Stacy Juba got engaged at Epcot Theme Park and spent part of her honeymoon at Disneyland Paris, where she ate a burger, went on fast rides, and threw up on the train ride to the hotel. In addition to working on her new Storybook Valley chick lit/sweet romance series, Stacy has written books about ice hockey, teen psychics, U.S. flag etiquette for kids, and determined women sleuths. She has had a novel ranked as #5 in the Nook Store and #30 on the Amazon Kindle Paid List. Stacy is also the founder of the Glass Slipper Sisters, a group of authors with Cinderella-themed romance novels. When she’s not visiting theme parks with her family, (avoiding rides that spin and exotic hamburgers) or writing about them, Stacy helps authors to strengthen their manuscripts through her Crossroads Editing Service.
IAN: Please tell us about your latest book.
S. Juba: My latest book is Fooling Around With Cinderella, the first in the Storybook Valley series. What happens when the glass slippers pinch Cinderella’s toes? When Jaine Andersen proposes a new marketing role to the local amusement park, general manager Dylan Callahan charms her into filling Cinderella’s glass slippers for the summer. Her reign transforms Jaine’s ordinary life into chaos that would bewilder a fairy godmother. Secretly dating her bad boy boss, running wedding errands for her ungrateful sisters, and defending herself from the park’s resident villain means Jaine needs lots more than a comfy pair of shoes to restore order in her kingdom.
IAN: Is Fooling Around With Cinderella published in print, e-book or both?
S. Juba: It is published in both print and e-book formats.
IAN: Where can we go to buy your book?
IAN: What inspired you to write the book?
S. Juba: I was inspired to write Fooling Around With Cinderella when I was at a fairy tale theme park with my family. We had just gone to visit Cinderella and suddenly I stopped short. This whole plotline popped into my head, about a reluctant theme park Cinderella trying to find her Prince Charming.
IAN: Did you use an outline or do you just wing the first draft?
S. Juba: I always use an outline, written on index cards and hanging on a bulletin board in my office. Sometimes I change things, but I always have a road map and keep my outline updated with the latest additions.
IAN: How did you come up with the title?
S. Juba: The title has a double meaning – “fooling around” in the romance sense, as there is a romance between Jaine and her boss Dylan. But the real reason is that Dylan, the general manager of the theme park, is having a tough time finding a reliable Cinderella to finish out the season. He had one go Goth, another get pregnant, and another quit, so he is tired of fooling around with Cinderella.
IAN: What do you hope your readers come away with after reading Fooling Around With Cinderella?
S. Juba: I hope they will have laughed and found the book a temporary vacation from their daily stresses, and want to return to Storybook Valley for future books.
IAN: How much of the book is realistic?
S. Juba: Actually, more of it is realistic than you would think. I did hours of research, researching theme park management, watching job recruitment videos for theme park chains, and watching videos of former theme park employees and behind the scenes videos of former “princesses” and characters. I researched everything, down to how to do a princess wave. As a former journalist, I really strive to find authentic details to incorporate into my fiction so that readers learn something without knowing they are learning something.
IAN: What books have most influenced your life most?
S. Juba: I have also published several mystery novels, so I would have to say I was influenced by the juvenile mystery series I read growing up – Nancy Drew and Trixie Belden in particular. I started writing mysteries in fifth grade as I was so hooked on those series, and my love of reading mysteries led me to writing my own mysteries.
IAN: Do you see writing as a career?
S. Juba: Yes, I definitely see writing as my career, but there are ups and downs with being an author so most authors need to have another job also. I am fortunate to be a freelance editor, so that I am always keeping my editing skills sharp, and I also find it very rewarding to help other writers make their books as strong as possible. In the case of beginner writers, I find it rewarding to mentor them and help them to make their publishing dream come true. I’ve also done freelance magazine writing and marketing writing, and am a former newspaper reporter, so I have always made my career as a writer.
IAN: Do you have anything specific that you want to say to your readers?
S. Juba: Stop by my website for some free books – you can download them on this page. http://stacyjuba.com/blog/short-stories/ Feel free to sign up for my newsletter http://stacyjuba.com/blog/newsletter-subscription/ and join the Glass Slipper Sisters Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/groups/482493158588214 I always love to connect with readers!
IAN: Tell us about your next book or a work in progress. Is it a sequel or a stand-alone?
S. Juba: It is the next book in the Storybook Valley series, Prancing Around With Sleeping Beauty. All the books in the series can be read as standalones, but they feature familiar settings such as the Storybook Valley theme park and have recurring characters. Jaine and Dylan, the leads of Fooling Around With Cinderella, will play a supporting role in Prancing Around With Sleeping Beauty. The protagonist is Dylan’s sister, Rory, a dance instructor whose real name is Aurora. (hence the Sleeping Beauty)