Look who’s joining us today ….


***(Color Key: Jolene. Harlow. Layla.)

Okay guys, you are in for a real treat today! Many of you may recognize our special guest from the Indie book world. 

layla5Joining us this week at Keeping It Real with Jolene and Harlow is Layla aka, The Bowtie Author’s better half. BUT, besides being an author’s wife she has the coolest job on the planet…. personally I think the coolest job on the planet is the washcloth that cleans the body of John Mayer or Jason Mamoa, hell, I’d love to be their wash cloth or loofah any day…. but Layla’s job is pretty bad ass.

Calm your tits Jolene, we haven’t even asked her a question yet!

Okay, Okay …. Layla would you like to tell everyone what it is that you do? 

First off, I’m so excited to be here! You two are freaking hilarious! Other than babysitting my husband, I’m a forensic trace evidence analyst. 

So, like real CSI crime lab sort of stuff right? Yes! Total badass!

HAHA! Those fucking crime shows man. They are addicting as hell but oh so very very wrong. I basically just sit at a lab bench all day looking at really really small things under a microscope. I do see a whole lot of bloody evidence but once I get what I came for, I’m really just looking at stuff under a microscope for 8 hours a day. Don’t get me wrong, I absolutely love what I do and I find it incredibly fascinating…trust me, I could talk about it all day…but it’s really nothing like what you see on TV. 

Can you tell us the best way to dispose of a body (asking for a friend)?

I can…but I don’t want to give away all my secrets. 😉

So when you were a kid did you have an interest in this stuff or did you dream of becoming something else? 

Actually I did. I’ve wanted to work in forensics for as long as I can remember. My mother got me this really cool CSI set from the Discovery store when I was in elementary school. Does that store still exist? It was like my favorite place ever! Anyway, so she thought this stupid set would keep me busy all summer. Nah, I finished that bitch in one day. Spent the rest of the summer pricking everyone and pulling hairs so I could blood type them. HAHAHA. Did you ever get Zach to play doctor?  Umm.  Too much?  Ok moving along!

Hey Harlow when you were a kid what did you want to be? 

Well it was a tie between a veterinarian and computer programmer.  I had SO many pets growing up.  Owl, turkeys, a pet deer named Elvis… BUT my inner geek ended up winning.

What did you want to be when you grew up, Jolene? 

Well, I was asked this very question when I was in second grade and I stated that wanted to be a frog. But as I got older I set my sights on something other than a job that required me eating bugs and hanging out on a Lilly pad all day so I decided that I wanted to become a psychologist. Needless to say I never became a psychologist but I sure as hell have listened to my fair share of rants and I’ve kissed a lot of funky ass frogs in my day, none of which turned into a prince. 

Jolene, you have to kiss a lot toads before you meet your handsome prince.  

OK, so I have to bring this up, Layla your husband knocked it out of the park when it came to giving you a gift recently. I mean some men would just gift someone purple barney looking slippers and think that’s a cool ass gift true story… but YOUR husband got you something fucking awesome. Care to tell everyone what he got you and what you did with this gift? 

YEEEEESSS! OK so one of the things I LOVE about my husband…other than his butt…is his ability to always find the perfect thing for me. This last Christmas he got me a small vial of authentic mummy wrapping from a collector. So, this gift is cool on multiple levels. First off, I mean come on, its fucking mummy wrappings and I LOVE Egyptian history. Second though, and most important, is that what I do for the trace evidence section is I’m a forensic fiber and textiles analyst. So to me this was a chance to look at some really old fabric. So of course, despite my husband’s complaints, I opened that little piece of history and pulled out one yarn for testing. I ran my entire set of tests on it to determine if it was indeed authentic. Now don’t get me wrong I can’t actually tell you how old it is, I don’t have the ability to do that. But, what I can say is that it is consistent with the fabric used during that time period and the fibers are ones that are consistent with what they would have had available. I even logged it into my standards. You know, in case an ancient mummy is ever involved in a crime. HAHA

HOLY CRAP!  Ok, Zach you just went up in cool points with us. I can’t even get a freaking gift card to a book store.

Or maybe he had other motives….


I honestly wouldn’t be surprised. HAHAHA. Except it would probably be more like this.


OMG….so what did you get him?  do you find that you try to out do one another in the gift giving department?

LOL!  SOOOO many comments…soooo little time.

I can’t speak for Zach but I don’t try to out do him. I got him a handmade acrylic steampunk bow tie (to go with his genre) and I had a custom Funko Pop made of one of his main characters, Adal. I saw that!  That was so COOL! I think in general we both just try to give each other something heart felt. Not to kill the vibe and get all mushy but honestly my favorite gift Zach gets me is the card he writes every year. I guess you marry an author and you expect to get beautiful words, but his cards make me cry every year. So in that respect he always wins because I can’t really put into words how I feel the same as he can. And as I’m typing this, he is doing a strip tease to a song by the play Chicago *shakes head. That’s my husband.  

Speaking of Zach, what’s it like living with an author? Does he come to you for story ideas or suggestions? 

Living with Zach is like living with a giant kid. HAHAH My life is never boring to say the least. Zach and I actually feed off each other. He has really awful ADHD but he’s super creative. So I keep him organized and do the businessy things that go into being an author and he does the creative bits. Whenever he needs my expertise he does come to me and we talk stuff through but I like to think we make a really great team. So you’re the brains? LOL

HAHAh yeah and Zach is the beauty. I’m completely OK with this.

 Any plans to write your own book? 

You know I actually have thought about it and a bunch of people keep asking me to do it but I’m not all that creative. I read a lot and I know what sounds good, but I’m not sure that would transfer into a well written book.  Maybe someday when I have a little less on my plate I will think on it some more.

OH you should write a CRIME THRILLER!!!

Yeah, I actually have some ideas on one but right now with work and the publishing company and all that, it’s just too much.

Okay I have to ask this question, you have been married for several years now and I have to say that the two of you are just freaking adorable. REALLY ADORABLE…like make me want to barf when I think about it.

Aww thank you…I think…

What tips can you give to all of us on how to keep the love alive in our relationships? What is your secret? and what is your go to solution when he has gotten you to the point of wanting to pull the hair out of your head?

Well first things first I don’t think I’m really one to give advice on this but Zach is my best friend. When we first met he was sleeping his way through my senior class and he wasn’t the slightest bit into me. We were friends first and I think that makes it easier. I mean we already know we like to hang out, the rest is just sex. If all you have is sex in your relationship what the hell are you going to do the other 23.5 hours of the day!

HAHA The other thing is that we have to work on it. We have to force ourselves to be cute and flirty and needy of each other even when we don’t exactly want to. Fake it until you make it right? 

Zach has this rule where we never go to bed angry and we never go to bed at separate times.

Sometimes that means I go to bed at 7:30 because Zach has to get up at 3am and he’s tired. But this means we spend more time snuggling. He also has this really aggravating thing where when I’m angry he just bear hugs me until I calm down. I’m pretty hot headed (being Italian and all), and this really aggravates me, but it works. After a few minutes we both stop being so upset and whatever we were arguing about seems silly. Then he forces me to talk it through even though I don’t want to…but again this helps and we stop being so mad. When Zach is mad at me I do something similar. I lay on him until he stops being mad. I think it also really helps that we did a few years of long distance and know what it’s like to be separated.

Ohhh my gawd, too flipping cute. The last thing I ever wanted to do when either of the wasbands were pitching their little baby fits was to lie on them until they submitted to me. I was more like, “Go ahead and pout … I’ll just be over here reading my book that’s all about hot ass vampires or hunky highlanders while you act like a five year old.” Maybe that’s why you’re married and I’ve been divorced three times. You’re resilient, patient and have a heart.

So I know that you are a huge Harry Potter fan so the question I have to ask is… what team do you root for? noooooo…..not that type of team. Are you team Gryffindor, Hufflepuff,  Ravenclaw or Salazar Slytherin? 

HAHA I’m a Ravenclaw and Zach is a Slitherin. So basically we could take over the world.

In five words describe yourself…..don’t ask Zach …and go ahead and make it ten words if that helps. Haha

Oh fuck. Ummmm. Introverted, awkward, uhh fuck…patient, ummm science-y? long…uhhh tired. HAHAHA does that count?

Harlow I really like her….hell she say’s fuck as much as I do!!

I noticed. LOL and science-y.

Does Zach snore?  Video proof?

YES! He wouldn’t admit it but yes he does. He also can fall asleep in less than a minute which I’m completely jealous of! I’ll get proof if you want it.

I think Harlow would love to have that proof but seriously I fucking can’t understand how people can fall asleep as soon as their head hits the pillow and here I am staring up at the ceiling wishing that I could just slug them with my pillow. It seriously takes me awhile to shut my brain off. 

Well this has been so much fun. Thank you Layla for joining us today….. ohhhhh wait, what the hell. Who’s banging on the door? 

Zach what the hell are you doing here, this was a girls only interview uhhhmmm….and what’s that in your hand? 

img_7240Oh this big, thick, hard…copy of my newest book? Yeah, I knew you had your eyes on it. I wanted to take a moment to introduce Webley and the World Machine. You interested? I can see you undressing IT with your eyes.

*Rolls eyes* Girls, we might as well have a seat and allow the Bowtie Author the floor. Go ahead Zach …… Nah, I’ll give him a milk crate… that’s all he’s getting. He’s outnumbered. 

So Webley and the World Machine is a Steampunk, science fiction adventure

To Save Humanity, They’ll Have To Leave It Behind

When childhood best friends Adal and Arija discover a steam powered world hidden deep within the earth, the result is life changing. Webley and the Dwellers of The World Machine work to keep the Earth turning. But when Arija and Adal stumble onto a growing conflict that will destroy the Earth, they find themselves forced to fight.

Will they be able to stop the war in time or will they regret ever having set foot in The World Machine?

Webley and The World Machine is a YA Steampunk featuring two snarky and fun eighteen year olds, a dwarf-like giant and a whole slew of odd robotic creatures. It’s Bioshock meets League of Extraordinary Gentlemen, and if you love sassy characters you need this book in your life.

WARNING: The characters in this book have a mind of their own and enjoy swearing and generally getting themselves into trouble.  Sounds like my type of book!!  *Grabs phone, heads on over to Amazon and one clicks to buy the book* I know what I’m reading this weekend. I already bought it so nah nah nah nah 😛

So if that all sounds like something you want to sink your teeth into, then check it out.

*Turns to Jolene and Harlow* Was that too sexual, guys? 

Hmmm. let me see.  You mentioned big, thick, hard, and sink teeth.  Layla I think he’s trying to tell you something. (AND WHERE is your freaking emoji button, Jolene!?)  

Dude, if you pull out an eggplant I’m going to kick your ass. 

Love you guys!!

Thanks for joining us. 



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