Thursday, October 23, 2014

Author Interview with Jenny Holiday

I would like to introduce Jenny Holiday - author of Saving the CEO, a new contemporary romance from Entangled Publishing.  I had a chance to ask her a few questions about her life and her writing and she has some very interesting responses.

In your bio, you list that you have a degree in urban geography.  What exactly is that, and why did it draw you?

"It’s about cities and human landscapes—how they got to be the way they are and how people use them. A concrete example is the practice of redlining in the 1960s. This refers to banks refusing to make mortgage loans to people in certain neighborhoods—drawing a red line around them on a map. So of course these areas, which tended to be home to poorer people, started to decline.  We might look at some of these areas today and see slums, but in fact there was a clear reason these places became the way they are. Urban geography is about untangling all that.

I got into it because I had a great prof as an undergrad. I was an undecided about my major, and I heard her give a presentation. I had always thought about geography as memorizing the state capitals, but she showed us it was so much more."

Since it’s the season of scaring – what superstitions do you have and what monster keeps you up at night?

"The monster that keeps me up at night is four years old, and he lives in my house. He is not a fan of sleeping.

I do get a little spooked by the idea of ghosts, especially if I’m staying somewhere I’ve never been. You know those people who go around hunting ghosts with special equipment and stuff? CRAZY PEOPLE. And when I was a kid, a babysitter let me watch a made-for-TV remake of Psycho. (Who does that?) As a result, for two years, I refused to take a shower without my mom in the bathroom with me, standing just on the other side of the shower curtain.

As far as superstitions, I don’t really have any."

What is the hardest part of the story to write and how do you get through it?

"Writers talk about “the sagging middle,” and that is definitely the challenge for me. I come out of the gate with a bang, but around about 20,000 words, I think, “are we done yet?”

Part of your new book, Saving the CEO is about breaking your own rules.  How often do you break your own rules?

Remember that four-year-old I mentioned? I’m still working shedding on the “baby” weight from being pregnant with that kid. I pretty much break a rule every single day on this front. I have an incredible weakness for M&Ms. But beyond that, I don’t think I really have big-time rules for myself like the hero of the book. He’s much more tightly-wound than I am!"

Many romance novels use the theme of love at first sight, or soul mates.  Do you believe in love at first sight or is it something that belongs in the stories?

"I believe in attraction at first meeting, which I guess is a slightly less dramatic version of love at first sight. And I’m not just talking about physical attraction. I think it’s possible to “click” with a person right away, and that can lead to love. I also think “lust at first sight,” which is what happens to the main characters in Saving the CEO, is possible. Part of this book was about imagining how lust could lead to love when the characters were resistant to the idea of love."

Quickfire Questions:
Favorite ice cream?


Cats or dogs?

Neither. (I am preparing to be booed.)

Favorite childhood TV show?

Scarecrow and Mrs. King

Lights on or off?

Are we talking about what I think we’re talking about? On—but dimly!

Author Bio:
Jenny Holiday started writing at age nine when her awesome fourth grade teacher gave her a notebook and told her to start writing some stories. That first batch featured mass murders on the loose, alien invasions, and hauntings. (Looking back, she’s amazed no one sent her to a kid-shrink.) She’s been writing ever since. After a brief detour to get a PhD in geography, she worked as a professional writer, producing everything from speeches to magazine articles. More recently, her tastes having evolved from alien invasions to happily-ever-afters, she tried her hand at romance. A lifelong city-lover, she lives in Toronto, Canada, with her family. She is represented by Courtney Miller-Callihan of Greenburger Associates. 

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