People often ask me about my writing. Which is good, you know, me being a writer and all because it would be bizarre if I was, oh, I dunno, a tax inspector or something. But I’m not, so it’s fine and I like to encourage a ‘stop me and buy one’ approach to my books, so I will talk about my writing all day, since talking about it means I don’t actually have to do it.
And one of the things they most often ask me is – when do you find time to write? Well, this is the question they ask after they’ve asked if I’m a millionaire, if I know JK Rowling and if I can get them a book deal for their three page pamphlet on the history of their grandfather’s wooden leg. Since it would be churlish to walk away at this point (besides, I’ve still got a book to sell), I usually smile and answer the question – when do I find time?
Between the day job and the five kids and the two dogs and the four cats and my poor grimly-smiling husband and the dust and the laundry, I managed to turn out "Please Don’t Stop the Music" in around nine months. [And for a chance to win a copy, carry on reading to the end!].
|Released Feb 2011|
It’s amazing how much time I used to spend, staring at the corner of the living room with my eyes open and my brain in neutral, and sometimes the set was even switched on. So, by keeping away from the moving pictures and using the time to write instead, I got my tale of Jemima and her secrets and Ben and his enigmatic hidden identity onto paper. Their story became more real to me than anything I might see on the TV and as I got more and more involved in their interactions I found that I didn’t miss watching television at all. Except, maybe Doctor Who. And Merlin. And Big Bang Theory – all right, I missed some of it.
But the freedom it gave me, not being tied to the screen (although I did sneakily iPlayer a few episodes of the above...ow, yes, all right, I watched all Doctor Who, now stop twisting my arm) meant that my book got written, not left half-finished locked in my laptop whilst I spent every evening flipping channels and moaning about that book ‘I always meant to write’.
Of course, when I typed the words ‘The End’ and looked up from my laptop, I realised that I hadn’t only stopped watching television, I’d also stopped dusting, ironing and cooking and my entire family, plus dogs, were sitting at my feet hopelessly begging for a square meal. But they’ll get over it. Eventually.
And barely had I started to watch the new series of ‘Strictly Come Dine with Me Factor’, than I felt a new book coming on...
Publishers Choc Lit are offering Strictly Writing readers the chance to win a copy of Jane's book, "Please Don't Stop The Music". All you have to do when you leave your comment is tell us who your favourite rock star is and why, and we'll announce the winner after the weekend.
Jemima Hutton is determined to build a successful new life and keep her past a dark secret. Trouble is, her jewellery business looks set to fail - until enigmatic Ben Davies offers to stock her handmade belt buckles in his guitar shop and things start looking up, on all fronts. But Ben has secrets too. When Jemima finds out he used to be the front man of hugely successful Indie rock band Willow Down, she wants to know more. Why did he desert the band on their US tour? Why is he now a semi-recluse? And the curiosity is mutual - which means that her own secret is no longer safe ...
You can find Jane here: