that depresses me because I know Im losing out some good books,I m hoping that the authors that do that will realize it and write novellas instead so that their books will be read.

  11. Emma Jay
    · July 12th, 2013 at 8:27 pm · Link

    Sharon, you mean like all one story, but broken into parts? Eek, that could get expensive! I haven’t read any like that, yet, but I know Amazon does some, where you pay one price, and when the new episode is released it goes straight to your reader. I’d like to try that sometime, but I am afraid I’d get too distracted by the other books on my reader and would forget to read the next episode.

  12. sharon chalk
    · July 12th, 2013 at 9:50 pm · Link

    in response to Emma Jay,Delilah is doing on of whats are called the serials and you pay one price and then every couple of weeks the next episode goes directly to your kindle.Delilah is nice enough to remind us the next episode is in and the authors also take suggestions from the reader about as the story progresses,things that they would like to see happen or something that would help add to the storyline.It should be interesting and I like the 1 price. Whats driving me crazy is where they have a 4 or 5 episode book but each episode cost.However its due to that system that I discovered Jasinda Wilder cause her first book was free,but its a 50/50 chance of the quality of the book after the free one that counts lol. So I find both good and bad,thank goodness a lot time they have the first story free and on kindle of course you always get to read a sample and that helps a lot,as you can tell,I read a lot so its great finding new authors,thats what I like about Delilahs page,she brings on authors Im unfamiliar with but I try them and they are almost always great!!

  13. flchen1
    · July 14th, 2013 at 11:13 pm · Link

    I have to say that I adore novellas, Emma, but I also like longer stories. Kind of depends on the mood 🙂 The shorter length is perfect for certain kinds of setups, or for a story that ties into a series the author’s got going… Looking forward to your new series!

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