Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Interview and Giveaway: Jayne Fresina

Please join me in welcoming Jayne Fresina to Debbie's Book Bag today. She is here promoting her latest book, Lady Mercy Danforthe Flirts with Scandal. She was kind enough to answer a few questions for. Her interview follows. See giveaway details at the end of the post for your chance to win a copy of The Wicked Wedding of Ellie Vyne, the book directly preceeding Lady Mercy Danforthe Flirts with Scandal in the Sydney Dovedale series.

DEB: Jayne, tell us a little bit about yourself.
JF: I wrote for thirteen years before I finally got a publishing contract. I love writing historical romance - and reading it too. I work from my home, so I get to divide my day between my "real" job and writing. Sometimes it gets very busy! I lived the first half of my life in England and the second half in America, which has been interesting. 

DEB: You're here today promoting your new book, Lady Mercy Danforthe Flirts with Scandal. What was your inspiration for this book?
JF: After writing THE WICKED WEDDING OF MISS ELLIE VYNE I really wanted to write Lady Mercy's story next. She leapt off the paper for me when I was writing her as a naughty little girl. Apparently a lot of readers liked her too, as I got some encouraging emails from people wanting to read more about her. It meant jumping ahead twelve years to write her love story, but she was quite insistent about having it told - and she's very demanding!

DEB: Is it a part of a series? Or a single title?
JF: This is the third in the Sydney Dovedale series, but it's not necessary to have read the other books. Hopefully, if you haven't read the others, Lady Mercy will make  you want to go back and read them!

DEB: How did your experiences growing up in England influence your writing?
JF: I'm not really sure. I suppose everything I've ever experienced has had some influence on my writing, but my teachers, my family and the history of the towns where we lived have contributed the most. At school I was very fortunate to have some wonderfully inspiring English literature teachers. The books I had to study have remained some of my lifelong favorites. They taught me a lot about developing characters. Revising for school exams in England also helped me to learn how to write speedily. Need five essays in 2.5 hours and I'm your girl!! 

Listening to my father's stories has always been inspirational - he grew up in the countryside and loves to tell a good joke. I think I got a lot of my creativity and humor from him. Also, as the youngest (and quietest) in my family I tended to do a lot of listening and observing, which has probably contributed to my storytelling now. With four girls in the house there was always a lot of tension and inevitably some drama going on, a lot of tears and laughter too. I grew up in several very old towns, including Huntingdon, Cambridge and York. There was history all around me and I absorbed it like a sponge. 

DEB: Why did you choose the Regency period to write about? What was the attraction?
JF: I've written in several different periods of the historical genre, but I do love the Regency era. I've loved Jane Austen and Georgette Heyer since I was fifteen. For some reason, there seems to be more room for humor in a Regency story - I'm not sure why. 

DEB: What was your reaction when your first book was published?
JF: I was thrilled, of course. When I received my complimentary paperback copies from the publisher, I just held one in my hands for the longest time, because I could hardly believe it was true. I've tried to do a lot of things in life and failed at many! This is one thing I finally managed to get done!

DEB: What do you read when you get a chance to read for pleasure? Do you have a favorite author?
JF: Jane Austen, Daphne Du Maurier, Samantha Grace, Courtney Milan, Madeline Hunter...

DEB: Tell us something about yourself that readers may not know.
JF: I have a phobia about sewing machines. I once ate nothing but strawberry jam sandwiches for a year.

DEB: What advice do you have for new writers?
JF: Write as much as you can, every day if possible - even if it's only for ten minutes. Persevere, no matter how many rejections you get. As long as you love what you write, someone else will too.  

DEB: What are you working on right now?
JF: I just finished edits on the final book in the Sydney Dovedale series and started the first book in my second series for Sourcebooks (The Book Club Belles Society).


The publisher is sponsoring a giveaway for one copy of The Wicked Wedding of Ellie Vyne by Jayne Fresina.

~You must be a bloglovin' follower or Email subscriber to participate.
~US and Canadian addresses only (publisher request)
~The deadline to enter this giveaway is Midnight EST, July 3rd.

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kipha said...

Awesome interview ladies! But Wow Jayne, strawberry jam sandwiches for a year? Do you still eat them? LOL
I can't believe it's coming down to the last book for the series. But I can't wait to see Carver next year! Thank you so much!

Na said...

The Regency period is a fun one to visit. I do notice regency romances can be lighter and there's room for laughts. Your character sounds feisty and interesting :)

Anonymous said...

lol, I can actually understand the phobia about sewing machines. I'm always afraid I'm going to accidentally sew the tips of my fingers together, lol.... but why did you eat only strawberry jam sandwiches for a year?

June M. said...

I am wondering why you once ate nothing but strawberry jam sandwiches for a year also. I would think that you would get very tired of the same thing quickly (at least I would).
Congrats on the new release. Looking forward to reading it :)

bn100 said...

Very nice interview

Rachelle21 said...

If anyone should have a phobia about Sewing Machines, I should. I once got a needle stuck in a finger from one.

I can't imagine Strawberry jam for a year.