Q&A With Jewel E Ann
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Q&A With Jewel E Ann
This week I have the honor of doing a Q&A with Jewel E Ann who’s the Wallstreet Journal and USA Today Bestselling author of romance. Some of her work is Look The Part, The Naked Fisherman, Transcend, Naked Love, A Place Without You, Perfectly Adequate, & What Lovers Do.
Q: What do you love the most about writing in the romance genre? When did you realize your calling to be an author?
A: It’s satisfying to write romance because it imparts a sense of hope and purpose. On a basic level, I believe most humans have the instinct to procreate, and therefore we are physically drawn to each other. Romance is the intimate side of love. It’s vulnerable and more complicated than other kinds of love, which makes writing it feel like solving a mystery of the heart.
Q: What’s your advice to anyone wanting to write a great romance?
A: Write what feels natural to you. Find your unique voice and own it. A great romance is more than a great idea; it’s your interpretation of the world—your hopes, dreams, and fears all woven into a “what if” scenario.
Q: If you were to write in another genre, which genre would it be and why?
A: I’d write women’s fiction. Romance is essentially under the umbrella of women’s fiction, but I’d write stories where romance is secondary. I have such a strong desire to tell “life stories” that make people think outside of their comfort zone. I’ve explored this with some of my books, such as For Lucy and Before Us.
Q: Is it fair to say that the characters and worlds within your stories are based off of actual places you’ve been to and people you know? I love it when authors can create worlds and people by using real places and people.
A: Most of my books are set in places I’ve visited or lived. However, I like using fictional towns, so I have more creative freedom to construct places that fit better with my imagination. My characters are rarely based on actual people I know, but they have traits and characteristics of either people in my life or people I have studied during research. And every heroine I write about carries at least one characteristic of myself.
Q: If you’re writing a new novel now, can you reveal any details?
A: I have two projects in progress. One WIP is an expansion of a novella I wrote for a foreign publisher. It’s challenging to take a short, face-paced story and convert it into a full-length novel, but it’s been rewarding. The novella was a fun read leaning toward a rom-com. The full-length story will show so much character growth and explore a more serious topic. I love where it’s going.
My other WIP is the final book in my Jack & Jill Series. I’m writing it so it can be read as a standalone, but for readers who read my original trilogy and/or Out of Love, it will be extra special.
Q: Does Hollywood have the rights to your novels? Hollywood is long overdue for creativity. Great books would do greatly for original content.
A: I have mixed feelings about Hollywood and book-to-screen adaptations. From the standpoint of sales and career advancement, I think it’s a great opportunity. However, I’m very attached to my stories, and I fear some of the emotional impacts could get “lost in translation.” I do agree that books are still a largely untapped goldmine when it comes to films.
Q: What’s your advice to new authors on how to deal with negative reviews, online trolls & family and friends who aren’t supportive of their writing goals
A: This is hard advice to give. Personally, I can’t be authentic in my storytelling AND give credence to the opinions of others. Writing is an art, and art is subjective (especially fiction). The second I take other people’s opinions to heart, I compromise my story. It becomes less authentic. The flurry of opinions and loud voices of critics stifles my creativity. However, I realize some writers crave feedback. Some writers use negative reviews to “improve” their writing. I think every writer should constantly strive to improve one’s craft, but I don’t think social media or opinionated family and friends are the best sources. I think art in any form is a talent. Not everyone can do everything, no matter how much time and effort is invested. You need a natural foundation to build upon. The best source of writing feedback is a good editing team. They will help polish your story while preserving your authentic voice.
Q: If you deal with writer’s block, what advice do you give to those who deal with the same problem?
A: I first ask myself why I’m having writer’s block. Am I distracted with life? Have I let other voices into my head, making me doubt my writing? Am I not in love with the story? It’s okay to take a step back and not write. I know a lot of seasoned writers stress the importance of writing every single day. I don’t. I write when I’m inspired. I don’t force my way through and settle for anything less than my best. Take a walk. Take a vacation. Read. Listen to music. Wait until the characters start talking to you again.