Jennifer Wilck is my guest author for today.
Tell us about your latest project.
My latest project is Skin Deep, which is published by Whiskey Creek Press and coming out in November. It’s a contemporary romance. Here’s a quick blurb:
The last thing Valerie needs, after escaping an abusive marriage to an alcoholic and rebuilding her life, is a broody, secretive, standoffish man. But that’s exactly what she gets when she becomes a makeup artist on the set of a hit sitcom and draws the attention of the series’ star.
John Samuels hides a terrible past—a life of abuse and neglect. A successful acting career and the affection and support of cast, crew and friends, does nothing to convince him that he is anything other than an unlovable monster.
Will he learn that the life he’s been living has been built on a lie or will he be doomed to repeat the sins of his father?
Do you have any quirks to how you write?
Well, I think it’s perfectly normal, but apparently, my definition differs from the rest of the world’s! Smile I’m very secretive about my writing.
My husband knows that I’m writing, but I don’t let him read anything until it’s published, and even then, I leave the room when he reads anything of mine.
Even my parents didn’t know I was writing a book until I showed them the letter from my publisher offering me a contract. That made for some awkward moments, but luckily for me they were so excited that they didn’t give me a hard time. I guess I don’t want to show anyone anything until I’m sure it’s good. Although I now have a critique partner, Jan, who is awesome and she reviewed and edited Skin Deep for me after I’d finished writing it and before I submitted it to publishers. It was my first attempt at using critique partners and now I show her everything I write.
How do you find the whole publishing process, in a season where things are changing and self-publishing is rapidly becoming more favourable are you still happy to be traditionally published?
I’m finding the publishing process fascinating. Although I write because I love it, rather than with the sole goal of being published, it’s always been in the back of my mind, and to go through the process is a lot of fun and a tremendous learning experience. I am very happy to be traditionally published, because I think it’s really important to have extra eyes view your work, provide editing and formatting help, cover art, etc. It’s very difficult to do that yourself, at least, it would be difficult for me. No matter how many times I look something over, I still miss things because I’m too close to it.
For other people who don’t want to self-publish yet or are unsure what would be the advice you’d give them to help them get published?
Just to be persistent. Don’t give up and be willing to explore many publishing options. You might not want to take advantage of all of them, but the more you know, the better equipped you are to be in this industry. And be nice to everyone you meet on social media, etc. It’s a small world and you don’t want to burn any bridges or get a bad reputation by something you say.
Are there any of your characters you particularly relate to, if there is, who and why?
My characters are fictional, although I try to include a little something of me or from my life in each story. For example, in Skin Deep, the family goes to the Meadowlands Racetrack over the Thanksgiving holiday. That’s their tradition and it was my family’s too. It kind of makes me sound like a degenerate, but it was a lot of fun looking at the horses and trying to guess who would win—I have a lot of fond memories from doing that and I tried to include those in this book. I like strong male and female characters who each have vulnerabilities but who can compliment each other and support each other when needed.
Would you still write if there was no financial need to, and if not what would you do instead?
Absolutely! I write because I love it! Publishing is a bonus, but I write my stories because I have characters talking in my head and I need to write them down. I love the stories I write and I hope others do too, but if I don’t get them published, that’s okay. It’s very fulfilling and satisfying to see a story through from beginning to end.
What are you planning on doing next/What else are you up to?
I’m currently writing another contemporary romance, but this one has a Jewish theme. It takes place during the holiday of Purim and has to do with hiding one’s identity or true self. If I can ever finish editing it, I’m hoping to submit it to publishers in the spring.
It sounds like you do a lot of self editing even if you do get some help, is that something you hope you’ll do less as you publish more or do you think you’ll always spend as much time editing yourself?
No, I’ll always edit my own things in addition to having others look at it. I think you have to. No one person is perfect and books benefit from many different editors.
If you want to find out more about Jennifer then check out her website.