A.J. Downey is the internationally bestselling author of The Sacred Hearts Motorcycle Club romance series. She is a born and raised Seattle, WA Native. Finds inspiration from her surroundings, through the people she meets, and likely as a byproduct of way too much caffeine.
She has lived many places and done many things though mostly through her own imagination… An avid reader all of her life it’s now her turn to try and give back a little, entertaining as she has been entertained. She lives in a small apartment in a small neighborhood with a larger than life fiancé and two cats.
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His Wild Blue Rose: Indigo Knights Book IVby A.J. DowneyPublish: Aug 06, 2018Series: Indigo KnightsContemporary Romance Romance
A Low Blue Flame: Indigo Knights Book IIIby A.J. DowneyPublish: May 22, 2018Series: Indigo KnightsContemporary Romance Romance
His Cold Blue Command: Indigo Knights Book IIby A.J. DowneyPublish: Nov 07, 2017Series: Indigo KnightsContemporary Romance Erotic Romance
Her Thin Blue Lifeline: Indigo Knights Book Iby A.J. DowneyPublish: Jun 28, 2017Series: Indigo KnightsContemporary Romance Romance
I have only lived in the Pacific Northwest in the Seattle area in three different, but still localized places. I couldn’t imagine living anywhere else but here. I have visited a lot of unlikely places, but this is home to me and always will be. I dream of retiring somewhere on the Northern Olympic Peninsula, which is still Washington beautiful.When did you start writing full-time and how did this change your schedule?
I started writing full time in September of 2015. Up until that point, I had been working three jobs and waiting things out just to make sure my writing would sustain me if I went all in. It’s been a wild and crazy ride getting here, but I would say it was worth it.Do you often cry when you read books or watch movies? What is the one book/movie that never fails to get you emotional?
Oh my god, yes! There are a couple of them actually. Fried Green Tomatoes gets me every time, and the ending to Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End has never failed to make me cry. Not once. I am a tougher sell on crying when it comes to books, I don’t know why. My own books have made me cry writing them, but reading doesn’t usually get me going as much as visibly seeing people on a screen. Maybe it’s the combination of the actor’s emotions and the music.What was the most memorable encounter you've had with a reader/fan?
She’s going to kill me, but I have a reader who is blind, her husband reads my books to her. At a signing event last year, I stuffed this toy stuffed dragon in the front of my dress between my boobs and she hugged me and she felt it and she was like “Oh my! What is that?” and she spent like a solid two minutes touching this dragon trying to figure out what it was before her husband clued her in, “Uh, honey, you’re feeling up your favorite author’s chest.” It was the funniest and most memorable encounter I’ve had to date.What compelled you to write The Sacred Hearts Motorcycle Club romance series? Why do you think a lot of people love and have really connected with this series?
Boredom. I was really, really bored and I started writing as a cheap way to pass the time. (Little did I know, it would actually turn into the most expensive hobby in the world until I gained some traction with publishing!) So I started writing and I put something like three or four books out and then I decided to try my hand at MC romance, which is what I had been reading at the time and the first book pulled in enough to pay for the publishing of both it, and the books that came before it, so I ended up running with it and made it a series.Do you think your writing has changed much since the first book in that series (Shattered & Scarred) to the sixth (Damaged and Dangerous)? What is it about "Damaged and Dangerous" that makes it a great addition to the series?
I think my writing has improved by leaps and bounds since Shattered & Scarred. Of course, I am nearly thirty pieces of writing published since then, from anthology pieces to full length novels. After that much writing, an author is bound to improve their craft. If they haven’t, there’s something wrong. As for Damaged & Dangerous, it wrapped up all of the loose ends that came out of Broken & Burned, the second book in the series, through Fractured & Formidable, the fifth book in the series. It was a good stopping point, I thought, so that I could explore a few other things. As most of my readers know, I went on a three book stint with the Kraken MC, by way of the Virtues trilogy before I headed straight back to The Sacred Hearts, picking up soon after the events of Damaged & Dangerous with Brother To Brother, the first book of the Sacred Brotherhood series. I tried to design the break in the series so that if you picked up the series beginning with Shattered & Scarred, you could then read The Sacred Brotherhood as a sequel series, but if you picked up The Sacred Brotherhood first, you could just go back and read The Sacred Hearts MC as a prequel series and it didn’t do any damage to the reading experience at all. You could still get a fully enjoyable experience no matter which way you went and The Virtues was there no matter when you got to them because the characters there weren’t first met until Cracked & Crushed. They’re just sort of a spin-off of the original series.Why the name "Indigo Knights"? What kind of character is Chrissy Franco? What would she think of you if you met in real life?
The Indigo Knights came out of the fact that I had this fictional city name, Indigo City, stuck in my head and I really wanted to do something with it. I knew I wanted to write a different sort of MC, one that was on the right side of the law, as opposed to the outlaw MC’s everyone is familiar with. I wanted to do an MC of cops, firefighters, and first responders and as we all know, they’re the modern day white knights out to save the world. I combined things. White knights out of Indigo City = Indigo Knights and that is how this series was born… sort of. The first book of the Indigo Knights series is based on something that was happening to me at the time, and still is. Chrissy Franco is essentially me in a lot of ways. I have someone out there that disagrees with an opinion I have and so he doxed my address on Facebook and told people to come to my house and hurt me etc. I just extrapolated from that experience, ramped up the drama factor, and while no one showed up in real life, I followed the plot bunny down its rabbit hole and Her Thin Blue Lifeline became a thing. In a face off between Katniss Everdeen (The Hunger Games), Beatrice Prior (Divergent), and Adelaide (from the Angel's Grace series), who do you think would win?
Honestly, I was kind of stumped by this question at first, but then I realized it would totally be Addy! She has the power of not only Death and War from the four horsemen of the Apocalypse behind her, but also Tab the angel of free will, the archangels, and finally God in parts of the series. Addy could totally take those two out.Who are some new characters you introduce in book three of the Angel's Grace series, "A Coup de Grace"? What excites you most about this book?
There weren’t many new faces in A Coup de Grace, to be honest. Almost all of the characters in ACdG were introduced in some part in the first two books, however, in ACdG, you see Iaoel in the ‘flesh’ for the first time. You get to hear her speak and you get to dive deeper into her motivations etc. further than you ever got to in the previous two books. She’s suddenly her own person and not this vague, ‘thing’ that Addy has been bestowed with. As far as new faces go, she’s a doozy, because you’ve spent two books knowing she is there, knowing she is effecting the path that Addy takes and the outcome of the trials that Addy has had to undergo, but until the third book you don’t get to meet her or know why.What was the first supernatural themed book you wrote? What was the inspiration behind the book "I Am The Alpha"?
The first paranormal romance or PNR I wrote was a solo project called Heaven, Hell, and the Love In Between. It centers around an antiquities restoration expert and archaeologist, Gracelyn, who has been going through depression issues and suddenly starts having ‘episodes’ that are bringing her closer and closer to suicide. She finds out, that her mental health issues aren’t really mental at all and that supernatural powers are at play. That she is caught up in something far greater than she could have ever imagined, As for I Am The Alpha, it isn’t my world, it is Ryan’s. He just invited me to come play in it. Fun fact: I hate dogs, I’m a cat person through and through, so writing werewolves and wolf-shifters is so not my thing, but I wanted to help Ryan out and it was a super fun project, so I went with it when he asked my opinion. Actually, I sort of shoved him face first into not only writing it, but turning it into a trilogy. Do I feel bad I bullied him into writing it? Absolutely not. It turned out great and was a blast of a project and I am pretty sure he will tell you the same thing… Okay, okay, I don’t know that for sure. There might be a few complaints.Do you get most of your inspiration for your own experiences and the people around you or from TV shows and/or movies?
Mostly from my own experiences and the people around me. I shamelessly have resorted to stealing friends, family, and reader’s names for my character names in recent times because coming up with names is hard! A few characters, like Hannah Hossler from The Virtues trilogy, are real people right down to their description. All done in good fun and with permission, of course.What are some new things that you want to experiment with in your future books?
If I told you, it would give things away for future books and I have been very careful to be as spoiler-free as possible here. One of the things I am doing right now, is writing the book that will be inside of a book. It’s a fun project that I have dubbed ‘the secret squirrel project’ to my readers as I make progress on it, but I will tell you a little about it here. One of the characters in one of my upcoming Indigo Knights books is an author. She wrote a book that hit big, movies being made about it etc. and for the purpose of her book, has yet another book coming out as a movie. That book is the secret squirrel project. It will be written, the story talked about and be very centric in the Indigo Knights book, so I decided to go ahead and write it and publish it under the character’s pen name. When my readers finish the Indigo Knights book, they will be directed towards the secret squirrel project and if they liked enough of what they read about it in the Indigo Knights book to want to go and read it as its own thing under this separate pen name, it will be there for them. See, a book inside of a book! I don’t even know how I came up with the idea, I just did; I love running with crazy things like that.If you were about to die and had only 10 seconds to pass on one piece of advice to your readers, what would it be?
Don’t ever believe what anyone says about anything. Experience it for yourself and draw your own conclusions. As Abraham Lincoln once said: “Character is like a tree and reputation like its shadow. The shadow is what we think of it; the tree is the real thing.”
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