Ah, romance. Fall is about to cool the air and I don’t know about you, but I find it breath-taking to fall in love in autumn. So, what better topic to kick off the month in which the leaves will start blazing than with talk of romance novels and the infatuation with writing? Jennifer Morey is an authority on both. An accomplished author with Harlequin, she gets to do what she loves for a living and rightly so.
Her latest novel One Secret Night releases this month. It just so happens that the main character’s name is…wait for it… Autumn.
After stumbling into the cross fire of a black ops mission, Autumn Ivy is saved by a dark sexy hero and swept away for a night to remember. Weeks later, she discovers her secret love is soon to be a secret daddy, but what’s more shocking is when Autumn tracks her mystery man right into the path of a killer.
CIR: Thanks for joining us on the Rock, Jennifer. I have to start with congratulations on your recent move to full-time author, a gig all of us writers dream of. It came with a lot of hard work I’m sure. Did you have a strategy/business plan starting out?
JM: Oh, heavens, no. The Universe had to give me a shove, as in, out the door. It’s never an easy decision to quit a dependable income source. And I’m a lousy decision maker if it isn’t fiction. I was a corporate junky for the aerospace industry. My job dealt with fascinating and challenging tasks, but never gave me chocolates and roses the way writing does. So when the demand for my position waned, it was a natural transition.
I’ve gone from having to struggle to fit in writing to having all day every day to write. There was really no strategy other than making an impulsive decision to give it a shot. I was fortunate enough to have enough saved to get me by until I can write a few stories and get them sold. So the only plan that applies here is to jump off the ship and swim for land. I don’t plan on drowning before I get there.
CIR: Were there any rejections that you felt were ‘crushing’ and how did you get over it? (I recently weathered one that still has me sucking wind, LOL).
JM: I could wallpaper my office two or three times with all of the rejection letters I’ve received. I learned early on not to let them bother me. Sure, it’s disappointing when you get them, especially when you think of all the time you spent on the proposal, but sometimes they come with comments, and sometimes those comments are constructive. It’s best to find the positive in them if you can. And always strive to write better. So, I guess the way I get over them is I get right back to work and try to write better.
CIR: One of my favorite romance authors is Jennifer Crusie. She started with the big H then moved on to epic yarns, some that I think could be romantic comedies on the screen. Do you have aspirations to write longer pieces?
JM: Yes. I have a single title that I have almost finished. It is a paranormal murder mystery that I plan to sell in the near future. Want to know what it’s about? A woman is murdered by a serial killer in the late 1800s and begins to haunt an agnostic when another serial killer surfaces in current time. I’ve had such fun with this story. Now to find the right editor who agrees!
CIR: You are clearly very thankful to be in your occupation. What was your former career and was it all that bad?
JM: No, not bad at all. In fact, I liked my job. I was an export control manager for a satellite imaging company. Spacecraft are considered munitions by our government and listed on the United States Munitions List just like armored combat ground vehicles or night vision equipment. Anything listed on the USML is controlled by the International Traffic in Arms Regulations (ITAR). All exports relating to them, including any technology, has to be licensed by the Department of State. Those licenses come with a host of other compliance requirements that have to be managed. That was my job. It was satisfying to me and quite challenging given the complicated nature of the regulations, so most of the time I didn’t mind doing it. What I did mind was the corporate politics. That, and the most important thing of all, the time it took away from writing.
CIR: With Rock interviews, we pride ourselves in asking bizarre questions. What actor/star never before published do you think would write an interesting fiction manuscript?
Kathy Bates. She’s funny, serious, and has a respectable reputation. She’s a class act.
CIR: Thanks, Jennifer. We wish you continued success with your series.
Interview conducted by Gusto Dave