Interview with Jennifer Wilck

by LaShawn Williams

1. Can you explain what is the most difficult part of your artistic process when preparing a novel?

 

I think the most difficult part is keeping the conflict going. I’m a non-confrontational person and I like everyone to be happy, including my characters. So my first instinct is always to smooth things over prematurely, which makes the story boring. Unless, of course, one of my characters is going to pretend that everything is fine (I’m fine, you’re fine, we’re fine, everything is fine—not!), but really keep his or her feelings buried until they explode. That might also be interesting, if I can keep that character likeable in the process. Usually it just means I have to go back and up the tension or come up with alternate reactions.

 

2. Do you read your book reviews on Goodreads? How do you deal with the bad or good ones?

 

I do real all of my reviews. And I’ll admit the bad ones sting. But reviews are subjective and what one person enjoys may be different from another person. So I remind myself that people are busy, and the fact that someone even took the time to review something I wrote is a great thing. And if the review is bad, I go back and read a good review to cheer myself up.

 

3. What other authors are you friends with, and how do they help you become a better writer?

 

I am part of a critique group with three other women and they are lifesavers! They’re all romance or women’s fiction writers and they are an extremely talented bunch. What makes us work so well together is that we all have different strengths, so we get a variety of different perspectives on our manuscripts. I was honored to be invited to join their critique group several years ago and we’ve all become very good friends, supporting each other through life events, celebrating birthdays and just chatting or texting to make sure everyone is holding up okay. Since becoming an author, I’ve found writers to be a very supportive and uplifting group.

 

4. As a contemporary romance writer, do you want each book to stand on its own, or are you trying to build a body of work with connections between each book?

 

I’m going to say a combination of the two, actually. I think I’ve become known in my circle as a writer of Jewish contemporary romance. In fact, when a publisher put out a call for Jewish romance, at least ten different people contacted me to make sure I was aware of it. So I love when people associate that aspect of my writing with me. I also want readers to enjoy my books because of great story telling and relatable characters, whether or not those characters are Jewish, and whether or not the book is part of a series or a standalone. And if they laugh at my snarky humor, all the better.

 

5. What did you edit out of Whispers in Washington that you wish you could have kept?

 

I’m not sure I edited anything out per se, but I did keep it shorter than I usually do. Whispers in Washington is a novella (or a short novel, I’m never quite sure of the definition) based on its word count. So I had to keep the plot and character arcs tight and not delve too deeply into background or secondary character relationships. It was challenging, but took a lot less time to write, so I’m starting to see the appeal. J

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BIO

I’m a contemporary romance writer living on the East Coast with my two teen daughters, husband and rescue dog. I’m a fan of chocolate and snark and love connecting with readers on Facebook. If you like spunky heroines, and strong heroes with just a touch of vulnerability, you’ve come to the right place!

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