Welcome Fellow GCC'er Marilyn Brandt
Tell me a little about your book.
According to Jane is the story of a modern woman named Ellie who gets dating advice from the ghost of Jane Austen. It begins one day in her high-school English class, just as Ellie’s teacher is assigning Pride & Prejudice. From nowhere, she hears a quiet “tsk” of disapproval aimed at the antics of the cute bad boy who has been teasing her. The author’s ghost takes it upon herself to stay in Ellie’s mind, offering up her own brand of Regency-era wisdom in regards to romance. Years and boyfriends come and go, but Ellie has a lot to learn about love. And, possibly, even Jane may benefit from a new insight or two.
What got you writing in the genre in which you write.
I love *reading* women’s fiction stories–both dramatic and humorous. They were not only what got me into the genre I’m working in, but they were what inspired me to be a writer in the first place. Aside from a lifelong love of Austen, I really enjoyed the domestic dramas of Sue Miller, Anne Tyler and Elizabeth Berg, as well as the lighter touch of Pamela Redmond Satran, Jennifer Crusie and Jane Porter. I wanted to find a way to merge the relationship themes explored in my favorite novels with my own writing style.
Favorite thing about being a writer?
Getting to do something creative every single day. Truly, that’s been such a gift. Even when the plotting of a scene is giving me fits or the synopsis doesn’t seem to make sense at all…I love knowing that I have a place to play with these characters and storylines. My hope is that by writing about women’s dreams and experiences as honestly as possible, I might get closer to helping readers recognize truths about their own lives. It was this sense of “recognition” that my favorite novelists gave to me.
Least favorite thing about being a writer?
SO much time at the computer! I’m a terrible sloucher. I’m forever having to remind myself to correct my posture so I don’t end up with a sore back and neck.
What is the most interesting thing that’s happened to you since becoming a published author?
I’m still pretty new at the published-author gig (this is a debut novel, after all!), but I did have an interesting thing happen over the summer. I really like this new Starbucks product–it’s an instant coffee called VIA™ Ready Brew–so I gave some away on my blog, along with advanced reading copies of my book. Well, a rep from Starbucks contacted me! He was pleased I liked the coffee and wondered if I wanted more for future giveaways. I said, “Oh, definitely!” And, between a Jane Austen conference, an RWA conference and a taste test I held for fun on my blog, I ended up giving away about 1,000 VIA™ packets! It was an exciting event for me, and I heard from a lot of people who visited that they enjoyed taking part and, also, really liked the coffee.
What’s your favorite type of pie?
Mocha-mud pie, with an Oreo crust and a scoop of Cool Whip on top. J
Thanks so much for stopping by!