Interview with Author Jackie Griffey
by Jacqueline Seewald
Hi, Jackie, thanks so much for joining us today at the Author Expressions blog.
First, let me congratulate you on the excellent reviews your new historical romance Merrywinds has received.
Jackie: Thanks, I was particularly thrilled since this will be my 'swan song' and there won't be any more of the Expressions line.
Jacqueline: I feel badly about it too. You and I share the distinction of writing romance as well as mystery.I was hoping to continue in both lines too. But publishing in general has suffered considerable losses during this bad economy. On a more positive note, the hardcover edition of Merrywinds is scheduled for November publication from Five Star/Gale.
And now to learn more about you and Merrywinds:
Question: Jackie, could you tell us a little about the main characters in your new novel and something about the plot line?
Answer: The main thing is the problems facing the two girls and telling something about the times in which they lived with some romance and adventure which really reveals their characters and the problems facing them.
Question: Is this a new series? If so, could you tell us about your plans for future novels.
Answer: No, this is a stand-alone. However, as I wrote, researched and really got into the girls' lives I considered writing a sequel. It would take place a few years later and end with the Battle of New Orleans. Right now I have no plans to do that but I really did enjoy the research and writing the book.
Question: What inspired this novel? How did it come about?
Answer: A couple of my friends write romance novels and I had done one historical novel. So being a firm believer that a good book should have romance and adventure too, I took the challenge to point out the problems girls and women faced (and overcame so gloriously) and made it a challenge for these two girls who were typical of their time.
Question: Can you share with us some information about your background? What made you want to become a writer?
Answer: That was pure accident I guess, LOL. I saw an ad by a famous china company advertising a figure of Father Christmas and calling it Kris Kringle. Horrified, I could see the beautiful old Christmas legends being lost to our children. Then, I'm afraid, typical of ME, not knowing a whit about what's impossible - I joined a writing group, learned a lot, researched a lot, made a lot of friends (I'm still a member of that same group and that was in 1993). The first thing I wrote was a reading script. Who but someone ignorant as I was would do that? LOLFOF. Anyway, I loved it, research and all. I kept writing and my first book was published in 2002.
Question: What other novels have you written? Can you tell us something about them? Answer: I'm writing mostly cozy mysteries and romance/suspense novels. I have the Merrivale cozy mystery series now being published by Zumaya Publications. The first Zumaya imprint of the first Merrivale novel, The Devil in Merrivale, came out in January, 2010. The second, The Nelson Scandal, will be out hopefully a year from that date, I don't know exactly when yet. I've started another series also. This Maggie and Joe series first novel, Dead on Arrival, came out in Jan. 2010, the same date as the Merrivale first novel.
Question: Sounds like you’re a prolific author! As a well-published writer, what advice would you offer to those who have novels they would like to submit for consideration?
Answer: One of my favorite writers once said: "write a book you would like to read" and I think that's pretty good advice. Develop your characters and settings and give them lives of their own with romance and (of course, very definitely) a lot of humor - just like real lives. And as for getting published-you will. Keep writing and proofing and sending things out and you will get there. Enjoy your writing, researching too, as you go along.
Question: I know that many of our readers are going to want to read your books. Could you tell us where they can find your novels?
Answer: Simple as pie: Of course they're available from the publishers, all the libraries (bless them) here in Arkansas and other places too; they're available on B&N and other bookstore lists whether they're on the shelves or not; and easiest of all, to decide what you want to find: go to Amazon.com, click on books and type in “Jackie Griffey”. You'll pull up all my things from ninety-nine cent e-books, audios, and hardcovers too.
Jackie, thanks so much for being our guest today. Just from this interview, I can tell you have a unique style and original sense of humor. It’s a pleasure to learn more about you and your writing. And it’s great to find out that you’re an Arkansas gal. I hope former President Clinton is reading your novels!
Readers and writers who have comments or questions, please know that they are very welcome here. So feel free to join the conversation.