Sarah Younger and Jeffe Kennedy at RWA 2016

At Last: My Big News!

Sarah Younger and Jeffe Kennedy at RWA 2016So, I’ve been making vague remarks about big changes in my writing career life. More than I thought, because a number of people have asked me about it! But there were Reasons I couldn’t say until today.


I’m moving to a new agent and agency!

As of today I’ll be represented by Sarah Younger of the Nancy Yost Literary Agency. I’m super excited about this move. Sarah just celebrated her 80th deal (which just happened to be a fabulous one for my wonderful friend, Grace Draven). She’s also just a lovely person all around – and not just because she loves my books! Here’s us at the Harlequin Ball in San Diego last summer (2016), at the RWA annual conference, long before either of us had an inkling we might work together. 

What’s funny is – and you longtime readers will particularly appreciate this – Sarah read and loved PETALS & THORNS way back when I published it under my Jennifer Paris pseudonym. Let me tell you, finding an agent who’s read your books for pleasure is a fantastic feeling. She really groks what I write and I think we’re going to make an amazing team.

So, as of today I’m bidding a fond farewell to Fuse Literary. I notified them and my previous agent, Connor Goldsmith, back at the end of February that I’d be making this change. My agency agreement with Fuse (like many), required a 30-day notice to wind up business with them. I will always appreciate what Fuse and Connor have done for me. Agency partner Laurie McLean really worked hard to find a place for me in the agency after my first agent (Pam Howell) left. (For those who don’t know, an author signs with a literary agency, not an individual agent, so if an agent leaves the agency, the author has the option of following them to the new agency or staying put and working with a new agent.) In the end, I approached Sarah about moving my work in a new direction. I liked what she had to say and was hugely gratified that she offered to represent me when I asked. 

Big changes like this never seem to be easy, even for the person who initiates them. The last month of conversations and logistics have been surprisingly emotional for me. It’s kind of like filing for divorce and planning a wedding to someone new, all in the space of 30 days. 

Plus there was that whole RITA finalist thing in the middle. 

All good things, but – WOW! – I’ll be happy to settle into a steady, quiet routine again. ~fans self with hankie~

So, stay tuned for news. Exciting days ahead!


Drafy Nest Pich Logo last stageThe submission window for NestPitch NOW OPEN, and will remain open for 24 hours 12-noon 1st April to 11.59am 2nd April (USA EST) There’s no cut off number. Everyone who submits during the window will make it into the contest.

All entries will receive a receipt.  If you don’t, check with Nik Vukoja on Twitter @nestpitch and/or @nik_vukoja

Send your entries to nestpitch @ outlook .com (no spaces)

For formatting instructions and rules go to this post go to:

NestPitch is a contest where participants email their 35-word pitches together with the first 300* words of their (finished) manuscript,(100-word for PBs).

The selected pitches will be featured on these blogs:

Brooke Powell 

Kimberly P. Chase 

Jeffe Kennedy 

Tina Moss  

Amanda Foody 

Dannie Morin 

Sharon M Johnston 

Sharon Bayliss 

Stacey Nash

Then agents, their identities hidden, will leave a request for pages, partials and/or fulls of the featured pitches.

 Entries must be embedded within email (no attachments) with following:



Genre: Category/Genre of Manuscript (i.e. NA Romance)

Word Count: (nearest 1000)

PITCH: 35-word (max) log-line

Answer to qu:

(question: in one sentence, max 15-words in the sentence: If my Main Character were an Easter Egg, what flavour would he be & why)

First 300-words of your manuscript. If the 300th word falls in the middle of a sentence, go to the end of the sentence.  For Picture-book submissions please only submit 100-words.  If the 100th word falls in the middle of a sentence, go to the end of the sentence.

Please ensure

(i)                 your manuscript has not been featured in another Pitch Competition in the past 12 months – that’s ANY pitch competition (not twitter pitches), from the period April 1st 2013 to 31st March 2014

(ii)               your manuscript IS NOT published.  This INCLUDES self-published.


Our Slush Bilbies & Nest Bloggers will read through the pitches and pick the top 72 pitches for the agent round; April 17th – 18th  

We try to get a good mix of various genres, but the writing comes first. Basically, if the submissions aren’t ready, it’s in your best interest that we pass, the last thing anyone wants is your manuscript to be old & tired from “doing the rounds” before its ready.

Too Many Tits

Too many tits, erotic romance, Falling Under, Going Under, contemporary romanceLoved this dragon sculpture on the waterfront in San Diego.

So, in the flurry of travel for a weekend-long seminar for my day job in San Diego – which was illuminating, valuable and utterly exhausting – I totally forgot to announce the THING I’d been waiting to announce officially since, um, August. You all pretty much know about it already – that I signed on with Carina for a new trilogy. These are essentially more Facets of Passion books, but full-length novels, which means 2- to 3-times as long.

All you people saying “I wish it had been longer!” – see how I give you what you wish for??

The reason we did not announce immediately is because we – meaning Agent Pam, Carina and I – all wanted to go for a retitling and rebranding of the series. It’s sad on the one hand, because I really did love my “jewel” titles. But readers would see those titles – Sapphire, Platinum, Ruby and Five Golden Rings – and not know that they were erotic romances. I’m no marketing or business guru, but apparently that’s a problem. 😛

Thus, though I snort-giggle at some of the titles out there, I have gone full Borg and have been assimilated.

(You would not believe the cool stuff this ocular implant can do!)

So, I’m delighted, excited and just really pleased to OFFICIALLY ANNOUNCE

*clears throat*

*makes jazz hands*

My new erotic romance trilogy:


The books will be

GOING UNDER (July 2014)

UNDER HIS TOUCH (January 2015)

UNDER CONTRACT (mmfflbrg 2015)

When you all get your paws on them, you’ll find that the titles really *do* reflect the stories themselves, which was important to me.

You all know about GOING UNDER already, because I had been calling it Emerald here. And yes, it’s all written. In fact, I’ll be working on developmental edits on it as soon as I finish this post.

An amusing story came out of my critique partner (CP) reviews of the initial draft, which carries a useful take-home message.

See, these books will also be a departure for me, because I’m including the hero’s point of view (POV). The Facets books were all from the heroine’s POV. Going Under, at least, alternates between the hero and heroine’s POV’s. (Probably they all will, but you never know what will happen when I get to actually writing them.) I wrote from the hero’s POV once before, in the fairly obscure Hunting the Siren, but this was my first significant effort to capture a “guy voice.”

Part of his voice emerged in that, at least in the lustful throes of sex, he thinks of her breasts as “tits.” To me, this is a convincingly guy thing. Particularly this guy. It’s a strong word, as these things go. In fact, I don’t think I’ve ever used it in a story before – and pretty much not in real life either. Well, one of my CPs (nothing against you, darling!) mentioned, pretty much as her very first comment, that I needed to search for “tits” in the manuscript because I’d used it way too many times.

Taking her comment to heart, I searched for it and found 19 occurrences. In 308 pages and over 82,000 words. Conversely, I used the word “breast” well over 100 times. (Hey – it’s erotic romance. What did you expect?) That’s a 0.02% incidence of tits versus over 0.12% for breasts (I got tired of counting) – an order of magnitude in difference.

But, because “tits” struck her as such a strong word, it stood out.

I guess I mention this because readers will always have their pet peeves. Especially with sexual terms. Sometimes a blog post or Twitter hashtag will prompt people to riff on the words they hate. “Moist” crops up quite often. Surprisingly often, to me, because I don’t have the issue with it that so many seem to.

The thing is – this is something a writer simply cannot control for.

It falls under the “you can’t please everyone” umbrella. It’s simply not worth worrying about. Let the readers have their fun and riff on most-hated words and phrases – heavens know, I have them, too – but don’t write accordingly.

Way too crazy making to fret over too many tits.

I need that on a t-shirt.

Two Turtle Doves, Special Gift from My Agent for You and a Cover Reveal!


Thanks to the sharp-eyed Sullivan McPig for seeing it in the wild and telling me about it!

I’m all breathless.

Finally, on this penultimate day of the Twelve Days of Gifts for all you writerly types who are online today, my lovely agent Pam has a special gift for you! She’s offering a query and first chapter crit to TWO of you! Just spread the word and let me know that you did!

Tomorrow I’ll draw ALL THE WINNERS!

This Stuff Ain’t Stayin’ in Vegas!

hotel viewSo, I’m here in Las Vegas, downtown at the Plaza Hotel. The hotel website referred to the pool as “iconic.” David asked me what that meant and I said probably that we’ll recognize it from movies. We’ve now decided it means “old, but not neat enough to be historic, but you still can’t bitch about it being ugly.” We’ve also labelled the elevators iconic, the strange service and the decades-old cigarette smell. I noticed this morning that a casino hotel on the next block is labelled “legendary,” which suspect means the same this as “iconic.”

I met my Kensington editor, Peter Senftleben, last night. He’s just lovely in person. Agent Pam arrives this morning, so it should be a good time to be had by all. Now I need to work on my presentation for tomorrow!

Also, I’m guesting on the fabulous Suzanne Johnson’s Preternatura blog today, talking about worldbuilding as gardening. Comment to win a copy of either Pawn or Possession!

But first… You guys have to read the joint review Bookpushers gave Rogue’s Possession. Okay, you don’t HAVE to, but it’s the most wonderful, amazing review ever. Just to indulge myself, here are some quotes. You’re welcome.

This is one of the most imaginative, seductive and darkly sensual fantasy romances I’ve ever read.

There is a real emphasis on the characters and the plot as well as the world-building which is explored in much more depth but retains the surreal and dreamy tone with great touches of humour as well as darkness.

This was another great installment that was well worth waiting for. Now I can’t wait for the next one!

The tension between them which I thought was hot and sizzling in the first book, was an inferno for this one!

I stayed up into the wee hours of a workday morning because I was so hooked.

All right. Thank you for indulging me. You may now go on about your business.

Have a great weekend everyone!

Breaking News!!

headerI’ve been sitting on this news for a couple of weeks, so I’m SUPER EXCITED to finally get it off my chest!

You all know how I am – not much for keeping interesting news to myself. Ask me to keep a secret and I’ll carry it to my grave. But fun, exciting news like this, that I just have to hold onto until a Specific Day? Gah!

So, what? You haven’t skimmed ahead yet? You have. I know you have.

Okay, okay.

Fabulous Piece of News #1

The amazing Agent Pam has announced today that she and Laurie McLean have left Larsen-Pomada and are forming their own agency!!


When Pam called a couple of weeks ago to tell me their plan, I didn’t hesitate to tell her I would go with her. I have great faith in Pam and Laurie’s abilities and ambitions. They have exciting plans and I’m thrilled to be part of them. I feel so lucky to have signed with Pam when I did and privileged to be part of this grand, new adventure.

Also, now that the agency-thing has been settled and is public and all….

Fabulous Piece of News #2

With Pam’s assistance, I’ve agreed to a two-book deal with Carina Press for the next Covenant of Thorns books!!! Yes, all you Rogue fans – this means two more books to round out the trilogy! Yay! Looks like Rogue’s Possession will come out around the beginning of October. I know, I know – it’s a long time from the first book. 🙁 BUT, the plus side is that book 3 should come out about six months after that! Whee!!!

All very exciting, isn’t it?

I think so, too.

Another Book Deal!

12_16 2I know, right? My cup totally runneth over!! The other shoe has finally dropped and it’s a Manolo Blahnik stiletto – maybe those ones with the red soles.

Because, as excited as I am about doing the Phantom e-serial – and wow, I can’t believe I announced that exactly two weeks ago, it feels much longer – this is even bigger and better.

Like three-book contract bigger.

Like I get money up front better.

Like PRINT, beyotches!!!

Ha! I may be running around giggling like a madwoman. When my mom asked me if this is what I’d been working toward all these years, I had to say, why, yes. Yes it is. All those Christmases when my family asked me what I wanted for Christmas and I told them “a lucrative multi-book contract” – well Santa finally delivered. (And yes, my family does love me – most of the time – even though I’m a smart ass.)

So, here’s the blurb from Publisher’s Marketplace:

December 17, 2012
Jeffe Kennedy’s The TWELVE KINGDOMS Series, three books in which the three daughters of a failing kingdom find their own magic and use that to help heal their lands and people while finding love along the way, to Peter Sentfleben at Kensington, in a nice deal, for publication in 2014, by Pam van Hylckama Vlieg at Larsen/Pomada Literary Agents (World).

This is the same editor who acquired the Phantom story. He read and loved The Middle Princess, which faithful readers of this blog will likely remember me writing. I’ll be doing some revising on that (though not much, Peter thinks – yay!) and turn that in by May 1. Then book 2 is due 11/1 and book 3 is due 5/1/2014.

Let me tell you, it feels really weird to have a 2014 deadline. “Hey, Jeffe, do you have plans for April, 2104?” “As a matter of fact…”

Please also note that these books will be classified as Fantasy. I am officially a Fantasy Author as well as a romance author. I’m all pleased with myself. Also, the books will be trade paperback (and will be available in digital, too), which is extra fancy. They don’t love my title (alas!), so that will change. We’re just kind of calling the series “The Twelve Kingdoms” for now. Which is probably for the best, because when I get emails from Peter with the subject line “Princesses,” it kind of cracks me up.

Of course, that just fits in with the whole giggling-like-a-madwoman thing.

I am beyond lucky.

New Book Deal!

This is that same sunrise, which has turned out to be a fabulous omen.

I’m excited, thrilled and delighted to announce that the fabulous Agent Pam has sold a project to Kensington Books for me!!

Here’s the blurb from Publisher’s Marketplace:

 Digital: Fiction: Women’s/Romance

Jeffe Kennedy’s MASTER OF THE MASKS, an update on the Phantom of the Opera set in Santa Fe with BDSM, to Peter Senftleben at eKensington, in a three-book deal, for publication in 2013, by Pam van Hylckama Vlieg at Larsen/Pomada Literary Agents (World).

The title will likely change, but it will be a very fun and sexy update of the Phantom legend. The story will be told in six installments and will launch Kensington’s e-serial line. (The very witty Carolyn Crane thinks I should ask for a t-shirt in my contract that says “Flagship Author.”)

I talked to Peter on the phone yesterday while we thrashed out details and ideas. I think he’s going to be great to work with – he also loves spreadsheets and New Orleans. (He went to Tulane, Mom!)

So, I’m just all giddy and excited and I’m probably forgetting to tell you half of it! Ask me questions!

Sunrises, Serendipity and a Tease


At the sight of blackbirds
Flying in a green light,
Even the bawds of euphony
Would cry out sharply.

~ Thirteen Ways of Looking at a Blackbird by Wallace Stevens

I know, I know – I’m forever quoting that poem, but when I see a sky and a bird like this, that line always comes to me. Those bawds of euphony always kind of annoyed me, too.

There’s an element of serendipity to so much in life. Like getting a cool photograph – it’s not really something you can plan for. This morning’s sunrise bloomed with exceptionally intense reds, oranges and pinks. But I don’t always go out to snap pics. This morning, though, David needed to charge his MP3 player before we went to the gym, so I had some time to kill. Then I saw a crow sitting in the big cottonwood by our neighbor’s house, thought of Laura Bickle and her crows, and decided to go back in for my telephoto lens. The bird then obliged by winging through the molten sky for me. I got six or seven great pics – most of which you’ll undoubtedly get to see here over the next couple of weeks.

I know, also, that getting these photos is a result of other long-term efforts – from all the saving and sacrificing we did over the years to enable us to have a home in this place, with these views, to the time I’ve invested in learning to take pictures, and acquiring that telephoto lens.

The last couple of days have brought some great news into my life. I know it’s a total tease, but I can’t say much yet. Still, I’ve been on the phone with Agent Pam the last couple of days and she’s lining up a new publication deal for me. I get to talk with my new prospective editor on Monday and it feels like everything is really coming together. Sometimes I wonder if Pam is disappointed when she calls me with news and I don’t scream or make other high-pitched noises.

Thing is, it feels much like getting a great photograph now. I’ve put in years of effort to get to this place, where all I need is serendipity – and Agent Pam’s enthusiastic hard work on my behalf – to bring it all together. When she tells me the good news, I don’t feel wild excitement. I feel a deep satisfaction. That resonant sense that what I want most is coming true.

It feels good.

So, sorry for the tease, but stay tuned – official announcement should be coming soon!

Serendipity willing.