Author Spotlight: JoAnn Sky (and her animal companion Gizmo)

JoAnn Sky has written for years as part of her job (business and marketing plans and the like). One day she tried her hand at writing for fun—and liked it. Now she authors adult contemporary romance as well as children’s books. Originally from the Midwest, JoAnn currently lives in Reno, Nevada with her husband a.k.a. love of her life, three children, and three crazy rescue dogs.

Visit her at where you can sign up for her newsletter and learn about all of her books.  You can also connect with JoAnn on Facebook ( and Goodreads (

Please tell us a bit about your new release.

NO PLAYER REQUIRED is the third of three books in the Biggest Little Love Story series and takes place in Reno, which is known as the “Biggest Little City in the World”.  NO PLAYER REQUIRED is a contemporary romance with a bit of western flair.

The first 2 books in the series were part of the Bliss sweet romance line of my publisher. NO PLAYER REQUIRED was deemed a bit too sexy for Bliss. Too sexy! So I was bumped up to the Indulgence line. I then was able to ramp up the first 2 books, as well, so that the entire series could move to Indulgence together! What fun it was!

Where do you get story ideas?

Sometimes an entire storyline develops from a very small thing. For example, wild horses roam in our neighborhood. Several years ago, my kids and I saw this one horse who was never with the band (horses are pack animals and typically stay in groups, or bands). We began watching for this horse and named him “Socks” because he was a black horse with three white feet – like he was wearing socks. After watching that horse for months, I knew I wanted to write about him. That was the kernel of idea that eventually grew into NO COWBOY REQUIRED (Book 1 of my Biggest Little Love Story series).

The wild horses just roam our neighborhood – sometimes they even cause traffic jams!

What do you do to combat writers’ block?

There are some days when I’m totally productive and the words flow out. Other days, I can’t even spell my name right. When I hit a wall, I try to take a break—as in for the rest of the day, or for several days. Sometimes for way longer than I should!  But sometimes there’s a deadline and that kind of extended break just isn’t possible. In that case, I take my dogs on a long walk. I’m a total dog person, and even when my dogs are crazy, they calm me. We currently have three older rescues in our family.

 What are you working on now?

Right now, I’m gearing up for Christmas marketing. In addition to writing romance, I’ve written 3 children’s books, all with rescue dog themes. Two are part of my Santa’s Dog series—did you know that Santa had 100 dogs? You can check them out on my website:

Super Fast Facts:

  • Tea or Coffee? Both, but coffee in the mornings. At least 2 cups. 3 is better.
  • Red or White wine? White. Anything but Chardonnay.
  • White or dark chocolate? Neither. Milk chocolate, please.
  • Cat or dog? Dog, specifically older shelter dogs.

Conversation with Gizmo

Gizmo is an almost-elderly rescue dog (don’t call him old, because he doesn’t feel old, at all!) who loves to eat anything his people feed him by hand. He loves being groomed, because he likes to look his best, and going to the groomer makes him feel special. He knows his people value him when they take him to get his hair done.

His bigger-dog siblings can both be annoying at times. But he loves playing with them until he gets overwhelmed by their size, and the fact that he can’t always see them coming. He doesn’t want to get bowled over unexpectedly! He likes to play at the dog park, and he prefers the little-dog side, but he doesn’t want to miss out on anything, so he wants to check out both sides of the dog park whenever he goes.

Gizmo likes to sleep and dream of his younger days when he could run fast and jump high. He dreams of leaping up against the trees where the squirrels used to hide and tease him. He can’t see the squirrels anymore, but he knows they’re probably still there! He’s blind in one eye, but he can see enough out of the other one to get around okay.

Before he came to live with JoAnn and her family, he had a good home with people he loved. They weren’t as fun-loving, and their home wasn’t as busy, but he got a lot of cuddles. One of his people had to go away though, and the other one couldn’t take care of him all by herself, so she made the hard decision to let him go. She and Gizmo were both sad, but somehow he knew that his life wasn’t over, and sure enough, JoAnn brought him to live with her family and gave him a new lease on life.

In his hew home, he learned about toys. His favorite toys are scrunchies and anything that has a squidgy, rubbery-feeling substance inside. In his new home, he learned about playing, and having dog-siblings. He learned about going places and doing fun things instead of staying inside all the time. He learned about peeing on grass instead of using potty pads.

When his people aren’t home, he sleeps a lot. The other dogs want to play, but playing isn’t as fun unless his people are there. He’s not sure why that is. Maybe it’s because he feels safer when they’re around, and his diminished eyesight makes him feel just a little bit disadvantaged when it comes to rough-and-tumble play.

Gizmo is happy with his human-and-dog family, and he wouldn’t change a thing about it! He’s so grateful to have a vibrant, busy home where something new is always happening. Life couldn’t be better!

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