Thursday, November 29, 2018


"I’ve discovered forgotten communities, have met strange characters and had some very odd conversations."

Hello Everyone!

Today, I sitting down with a very dear woman, J.Arlene Culiner, author of Desert Rose. We have a wonderful conversation in store so I'm just going to get right to it. But first, let's meet J. Arlene. She really is lovely. 

Thank you J. Arlene for sitting down with me.  To start off this interview, tell us a little about yourself--the real Erin behind the writer.

Thank you for inviting me to your blog Nancy. Write about myself ? Well… it’s a bit complicated… When very young, I set out to have a life of adventure and discovery, not one of security and comfort – although those things can certainly can be appealing when confronted by life’s more dangerous moments. I’ve since crossed much of Europe on foot, traveled, by bus, train, car or truck throughout North and Central America, Europe and the Sahara, and lived in unique places — a Hungarian mud house, a Bavarian castle, a Turkish cave dwelling, on a Dutch canal, in a lonely, very haunted stone house on the English moors, and presently in a 400-year-old former inn in a small French village. 

My sort of lifestyle has meant staying flexible and taking up any sort of work that presented itself: belly dancer, fortune teller, translator, model, b-girl, story teller, radio broadcaster, actress, social critical artist, photographer and writer.
Along the way, I’ve discovered forgotten communities, have met strange characters and had some very odd conversations. I cherish these experiences because they’ve kept me on my toes, way beyond my comfort zone. Of course, I do incorporate these experiences into my books. 

So far, I’ve had five romances published and, as Jill Culiner, two mysteries and two narrative non-fiction works, and I have another non-fiction work looking for a publisher. I also narrate audiobooks and I have a storytelling podcast — Life in a Small French Village — which can be heard here:

Wow! What an amazing life. J Arlene, you have taken the motto, 'living life to it's fullest' to new levels. You mentioned above you used your life experiences in your writing. How did you come to write Desert Rose? Such a cute cover. 

My latest romance, Desert Rose, is set in Blake’s Folly, Nevada, a rundown semi-ghost town of trailers, shacks and old cars. This quirky community with it’s strange local characters was the setting for another of my romances — All About Charming Alice (a new version of the book will soon be released by Fire Star Press) — and I wanted to return to Blake’s Folly and write about Alice’s best friend, Rose Badger. To tell the truth, Rose had been nagging me for quite some time, demanding the limelight, and I’m glad she did. She is a delightful character: gutsy, original, open-minded. As soon as the very appealing, honorable and sexy Jonah Livingstone (he’s part Paiute, part Italian) walks into her shop, he’s entranced too.

Of course, it’s the secondary characters in Blake’s Folly that I particularly love. True misfits, they don’t fit into neat houses and tidy gardens. Rebels — not by choice, but by character — they’re the real thing. And they’re also nosy, interfering and truculent.

As for the locale, I have managed to wander into two desert communities that were very much like Blake’s Folly. They have a special place in my heart and I wanted to share them with romance readers who are looking for an original, out-of-the way setting.