Jamie Schulz’s book Masters’ Mistress: The Angel Eyes Series Book One recently roared on to Amazon bestseller list, and rightfully so because it hits all the hot spots and so much more. Schulz has written a compelling and yes, steamy dystopian romance, which takes readers into a chilling future, where thereis an interesting twist – women own men. But that’s not all, this story includes a steamy and slow burning romance, one that fly’s in the face of all the norms of the riveting and dark world Schulz has created.
There is no doubt that Masters’ Mistress will leave readers wanting more, but the good news is that this is the first novel in Schulz’s dystopian cowboy romance series called Angel Eyes. Recently we sat down with Schulz to learn more about this rather brilliant novel.
Inspiration takes so many different shapes and forms. Can you tell us what inspired you to write Masters’ Mistress: The Angel Eyes Series Book 1?
*Laugh* I get asked this question a lot, but the answer is very simple. History is where I get a lot of my ideas in general. The very first idea for this series came to me years ago in high school history class.
We were studying the American Civil War, and I remember thinking, “What could be worse than living as a slave?” The idea grew and morphed as my friends and I discussed the topic. Especially after I brought up two questions:
Those ideas sparked a long, interesting conversation, which encouraged me to put pen to paper.
History is where the society and the inequality in the story comes from, both older and more contemporary. It took me a long time to write these books and lots of editing before it was done.
Is there a character in Masters’ Mistress that reminds you of yourself?
Actually, there’s a little of me in all the characters, I couldn’t pick just one. But if I had to narrow it down, I’d say there are experiences in my life that are reflected in both Angel’s and Monica’s characters. Things that have helped me grow as a person and become stronger are seen in each of them. Their deeply devoted friendship gives Angel the anchor she needs to begin to heal, but it isn’t until Bret enters the picture that she truly starts to let go of the past. It’s a long hard road to overcome emotional tragedy and self-doubt, but Angel will get there, and so will the others.
Your book rather brilliantly takes on the topic of gender and slavery. Can you talk about how this aspect evolved?
Again, the slavery side of it evolved mostly through researching American historical events and how slaves were treated before the Civil War and after. I spoke to therapists and other mental health professionals about how such a life could affect a person physically, mentally, and emotionally.
Then I did more research and reading about war and its effects on people, all to shape this story and the characters in it. The difficult thing about trauma is that everyone reacts differently to it. There are some similarities, but there’s not one specific diagnosis or an exact list of symptoms to follow. People can become self-destructive or even violent, and recoveries can often take years if they recover at all.
The gender aspect came from the inequality between men and women that has been prevalent for centuries. I read through documents discussing this issue that went back to Victorian England and further, and then compared them to more modern historical events, such as the instances of kidnapping and abuse that have happened in more recent history. People have done terrible things to each other.
For years, there have been books about the “helpless woman”needing a “big, strong, man” to protect them and teach them about love. I flipped that on its head, putting the man in the vulnerable position and giving the woman the hero’s role.Because I know women are capable of being the champion, of fighting to survive, of caring for those they love and themselves. I wanted them to feel doubt and frustration, but to keep fighting, because that’s what women have always done. I also wanted to show that men can be victims too. That women can be strong and protective. That male or female, love can make an important difference in a person’s life. That we all hurt, we all need, and that, at times, we all feel discouraged, desperate, and alone.
These characters will learn to work together for a common goal, while also learning to trust each other, to love each other, no matter the many pitfalls and doubts they suffer along the way. It has some twists and turns down the line, things that you may or may not see coming, but hopefully, it’ll be an interesting read all the same.
A great story like this one is all about the setting, the descriptiveness, and the raw energy that captivates, all coming together to have the reader unable to put the book down. Your book includes all of these aspects, what keys are critical when you’re looking to get into the writing zone?
I usually need to be rested and alone to really get into the writing zone. Too much going on near me is very distracting. Once I get into the story, however, I become hyper-focused. I can usually ignore almost everything else and just write. I try to get it all out as fast as possible, then I’ll go through it a few times to fill in any gaps.
During my edits, I try to build the captivation with the setting, emotions, and physical sensations that surround the characters. When my editor gets a hold of it, all those things are built on even more.
If I’m tired when I write a scene or chapter, I tend to find silly mistakes or lazy descriptions the next time I go through it, but those things get fixed when I edit.
When the weather allows, I love to work outside and when I can’t, which is most of the time, I try to sit near a window so I can see the trees and birds and other things outside. Something about nature is both calming and inspiring, and I need it to find my “zone.”
To find out more about Masters Mistress you can head on over to Amazon.