Interview with Jennifer Theriot

March 4, 2014 at 6:43 pm (Interviews) (, , , , , , )

P1010001Meet Jennifer Theriot, Texan, CFO, wife, grandmother, and AUTHOR!

1.  Describe your book and its inception. What was your muse so to speak

Out of the Box Awakening is a romance novel centered on middle aged lovers and stresses the importance of family and friends. I got the idea to write a book after reading the Fifty Shades of Grey trilogy. I had to read it 3 times to actually get the core of the story.

I took two of my closest friends to dinner one night and over a glass of wine casually mentioned that I was thinking of writing a book about middle-aged lovers. The actually dared me to do it with enthusiasm.

We all agreed that there just weren’t romance novels out there about women like us; hence the dare was accepted and the writing began.

My muse would be Kevin Costner. As soon as I started writing the book, he was hands down Ash Harper in every sense of the word.

2. You’ve written a romance.  Is this the genre you prefer to read? What are your favorite titles and authors?

Romance is my favorite genre. I love Maya Banks, Lisa Renee Jones, S.C. Stephens and Cherrie Lynn. I loved all of their books.

3. Writing romantic stories, I find, always invites quite an array of emotions from people in the real world.  How have your friends and family reacted to your story content?

For the most part, my friends and family are behind me one hundred percent. My friends have read the book of course but my immediate family (husband and kids) Ehhhh….out of the boxno.  And truth be known, I don’t think I want them to. There’s some things better left to the unknown.

4. Just like when I read, when I write I find myself drawn to certain characters more than others.  Did you have a favorite in your own work?

Oh goodness YES! Todd O’Malley is the tatted up, pierced good-looking rock star that resembles Adam Levine. In the book, he becomes best friends with the main character Olivia. Their relationship as he describes it: “Olivia is like having a mom and a best friend all rolled up into one smoking ass hot chick.” I have to say he’s by far the most colorful and fun character. Ash on the other hand is the Romeo every woman would want in her life. Those two are my dream guysJ

5. Many authors are heavily influenced by their environment when they write.  Where is your safe space? Do you have mood music?

My “space” consists of being curled up in my chair with my feet up on the ottoman, Mac Book Air in lap typing away with ear buds in listening to the playlist for my book. I find that I can still spend time with hubby that way and have the best of both worlds.

Music is a huge influence in my writing. I’d wanted to use lyrics from a particular recorded song in my book and quickly discovered the red tape and bureaucracy involved with permission to use. That being said, I wrote my own lyrics and I’m so proud to say, a dear musician friend wrote music to them and recorded it. It’s even on iTunes.

6. What do you find to be the easiest of the writing and editing process? What is the hardest for you?

The easiest is of course the writing. The hardest is during beta reads when the readers come back with their comments. It is probably the most intense part of the process for me. I have an incredible beta reader, who has also become a good friend. She knows my characters like the back of her hand and calls me out when she’s not feeling what she knows I’m trying to say. She and I have had many discussions and she pushes me to emotionally engage the readers with a scene. Her words are “Jen, you know what’s going on and how the characters are feeling….take us there in your words. Make us feel it with you.”

7. Did you learn anything about yourself or the world you live in by writing this book?

Funny you should ask that…. The answer is yes. This journey has made me much more confident about myself as a 59 year old woman who considers herself forever young. I’ve never felt better inside or out. If anything, my main character Olivia has given me the authority to express my feelings in the real world. I’ve talked to a lot of ladies in my age group who like me still enjoy sex, they like date nights with their husbands and significant others. They like to wear sexy lingerie and dress trendy. It’s an incredible feeling and I believe when you feel good about yourself, others can see that.

8. I’ve met a lot of authors with drastically differing views on this… would you ever be interested in a TV or movie deal for your series?  If so, how involved would you want to be? (There every step of the way? Or hand it over and let the film people do their thing?)

I could totally see the Out of the Box series being made into a movie…I’ve even got a dream cast put together. Probably every author visualizes his or her book getting made into a movie or TV series.

What a lot of authors probably don’t realize is how much of a long shot that is. A movie/TV series doesn’t just magically appear and the things that go into the making of a series or movie and moreover the likelihood of it actually coming to fruition is daunting. Finding investors to actually take a chance on financing a project like…very difficult!

I would definitely be a hands-on type. It’s my personality. I’ve got to have my hand in every detail which drives me crazy but that’s the way God made me.

P10009959. You’ve just started participating in book signings and are writing another book.  What direction do you see your writing career headed? Where would you like it to head?

I love doing the book signings. At first I was terrified!

I love interacting with people and meeting other authors.

I do plan to continue writing as long as people keep reading my books. I’ve finished the second book, Out of the Box Regifted. It’s currently in editing and I’ve started the 3rd and final book in the series, Out of the Box Everlasting. (The trilogy is called ARE. That way, readers will know what book is first and last in the series because it spells a word)

After Everlasting, I’ll do a book from Todd’s POV and then I’m on to a completely different series. I want to continue to write about middle-aged lovers. I feel there is a market for this. Women my age don’t always want to read about twenty-something characters…

10. Every reader or writer has a favorite bookstore (and if you don’t, please don’t spoil my delusion!).  Now is your chance for a shout out!  Tell us who you love and what you love about them.

I could sell my soul to Half Price Books! I’ve never gone into one and come out empty handed.

I also like Barnes and Noble.

Something about a good old bookstore just feels right. When you walk down an aisle, if you listen closely enough you can hear the characters in the books whispering “Buy me, buy me!”

Long live the bookstores!

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