Wednesday, June 12, 2013

J. Jeffrey for the novel The Second Daughter

J. Jeffrey

Welcome and thanks for agreeing and being part of this blog.
I thought it a good idea to catch up with you and see what you are up to since the last time I reviewed the novel The Second Daughter. My 4 Star review for this contemporary woman's fiction can be read HERE.

Author’s Interview Questions
  1. Are you famous is the general question I get when family and friends introduces me to their friends. It always left me with a pause as quick comebacks filters through my mind but ending up saying something like ….”Oh gee thanks” and give a shy smile, silly I know but the idea unsettles me. (a)Does this happen to you and (b) what do you say?

I have a small wee bit of fame -- I’ve written a number of successful “philosophy for the general reader” books under a different name which get me some name recognition, but that translates not at all to recognition in the fiction department … I don’t see anything desirable from fame per se other than that it would be nice to sell more books ….

  1. In general do you like to talk about you writing and published books or are you very close-lip about it? If no why?

The only reticence I have is that I have published my novel under a pen name (for reasons driven by the plot) -- but otherwise I’m as open as can be, and am in the process of giving lectures at local libraries to talk about my experience writing and publishing my debut novel, The Second Daughter …

  1. What book/s are you currently writing and what is it about?

The Second Daughter was so much fun, so rewarding and fulfilling, that I’ve decided to write a second novel -- this one is well underway and couldn’t be more different from the first -- The Second Daughter is a roughly contemporary dysfunctional family story with unintended positive outcomes … the novel I’m working on now is a historical murder mystery with a philosophical air  …

Here’s the blurb for The Second Daughter:

The Second Daughter
                It had started out well. Umbrellas tangled. A storybook romance followed. A wonderful wedding. A beautiful, sweet first daughter. They were complete, a family, happy.
                And then they went and had another daughter.
                The charming fraud of a father starts disappearing, then worse, coming back. The once sweet older sister resents her new sibling, and the sisters are at constant war. The poor harried mother is so busy what-iffing about the life she might have had that she overlooks the life she is actually having. Everyone blames younger daughter Debra for pretty much everything as the family disintegrates. Along the way there are secrets and lies, heartbreaks and betrayals, plus the dramatic unexpected death of a central character at a pivotal moment. Debra, now a young woman, finds herself living awkwardly alone with her embittered mother when one night the phone rings—and her mother’s secret past suddenly crashes back into the present. Their life may be about to change forever; or rather, perhaps, revert back to what it should have been all along.
                But not because of that phone call, as it turns out.
                Because of the remarkable second daughter. For what Debra Gale has is unyielding determination. What she has is an irrepressible capacity to love. 
                And now at last what she has is a chance.
                The complex dynamics of a changing family. Mother, daughters, sisters, and the father who both divides and unites them. A fair amount of banana cream pie, and a truly unique love story—between husband and wife, between parents and children, but most of all between a mother and her second daughter. Welcome to The Second Daughter: a funny but poignant, achingly beautiful love story.

  1. Why this particular genre?
        Why not? The Second Daughter is based on some issues I’m rather familiar with (surprisingly), in particular the complicated relationships sisters can have to one another particularly while growing up -- so the ‘literary fiction/women’s fiction’ labels seem appropriate … The new novel I’m working on is based on some true historical facts, including a true murder mystery, so naturally falls into its genre as well.

  1. What inspire or motivate you to write?

It’s not the big bucks, the long hours (months years), the fun of getting rejected by agents and publishers, that’s for sure … I write because it’s fun, because nothing is more fun than a day writing, and it’s what I would do anyway if I were rich and didn’t have to work …

  1. What is the writing process like for you?
I need large blocks of time -- several hours a day at least, preferably mornings, multiple days in a row and I sit and just fill up empty pages, inventing plot as I go along and then going back and revising earlier sections as new ideas arise in later sections …

  1. What is the best and/ or worst part of being a writer?
        Best -- fun, you’re totally autonomous, you can take breaks if/when necessary (to go get a snack, watch internet, pick up the kids etc) …  worst -- all those same things … Or more seriously: awfully huge investment: can take a couple years to generate a novel and then it can fall dead stillborn from the press …. Or worse receive vicious criticism … You can pour your heart into the project for years and then some random anonymous person gives it one star and no comments … heartless!

8. Any advice for struggling writers?

        Only do it if writing is more fun than almost any other thing you can think to do -- since, statistically speaking, your chances of success (i.e. big success, fame, money etc) are vanishingly small ….

9. What is your favorite genre to read or write?

          I like all kinds of good writing!

       10. Favorite author?

            Too many to list!
       11. What did you do before you became a writer?

            Well, my day job is a college professor of a subject that is NOT literature …

        12.    Was it a life long dream or triggered recently?

Life dream … from teenaged years I imagined I would do some writing, be a writer … though it’s only in the past few years that I’ve been at the right place in my life and career to find the time to write my first novel (and now my second) ….

  1. What do you like to do when not writing? 
                                Think about writing … and yell at my kids …

And Finally
Moto/wisdom in life you live by. 

                What if the hokey-pokey IS what it’s all about?

Contact details and buy links of the newest books you would like the readers to know.

                Best thing to do is go to the website:

Thanks once again for your willingness to share with me and the readers.

Next week I have 
Carlyle Labuschagne 
June 16, 2013

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