My visitor today comes from Down Under – my first author visit from Australia, and I’m very excited! I’ve made us the usual brew and would have loved to get Jennie Jones some Tim Tams (a delicious Australian biscuit which some friends once brought me back from Brisbane) but sadly they’re not available in the UK. So instead, I’ve bought us a packet of Penguins and hope Jennie Jones will find them a good substitute :) (The rival merits of these two biscuits are discussed in depth on the brilliantly named website A Nice Cup of Tea and a Sit Down.)
I hope you’re not suffering from jet-lag, Jennie. Welcome to the northern hemisphere!
Whereabouts in Australia do you live, Jennie? I live in Perth, Western Australia (but I was born and brought up in Wrexham, North Wales then moved to London where I went to drama school, then met a rugby loving New Zealander in a pub in Hammersmith, and eventually moved to NZ and then on to Australia – phew!)
My daughter’s working in NZ at the moment, with her rugby-loving boyfriend. A great country for rugby. They’ve had many a trip to watch the Wellington Warriors!
Where is your favourite place in the world? Wales. Probably because I miss it and always will.
I love Wales, too, Jennie, and holidayed every year on the Lleyn peninsula. Great memories, and a beautiful country.
Being a writer is a great job. What’s the worst job you’ve ever had? I’m laughing as I recall the most memorable of two of the worst jobs I had. I was at drama school and in between term times had to get a job. One was as a washer-upper in a small take-away café. I was up to my elbows in suds all day but got to sample their hamburgers, so it really wasn’t half bad. The other was as a department store demonstrator for a new quirky toy (remember, we’re talking years ago!) called George. George was a yellow, voice-activated car. It was the most embarrassing of jobs. “Come on, George, turn left. Turn right. Stop George.” I’m sure everyone working in the department store wanted me to give up and go home. But I couldn’t afford to, so I kept George the yellow car motivated and moving for two weeks. I hope I never see him again … even in my nightmares.
That’s made me laugh as well – but I bet it wasn’t funny at the time!
What book do you wish you’d written? Tied to the Tracks by Sara Donati (of the Into The Wilderness historical series fame – but this is one of her modern-day stories).
What an interesting choice! I’ve never read any Sara Donati, but will check out her books :)
What’s your favourite song? Totally depends on my mood. At the moment of answering your questions, let’s say … “I’ll go my way by myself” sung by Fred Astaire in the movie The Bandwagon.
Oh I just love Fred Astaire!
If you could meet anyone in the world, dead or alive, who would it be and what would you say to them? I’d dearly love to sit with my Nan again and ask her so many questions. I took her name, Jennie Jones, and hope she’s proud of what I’ve done in my writing life but I have so many memories of her taking me around the town I grew up in and wish I could speak to her now, as a woman to a woman.
What’s your happiest childhood memory? Christmas. I loved the whole Christmas Eve thing. Having to walk into town in the snow to shop for the forgotten cream, or cucumber that was needed for lunch or late afternoon tea. Watching all the Christmas movies on the television. The black and white ones and the colour ones. Waking up early on Christmas morning and creeping downstairs to see what Santa had left for us. And opening the wrapped presents. I loved the tree, the lights, the feel of Christmas. Everything.
If you had to marry a fictional character, from film, television, or books, who would it be? Paul Newman. As a teenager I just loved him to bits and pieces even though he was older than I was. Today, I’d say Channing Tatum or Ryan Reynolds (and I’m older than them – by yards! So I’m dreaming … but hey, I write romantic fiction so who’s to say I can’t dream?)
I love Paul Newman. *sigh* What a great guy.
What’s the most important lesson life has taught you? Work for it and you might just get it.
And finally, please tell us about your latest book, where we can find it, and where we can find your blog/website
My debut novel is The House on Burra Burra Lane. I was given a brilliant Report by the RNA New Writers Scheme and after I’d adhered to everything in the report and made my changes to the manuscript it finaled in two competitions, including Choc Lit Search for an Australian Star competition and was accepted for publication by Harlequin Australia’s digital-first imprint Escape Publishing for a June 2013 release. It would not have seen the light of day if not for my NWS report. I will be forever grateful to RNA and my ‘reader’. In January 2014 Harlequin Mira (Australia) sent my novel to paperback. I now have four more stories in this series to go. Two are written and I’m hoping will be out by the end of 2014, and the other two are underway.
All Where to Buy links for The House on Burra Burra Lane can be found at Escape Publishing, including Amazon US and Amazon UK
(I’m afraid the paperback is only on sale in Australia and New Zealand but if anyone would like to purchase the paperback, I’m happy to send you one via mail. Contact me via my website.)
And you can find me on my website Jennie Jones Romance or on Facebook at Jennie Jones, Romance Author
14 thoughts on “Good to meet you…author Jennie Jones”
Aloha! (Actually I’m a Kiwi, but now a hybrid American as well) :-) What a great interview. Very fun and lively. I love North Wales, being a New Zealander, and Fred Astaire. Can’t stand rugby though. LOL. (I know, sacrilege LOL) I love the title of the book too and the cover is so alive! Fantastic. Wishing you all the best Jennie Jones.
Aloha Meg! I struggle to understand the rules of rugby – a terrible confession from someone who lives in the north of England! I enjoy watching the players, though! :) I loved the cover of Jennie’s book, too. Lovely heroine! Thanks so much for your comment!
Hi Meg – lovely to meet you on Helena’s blog! You don’t care for rugby? Well, don’t tell anyone but I had to be persuaded into ‘loving’ it too :)
Aloha Helena and Jennie. Lol. You’re safe then if you’ve learnt to love rugby. I’m in danger of having my passport taken off me if they ever find out I can’t stand it. :-) it’s practically a religion in Wales and New Zealand. Lol.
Nice to meet you all. Aloha Meg. :-)
Lovely to meet you, Jennie – your book sounds lovely. Isn’t the RNA NW Scheme great!
It’s a brilliant scheme, Ros, and there are a lot of us graduates this year. Jennie’s book sounds fab! Thanks for coming!
Rosgemmel – it’s a fantastic organisation and a brilliant, worthy scheme. Thanks for sharing your comment – it means so much!
I enjoyed the interview, Helena and Jennie. I have a friend in Wales who posts the most beautiful pictures. I’d love to visit there, but, unfortunately, my travelling days were over long ago.
Your book sounds very interesting. Best wishes and lots of luck with your writing.
Wales really is a beautiful country, Leona. The weather’s not always so good, though, sadly, as it rains a lot, even by UK standards! But the mountains and the coast are gorgeous. The next time I go I’ll put some photos up on FB. Thanks very much for your lovely comment!
Thank you so much Leona! What lovely words. I keep looking at beautiful pictures of Wales too :)
Hey, Helena, and nice to meet you Jennie. I love the story of using your grandmother’s name. I’m sure she knows and is super proud. I have a friend who loves Wales. She goes from the states once a year to visit friends she made when she worked there for two years. She can even talk the talk. It’s quite fun. Good luck with this book and your writing.
Welsh is a beautiful language to listen to, Marsha. Here’s a male voice choir singing their national anthem in Welsh: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zn10tbDA_l4 Sends shivers down your spine! Thanks for coming, and for your lovely comment
OK Helena – now I’ve got tears in my eyes! Beautiful rendition … My nan (the original Jennie Jones) wrote out the words for me on a sheet of writing paper when I was a little girl. I still have it. Lovely, lovely, lovely …
Hi marsharwest! Lovely of you to take the time to comment. Yes, me and nan were close. I can still talk some of the talk in Wales, but not very much I’m sorry to say! Thanks for the luck wishes!