Q&A With Jenny Colgan

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Q&A With Jenny Colgan 

This afternoon New York Times Bestselling author Jenny Colgan had gotten back to me via instagram message agreeing to do this Q&A with me. Jenny Colgan has written many novels, some of which are “Rules at the School by the Sea,” “The Café by the Sea,” “Little Beach Street Bakery,” and my personal favorite “The Bookshop on the Corner”.  For science fiction lovers she has written for the popular show Doctor Who. 


Q: So Jenny when did you realize your calling was to be an author? 


A: Oh I wouldn’t call it anything as fancy as that! I just loved to read, was a massive bookworm. I didn’t think of it as a job anybody could do, especially not people from small Scottish towns. Then Bridget Jones and Marian Keyes happened in the 1990s and it was a real, ‘well, why not?’ moment. I got very lucky with my timing!


Q: If you had to choose, which book would you say was your favorite one you wrote and why?


A: I think An Island Wedding is great, I love it. If you’ve been following the whole series, it should, hopefully, be a really really emotional close to it. Because I’d been writing these people for so long I know them really well, plus writing about weddings is always fun. 


Q: What advice do you give to anyone wanting to write, especially romantic comedies like you do? What advice do you give to anyone struggling with writers block? 


A: There’s no such thing as writer’s block really, you want to do it or you don’t. It’s not easy for anybody. The only solution to it is to stick your bum to your chair. The biggest and most important thing is to get the words down. It doesn’t matter if they’re good words. Terrible words at the first draft stage are absolutely fine, you go back and fix them later. They just have to be there. Don’t compare your own first efforts with other people’s finished work, editing is a huge part of the journey. But first you need something to edit!


Q: Do you still live in Scotland or England? If you do, do you live in the countryside or in town?  From the pictures I’ve seen, both countries are beautiful. 


A: I live in Scotland and we are lucky enough to live between the city and the countryside; both are absolutely beautiful. I do know how lucky we are. 


Q: Does Hollywood or any film studio in the UK have the rights to your novels? I would be shocked if they did not. I would love to see “The Bookshop on the Corner,” a cute romantic comedy. 


A: Yeah we sell rights all the time but they never get round to making stuff! One of these days. I live in hope but I never dwell on it. I think it would be cool to have something made in a foreign language. My friend Mike Gayle had a Bollywood musical made of one of his novels how awesome is that? 500 Miles in its French translation is ‘1000 km’ ; I’d love to have a chic French comedy from one of my novels. 


Q: Are you writing a new novel now? If so, can you spoil it a little bit? 


A: I have just finished a novel about a pilot who crashes on an (almost) uninhabited island in Scotland; that’s a lot of fun. And I’m about to start another Edinburgh bookshop novel which I’m really looking forward to.