As part of Bookouture Xmas, I'm delighted to welcome Jenny Hale to the blog to chat books, writing and Christmas.
So grab a cuppa, put on some Christmas music and enjoy!
Christmas Wishes and Mistletoe Kisses is about single mother Abbey Fuller. She loves her family more than anything, but she’s had to put her dreams of being an interior designer on hold to raise her son Max. As a favor for a friend, she takes an interior design job where she meets Nick Sinclair. He needs his house decorated in time for his family’s festive visit – and money is no object. When Abbey pulls up to the huge Sinclair mansion, she has a feeling she might be out of her depth. And when she meets the gorgeous, brooding Nicholas Sinclair, she knows that she’s in real trouble… And so begins a little Christmas magic!
2. What was your favourite thing about writing a Christmas story?
Christmas is about family, love, and showing people we care about them—all the things that I like to put in my novels. There’s something so cozy about it, so romantic, that Christmas just fits for the type of story I like to write. It’s my favorite season.
3. How do you keep motivated to write a Christmas story when it's not Christmas time?
I don’t have any problem keeping motivated. Once I’m in my head, creating a story, the whole world outside fades away. I might put on Christmas music, but usually, I don’t need a thing.
4. In keeping with the Christmassy theme, how do you spend the festive season?
I spend it with my husband and my two boys. We make cookies for Santa and get up very early in the morning to find his loot. The rest of the day is spent lounging around the house.
5. You have such a wide range of brilliant stories - do you have a favourite?
My favorite used to be Love Me for Me. But that was until I wrote Christmas Wishes and Mistletoe Kisses. With this book, once I figured out who the characters were, I really connected with them and I could be a little more playful. I really enjoyed writing Nick and Abbey.
6. What was your journey to publication like? Any tips for aspiring authors?
I submitted stateside for a couple of years and I kept getting really good feedback so I continued to submit. I wondered what kind of feedback I’d get from the UK, so I submitted to Bookouture. I got a contract, and the rest is history.
7. Looking at your Twitter feed its clear you're busy - juggling a job, writing and raising a family! How do you find the time to write? Do you have a routine?
I don’t have a routine! (Eek!) Every day is different. I set a target of writing 1,000 words a day (or editing 4,000) and then it’s a mad scramble to reach that target. I rarely miss my goal.
8. When you're not busy doing all the above, how do you unwind and relax?
Writing is how I relax! (or reading) My favorite times are when the house is completely silent and I’m all by myself. The minute that happens (which is rare), I literally run for my computer.
9. What does it feel like to be a published author?
Surreal. I think the best way to capture the feeling is the thought that there’s a person somewhere, across the ocean from me, in another language, reading the words that were in my head, that I wrote while getting snack for my kids and doing laundry.
10. Do you have any plans for the next novel? Can you share anything about it?
It’s definitely at the beach—a summer book. I’m throwing around ideas at the moment. One idea has to do with a giant inn right on the water and sailboats…
That sounds fantastic, I can't wait to hear more! Thanks for coming on to the blog, Jenny.
Christmas Wishes and Mistletoe Kisses is out now
An uplifting, beautiful story about never letting go of your dreams, the special magic of a family Christmas… and the rush of falling in love under the mistletoe.
Single mother Abbey Fuller loves her family more than anything, and doesn’t regret for a moment having had to put her dreams of being an interior designer on hold. But with her son, Max, growing up, when a friend recommends her for a small design job she jumps at the chance. How hard can it be?
Nick Sinclair needs his house decorated in time for his family’s festive visit – and money is no object. What he doesn’t need is to be distracted from his multi-million dollar business – even if it is Christmas.
When Abbey pulls up to the huge Sinclair mansion, she has a feeling she might be out of her depth. And when she meets the gorgeous, brooding Nicholas Sinclair, she knows that she’s in real trouble…
With the snow falling all around, can Abbey take the chance to make her dreams of being a designer come true? And can she help Nick to finally enjoy the magic of Christmas?