– ‘The Magic of Wor(l)ds’ blog is a hobby, reviews and other bookish stuff on this site are done for free. –
Today I’m on the ‘The Secret Cove in Croatia’ blogtour, organised by Rachel’s Random Resources.
To promote this book I have a Q&As post, but b
About the Author :
Jules Wake announced at the age of ten that she planned to be a writer. Along the way she was diverted by the glamorous world of PR and worked on many luxury brands, taking journalists on press trips to awful places like Turin, Milan, Geneva, Paris, Brussels and Amsterdam and occasionally losing the odd member of the press in an airport. This proved fabulous training for writing novels as it provided her with the opportunity to eat amazing food, drink free alcohol, hone her writing skills on press releases and to research European cities for her books.
She writes best-selling warm-hearted contemporary fiction for HarperImpulse.
Under her pen name, Julie Caplin, her twelfth novel, The Secret Cove in Croatia published in ebook format this July.
Sail away to beautiful Croatia for summer sun, sparkling turquoise seas and a holiday romance that’s forever…
When no-nonsense, down-to-earth Maddie Wilcox is offered the chance to work on a luxury yacht for the summer, she can’t say no. Yes she’ll be waiting on the posh guests… But island-hopping around the Adriatic sea will more than make up for it – especially when Nick, her best friend Nina’s brother, is one of them.
Sparks fly when they meet on board and Maddie can’t believe self-entitled jerk Nick is really related to Nina.
But in a secret, picture-perfect cove, away from the real world, Maddie and Nick discover they might have more in common than they realise…
First of all thank you very much for taking the time to answer my questions, I really appreciate it. Here we go! 🙂
Thank you for having me on the blog, I really appreciate it too. Jx
Can you, for those who don’t know you already, tell something about yourself and how you became an author?
I’m Julie Caplin, but also known as Jules Wake, and as Julie I write feel-good contemporary romance set in cities and places that would be perfect for a romantic escape. Locations to date have included Copenhagen, Brooklyn, Paris, Iceland and now Croatia. My first book was published in 2014 and this year I’ll have my thirteenth published … and I’ve only just given up my day job!
My Dad taught me to read before I even went to school, so I was an avid and often precocious reader from an early age. The first thing I would do whenever I moved to a new area would be to join the library. I can’t imagine a life without books and I always have a book on the go. In the days before Kindle, I would find myself struggling to find the type of books that I wanted to read because I’d exhausted the library’s supply of my favourite genre, so one day I decided to write my own.
I’d had an idea in the back of my head for a while, so when I was put on gardening leave for six months I decided I would use the time to write a book.
Sadly I didn’t have the first clue about writing but luckily my dear old dad, who taught me to read all those years ago, gave me honest (brutally honest) feedback. Realising I needed to learn how to write properly I went on a six week course, which taught me more about how much I didn’t know than how to write. From then on I read up on writing, did workshops, exercises, went to conferences, set up a writing group and did everything I could to hone my craft. It was when I joined the Romantic Novelists Association New Writers’ Scheme that I really began to write in earnest and thanks to this fantastic organisation, I got my first book published in 2014.
Which books did/do you love to read as a child/now as a grown-up?
As a child I read everything I could get my hands on. I do love a good series, so I loved the Chalet School Series and Nancy Drew. Now as an adult I still love a good series and some of my favourites of late are firmly in the urban fantasy genre and include the Kate Daniels series by Ilona Andrews as well as the Hidden Legacy series which is also brilliant. I also love the Mercy Thompson series by Patricia Briggs.
My three favourite contemporary romance reads, which are my go to comfort reads when I’m not feeling well are Katie Fforde’s Stately Pursuits, Jill Mansell’s Staying at Daisy’s and Marian Keynes’ Rachel’s Holiday. I’ve read all three several times and would happily read them again.
Is there a writer whose brain you would love to pick for advice? Who would that be and why?
I think Ilona Andrews, which is actually a husband and wife team. I’m fascinated as to how they write together and in awe of their incredible world building and plotting across so many books. They’ve written several different series, each with their own very distinct fantasy worlds and their attention to detail is phenomenal. I would love to learn how they go about building those worlds and how they sustain the story over a series.
If you could, which fictional character (from your own book(s) or someone else’s) would you like to invite for tea and why?
Peabody, Eve Dallas’s side kick in the futuristic crime novels written by J D Robb (aka Nora Roberts). She’s the perfect secondary character and as the series has developed so has her character, so over the years we have learned more about her. However the glimpses into her life are fleeting and she comes across as such a lovely person, I’d love to get to know her a little more and find out how she puts up with Dallas.
Do you have some rituals or habits whilst writing?
No. For me writing is work. I love what I do but there’s nothing magical about it. Every day I have to write so many words, some days they come easier than others, but I’m not allowed to finish for the day until I’ve reached my target word count. I might take breaks, go out, but I don’t go to bed until the words have all been written.
Where do you come up with your idea(s)? Do people in your life need to be worried? 😉
I’ve always had an active imagination. I occasionally overhear things that I think I might use, but I invariably forget them along with punch lines to jokes! Every now and then I might hear something on the radio which sparks a bit ‘What if’ question from which I’ve then developed a whole story.
I’ve always been good at coming up with ideas and if anything, I have far more than I’ll ever be able to write.
Are you a plotter or do you go with the flow, as a pantser?
I’m such a pantser!
I have read up on plotting, I’ve got books on beat sheets, how to plot a novel, novel structure … loads of them! And each time I try to plot a book in advance I end up in a right old mess. I’ve now finally accepted … book thirteen, mind … that I’m a pantser and that I just have to jump right in and see where the story takes me. I’m a great believer in the power of the subconscious and allowing ideas to ferment at the back of your brain. I quite often go to sleep on a plot problem and wake up with the answer.
I also swim a lot and I find that offers really good thinking time for me to mull over my story and think about where I’m going next.
Can you give novice writers some tips (do’s/don’ts)?
Don’t be tempted to publish your very first book. Hone your craft. You wouldn’t enter your first cake in the Great British Bake Off. Certainly send it off for feedback and critiques and if you feel it is good enough submit to agents and publishers. But if the responses are resounding rejections, start a new project and write another book. And repeat. I wrote five books before I got my first one published.
What are your futureplans as an author?
I also write as Jules Wake, so I have another two Jules Wake books coming out in the next year and then I’m contracted to write another two Julie Caplin books. I have so many ideas in my head, I’m not sure I’ll ever have the time to write them but I have an idea for a crime novel that I’d like to write and a commercial women’s fiction domestic drama that I’d also like to write.
Last, but not least : Can you give my readers one teaser from your book, which is featured here on my blog, please?
‘I think you’ve pulled,’ she said, trying to keep her face straight.
‘What?’ Nick looked at her, puzzled.
‘The guy that just passed us. Couldn’t take his eyes off your arse.’
She laughed at the startled expression on his face as he shot a quick look over his shoulder and then laughed even more when the dark-haired guy grinned at Nick, revealing lots of perfect white even teeth.
‘All the better to bite you with,’ said Maddie, gurgling with laughter.
Nick’s mouth was pinched shut in a straight line and he swivelled his head back so quickly it was a wonder he didn’t crick his neck.
‘Told you. I think it’s the shorts.’ She eyed the tight fabric with the dodgy turn-ups. They didn’t even look that comfortable.
‘What’s wrong with them?’ he asked warily.
‘Nothing, I guess, if you’re a trainee gigolo or a bit of a fox.’
Nick blew out an annoyed breath. ‘They’re shorts.’
‘They certainly are,’ teased Maddie.
‘You a fashion expert as well now?’ he asked through gritted teeth.
‘You’re on holiday, not the catwalk. Time to relax and enjoy yourself. I’d have thought dressing for comfort was the most important thing.’ Her lips twisted as she tried hard not to smile. In those shorts he might have difficulty fathering children in the future, although she’d be the last to deny that those muscular thighs, covered in crisp sandy gold hair, were pretty impressive and she was on the same page as the gay guy when it came to Nick’s bum. Shame he was such an arse. ‘You want to watch you don’t cut your circulation off.’
‘Is there any kind of filter with you?’ asked Nick.
‘No,’ said Maddie matter-of-factly.
Isn’t that a great reason to pick up this book and to find out more?!
Thanks once again for this lovely interview, Julie Caplin.
The Magic of Wor(l)ds
P.S. Are you an author (or publisher) who also wants a FREE interview like this? You can always contact me via e-mail!