This week on Writing Inspirations I welcome the lovely Jennie Jones. Jennie and I met a couple of years ago at the Romance Writers of Australia Conference and share a love of writing, good wine and horses.
Jennie writes Rural Romance and her latest novel, The House At the End Of The Street (released August 1st) is rocketing up the book charts.
Bestselling Jennie Jones takes us back to Swallow’s Fall: Gemma has a burning need to stay and make a home. All Josh has ever wanted is to get out. Now he has the chance, and all he needs to do is tie up a few loose ends…
Gemma Munroe loves hard, laughs hard and plays hard. Or at least she did before today. Her dream is finally within her grasp – owning the toy shop in Swallow’s Fall and establishing herself permanently. Only one person has the power to get in her way: Josh Rutherford – the love of her life who kissed her and left her ten years ago is coming home.
Josh will be in town for only five days. He’ll finally sever the ties to a youth filled with poverty by selling the properties that are now his. He’s returning healthy, wealthy and emotionally stable, and then he’ll leave forever. It’s all in the plan. Except for Gem. He never forgot her, but he definitely forgot the effect she has on him. Now she’s got problems, and he can’t seem to leave without trying to help her solve them.
The town itself has its own plans: Gemma and Josh are thrown together in Speed-Date fiascos, kissing experiments, bar fights, and an issue with the North Star – Josh’s compass and the road to his next adventure. Seven weeks later Josh is still in town. Gem has to get through her best friends’ wedding and Josh has to get over Gem. Because he’s not staying. Is he?
It’s great to have Jenny back on Flying Pony talking about her writing inspirations. We’d love to you to share your own inspirations – reading, writing or otherwise in the comments section.
- What – or who – first inspired you to write?
I’ve always been an avid reader whether it was Mills & Boon or Anna Karenina and would be taken away in the story, playing the scenes in my head and putting myself in the situations the characters were in. But strangely, I think it was my wish from a young age to be an actor (and play all those roles I’d read about on stage), and fulfilling that dream, that led me to write. Once I gave up the theatre as a professional actor due to marriage and home duties and childcare, I missed the artistic energy and soul-satisfying enjoyment of “becoming someone else”. Writing was the only avenue I considered and Romance was the only genre I felt would fulfill my love of romance and drama.
- Is there a place and time of day when you feel most inspired?
5 am to 8am. It’s still dark, it’s peaceful, my mind is clear and not filled to the brim with on-the-go daily chores and things to be done for others. It’s the perfect time to create as the sun rises. Woe betides anyone who interrupts me. This time period can last until 10 am some days, and those are the best days. If I’m still in my pyjamas at 10am – it’s been a great 5 hours.
- When you’re feeling uninspired what sort of creative activities help you get your writing mojo back?
I turn to research. It never ceases to amaze me how much plot substance and character development can be gained from research of sometimes the simplest things – and therefore storylines form and a desire to put words onto the page returns. It doesn’t always work though, and I’m not very good at pulling myself out of the hole, but give it a day or two and I’m usually back at it. (I agree Jennie – research is a great way to generate new plot ideas 🙂
- Can you tell us about one of your characters (current or past) who has been inspired by a real person or a situation in one of your stories that was inspired by a real life event?
I haven’t used anyone like this in a book. Not from my past anyway, but I can tell you about a woman I met on a bus once, and one day she’s going to be in a book. I was in drama school in London, so only just turned 20. Sitting on the top deck of a double decker I got into conversation with the older lady next to me. We talked about London and the buildings and then she told me about her life during WWII. It was fascinating, but the words that stuck with me (and gave me such a clear picture) were: “It seems odd to say this, but it was the best time of my life.” I still get goose bumps when I think about this. The sadness, the horror and the spirit! Oh, the spirit must have been tremendously deep during that time. And this lady would have been a young woman of about 20 at the start of the war. She’d obviously been shown a whole new world where women were useful and needed for more than just home duties. I also imagine her at dances, drawing stocking seams on her legs, and having fun flirting and partying with the army boys. Or maybe the flyboys.
- What was the inspiration for your current book?
A fictional character called Grandy. He was in book #1 of the series and I loved him so much I wished he were real, and perhaps my mentor in life. He’s in books #2 and #3 too. Sadly, he couldn’t make it to book #4 because he was 95 in book #3 and it wasn’t feasible to still have him around. But his spirit remains and he’s not only mentioned in the last book, he’s a main player in one of the secrets nobody knew was a secret. So Grandy helped me plot the book and round off everything (pretty much everything) that had happened throughout the series.
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