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Tuesday, August 1, 2017

Starting with a Novella: An Interview with Jillian Eaton

My interview today is with Jillian Eaton who indie-published her first book, A Brooding Beauty, in 2012. Since then she has written over twenty novels and novellas. So, let’s look back and learn how she started.

What made you decide to write your first novel? Was there any particular author you read that made you think, I could write like that?
As a reader, I fell in love with historical romance pretty early on and over time my writing started leaning in that direction. If I had to choose an author that influenced me the most, it would be Lisa Kleypas. Her witty and endearing writing style is definitely something that inspires me. 

How long did it take you to write your first book? How many rewrites did you do on it? Who helped you with the editing?
The first book I ever self-published was a novella, and it took about six months from start to finish. I probably did about two rewrites, with lots of editing in between! I did – and continue to do – the editing myself, and was encouraged by my parents to keep plugging away. I am not active in any writing critique groups, although I wish I was! Something else to put on my to-do list. 

What is the hardest part of writing for you? Starting? Creating a scene? Dialog? Tension, etc?
Generally, my books are pretty easy to start. They’re all based off a random idea, usually while I’m in the shower. I enjoy writing dialog and I love character development, but I usually get bogged down around the middle. Sometimes I have to take a few days or a week and step away from my characters to give myself a fresh perspective. Once I’m over that 50% mark it gets much easier. 

We have all experienced rejection. Give me an example of how you learned to
write past it.
Negative reviews. At first, they really got under my skin, but now I’m able to read and move past them. Of course, I wish every review was 5-stars, but I’ve actually learned quite a bit from the 3-stars and 2-stars and in several instances have taken what the reviewer wrote and used it to strengthen my writing. 

What has surprised you the most in writing/publishing?

I was – and am – surprised by how welcoming the writing community has been to self-published authors. Especially the bloggers! My career wouldn’t be what it is today if not for some very kind blog owners who gave a little known self-pub author a chance.

What frustrated you the most?
As far as frustrating…I’d have to say finding the perfect stock image for my book covers! It can take minutes, or it can literally take months to track down just the right picture 

What do you know now about writing that you wished you had known sooner?
Some things can’t be rushed, and writing is one of them. 

What is some of the best writing advice that you’ve received or could give?
There is one quote by Nora Roberts that has always stuck with me. “You can fix anything but a blank page.” Even if you just write a sentence, it’s a sentence that you didn’t have before. 

So my advice is to write that sentence. And the one after that. And the one after that. Enough sentences and you have a paragraph, enough paragraphs and you have a page, enough pages and you have a chapter, enough chapters and you have a book! 

What is the next book that will be coming out? Can you give me a short synopsis?
My next book, A Dangerous Proposal (Bow Street Brides #2), is coming out on July 25th and is available for pre-order now! Although it’s the second novel in the Bow Street Brides, it’s very much a standalone. 

Here’s a quick teaser…Having been hurt by men twice before, Miss Felicity Atwood doesn’t trust the charming Felix Spencer any further than she can throw him. But when she finds herself unwittingly entangled in a deadly conspiracy, Felix is the only one she can turn to. Somehow, she must find the courage to trust him with her heart…or risk losing her life.

That’s all for today’s interview. If you would like to learn more about Jillian’s writing or buy her books, here are some links to get started.

Website –
Facebook –
Twitter - @jillianwrites
Instagram - @authorjillianeaton

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