We’re kicking off this week by getting to know the one and only Janna Jennings who writes the always amazing Grimm Legacy books.
What was the first book you wrote? Published?
A Grimm Legacy, which started out as four character sketches, and grew from there. I entered the manuscript with all it’s many flaws into a contest on NaNoWriMo. That’s how I got hooked up PWP… and the rest is history
Which author do you most look up to?
This could be a long answer. I’ve always loved C.S. Lewis, and think he’s an author who could easily be considered timeless. Kids enjoy his books as much fifty years ago as they do today. Jerry Spinelli’s language and descriptions create these amazing visuals that drag you right into the heart of the matter. Newer author Shannon Messenger really knows how to build a world and twist a tale right on its ear. Honestly, there is so much good writing out there, one is never out of things to read.
What is your ultimate goal as an author?
To connect with readers. To have them enjoy a story, to love the simple act of reading and being satisfied and a little sad when they flip to the last page of the book. To leave them wanting more.
Which of your characters do you most connect with?
I think there is always little pieces of me and my experiences in each character I write. But the troublemakers seem to flow from my pen a little too readily to deny a strong connection with them.
What is your favorite genre to read? Why?
I’m on the fence between historical fiction and fantasy. The historical fiction always seems so fascinating to me, and it’s the only way I enjoy history. Wading past the dates and facts and getting to the human heart of the story. What was this person’s experience, hopes, dreams? And fantasy is always fun, pushing the boundaries of what is possible, one great big ‘what if?’
What is the most challenging part of your writing process?
Consistently finding time to write, and probably because it is a fresh would… formatting!
Do you have any go to snacks while writing?
I’m a tea drinker 🙂
What is your all-time favorite novel to read?
I think I’m going to have to go back to Lewis on this one. The Lion the Witch and the Wardrobe.
What do you consider your greatest strength as an author?
Being able to absorb advice and apply it to my writing.
What is the best writing advice you’ve ever received?
The importance of having a plan before you start writing.
What’s the best thing about being a writer?
The power words have. Twenty-six simple letter, when strung together can elicit unanticipated emotions, thoughts, and dreams from anyone they come in contact with.
If you couldn’t be an author, what would be your next choice for a dream job?
Librarian, and fortunately, I get to live it!
How long does it usually take you to write a book from plotting to publishing?
A year. It would be nice to cut that down.
What is your favorite place to write?
Surrounded by books, usually a book store or library.
Tell us something fun about yourself, completely unrelated to writing!
I recently started my dream job of being a librarian at an elementary school. I get to spend all day surrounded by books and get kids as enthralled about books and reading as I am. And just how excited would you be if your employer had a substantial budget for you to buy books every year?