I have another fun cozy mystery author interview for you today, this time with the lovely Jenna St. James. Grab a beverage, find a comfy chair, and have read below to see what Jenna has to say about writing, penguins, and cookies.
Interview with Jenna St. James
1 – What inspired you to write your books?
When I first started journaling and writing, there was a lot of chaos in my life, and I needed a way to express myself without getting thrown in jail (lol)…so I started therapy writing. From there, my first novel Picture Perfect Murder was written. I found it was easier to get my emotions down on paper than to verbally express them. Eventually I learned to curb the chaos and started writing cozies for the pure pleasure.
2 – What’s your favorite thing about cozy mysteries?
You get to use your brain to try and solve a puzzle…and you almost always have an awesome sidekick!
3 – Do you have any writing rituals?
I typically start my day at 2am, but I won’t let myself have coffee until around 5am.
4 – What’s more important – character or plot?
Both! It’s like bread & butter or peanut butter & jelly. Although I will say sometimes I think I lean heavier on one more than the other depending on the book. I can usually pick up one of my books and tell you which one I went heavier on—plot or character.
5 – What do you like best about being an author? What do you like the least?
What I like best about being an author is that I get to stay in the comfort of my home and tell people stories I hope they enjoy. My LEAST favorite part of being an author is marketing. As an Indie author, it’s like you have to have a doctorate in eight different fields. Marketing is not my forte, and I feel like sometimes I do myself a disservice. Because I’m constantly trying to read up on and implement ideas, I get behind on my writing.
6 – What’s your favorite cookie? If you don’t like cookies, what’s wrong with you? Oops, sorry, scratch that. My follow-up question was meant to be far more polite – “Why don’t you like cookies?”
LOL. I love cookies, cakes, pies, pretty much sprinkle sugar (fairy dust) on it, and I want to consume it! I love coconut, so cookies with coconut, chocolate, maybe pecans and a shot (or two) of bourbon or rum for flavor!! YUM!
7 – A penguin walks through your front door wearing a sombrero. What does he say and why did he come visit you?
His name is Pierre Penguin, and my favorite character, Tante Lulu from Louisiana, sent him to me. Pierre hands me a necklace of St. Jude. “Put it on. Tante Lulu says you’re the next hopeless cause she’s willing to help. Laissez le bon temps rouler!” Of course I readily agree! It’s not every day one of your favorite authors, Sandra Hill, decides to give you your own Cajun from her Cajun books series. LOL…I’m sure my James will understand.
8 – What else would you like us to know about you?
I try not to take things too seriously. Like many people, my life has a tendency to be chaotic, and that stresses me out. So I try and tell myself to sit back and laugh through a lot of it. Also, I hope to be able to travel more so I can expand my writing settings within the next five years. Take my readers on different adventures in different parts of the world. And mostly, I’m thankful every day that I get to do this job.
Jenna St. James’ Books
Check out Jenna’s cozy mystery series—the Ryli Sinclair Mysteries, the Sullivan Sisters Mysteries, the Copper Cove Mysteries, and the Witch in Time Mysteries—and her Trinity Falls romantic comedy series.
About Jenna St. James
Jenna writes in the genres of cozy/paranormal cozy/ romantic comedy. Her humorous characters and stories revolve around over-the-top family members, creative murders, and there’s always a positive element of the military in her stories. Jenna currently lives in Missouri with her fiancé, step-daughter, Nova Scotia duck tolling retriever dog, Brownie, and her tuxedo-cat, Whiskey. She is a former court reporter turned educator turned full-time writer. She has a Master’s degree in Special Education, and an Education Specialist degree in Curriculum and Instruction. She also spent twelve years in full-time ministry.
When she’s not writing, Jenna likes to attend beer and wine tastings, go antiquing, visit craft festivals, and spend time with her family and friends. Check out her website at http://www.jennastjames.com/. Don’t forget to sign up for the newsletter so you can keep up with the latest releases! You can also friend request her on Facebook at jennastjamesauthor/ or catch her on Instagram at authorjennastjames.
Editor’s Note: Thanks so much for the interview, Jenna! I love that your penguin is named Pierre and hails from Louisiana!