Joining me today is Vera Jane Cook. Be sure to check out yesterday’s post with my review of DANCING BACKWARD IN PARADISE. Leave a comment for a chance to win an ebook copy. Welcome Jane.
DANCING BACKWARD IN PARADISE has had quite a journey. You won awards for it back in 2007 so I assume that is when you originally published (on your own perhaps?). Then it seems it was put out by your current publisher in 2012 and here it is 2014 and you are touring with it. A large percentage of my readers are writers, so I am sure we would all find it interesting, could you tell us a bit about that journey?
Dancing Backward in Paradise was the first book of mine that was self published with iuniverse in 2006. It came out as a softcover book and it was published as well as an ebook but formatted so badly that I jumped at the chance to have it republished by Musa in 2012. I have six books published with Musa and trying to give them each attention takes a lot of time and money. I concentrate on one or two and then go back to the older ones. Hopefully I have enough books published now so that I can sell myself as an author instead of sell book by book.
I read somewhere that you are not from the South. Why Southern Fiction? Do you ever have concerns about authenticity?
Nope. My Mom was Southern and that whole side of the family is deep south so if nothing else, my writing is authentically southern.
You have had quite the career outside of writing. Acting, teaching in the arts, then corporate. What do/did you love and what did you hate and how have you managed to make time for your writing? And if it is funny and not too personal, what was the “bizarre mid-life crisis” that caused the shift from the arts to corporate?
The bizarre mid-life crisis was finding myself flat broke after being used to riches. I had to work for a living – what a shock. I don’t like working for people. I am very much a writer in that I love quiet and peace and aloneness.
What do you like to do to balance the demands having a job and writing places on you?
I love the Catskill mountains and go there often. Just being with friends and my spouse, our dogs, taking walks – going to fairs. That’s what I love. Reading is another way I relax. I’ve always loved to read.
What is the working title of the book you are currently working on, where did the idea come from and what can you tell us about it?
If you mean aside from Dancing Backward in Paradise, my next book is about a young girl who connects with an older woman (they both have a murder in common) but as it turns out, they have a great deal in common, so much so that it will change their lives.
Now three things I ask everyone that have nothing to do with writing:
- What is your favorite food? Boiled lobster with cole slaw and sweet potatoe fries, a good white wine to sip, followed by a hot fudge sundae.
- What is your favorite TV show? Mad Men, Boardwalk Empire, Six Feet Under, Call the Midwife, Big Love, Breaking Bad, Paradise and Home Land.
- What is your favorite music? Jazz vocals (Paula West, Diana Kroll, Ella – also love rock and roll and country. Love Chris Botti too and Kenny g.
Thank you so much for being here today, Jane, and continued good luck with the book. Before you go, is there anything else you would like to tell your readers or have them know about you?
Yes, if you like my book please let me know, would love to hear from you. I go to book clubs reading my book either in person or by Skype.