Friday, January 5, 2018

Blog Tour: Jane Austen Lied to Me by @JeanetteAWatts #interview and #giveaway

Humor / Satire
Date Published: September 2017

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What college girl doesn’t dream of meeting Mr. Darcy? Lizzie was certainly no exception. But when Darcy Fitzwilliam comes into her life, he turns out to be every bit as aggravating as Elizabeth Bennett’s Fitzwilliam Darcy. So what’s a modern girl to do?

Jeanette Watts’ satire pokes loving fun at Jane and all of us who worship the characters who shall forever be our romantic ideals.


Is There a Message in Your Novel That You Want Readers to Grasp?
Being a dreamer is hard. Things don't always go the way you expect them or want them to. People will tell you you're crazy, or you're wrong, or you should just give up. But what are we without our dreams?

Is there anything you find particularly challenging in your writing?
Having enough time to do it! My brain is always full of stories, and my life is always full of distractions and deadlines and other obstacles.

How many books have you written and which is your favorite?
Well, you think that would be an easy question, wouldn't you? First of all, I have published four books. How many books have I written? I wrote a couple books as a teenager just to entertain my friends. I've also got a novel that I wrote - and then mostly threw out and rewrote. And then I set it aside to write two screenplays and Jane Austen Lied to Me. I took another look at the rewritten novel, it's not "ripe" yet. I have another book to write first, and then I might go back to that one... which will be the third complete rewrite. Does that count as one book, or three?

If You had the chance to cast your main character from Hollywood today, who would you pick and why?
Joey King, or wait a few years, then Ekaterina Samsonov. They've got friendly, wholesome, girl-next-door faces.  But those are both white girls, right? Every single character in the book is colorblind. I want to see this book turned into a Broadway musical, and I would love to see the show touring the country with the lead girl played by a different race in every touring company.

When did you begin writing?
I started by telling stories. I would make up stories to tell my best friend while we walked to school, all set in the Star Wars universe. This is before there was such a thing as fan fiction... she's the one who made me start writing them down.

How long did it take to complete your first book?
Ten years. Wealth and Privilege is historic fiction, and all those years ago (add another five years of trying to find an agent and publisher!) you couldn't just jump online to get your research done. If I wanted the census records for Johnstown, Pennsylvania in 1880, I had to go to the library in Johnstown to read them. Today, if I Google "census records, Johnstown, 1880, blam! There they are.  It took a lot of research trips back to Pennsylvania (I moved away to Ohio soon after I'd started writing it) to get all the facts I needed.

Did you have an author who inspired you to become a writer?
I had several! I realized recently that I grew up on female writers. I had discovered Laura Ingalls Wilder and Louisa May Alcott by the time I was in fourth or fifth grade. And the Anne of Greene Gables series. Then there were Nancy Drew mysteries. Then I discovered Margaret Mitchell and Gone With the Wind. So many women writers!

What is your favorite part of the writing process?
Getting to meet my characters. That delicious process of watching them grow, just like children, until they take on a life of their own, and stop doing what you expect them to. I laughed til I cried at The Man Who Invented Christmas. It's pure folly to expect characters to do what you tell them. Why would you want them to?

Describe your latest book in 4 words.
Hollywood Romantic Comedy Movie

Can you share a little bit about your current work or what is in the future for your writing?
Normally I write historical fiction. I call Jane Austen Lied to Me my "mental vacation." I can tell you now, writing a modern satire is every bit as much work as writing a story set in the past. I read biographies on Jane, reread her works, watched every adaptation I could get my hands on (there are some old ones that are really pretty bad). I teach at the college level, but I'm a dance instructor - how do college freshmen of today take notes in chemistry class? On paper? On laptops? Just use your phone to take pictures of the stuff the professor is drawing on the board? I asked my dance students at lot of questions.

My next story, I'm going back to the past. New York, turn of the last century. But I do already have readers suggesting that I ought to write another comedy just like JAL2M, about the Bronte sisters.  I'm going to that stew in by brain for a while. I'll start writing that one when my brain is done cooking.

About the Author

Jeanette Watts had been writing historic fiction when the inspiration for Jane Austen Lied to Me hit her on the drive home from the Jane Austen Festival. The idea was simply irresistible, and she put aside other writing projects in order to focus on writing a satire, thinking it would be a "mental vacation." It turned out to take every bit as much research to write a modern story as it does to write a historical one.

She has written television commercials, marketing newspapers, stage melodramas, four screenplays, three novels, and a textbook on waltzing.  When she isn’t writing, she teaches social ballroom dances, refinishes various parts of her house, and sews historical costumes. She has just relocated to Charlotte, North Carolina and is loving her new home town.

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1 comment:

Emily H said...

Thank you for posting

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