Author Spotlight

 

Recently, I had the opportunity to chat with a very talented author.  So, without further delay let’s hear from

Jenny Gilliam

It sounds like you have always been a writer. When did you start focusing on getting published?
I started pursuing publication a little over two years ago when I joined RWA and my local RWA chapter. I’d written for years and always wanted to be a published author, but I never actually finished anything until recently.

Tell us what makes Jenny tick.
Oh, boy. How long do you have? Love. Love is what makes me tick. Well, that and coffee. J Love for my husband, my children, my family, coffee. It’s what keeps me going and helps me write. The love part. Well, the coffee, too.

How do your stories develop? Is it with a character, a scene, a location, or in an entirely different way?
It really depends on the story. Often times, characters start rambling in my mind, or I get a snippet of a scene or plot and I go from there. I have a little notebook I keep in my purse where I write down ideas when the muse of inspiration hits.

Tell us some of your favorites…foods, movies, music, authors, books, colors, and any others you want to share?
I love potatoes in any way, shape or form (except potato salad). Mostly, I love French fries. I’m a huge fan of gangster movies: The Godfather Trilogy, Casino, Goodfellas, The Departed. Martin Scorscese is my own personal god. I love alternative rock and country. A bit of an eclectic mix, I know. Country music always has a story to tell, which is why I adore it.

My favorite authors are Rachel Gibson, Jonathan Kellerman, Dean Koontz, Susan Elizabeth Phillips and Sherillyn Kenyon. I love so many books, it would be difficult for me to choose one, although See Jane Score by Rachel Gibson is one of my all-time favs.

If you could bring one of your characters or any character to life, who would it be and why?
I try (‘try’ being the operative word) to get up before the fam every morning at 5. I write for about an hour before the Internet beckons. Then I have to get the kids up and ready, and I write again in between “Mommy, I want (insert random snack or request here),” from my two-year-old while my daughter is in kindergarten. If the two-year-old decides to take a nap, I write again, and then if I’m not completely exhausted by the end of the night, I write after the kids go to bed.

Do you enjoy hearing from your readers and what is the best way to contact you?
I love hearing from my readers. I can be reached at jenny@jennygilliam.com. I’m starting a quarterly newsletter, so those readers who want to receive it can shoot me an email, as well.

Do you have any advice for aspiring writers?  What was the best piece of advice that you received when you were starting out?
Keep writing no matter what. Even if you only write a sentence one day and two pages the next, keep writing! It’s the only way you’ll ever finish. Also, joining a local writer’s group, such as your local RWA chapter and gleaning whatever information relevant to the craft is a great help. It’s also a good way to network and meet other writers/authors.

How do you promote your work?
To be honest, I’ve been promoting so much, I feel like my own pimp. LOL. I started by joining loops or listservs geared toward romance writing such as Chatting With Joyfully Reviewed. I’m getting to know other writers online. I’ve also requested author interviews and spotlights. I’ve done 4 so far. So, basically, I just put myself out there. I’ve also created business cards that I hand out at any available opportunity and roped my relatives into giving them out, too.

How would you spend a perfect day?
Honestly? Writing. And then shopping.

Are your friends and family your greatest supporters?  Do they read your work?
Absolutely. My family is uber supportive of my writing career. One of my mother-in-laws reads everything I write before I submit. She’s my ‘first reader.’ I thought I would have to guilt them into buying my work, but they all jumped on board and did the honors themselves. I’m lucky to have such a supportive crew.

Do you believe in happily ever after and have you found yours?
I am a full believer in the HAP (happily-ever-after). What’s the point without it? Love is a powerful, all-consuming emotion. It moves mountains. I’m incredibly blessed to have found my own hero. We’ll be celebrating our tenth anniversary next year. He’s my rock. I’d be lost in this world without him.

When writing do you plan the story out before beginning or does it develop as you write?
Both. I write a short outline, but usually the characters change their minds and declare mutiny on said outline. I end up going where the characters go since they lead the story.

What is your guilty pleasure?
Teehee. Venti 3 shot Carmel Macchiato from Starbucks. Yum!

Is there anything else you would like to share with us?  Any current or upcoming releases?
I have two releases coming soon; The Truth About Roxy, from The Wild Rose Press, and Letting Luce, from Amira Press. Here’s a blurb from each:

The Truth About Roxy:

Roxy Palmer is a walking, breathing cliché. And darned tired of it.

Working as the assistant librarian in her small, Southern home town, Roxy also anonymously pens the local love column, Ask Paula Rockwell—Thorton, Georgia's answer to Dear Abby.

But when the door leading to Roxy's lifetime dream is slammed in her face by one of the good ol' boys, Roxy brings out the big guns--and turns the genteel town upside down with her racier, feminist, home-wrecking new format.

Paula Rockwell is making Sheriff Noah Kennedy's life crazy. He's got angry husbands lined around the block, demanding the cancellation of the column, fights breaking out and women catching their boyfriends' trucks on fire. If he ever gets his hands on that woman…

But he's got his hands full of Roxy at the moment, and if he ever discovers the truth about Roxy, all hell will break loose.

Letting Luce:

When Lucy Hollister tried to drop-kick her personal computer out her second-story window, she had no idea it would eventually lead to the seduction of her very hot, very yummy best friend, Rory Carlisle.

After all, she’s the queen of passivity, and he’s the reining king of the non-committed relationship. When a sexy online flirtation leads the couple into some steamy situations, Rory realizes that his cute best friend is letting loose—in the best possible way.

Can this couple get past old hurts and guarded hearts to embrace the passionate love that awaits?

Thanks for having me!

Jenny Gilliam

 

 

     

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