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Intervier With Author Jeanna Louise Skinner


Genre(s)

Plus-Size Witchy Romance – to be precise!


What made/inspired you decide to be a writer?

I feel like I should say something clever here but the truth is I just love it. It feels like the closest I can get to actually being able to do magic, because what are stories if not a collection of words grouped together in a special way to invoke a feeling or a happening? Storytellers are Spell-casters and Word Witches.


What inspires your writing?

I’m a huge fan of word play and puns (Word Witchery again), so quite often an idea will pop into my head because I’m riffing on a common saying or a popular meme. I am heavily influenced by pop culture as well as fairytales, myths, legends and folk stories, so I like the juxtaposition of mixing the two in my stories. I’m a sucker for a clever pun title. And of course, I love creating fat and fabulous witchy characters, often with disabilities and/or queer rep, and the people who fall in love with them.


What’s the first thing you remember writing, and how old were you?

Oh gosh, I’m not sure how old I was but I remember writing a poem when in was in Primary School about My Fears which included the line: “My body begins to tremble and shake, and my mouth crumbles like a Cadbury’s Flake”. See, I was influenced by pop culture even then!


Do you need quiet or can you write anywhere?

Quiet is my preferred writing space but I’ll manage anywhere in a pinch. Usually when I’m up against a deadline.


How do you handle brain block?

Ha! I don’t handle it. I have ADHD so my brain is constantly pinballing around up here. If I’m blocked—which is more often than I’d like — my brain creates and dreams up other ways for me to be creative. It’s like a pressure cooker. I have to be doing something to let out a little steam, so if I’m not writing I’m making pretty aesthetics or videos, or I’ll be dreaming up a pun-based shiny new idea.


If they could bring any character from any story from any time period to life, who would it be?

I never know what to answer to these kinds of questions. I think it’s my neurospicy brain again. I get anxious because I feel like there’s a right answer and I’m obviously going to get it wrong. That all being said, my debut witchy romance, The Book Boyfriend, is about a hot and mysterious Tudor nobleman coming to life from the pages of a book which the heroine is reading, so I’ll have to say him: Lord Jonathan Dalgliesh.



What made you want to write this particular piece?

Witches!

Seriously though, I’ve longed to work with The New Romance Café and this anthology gave me the perfect outlet to write a silly story based on an event that happened to me a few years ago where I met my favourite actor, Henry Cavill, and he used my hoodie to wipe mud from his face — WHILE I WAS STILL WEARING IT! I have “Henry Cavill’s Towel” in my social media bios for a reason 😁


What can readers expect from your story?

🧙‍♀️ A Disabled and Plus-Size Witch in STEM

🤵 Her Hollywood Hottie Crush

🤵 His Super Strong Genetic Clone

✨ A Magical Accident Involving Her Hoodie & His DNA

💥 “Who did this to you?... Not ***HIM***?!!!”

♿ Disability Rep

🌶️ Closed Door Spice (the word count limit defeated me, but I i am planning on releasing the full spicy version in the future)

🧷 KEEP YOU SAFE

💕 Soulmates

✔️ Inspired By True Events (as mentioned above)


For those readers who are new to you, what book should they start off with and why?

I only have one book currently published and that’s The Book Boyfriend, which I talked about earlier. It features a fierce, body-positive, fat and tall heroine; a morally grey, swoon-worthy Tudor hero; mental health representation; romance novel references galore; a dusty Devon bookshop setting; history, mystery, magic; sonnets, secrets and spells; and the grumpiest, chonkiest bookshop cat. It’s full of cosy, witchy, light academia, bookish, slow burn, reverse-time-travel vibes, and it’s perfect for fans of Practical Magic, Inkheart , Kate and Leopold, Outlander, and The Very Secret Society of Irregular Witches.


And I’m currently working on my new series, The Bluebloodsuckers, spicy romcom fairy-tale retellings about a modern-day fictional European royal family— who just happen to be a coven of vampires! Book One in the series is called Pumpkin Spiced and it’s a Cinderella-inspired sexy romcom about a stabby, plus-size, neurospicy, swordsmith-witch, her Prince Charming— who turns into a vampire on the stroke of midnight, and a glass dagger in place of a glass slipper. It’s a lot of silly, sexy, campy fun.


Thank you for having me!



Links:

(I gave The Book Boyfriend two different covers because I’m extra like that!)

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