Q&A: Jen Malech Books

Q: What is your latest book about?
A: It’s hard to answer this question simply, but if I was to give the book one word, it would be this: reconciliation. Reconciliation between the past and the present, between mother and daughter, between father and son, between hope and reality.

In St Ives Memory, our protagonist, Rose Fox, has seen a lot in her lifetime. She served in the WVS during World War II, she grew up in a home where her adopted parents had made the choice to hide the truth about her parent’s story, and her mother, bound by a mental illness, meant that childhood was not a normal kind of childhood for her and her brother. When one of those secrets from her parent’s past is revealed through a series of events, Rose goes on a journey not only to uncover who she really is, but to also find the will and strength to forgive and love the ones who have hurt her the most.

Q:  What was the most difficult part about writing a sequel?
A: The most difficult part about writing St Ives Memory, the sequel to A Song for Somme, in particular, was that the timeline jumped 20 years, so I had to write the characters as not only older individuals, but as developed characters. While at the core, they are still very much the same people, life’s experiences shape who we are. Change is inevitable.

Q: When is your next podcast feature?
A: I currently don’t have another podcast episode on the horizon, but I am hoping to produce more content in the future. I was so blown away by all the positive feedback from the last episode and most certainly would love to bring my friend, Charity Hall, on again to discuss not only my books, but reading and writing in general. She is a gem and I look forward to the day when I can interview her in return!

Side note: Definitely invest yourself into friendships who invest into you and the things you are passionate about. This is a rare find and I’m lucky enough to have found a core group of people who have helped me so much in the writing process. I have said this so many times, but I will say it again. These books really wouldn’t have been possible without the support of my friends. I’m not kidding. I almost took my first book off the shelves entirely, yet friends kept encouraging me, and three books later, here we are.

Q: Who is your favorite character that you have ever written?
A: Lloyd Fox. The protagonist of my second book, A Song for Somme, Lloyd is an introvert whose main way of communication is through the music that he composes. His character’s journey was inspired by the life of C.S. Lewis. (I am a pretty big fan of Lewis) and I enjoyed exploring the relationship between him and his children in St Ives Memory.

Q: Q: Have you thought about writing a book with a police office character?
A: This question made me smile, mainly because the question came from a police officer. I don’t know if I will write a book about a police character. However, I do make mention of the local bobby in all my books, ha!

Q: Why are all your books set in England?
A: Ever since I was a little girl, I have been captivated by England, including the relationship between England and America in the early 1900’s. Additionally, I love learning about another culture and if I can learn more in the process, then I am all up for the challenge.

After writing the first book in Brit English, it just made it easier to continue in this pattern, especially after visiting England in the Fall of 2017 which helped a lot with my research and the writing of both A Song for Somme and St Ives Memory.

Q: Are you in the process of writing another book?
A: No, I am not. I have made the decision to take a break from fiction writing to focus more on my career(I’m a writer in the Advertising Industry!)
I don’t know if I will write another book again. If I do, it will be some time from now, as I am focusing more on other things at the present moment. It takes a lot of mental and emotional energy to write and publish each book.

I hope you all enjoyed this Q&A session. And, who knows, maybe in the future, there will be another podcast episode to look out for!

Cheers until next time, friends!

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