Our guest today on the blog, is the talented and prolific, Jenny Kane. Jenny is the author the contemporary romance Another Glass of Champagne, (Accent Press, 2016), Christmas at the Castle (Accent Press, 2015), the bestselling novel Abi’s House (Accent Press, 2015), the modern/medieval time slip novel Romancing Robin Hood (Accent Press, 2014), the bestselling novel Another Cup of Coffee (Accent Press, 2013), and its novella length sequels Another Cup of Christmas (Accent Press, 2013), and Christmas in the Cotswolds (Accent, 2014).
Jenny’s fifth full length romance novel, Abi’s Neighbour, will be published in June 2017.
Jenny is also the author of quirky children’s picture books There’s a Cow in the Flat (Hushpuppy, 2014) and Ben’s Biscuit Tin (Hushpuppy, 2015).
Welcome to the Write Romantics, Jenny! Thanks for agreeing to submit to our interview questions and now over to you…
What has surprised you most about being published and has it lived up to the dream?
It is twelve years since I had my first short story taken by a publisher, and I still can’t believe my luck. I’ve worked with many different publishers since then, and although I’d be kidding myself if I said there have never been frustrations alongside the joys, on the whole it has been fantastic!
To be able to get up every morning and make things up for the entire day- and actually get paid for going so…that is a dream come true!
Can you tell us a bit about the plot for your latest novel?
My latest novel, The Outlaw’s Ransom, is a little bit of a departure from my usual romantic comedy/friendship style fiction. Although it still contains a romantic tale, it is largely a medieval murder mystery.
I’ve been a lover of all things medieval from the first time I clapped eyes on an episode of Robin of Sherwood on the television back in the 1980’s. Since then, I’ve had a fascination with the era- especially the thirteenth and fourteenth centuries- that has never waned. It was this interest that led me to write The Outlaw’s Ransom.
The first in an exciting new series by acclaimed author Jenny Kane writing as Jennifer Ash.
When craftsman’s daughter Mathilda is kidnapped by the notorious Folville brothers, as punishment for her father’s debts, she fears for her life. Although of noble birth, the Folvilles are infamous throughout the county for disregarding the law – and for using any means necessary to deliver their brand of ‘justice’.
Mathilda must prove her worth to the Folvilles in order to win her freedom. To do so she must go against her instincts and, disguised as the paramour of the enigmatic Robert de Folville, undertake a mission that will take her far from home and put her life in the hands of a dangerous brigand – and that’s just the start of things…
A thrilling tale of medieval mystery and romance – and with a nod to the tales of Robin Hood – The Outlaw’s Ransom is perfect for fans of C.J. Sansom and Jean Plaidy.
I loved creating the character of Mathilda of Twyford. I have to confess however, that The Outlaw’s Ransom is not where Mathilda first saw life. The story of The Outlaw’s Ransom appears in a shorter form within my timeslip novel, Romancing Robin Hood (written as Jenny Kane). It was the popularity of the medieval part of that novel that led to The Outlaw’s Ransom– and to its sequel, The Winter Outlaw, which will be published in November 2017.
Who was your first hero and how do you think he’s influenced your writing, if at all?
It might not surprise you, in light of my previous answer, that my first hero was Robin Hood- and indeed- whoever it was who first wrote his stories back in the (I believe) thirteenth century. The love of the ballads led me to research a PhD on the subject of medieval literature and crime- it was completing my doctorate that taught me how to write.
Do you think it’s true that you should ‘write what you know’ and, if so, to what extent have your experiences influenced your writing?
I am guilty of overusing my life experiences within my work. The entire Another Cup of… series (Another Cup of Coffee, Another Cup of Christmas, Christmas in the Cotswolds, Christmas at the Castle and Another Glass of Champagne), is based on my own experiences of life as a student, a mother, a frequenter of coffee shops, and a writer. My Cornish romance, Abi’s House, is set in the Penzance and Sennon Cove area of the country, where my grandparents lived, and where I spent much of my childhood. Even Romancing Robin Hood, which is part set in the modern era and part in the Fourteenth century, steals from my own life. It features a medieval history tutor based at the University of Leicester. I wonder if you can guess what I used to do for a living- and where?
What are you working on at the moment?
I have three projects on the go at the moment. I am double checking the edits of the sequel to Abi’s House- Abi’s Neighbour– which will be out in May. I’m also editing my second Jennifer Ash book, The Winter Outlaw. Meanwhile, I am working on the promotion of my latest Kay Jaybee novella (erotica), Wednesday on Thursday. Once all that is sorted, I have a brand new novel lined up in my head, ready to be dashed out onto the computer before another idea takes hold.
We know you write both romance/women’s fiction and erotica under a different pen name. Do you ever think about writing in a different genre, if so, what would you choose?
As well as my erotica (Kay Jaybee), and my historical fiction (Jennifer Ash), I also write children’s picture books. I keep the name Jenny Kane for those- anymore many pen names and I’ll start to forget who I am!
If I branched out further I’d have a go at a thriller- or maybe some horror.
If you could have three writing-related wishes, what would they be?
That’s a tricky one- but here goes….
I’d love to get an advance for my work.
To have all my books available in paperback as well as on Kindle/download.
And this really is wishful thinking – to have one of my novels made into a film.
Many thanks for welcoming me to your site today Jo, and for asking such great questions.
If you’d like to read my first medieval mystery, then The Outlaw’s Ransom is available for your Kindle here –
Find out more about Jenny at the links below –
Keep your eye on Jenny’s blog at www.jennykane.co.uk for more details.
Jenny also writes as Jennifer Ash.
Jennifer Ash is the author of the medieval murder mystery, The Outlaw’s Ransom (Dec, 2016). Her second novel, The Winter Outlaw, with be published in 2017.
You can find detail’s of Jennifer’s stories at www.jenniferash.co.uk