Jennifer Lynne Interview
Happy Hump Day to all of our Monsters and Addicts! Book Monster Reviews and LITERAL ADDICTION are very pleased to welcome author Jennifer Lynne to our sites today.
Jennifer wrote a great bio about herself for her website, so we borrowed it so ya'll canget to know more about her.
So, a little about me…
I live in the outer eastern area of Melbourne, Australia, with my partner, two gorgeous daughters and a very fat cat. (No, we don’t overfeed her – she had a double knee reconstruction a while ago and is now too lazy to move!).
I was introduced to romance at around the age of twelve, and in fact still have that book on my shelf, as a reminder of how it all started. Yes, it was Mary Stewart’s Nine Coaches Waiting and the dark, mysterious Raoul that started me along the road to romance. The Women’s Weekly romance series followed, then on to Mills & Boon, then writing my own simple stories. And that original romance has a lot to do with how I write today. My heroes are rarely sunny and bright. They usually have a dark – sometimes twisted – side, and it is only through the power of love that they can be saved from this darkness within themselves. Oh Raoul! What an impact you have had!
While I would love to write fiction full-time, I can’t afford that luxury. Yet.
I have a degree in literature and media studies and worked as a business writer and company journalist, in PR and marketing, run my own PR business, worked for government departments, small independent companies and large multi-national organisations. I’ve even worked in an optical store! All of these many and varied occupations have been a fantastic way to gain life experience and meet many different people, and it is only now, in my forties, that I am confident enough to put forward my writing to publishers in the hope that the breadth of my experiences will give my writing a richness and depth that I know it didn’t have in the past.
Seducing Serena was my first erotic romance novella, and Red Sage was the first publisher I approached with this story. I know how lucky I am to have had such an easy introduction to the publishing world, and I am just keeping my fingers crossed that someone out there continues to see value in the love stories I write!
And yes, I do have a 'special person' in my own life, who is convinced he is the hero of my stories. Who am I to dissuade him of this idea?
Before we start the interview, let's take a look at Jennifer's books…
Tentative release - February 24, 2012
GODS OF LOVE series - Book 1
Three people. One erotic fantasy. And a twentieth wedding anniversary like no other.
"Secrets Volume 28: Sensual Cravings"
They sound great don't they!? Now that you know a bit more about Jennifer and her books, let's get started with the interview….
Book Monster Reviews/LITERAL ADDICTION: Hi Jennifer! We’re happy to have you with us today! Thank you for taking time out of your busy schedule to drop by and spend some time with us!
Jennifer: Thank you so much for having me!
Book Monster Reviews/LITERAL ADDICTION: We’d like to start out by getting to know you a little bit better.
Q1): Can you tell us 3 things about yourself that we can't find out on the internet, in your bio, etc?
Jennifer: Hmm, let's see…that's a hard one, because I do have a fair bit of info out there in virtual land! Well, here goes…
(1) My best friends are my two sisters, and as I'm the oldest, they always listen to me (ha, in my dreams!).
(2) My beautiful cat Merlin, who is no longer with us, had diabetes and I had to give him twice daily injections at exactly 8am and 8pm. Not conducive to a social life, let me tell you.
(3) My first part-time job while still at school was as a checkout chick at Safeway – the same one where my eldest daughter now works part time. The sad thing is, it looks somewhat similar to when I was there – except for the scanners. We had the old push-button cash registers back then and you had to manually choose and enter a "department" for each item! Anyone else remember those days?
2) What do you love to do when you're not writing? Do you have any special hobbies or interests?
Jennifer: When I'm not writing, I'm usually ferrying one of my two teenagers around to their school/work/social activities, or I'll be at my day job in medical admin, or I'll be shopping for food, cooking, cleaning, washing… all the joys of being a working mum, I guess! But my partner and I do find time to go to the movies once in a while (just saw The Iron Lady – Meryl Streep was amazing), and I love going for weekend drives up into the hills to visit one of the wineries, coffee bars or craft shops in the Dandenong Ranges. In summer we often head down to the beach after work for a couple of hours and watch the sun go down over the bay. I also love catching up for a drink or coffee with family and friends. These days, I'm also finding a few extra kilos that weren't there before, so I've started going for regular walks to try and get a bit more healthy.
3) Who are some of your favorite authors and what books are in your TBR list?
Jennifer: I love Lisa Shearin, Ilona Andrews, Carrie Vaughn, Ian Rankin, Reginald Hill, Charlaine Harris, Sue Grafton…gosh, so many wonderful authors I can't possibly name them all here. I read across a variety of genres, but for some reason tend to avoid straight horror, and also non-fiction. I particularly enjoy sensual and erotic romance, paranormal, fantasy, urban fantasy, a little bit of sci-fi, mystery and thriller. I find that the authors who really appeal are the ones who assume their reader has a brain. They don't spoon-feed you every little thing. They let you discover the story for yourself. Don't know if that makes sense, but Reginald Hill and Ian Rankin are masters at this.
4) What are some of your favorite TV shows and movies?
Jennifer: I'm addicted to Escape to the Country and Location, Location, Location. I also love Amazing Race (US and Australian versions) and Survivor. What else? Oh, I love the BBC series of Merlin. Colin Morgan and Bradley James work beautifully together (as well as being easy on the eye!). Love it. And how could I forget Trueblood? (I'm a huge Eric fan). In terms of movies, I like slightly quirky (e.g. Being John Malkovich and Memento) and anything that either chokes me up with emotion or makes me smile (Cinema Paradiso, Chocolat and Amelie). The Shawshank Redemption is an oldie but still a fave, and yes, I loved the Lord of the Rings trilogy. I'm off to see We Bought a Zoo and Hugo soon – looking forward to both.
5) Is there anything you find particularly challenging in your writing?
Jennifer: Finding the time! Or to be more accurate, making writing a priority on a regular basis. I find that life gets in the way and it takes a conscious effort to set aside dedicated writing time, and to stick to the routine without feeling a sense of guilt. We working mums need our own time and space too, don't we? That's what I keep telling myself, anyway! The other challenge of writing for me is balancing all the different aspects of being a published author – it isn't just about writing the next book any longer, as you need to make time for keeping up with social media, blogging, promoting, and essentially maintaining a presence on the web. That is especially so for an ebook author like me, whose work only exists in a "virtual" bookstore.
6) Who or what has influenced your writing and why?
Jennifer: I think a lot of the early books I read, such as Mary Stewart's romantic suspense, Mills & Boon, Harlequin Intrigue, really focused my attention on the romance genre. My father passed away when I was a young teen, and I found escaping into romance books, or romance combined with suspense or intrigue, a great way to cope. Joining Romance Writers of Australia also helped influence my writing. This was way back in the early days of the organisation, when there were only a handful of members, but I faithfully read the newsletter every month (still do) and learned so many great things that I've been able to apply to my writing. One of the key things was the idea that you need to show, not tell, your story. "She felt sad" is not going to draw your reader in! I also think life experience shapes your writing. What I write today is definitely more mature than what I would have written 15 years ago. Hopefully that is a good thing!
7) Can you please tell us a little about the GODS OF LOVE series? When will the next book in the series be coming out?
Jennifer: Platinum Passion is the first in this series of novella-length stories about the erotes. There are many versions of the mythology surrounding the erotes, but the one that resonates best with me is that they were aspects of the primal god, Eros. As an erotic romance writer I was fascinated by the idea that the concept of desire is so complex that its various aspects could only be personified across several beings.
While the erotic author in me applauds the idea of the greatness of Eros, I also love the idea that his power, and therefore that of the erotes, stems primarily from a woman (yep!), the Greek goddess Aphrodite, born of the sea. She is purported to be the mother of the erotes. Her influence will be evident throughout the Gods of Love series. But my celebration of the ancient Greek gods of love begins in Platinum Passion with the gorgeous Pothos, god of sexual yearning.
I'm currently writing the second novella in the series, Aphrodite Calling. This one is about Himeros, god of sexual desire, and the woman he meets in modern-day Melbourne, Australia. I am aiming to have Gods of Love #2 out by the end of March.
8) What are some other projects you have in the works?
Jennifer: My next release will be in February. Educating Ethan, an older woman/younger man sensual romance, will be my first release with Breathless Press and I'm very excited about that one. As well as working on Aphrodite Calling (Gods of Love #2), I'm also developing the third Gods of Love story, about Anteros (god of requited/unrequited love). I've tentatively titled it, Sex Club Secrets. He's a real handful, that Anteros! I'm also developing a story that I hope to submit to my Educating Ethan publisher, Breathless Press. It's an erotic fairy tale based on the story of the princess and the pea. A woman with super-sensitive skin? Perfect fodder for an erotic romance writer! So there's plenty to keep me occupied in coming months.
9) What advice would you give to writers just starting out?
Jennifer: Finish that manuscript! And when you've finished it, start the next. Just keep going with your writing, because the more you do it, the more you learn. Join your local writer's group or use the internet to subscribe to blogs and newsletters that offer advice and support for writers. Find Yahoo groups that support new or unpublished authors. It's a constant learning process, and there are loads of fantastic people out there willing to share their knowledge. Also, write what you want to write, and look for a publisher that fits your writing, not the other way around. That way, you can be true to your own inner voice. Most of all, I would say never give up your dream.
10) Is there anything specific you would like to say to the readers out there?
Jennifer: I'm a reader too, and I say to all of us…happy reading! May 2012 bring many new and exciting stories into which we can all escape!
Book Monster Reviews/LITERAL ADDICTION: Jennifer , again, thank you so much for taking time out of your busy schedule to sit down and talk with us. We hope to have you on Book Monster and LITERAL ADDICTION again in the future.
Jennifer: It has been a pleasure, and I'd love to be back here again at Book Monster and Literal Addiction. I look forward to it!
If you'd like to learn more about Jennifer and her books you can check out her Website/Blog or follow her on Facebook, Twitter, Goodreads and Amazon.
CONTEST: Jennifer is giving away a digital copy of either Pandora's Gift or Platinum Passion (winner's choice) to a winner from Book Monster and a winner from LITERAL ADDICTION (over on their site).
TO ENTER: Make sure you are a member of the Book Monster Blog (by clicking on the “JOIN THIS SITE” button at the top left hand corner of blog page), and then post a comment on the interview with your email address.
*Any comments without an email address will NOT be entered into drawing.
Don't forget to drop by the LITERAL ADDICTION website (http://www.literaladdiction.com/) and follow the directions and links to enter their contest for an extra chance to win!!!