A pleasure to meet the co-author of Only One Woman… it’s Christina Jones who is just as lovely as Jane.
Hello nice to meet you! Tell us a bit about you where are you from and other than writing what else do you enjoy?
Hello Kim, and it’s lovely to be here – thank you so much for inviting me. I live in the UK, in a small market town, 5 miles south of Oxford. The river Thames runs through the town which dates back to the 11th century and it’s very beautiful… I’m a bit of a mad cat lady in my spare time – I’m seriously involved in all sorts of animal welfare and rescue organisations, I also love steam trains, well, all trains really – and all things steam driven… and fairgrounds…and fireworks… And I read an awful lot, and I love gardening and walking and swimming and music…
How did you start writing? What was your inspiration to create?
I started writing for myself before I started school. I told myself stories and wrote them down – I thought everyone did it! My mum and dad were great readers and also magical storytellers – so I guess it was just instinctive to write make-believe. I had my first short story published when I was 14 and just carried on from there having stories published regularly in the teenage magazines (I also did pop/rock interviews for the teen mags while I was still at school) and then later, sold stories and serials to the women’s magazines, and amusing articles to newspapers. Again, I didn’t think this was odd – I thought writing was like talking – sort of natural…
Kim: Oh wow 14, that’s such an achievement at a young age. Well done.
Who is your favourite author, is there anyone out there that inspires you?
I can’t pick just one! Classically it has to be Dickens… again, my parents had all the Dickens books in the bookcase at home and I just read them – I was too young to appreciate them then but in later years I just loved the huge cast-lists, the humour, the quirky names, and the fact that they were all so different. Then Agatha Christie – again – I read her as a child because my mum did, and enjoyed them all many, many times over since I’ve grown up. And now I suppose, of all the modern authors, it’s Peter Robinson and Dick/Felix Francis… And my inspiration? Enid Blyton as a child! I loved – and still do – her stories and I so wanted to be her when I was a kid…..
What genre do you enjoy reading?
I read thrillers, crime and police procedurals – I love the convoluted plots and the vicarious thrills and shivers – however, I don’t like anything too grisly or gory…
Have you ever thought about writing in a different genre? If you could what genre would you like to dabble in?
I’d love to dabble in crime! Love it! Would love to be clever enough to work out a who-dunnit and why they dunnit and not give the game away until the end. Sadly, I’ve tried it and I’m rubbish! Total rubbish! So all crime and thriller writers have my utmost admiration.
Kim: *smiles* gee thanks. But ya know the trick could be just to have the ‘who-dun-it’ in your head, then, and lead everyone up the garden path on another route. Like telling the story with a few surprises or even red herrings. Give it another go.
What has been your most proud moment as an author?
Seeing my first book – Going the Distance – on face-out shelves and in best-seller charts in every book store in the UK. It was very exciting – but it didn’t feel real. I did TV and radio and all sorts of media interviews about it – and it was like I was talking about someone else. Really weird. But I was very proud none-the-less. I’ve got better about being a published author since then…
Kim: TV and radio, impressive!
Was there ever a time you wanted to pick up your laptop, and then launch it out the window with frustration?
Too many times to list!
Are you a “plotter” or a fly by the seat of your pants “pantster” as a writer?
Definitely a pantster. I have a vague idea about my plot… definitely have a theme… know my main characters… then I just write. I make it all up as I go along. I have no idea how – it just happens… like magic…
Every writer has a word(s) that they always slip up on when they write, then slap their forehead when they notice their typo. For me it’s further and farther exit or exists- but hey I’m over it now. Do you have a word (s) that make you go blah! Go away not another damn typo.
Oooh yes – I never know how to spell restaurant, or ghost, or guarantee – thank the lord for the spellchecker.
Kim: I can’t actually spell guarantee without checking either, it always looks wrong to me.
What three tips would you give any aspiring writer?
- Read – anything and everything – keep reading
- Write your own story – don’t follow trends
- Don’t worry about “writing rules” – there are no rules – write the story only you can tell, the only way you can tell it.
Kim: I like the last point a lot.
What are you working on now? What will you release next?
The new book is Only One Woman – co-authored with my life-long friend Jane Risdon. We’ve wanted to write together for years – but I write fluffy rom-com and she writes gritty crime – so the subject matter was always going to be tricky…. Then we decided we’d write a novel based in the 60s, with the 60s music screen as a background, and throw in fashion and world events and love and laughter and a few tears as well… and Only One Woman was born – and is out on November 23rd and we’re so excited!!!
Kim: it really does sound like my kinda story, the era and music. I need to check this out I have a review copy tucked away. Sometimes when you write a different genre to your co-author the fusion really works. My co-author Didi Oviatt can write all kinds of cool sci-fi, paranormal ,sciency stuff, which I can’t write for shit ( if I’m honest). Somehow we got a fantasy genre story done, I felt pretty proud. When there are differences it can really make a good mix with different skills
So… where can we get your books?
Only One Woman is going to be published first as an e-book on kindle, kobo – and most other e-devices – so available at Amazon worldwide, Kobo etc etc. There will also be an amazon paperback available. However, it will appear as a mass market paperback for shops etc in May 2018.
Does a big ego help or hurt writers?
I think it must depend on the type of writer. I’m very shy so I never tell people I write because it sounds like showing off… if I had a big ego I’d probably sell more books but have fewer friends.
Kim: LOL, hmmm you have a good point. Maybe just good promo rather than a big ego is a better way.
Do you read your book reviews? How do you deal with bad or good ones?
I always read them – I preen a bit over the good ones, but only in private…. And I’d like to say I handled the bad ones well – but of course I don’t… however, I’m actually glad in these times of zillions of books being out there, that someone has taken the time to review one of mine at all.
Kim: Yes, that’s a good way to look at.
How long on average does it take you to write a book?
A normal 100,000 word novel takes me between 6 and 8 weeks as long as life is bobbing along on an even keel. I usually allow 4 months because something is bound to interrupt the process…
Kim: WHAT!?! That’s fast!
What’s your favourite movie?
Rear Window – the original with James Stewart and Grace Kelly – it has absolutely everything…
What’s your favourite book and why?
I know this will sound odd – but it’s a 1940s book, long out of print, called Then A Soldier… It’s about three young men, from completely different backgrounds, called up to fight in World War II. I first read it when I was about 10 – it was just one of the books on the bookshelves at home… and it was the first time that I actually walked into the pages of a book and lived the story. It wasn’t aimed at children and certainly not girls, but I loved it – I loved all three “heroes”, loved their back-stories, loved the camaraderie – everything… I knew nothing about the war or the army – but it just entranced me and it ended happily, too. I read it at least once a year even now and can probably quote it from memory.
What music do you like?
Everything really – from popular classical, through big bands, pop, rock – anything – except – deep breath – rap and the plethora of solo boys with or without badly-played guitars who wail…
Pick one a one time “Bestselling author” or an author with longevity what would you rather?
“Author with longevity” every time….
Thanks Kim – this has been so much fun. Cxxx
Kim: You’re very welcome.
ONLY ONE WOMAN: http://amzn.to/2xlUldr