My Bookshelf

Saturday, 8 November 2014

Author Interview with Trish Jackson

Hello everyone.  Welcome to my second interview with American Author, Trish Jackson.  A lady who certainly has stories to tell.

Trish, tell us a bit about yourself.

Hi Claire, it's wonderful to be featured on your blog.  I grew up in Zimbabwe (it was called Rhodesia then), and moved to the US in 1990 with my husband and three wonderful children.

What bought you to the world of writing?

My mother is a published writer and she always encouraged me to write.  From time to time I submitted my stories to publishers, but that was in the days when publishers were the muckety muck and writers were the lowest of the low until they had proven themselves, and rejections were the norm.

What is your first book and what do you think of it now?

My first book, 'Way Out of Line' was published by a print-on-demand publisher before the Internet became part of our everyday lives.  They didn't offer any help with editing, and more recently, when my second book was accepted by Uncial Press, I realized what a huge difference a good editor can make.  My seven-year contract with my first publisher had expired at the time, and I submitted the manuscript to my new editor, Jude, who made exponential changes and whipped it into something so much better than the version I first sold.

What type of books do you write and do they fulfil your reader’s needs?

I write romantic suspense/thrillers and romantic comedy.  They all take place in country settings, and I always feature animals in them, which is fun.  I also work hard to make them extra emotional.  My readers are down to earth, outdoorsy animal lovers -- not the type who want to read about jet-setting millionaires fast cars, and glitzy places.

Well that certainly shows you know your readers.

Would you like to feature a book, if so which one?  Tell us about it?

My romantic comedy, 'Backwoods Boogie' is about to be released on November 14th.  It's the third book in my Redneck P.I. Mystery Series, about Twila Taunton, who is proud to be a redneck, her tangled love life, and the cases she solves as a private investigator in small town USA, together with her Harley-riding, hard-drinking Great Aunt Essie and her dog, Scratch. In 'Backwoods Boogie' she is determined to get the British tea shop owner off a trumped-up murder charge.  She brings in computer hacker and farter of note, Gasser Cunha to access certain computer information.  In the course of her investigation, she discovers an illegal puppy mill, where a bunch of dogs are being abused.  She calls on her long-distance lover, Harland to help rescue them.  I am an animal advocate, and although the book is written in fun, it carries a series message about animal abuse.  This series is such a blast to write, and I often find myself chuckling at the quirky characters and new bizarre scenarios.

How long does it take you to write your first draft?

My first draft usually takes about three to four months.

Do you plot or not, if so why?

I don't plot.  I get an idea and I just start writing.  If I get stuck, I go for a long walk and think it out, and usually I can continue when I get back to my computer.  I've tried to plot, but I don't seem to be able to follow the plot.  The only thing I do write down is the timeline, because it's so easy to forget the sequence of events.

Do you write in 1st or 3rd person, or have you do both?

I have written in both.  I like to include as much emotion in my stories as possible, and it's a lot easier to do so in 1st person.

How do you edit your work?  Do you leave your draft alone for a while or edit as you write?

Once the first draft is complete, I leave it for at least two months and start working on another book.  When I get back to the first book, it's no longer fresh in my mind and I am more easily able to see the flaws in it.  Then I start fleshing it out.  I am blessed with wonderful editors who have taught me more than I could have learned about writing in two years of college.

What type of people/readers do you market your books to?

Romance and thriller readers enjoy my serious books, but they are a little too harsh for some of my romantic comedy readers, so I have two similar but distinct markets.

Do you self-publish or have you worked with an Agent/Publisher

I have two publishers, and the only gripe I have about them is that it takes a long time for them to get my books published, so I am at a crossroads where I might self-publish my next novel.

How do you promote your writing?

Promotion is the most difficult part about writing.  Most of us don't want to be bothered with marketing, but we have to, and I try to make myself spend 50% of my time marketing and 50% writing.  I also have a four-day-week job, so I have to take that into account.

Where can we buy your books?

My books are available on Amazon at the link below in both electronic and print formats, and if you prefer print books, you can get them here in New Zealand --

Who are your favourite authors?
James Patterson, John Grisham, Michael Connelly, Lee Child, Anne Rice, Janet Evanovich, Catherine Coulter, Patricia Cornwell, Kathy Reichs, Nora Roberts, Danielle Steel. I could go on.

Do you have any more information you’d like to share with us?

My other series, the Zodiac Series is seriously scary and sexy romantic suspense. Each primary character or heroine belongs to a different star sign in this series, and exhibits the typical traits associated with her sign.  Capricorn Cravings was the first, and the second book in this series, Aquarius Addiction will be released in January 2015.  I have just completed the third one, Virgo's Variant and it has been accepted by the Kindle Scout program, whereby readers get to review the first 5000 words, and nominate the books they like.  If the book gets enough nominations to be published by Amazon, the readers who voted get a free copy.  Here's the link to my book, which goes live on November 7th.

I also offer free downloads of short stories on my website.


Trish Jackson grew up on a farm in Zimbabwe, Africa, which sparked a love of adventure and suspense. She moved to the U.S. in 1990 and currently lives on 81/2 acres in Florida.
Trish writes provocative and poignant romantic thrillers/suspense and politically incorrect romantic comedy, focusing on animals, astrology, and the passions, dreams, and tragedies in the lives of country folk in small towns.

She loves country living, horse riding, chocolate and all animals.                                                                   

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