Monday, July 5, 2010

Interview with Jane Green and book giveaway!


Jane Green is the author of thirteen novels, read by women all over the world. I love her books so much that I recently wrote a tribute about her. And now she has so graciously taken the time to answer some questions that I came up with. I also asked Melissa Patafio, a close friend and Jane Green fan, to help with these questions. Jane has also offered to give away signed copies of her books to two lucky winners. The first is her newest book, "Promises to Keep." The other one is "Dune Road," which came out last year and was a great story with a mystery wrapped inside.


Melissa Amster (me): You usually have your books set in Connecticut (or the New England region), London, or a combination of both. Have you considered setting a story in a new location?

Jane Green: Absolutely. I’m slightly fed up with Connecticut myself, so I can only imagine how my readers must feel. The tricky bit is finding enough time to get to know a new place, but we are spending some time this summer in California, in the wine country, and I am wondering if that will be the setting for the new book.


MA: I recall you saying that your books have grown with you (i.e. writing about single characters early on and now writing about characters who are married with children). What has your journey been like as a writer?
JG: In many ways it is harder now, although as a writer I think I am probably better – more rounded, and certainly I spend more time writing, and particularly editing. But changing as a person – becoming softer, more vulnerable, through motherhood, divorce, remarriage, has unquestionably affected and changed my writing, which is, I hope, a good thing.

Melissa Patafio: How do you go about writing a story with characters that are so emotionally and realistically connected to issues (Ellie-“The Other Woman”, Jemima) in cases where you haven’t experienced these things yourself?
JG: I have always had a tremendous amount of empathy, although most of the things I have written about have touched me in some way – even if I haven’t lived it, I have been close enough to it to understand it.

MP: Do you always know how a story will end before you start writing it or does the ending change multiple times before you finish the book?
JG: I always have a rough idea of the beginning and the end, but how I get there is the interesting bit. I only ever plot in thirds, because generally, by the time I finish the first third, the characters will have taken over and the story will have changed entirely.

MP: How did you celebrate when your first book “Straight Talking” went to a bidding war and became an immediate success?
JG: I remember buying my first ever proper grown-up car. It was a little red BMW, pre-owned, which was very zippy and cool. Everyone said I ought to be careful because statistically the police were far more likely to stop a woman in a red car, and sure enough, within the first week I had been pulled over by the police for erratic driving. Sadly, no alcohol was involved. It was just my driving.

MP: What was your inspiration for writing “The Beach House” and how were you able to write “Nan” as such a genuinely lifelike character?
JG: I moved into a tiny little beach cottage for a Summer, and loved living by the beach. I fell in love with my landlord, while living there, and we went for walks every night, and a woman would pass us, on a bicycle, with long white hair, leaving a trail of cigarette smoke. I was fascinated by her, and used that snapshot to develop Nan.

MA: Would you want someone to make a movie of one of your books? If so, which book would you choose?
JG: Yes please. Whichever one they would like, pleeeaaaassseee. Although in truth, Jemima has always struck me as being the most filmic. I would also love either Promises to Keep or The Beach House, with Helen Mirren as Nan, perhaps.

MA: What is the funniest thing that has ever happened to you during a book tour?
JG: My husband pops up, from time to time, in airports. I walk through baggage claims on the other side of America looking for my name on a sign, and occasionally, the man holding that sign, entirely unexpectedly, is my husband, who has surprised me.

MA: Now that summer is upon us, what is your favorite flavor of ice cream?
JG: Coconut.

MP: If you were to have any career other than writing what would you like to do?
JG: Interior Designer or chef. Or garden designer. Or...artist. Easier perhaps to just say something creative?

Thanks again to Jane for answering our questions and to her assistant, Sue Redston for facilitating this interview and giveaway.

How to win "Promises to Keep" or "Dune Road."
Please comment below with your e-mail address. (Also, if you have a preference, please indicate that in your entry. Otherwise, you'll be entered to win either book.)

For additional entries (each as a separate comment including your e-mail address, as well):
1. Please tell us: What is your favorite Jane Green book?
2. Follow this blog and post a comment saying you are a follower (if you already follow, that's fine too).
3. Post this contest on Facebook or Twitter or in your blog, and leave a comment saying where you've posted it.

Giveaway ends Thursday, July 8th.

78 comments:

Jonita said...

Thank-you for hosting yet another amazing giveaway, Melissa! Please enter me to win "Dune Road" because I was lucky enough to receive a review copy of "Promises to Keep". Thanks!

jonitathebookchick@gmail.com

Jonita said...

Is this where I'll get booed for admitting that I've only read one Jane Green, which is "Promises to Keep", which I loved? I did go out right after finishing that one and bought three more, so maybe that will make up for it :)

jonitathebookchick(at)gmail(dot)com

Jonita said...

I am already a follower of CLC through GFC!

jonitathebookchick(at)gmail(dot)com

Jonita said...

http://twitter.com/jonitabookchick/status/17790315483

I tweeted! Melissa, I'll also post this on my sidebar.

jonitathebookchick(at)gmail(dot)com

P88hBear said...

What a fun read - thanks so much!

amy (a) hats4heroes dot org

Colleen Turner said...

I love her statement about her husband showing up at the airport as her "driver". That is just too sweet!
Thanks,
candc320@gmail.com

Colleen Turner said...

I loved Jemima J. I have heard online it might be made into a movie!
candc320@gmail.com

Colleen Turner said...

I am a GFC follower and facebook fan!
candc320@gmail.com

ChristyJan said...

Fun interview. I haven't read any of Jane's books (yet) so, I'd be thrilled to win either one.

hawkes(at)citlink.net

ChristyJan said...

I'm a follower

hawkes(at)citlink.net

Anonymous said...

I love finding new authors to read....would love to be entered in the contest! Thanks!!! Keri

otkeri@comcast.net

Anonymous said...

I would like to read "Promises to Keep". I have never read any of her books but the interview made me interested.

CarolNWong(at)aol(dot)com

Anonymous said...

I am already a GFC follower of this blog.


CarolNWong(at)aol(dot)com

Karen said...

I am a follower via GFC.

Never having read Jane before, I would be interested in either book.

kzupancic[at]yahoo[dot]com

Anonymous said...

Just finished reading The Other Woman and loved it. Please enter me to win either book!! Thank you!

dizzygoogirl@hotmail.com

Anonymous said...

The first Jane Green book I ever read was the one with Jemima J and I was hooked!

dizzygoogirl@hotmail.com

Bonnie said...

Great giveaway and wonderful interview with one of my favorite authors. The first Jane Green book I ever read was Jemima J and that was all it took to hook me! I am a loyal follower of both Chick Lit Central and Jane Green!
intrepid9923@yahoo.com

edmontonjb said...

Great interview! I would love to win Dune Road as I already have an advance copy of Promises To Keep.

dftrew(at)gmail(dot)com

edmontonjb said...

My favorite Jane Green is Jemima J

dftrew(at)gmail(dot)com

edmontonjb said...

I follow with GFC

dftrew(at)gmail(dot)com

LABBOO said...

labboo.gc@gmail.com

Danielle said...

I am new to this blog and appreciate the giveaway!! Thanks so much!

I would love to be entered to win either book...I have read a few of Jane Green's novels, but haven't had a chance to read either of those!!

Danielle Wetmore
djbroyer@gmail.com

krystal_lynn said...

Enter me please. :)

miss_kris_11(at)yahoo(dot)com

krystal_lynn said...

My favorite Jane Green book is also the very first womens fiction book I ever read, Jemima J. I loved it! And from that point on, I've been reading fiction, chic lit, and fantasy like there's no tomorrow. :)

miss_kris_11(at)yahoo(dot)com

krystal_lynn said...

Blog follower here!

miss_kris_11(at)yahoo(dot)com

Heather said...

I think my favorite Jane Green is Bookends...that is where it all started for me!
ra6352 {at} gmail {dot} com

Heather said...

I am a follower!

Heather said...

I posted about this great giveaway on facebook. Thanks for the chances to win! I would love either book!
ra6352 {at} gmail {dot} com

Tiffany said...

Either is fine with me! I don't have either book yet!

Schlarmette@gmail.com

Tiffany said...

I am a follower. schlarmette@gmail.com

Tiffany said...

I am going to post the contest on my facebook page!

schlarmette@gmail.com

Tiffany said...

Hmm... favorite ... so hard to choose! I'm going with beach house, followed by Mr. Maybe!

schlarmette@gmail.com

alli416 said...

Jemima J....hands down!
Great interview...thanks for sharing :) Please enter me in the contest...hope I win! :) :)

LABBOO said...

I'm a follower.

labboo.gc@gmail.com

Aimee S. said...

I am not a big reader but I try to read when I can...now I am definitely interested in The Beach House or Jemima J.! Thanks for the great interview!

Kristen O said...

Love Love Love Jane! I've read all her books except "Promises to Keep" which I'd love to read. I've been following her since Jemima J.
Please enter me to win Promises to Keep.
Kokolynee@aol.com
Thanks, Kristen

carly said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
carly said...

Honestly I haven't read any of Jane Green's books. I love the bright beautiful eye-catching covers, especially the new one, such a gorgeous blue!
Anyway, my B-day is today, I'm 27, and feeling really really old!
Congrats to Jane Green on all her successes, I better get to reading her MANY MANY books!
xoxo~carly

Anonymous said...

loved all of jane's books that i read...maybe 'to have or to hold' is a top favourite of mine :)

karenk
kmkuka at yahoo dot com

Anonymous said...

please include me in this fabulous drawing to win either book of jane's...thanks :)

karenk
kmkuka at yahoo dot com

Susan Helene Gottfried said...

No need to enter me, Melissa (aargh! I dig Jane Green). I'm dropping in to say thanks for the e-mail. I've got this posted at Win a Book for you.

Amy said...

I would love to win either "Promises to Keep" or "Dune Road".
This is a fantastic giveaway, thank you to both you and Jane Green!

~ Amy
Aimala127 AT gmail DOT com

Amy said...

"The Beach House" is my favorite book by Jane Green - how can you go wrong with a setting like Nantucket and a character like Nan? You can't! lolol

Thank you!
Aimala127 AT gmail DOT com

Amy said...

I am a follower of your blog on google friend connect!


Aimala127 AT gmail DOT com

tetewa said...

This would be a new author for me, count me in! tWarner419@aol.com

mariska said...

I Haven't read any Jane's books. so either one will be GREAT for me :)

uniquas at ymail dot com

mariska said...

1. Please tell us: What is your favorite Jane Green book?

--> Since She's a new for me Author, i still don't have any favorite of hers yet !

uniquas at ymail dot com

mariska said...

2. Follow this blog and post a comment saying you are a follower

--> I am a follower :)

mariska said...

3. I tweeted : http://twitter.com/becunique/status/17909535859

uniquas at ymail dot com

JHS. said...

I've never read her work, so would like to give it a whirl. Either book would be fine.

And yes, she DEFINITELY should come here to the wine country of California. We have all kinds of beautiful locations that would make excellent settings. :-)

JHS
Colloquium

jhsmail at comcast dot net

JHS. said...

Already a follower.

JHS
Colloquium

jhsmail at comcast dot net

purplg8r said...

I would love to win Promises to Keep.

Thanks!

belle2211(at)yahoo(dot)com

purplg8r said...

My favorite book by Jane Green is Bookends!

belle2211(at)yahoo(dot)com

purplg8r said...

I am a follower!

belle2211(at)yahoo(dot)com

traveler said...

Either book is lovely. Thanks. saubleb(at)gmail(dot)com

traveler said...

I liked The Beach House the best. saubleb(at)gmail(dot)com

Lootz said...

hello...one of your biggest fans Jane...also, have friends and family that are addicted to your books!

"Promises to Keep" is my next read..so cross my fingers that I win it!

xoxo!

sunny_418 said...

I would like to be entered. Thanks!

sunny_418@hotmail.com

Anonymous said...

I would love to win Dune Road. I have loved Jane for years. I was blessed to meet her a few weeks ago. She's great :)

LKilburn
Vaangel_19@yahoo.com

Anonymous said...

I have read Second Chances, The Beach House, Dune Road and Promises to Keep. My fave so far is Promises to Keep. I have stuffed in a bookcase somewhere Jemima J and Mr. Maybe which I will take to the beach with me this summer. What a great writer. You inspire Jane! -Ryan

Anonymous said...

Just started following this blog. I just love Jane Green, and my favorite book is probably The Beach House. All the characters were so engrossing. I would like to be entered in this contest.

kirstenlovesbooks@gmail.com

Jencey said...

My favorite Jane Green book is Bookends. I love the idea of owning and running a bookstore. I will be happy to receive either book. I wil post on my facebook page and my blog.

Charia said...

I would love to have a copy of either. Both were wonderful books!

cahalford46@gmail.com

Charia said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Charia said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Charia said...

I would have to say my favorite books of Jane's are either Jemima J or The Beach House

cahalford46@gmail.com

Charia said...

I follow your blog.

cahalford46@gmail.com

Charia said...

I blogged about the giveaway!

http://life-of-the-halls.blogspot.com/2010/07/jane-green.html

cahalford46@gmail.com

Janelle said...

Thank you for hosting this giveaway! :)

I think my favorite book by Jane Green is Bookends. No, I know it is. (Jemima J runs a close second, though...)

I follow this blog and I retweeted it. You can find me under Janellio99!

Janelle said...

Thank you for hosting this giveaway! :)

I think my favorite book by Jane Green is Bookends. No, I know it is. (Jemima J runs a close second, though...)

I follow this blog and I retweeted it. You can find me under Janellio99!

Anonymous said...

Always love reading Jane Green interviews!
kittycat343@hotmail.com

Anonymous said...

I loved all of Jane's books and am reading Dune Road now. Would love to win "Promises to Keep".

mbryan1102@yahoo.com

Melissa said...

I loved all of Jane's books and am reading Dune Road now. Would love to win "Promises to Keep".

mbryan1102@yahoo.com

Bethany said...

My favorite would have to be Jemima J. I would love to win "Promises To Keep" - I have all the others!

Eraina Davis said...

Thanks for such an awesome interview. I would love Dune Road! I am going to her event in Westport CT tomorrow to get Promise to Keep!:)
eraina.davis@yale.edu

Jesse said...

I lurve Jane Green! I've read all of her books and there is something so awe inspiring about her writing that is eloquent but not so far stuck up that makes me want to shriek... I'm surrounded by friends who write, edit, argue for a living and I, by no means, am good at it...
Jane, please make another pit stop in the bean (Boston)! I missed the last one in Brookline due to travels.. and please oh please let me have a signed copy of her new book, Promises to Keep.. or any of her books.. I'm not picky! Crossing my fingers and a big merci!

Jesse
jesse.kwan@gmail.com

BRN2SHOP9 said...

Absolutely love Jane Green!

Melissa said...

Winners have been posted: http://bit.ly/96vhKI