Interview with Eloisa James by Gerri Brousseau


Firstly, let me say it was a pleasure to meet you at Connecticut Romance Writers of America’s Fiction Fest on May 14, 2011.  Thank you for agreeing to answer a few questions I have put together, which I hope will help new writers like me, as well as those who are already established.

Coming from a family of poets and writers, can you tell us what inspires you?

Inspiration comes (in my case) from two places:  first, from my own life, because the strong emotions in novels need to spring from the author’s own emotions, and second, from other people’s novels. I read all the time, and I think it’s the most valuable use of an author’s time.

Being a wife, mother, college professor and New York Times best-selling author, can you tell us how you balance it all?

I am a great list-maker.  I get a lot of sleep.  I don’t fuss about whether things are perfect all that much. My laundry never gets done…

Do you ever get writer’s block? And if so, how do you handle it?

No.  I just don’t have time for that.  If you accept that you will write really bad
fiction at times, then you just keep going.  You can edit words on a page; you can’t edit a blank page.  I once had to throw out 175 pages and start over.  It’s painful—but at least I understood the right direction when I discarded those pages, whereas if I let myself have writer’s block, I wouldn’t even know what not to do.

Of all the characters you have created, who is your favorite?

It’s generally whichever character I wrote most recently. I am extremely fond of Linnet and Piers, from When Beauty Tamed the Beast.

With the innovations of today, such as I-Pad, Kindle and The Nook, in which direction do you see the publishing industry moving?

Toward electronic books, with no question.  But I think regular books will survive, at least for my lifetime.

With the trends in publishing changing, what advice could you give new authors?

I still think an agent is a very good thing.  Self-publishing is great—but what on earth will direct a reader to find your book, when there are 5,000 historical romances out there, selling for .99?  I think it’s going to be very difficult to
clear the noise enough to find readers.

What is your favorite novel?

I don’t have just one.  Favorite novels are littered throughout my life: my favorite novel at 15 (To Kill a Mockingbird) is still beloved. Right now, it’s probably the collection of short stories I’m reading by David Foster Wallace.  Loretta Chase’s Lord of Scoundrels was one year’s favorite, as was Susan Elizabeth Phillip’s It Had To Be You.

Thank you so much, Eloisa, for taking the time to meet with me and for sharing your insights.  If the readers would like more information about Ms. James and her best selling novels, please visit her website at

Now for some more fun …. A contest!   Eloisa has agreed to provide a personally autographed copy of her latest novel, When Beauty Tamed The Beast to our contest winner.  How do you win?  In order to win you must comment in the
“comment” box below and tell us why you want to win this book.  Contest ends on Sunday, June 12, 2011 at Midnight EST.  Void where prohibited by law.  Good luck!

–Gerri Brousseau

About Susan Hanniford Crowley

Paranormal Romance, Fantasy, and Science Fiction Author
This entry was posted in Author Interviews, Characters, contest, Eloisa James, Gerri Brousseau, historical romance, inspiration, New Release, romance, RWA, Writer's Life, Writers Conferences and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

48 Responses to Interview with Eloisa James by Gerri Brousseau

  1. Yadira A. says:

    Hi Everyone!
    The cover on When Beauty Tamed The Beast is beautiful! Went to Ms. James’ website to take a closer look and read the blurb and now I just have to have it:) I love the twists to what is considered a classic tale… she really made it her own and I’m sure it will be an unforgettable read. Besides it’s just really pretty to look at:) Hard not to take note of those awesome cover quotes by other talented authors as well. Those are my reasons for wanting to win this book. Thanks for the chance!

  2. Lori laspada says:

    I loved this book. Ms. James didn’t disappoint me with her story on my favorite fairy tale. I down loaded the book on my sony e reader. My reader has recently broke and is too old to replace. Needless to say my copy of WBTTB is blocked from me.

  3. Michelle M. says:

    I love her books. The Desperate Duchesses series is great and I’m looking forward to reading her fairy tale series.

  4. Holly wright says:

    I must win because I’ve read everything by eloisa and this book is my favorite fairytale. What beauty doesn’t want to tame a beast?

    Hollybwright at comcast dot net

  5. Jennifer F says:

    Eloisa James Rocks! She’s a beautiful writer and a beautiful person. I had the pleasure of meeting her at Fiction Fest and still am just in awe.

  6. Amy Conley says:

    I want to win this book because EVERYTHING Eloisa’s writes is fantastic and I haven’t read this one yet!!

  7. Electronic books just don’t have the same appeal as a proper book. The cover art is beautiful, and would be a great addition to my collection. I would love to win a copy!

  8. Mrs. P says:

    I would LOVE to have an autographed copy! Then I can lend my other copy to my friend because right now…I can’t part with it. This was my favorite historical romance so far!

  9. Betsysalt says:

    Ooh would love the chance to read this book. Interview great & fun to follow EJ on twitter (especially to hear about Lucy’s adventures).

  10. Deborah R says:

    I love her books! would love to have just one autographed! I love to read her posts on Facebook, especially about her daughter!

  11. Pamiam says:

    I loved this book and can’t wait for the next one. I read at work during my breaks and lunch and the girls in the office kept looking at me as I laughed. I think the fairytale books are probably one of my favorite reads.

  12. Sarah Probst-Smith says:

    I would love to have a copy of that book in general that it would be autographed would just be EPIC! I haven’t read this one yet and I have been looking forward to it! Eloisa James is a romance queen. (I still love you too Ms. Quinn) lol

  13. Tiffany says:

    Excited and can’t wait for the next book! Loving the ‘Fairy Tale’ series, espeically When Beauty Tamed the Beast!

  14. Polly says:

    Not only authors make valuable use of time when they read. We all do. And I love what Eloisa writes. The only thing better, I think, would be to take one of her classes. I’d love an autographed copy to add to my library!

  15. Susan H says:

    I have this book on my list of books that I need to read. I does have a beautiful cover too. 🙂 I have read the synopsis of it and can’t wait to read it! Thanks for the chance to win!

  16. Kershia says:

    I would like to win this book because it sounds interesting and intriguing! And I love the kind of pun in the title!

  17. I met Eloisa James at the Connecticut Fiction Fest, and was inspired by her words of wisdom about writing and the business of writing. When Beauty Tamed the Beast was brought up many times during the conference, and I am so excited to read it! Unfortunately, it was not available at the book signing, and so I am still chomping at the bit to get it. Eloisa is my favorite historical romance writer, and I think part of that is because she is approachable, she doesn’t give you “nonsense” answers to your questions, she tells you how it is, and I think that is why I love her fiction so much as well. She doesn’t seem afraid to really tell these characters’ stories, and she doesn’t hold back. I can’t wait to read this book, and thank you to both Gerri and Eloisa for providing the opportunity to win it!


  18. Candy Gorcsi says:

    Who doesn’t like fairy tales? I happen to love romances based on them! The book really does sound wonderful, and the cover is absolutely beautiful! Who wouldn’t want to win a sign book by Eloisa?


  19. Leslie says:

    Miss Eloisa I love your writing style and storylines. Your characters come to life in my mind. At times I can wish to be the heroine, imagining what it would be like to live in that time and always hoping to have that much romance in my own life. A book is truly the greatest gift. It is a chance to escape into a different time and place. I would love to have an autographed copy of When Beauty Tamed the Beast.

  20. There aren’t too many books that I like to read over and over, but I absolutely will for: When Beauty Tamed The Beast! After reading the excerpt online, I was fell hard for the love story and the characters. The next day I had the book, and in less than 3 days I knew the characters as well as I know how to breath! I would love to have a signed copy!!!

  21. Cathy Phillips says:

    I would love to win the autographed copy of When Beauty Tamed The Beast because I love Eloisa James. The cover is beautiful and the premise is wonderful. I can hardly wait to reead this book. Thanks for this great giveaway!

  22. I’m always looking for new books to read and haven’t got to this one yet. Would absolutely LOVE and autographed book – we never get a chance to have book signings anywhere close to where I live so this would be a great opportunity! Love Elosia’s books!

  23. paulashene says:

    I am an avid reader {already have read Linnet and Piers story}, writer, and on line bookseller so if I can get an autographed copy of one of my favorite writers – that book stays on my own shelves – I had to make a decision on what to keep because my selling stock is overwhelming and now only books I have bought directly from authors that are autographed or ones I have won have a place of honor.

    I really, more than even that, find it wonderful to actually connect with the creators of the stories I love to read!

    Thank you for that insight: “You can edit words on a page; you cannot edit a blank page.” –

  24. Kathleen says:

    I love Eloisa James books and also am a huge fan of the TV show House and Hugh Laurie himself so I need this book to combine all that fandom into one outlet!!

  25. I have been dying to get my hands on this book. Beauty and the Beast is one of my favorite fairy tales. I cannot wait to read how Eloisa has taking the story and turned it into a real life story. I am also looking forward to her Cinderella and Princess and the Pea books.

  26. alisha woods says:

    I think everything Eloisa writes is great I have all of her books in paper back and 5 in hardback. I would recommend her books to anyone.

  27. Crystal Whelan says:

    Unexpected storylines are so hard to find in romance, that’s why Eloisa is such a gem!

  28. Melinda Sexton says:

    I’d love to have this book as an escape after my one-year-old and 2-year-old go to bed at night!

  29. Vickie Bates says:

    I have heard good things about this book, but haven’t bought it yet. Would love to have an autographed copy!

  30. dorthyn says:

    I want to win this book because…well because I LOVE Beauty and the Beast stories, and I LOVE House. And to get both of them in one book…could there be anything better? Even if I am not lucky enough to win it here, it is now on my list to buy in the future. Because like I said, what could be better than Beauty and the Beast and House combined into one.

  31. cheryl says:

    I love books where one of the main characters has an an issue or problem to overcome, whether it be physical, emotional, family, health, etc. Love to see their self-esteem be boosted by attention from what is deemed “the right people”. Love to see their issue not run their life any longer. Love to see them be able to be the average Joe/Jane.
    Thanks for the opportunity to possibly win.

  32. Lisa says:

    Loved her Desperate Duchesses series and look forward to reading When Beauty Tamed the Beast.

  33. Leanna Hiner says:

    I would love to win this book because this is one of my favorite genre’s and I would love the chance to try an author that I have not read before.

  34. Carrie Evans says:

    I absolutely love Eloisa James!! This is the only book of hers that I don’t have yet!!!! I can’t wait to read it!!!!!! Thanks for your amazing work!!!! Your FB posts also amuse me nearly every day!!!!

  35. I love story book romances, I had to download When Beauty Tamed the Beast because of all the snow this winter but I love real books, I would love to add this to my library along with A Kiss At Midnight…………I just have to say I also loved Storming The Castle……..

  36. Sam Escobedo says:

    I absolutely adore Eloisa’s Essex Sister’s series. I had the great pleasure of meeting her last summer at Disney World in Florida and she is a true inspiration. I myself hope to become a published romance novelist one day and she is definitely one of my idols. I’m also a big fan of tortured heroes such as the Beast in “Beauty and the Beast” (which is my favorite Disney movie by the way 🙂 and the Phantom in “Phantom of the Opera” (although he doesn’t get the girl ): ). I hope I win! 😀

  37. Quilt Lady says:

    I must have this book because I love Eloisa’s book and also love this cover. This is my kind of story. You just can’t beat the Beauty and the Beast stories. Please pick me!!!!

  38. Samra Nadeem says:

    I would love to have this book because frankly I ADORE all of Eloisa’s books and am constantly on her website waiting for tidbits on her newest. A romantic at heart, I worship at the altar of happily-ever-afters and Beauty and the Beast is my all time favorite. Eloisa’s take on the story is such a wondrous melding of fairy-tale and reality. Not to mention my craziness about her writing and characters even astounds me – I spent one evening just crafting birthday wishes to a friend from all of Eloisa’s heroes (my friend is also infatuated by Eloisa’s books) trying my best to emulate her wit and flair. It was a zany idea but I can hardly remember ever having had such fun writing birthday greetings. Please I implore you, let me win the book so I can flaunt it under the envious noses of my like-minded friends in the manner of the belle of the ball flaunting her catch of the Season’s most eligible bachelor 😉

  39. Eloise, as a fellow romance author (currently publishing my first book), you are one of my greatest inspirations. I loved every book I’ve read by you. Dark, mysterious heroes are always sexy. You are a wonderful role model for readers and writers alike. Thank you for doing what you love and providing us with captivating characters and story lines. After all, I couldn’t imagine my life without books.

    Diva J.

  40. anne begg says:

    I’m dying to read “when beauty tamed the beast,” but I havn’t seen it in a shop yet, as they don’t seem to publish them much in Australia. I love browsing in my favourite bookshops for new books by my favourite authors, and my favourite local bookshop borders, has just closed down! i’m very sad, and it feels like a big black hole in my local shopping centre, but i feel a little spark of excitement knowing I will eventually get to read ‘When beauty tamed the beast”, even if i have to resort to buying it online! I’m a bit old fashioned and think online shopping is just not the same. I know the book will be just as good whenever I do get to read it as i love all Eloisa’s books so dearly, and the few I have found in shops here have been read many times. Go Eloisa! I know you will never get writers block because you are awesome!!
    Anne B

  41. librarypat says:

    Beauty and the Beast is my favorite story line. The tortured hero or heroine, be it physical, mental, or a soul deep pain, hiding behind a facade of either gruff abruptness or glacial withdrawal is totally misunderstood. The one person with the understanding and insight to see past that facade and recognize the lonely hurting person inside needing love arrives to change both their lives. What more could you want in a story? This variation on the story sounds like a good one. With an author as adept as Ms James it is sure to be a worthwhile read. I am looking forward t it.
    Thanks for hosting the contest and thank you, Eloisa, for donating the book.

  42. penny says:

    I keep reading such good things about this book that I would love to read it!

  43. christina Peterson says:

    I have 9 books, by hers truely EJ, on top of the desperate duchesses saga books. I find the books absolutely exilerating. for a while i was able to buy up your books, but due to unforseen circumstances passion in books have slightly failed me. I know if I was to recieve this book and it to be autographed that I would be able to get back, not only in books, but in all my other crafts. Also given the fact that i have a classic book and 2 different versions of the story that twist on it would just be great. your books, amongst some other ones too, keep me reading and my children see that and want to read too. I would really love to have something special and to be able to treasure it.

  44. gloria freeman says:

    Would love to read this book,have read so many good thing about it.Love Ms James writing style know I would love this book too.

  45. May says:

    I love eloisa James! I still read it is in his kiss whenever I am a bit down! I sure would love to read another entertaining book…. And I really like house the tv show and the hero in the book reminds me of him!!!

  46. Melody says:

    I ADORE Eloisa James. She’s the reason I started reading regency romance novels during my summer breaks from school. I’ve enjoyed and thoroughly devoured all her series and I’m DYING to get my hands on When Beauty Tamed the Beast. I finished A Kiss at Midnight and loved it so much. She’s an amazing writer who has the superb talent of creating fun witty engaging, thoroughly enjoyable characters. I will never get tired of her work. I just wish I could afford to buy all her books but I’m a post-grad art student so the library is my haven. If I have to beg to win this book I WILL! I would so love it if I could for once win a Eloisa James book and drool over the amazing cover art and dive right in.

  47. Gerri says:

    Thank you to everyone who commented and entered the contest to win the autographed book, “When Beauty Tamed The Beast.” I wish everyone of you could win, but alas there can only be one, and the autographed book goes to Melanie Meadors.

  48. librarypat says:

    Congratulations, Melanie. Lucky lady.

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