Interview: Jay Northcote
Hey, all! Please welcome Jay Northcote to the blog today. We swapped interviews, and mine will be on her blog next week (11/22), but for now, check out Jay’s answers to my questions and the blurb for her newest release, Nothing Ventured, which just came out from Dreamspinner yesterday (and I am very excited to read!). 🙂
Thanks for hosting me today.
What do you love about fanfic? How did you come across it?
I came across fanfiction because a friend told me about it and I was intrigued, and then I started reading and became hooked. But I was fascinated by the authors as much as by the stories. All those people—many of them amazingly talented—writing stories for the love of characters and the joy of writing. It was very inspiring. The first piece of fiction I wrote in 20-odd years was a short fanfiction story and the floodgates opened. I’ve been writing ever since.
As a reader I love fanfic because it allows me to lose myself in a story with familiar characters that I adore. You know how when you love a story so much that you don’t want it to end? With fanfic you get to keep reading more stories with the same characters so you never get that post book slump. There’s always more!
What is the most difficult thing about writing for you? The easiest?
I think the thing I struggle with most is motivation and that goes hand in hand with confidence for me. When I’m in an ‘up’ phase and I’m feeling good about my writing, I’m inspired. The ideas flow and I don’t find it too hard to get stuck in and get the story down. But when I’m feeling vulnerable or low, I get really negative about my work and then it’s an uphill battle to write at all.
From a technical point of view, I’d say that my weakness as a writer is plotting. I get very tangled in plots and timelines and they stress me out. Sometimes I have no idea how I’m going to find my way through it and get a bit panicky. The parts I find easiest is writing characters, they usually make themselves known and are quite easy to channel.
Do you prefer writing stand-alone books or a series?
I prefer stand-alones. Partly because of the plotting issues, my brain would really struggle to keep plot threads going through more than one book. Also I love writing getting together stories, the part where they meet and fall for each other is the part I want to tell. I rarely have any inclination to carry on writing my characters once they’re in an established relationship.
However I do have a possible plan for a sequel to The Dating Game, so that might be an exception.
What’s your favorite cover of your books?
That’s really hard, because I’ve been fortunate to have a lot of really gorgeous covers. But if I had to pick just one, I think it would be the cover of Not Just Friends. I had terrible trouble finding an image I was happy with, but as soon as I found this one I knew it was perfect. I was thrilled with how it turned out. (The photo is by Dan Skinner and the cover artist was Paul Richmond).
Which book of yours would you like to have made into a movie?
I would be utterly thrilled to see any of my books made into movies! But if I had to choose I’d like to see Not Just Friends. I think it would be super cute and fun to watch. Sort of like an American high school movie but British and with more smut and alcohol involved (because the characters are college age). The scenes with the flatmates would be good, because there was a lot of fun dialogue with all the boys together in the kitchen. I’d love to see that on a screen.
Tell me about your new release.
When Aiden agrees to run the Mad Mucker—a twelve-mile muddy slog over an obstacle course—he’s expecting it to be a bit of a laugh. The training will be tough, but Aiden could use the motivation to regain some fitness.
Matt is the sexy cousin of one of Aiden’s coworkers and a last-minute addition to the team. When he agrees to train with Aiden, Aiden suddenly finds the prospect of regular workouts a lot more appealing.
Soon attraction flares, and they embark on an intense physical relationship. Matt doesn’t want to fall in love with a man, and Aiden doesn’t want to fall in love at all, but despite their insistence on no strings, they grow closer. As the day of the race approaches, time is running out for them to work out how they feel about each other.
Jay lives just outside Bristol in the West of England, with her husband, two children, and two cats.
She comes from a family of writers, but she always used to believe that the gene for fiction writing had passed her by. She spent years only ever writing emails, articles, or website content. One day, she decided to try and write a short story–just to see if she could–and found it rather addictive. She hasn’t stopped writing since.