I’m happy to welcome Wild Rose Press author Jennifer Wilck. Today, Jennifer shares ten interesting facts about herself and her latest release, Waiting for a Miracle.
1. I’m an only child. I loved all of the opportunities I was given growing up, due to the fact my parents only had me—horseback riding lessons, ballet, any college I wanted (within reason)—but I always wanted a sibling. I thought The Brady Bunch was the perfect family. It wasn’t until I had two daughters that I realized there’s no such thing as a perfect family, and it’s the imperfection that makes each family unique. I love how my girls get along, and I also love how they disagree and are each their own person. As a writer, I often include a child in my stories, but my heroes and heroines will definitely have children of their own—either naturally or through adoption. In Waiting for a Miracle, my heroine is unable to have children of her own, but wants to foster them. The hero is a single dad and is happy to support her dream.
2. My stories usually start out with a snippet of a conversation that I hear in my head. Sometimes those snippets are in the hero’s POV and other times they are in the heroine’s POV. It’s my job to figure it out and then build a story around that conversation. In my book, Addicted to Love, I “heard” the black moment first. Start at the end and work backwards? No problem!
3. In my other life, I wrote for technology magazines. As an English major, I tried to turn the techie mumbo-jumbo into something regular people could understand. However, in the real world, I’m not technology proficient. My husband used to laugh because I could explain why something worked, but couldn’t actually do it! I have several friends who work for major technology companies, so when I needed my characters to have particular jobs, I was able to interview them.
4. Most of the children in my stories are based in some way on my own girls (please don’t tell them that). And some of the character quirks are theirs. For example, Claire, the six-year-old girl in A Heart of Little Faith, loved the game Trouble. My oldest daughter and I used to play that game for hours!
5. My favorite characters to write are the meddlesome but loveable mothers or grandmothers. In Addicted to Love, my heroine, Hannah, lives with her grandmother, and she is one of my most favorite characters of all time (soon to be displaced by the grandmother in my current WIP, though).
6. I love writing both Jewish and non-Jewish contemporary romance. I think it’s important to represent all types of people in romance, and as a Jewish author, I can bring a unique perspective to my writing. There are always cultural elements that I include in my Jewish romances, and the stories revolve around more than just Hanukkah. Some of my biggest fans of my Jewish romance are a group of Catholic ladies who absolutely love the Jewish elements.
7. One of the best aspects of being a writer is that it has forced introverted me to be more extroverted. I have to toot my own horn a lot more than makes me comfortable, but I’m getting better at it. I’ve made contacts at local book stores and libraries, and despite my shyness, I love talking to readers about books—either mine or others I’ve read.
8. I love trying new foods. I was encouraged as a young child to eat a variety of adult food, rather than typical kiddie fare, and I think that has made me more adventurous as an adult. As long as it’s not alive, isn’t an organ, and isn’t any form of insect, I’m willing to give it a try. I include lots of food in my books, as well. There’s a great food scene—chocolate—in Five Minutes to Love, that was so tempting while I was writing it that even now, thinking about it makes me hungry.
9. In general, I prefer it to be quiet when I write. Music does inspire me, but if I write while listening to it, I’ll get distracted. The need for silence also means I stagger the times when I write based on who is going to be in my house when. Although, now that my girls are in college, my house is much quieter ad I’m able to write when the inspiration hits, as opposed to when they are out of the house.
10. My favorite trope to read and to write is Beauty and the Beast. I love damaged heroes and strong heroines (not necessarily beautiful ones), and I love adding a psychological component to my conflicts. I hope a reader gets a wide range of emotional responses when they read my writing, just as I want to get the same benefit when I read other authors.
Benjamin Cohen, widowed father of six-year-old Jessie, is doing his best to hold it together through order and routine. The last thing he needs is his matchmaker mother to set him up with her next door neighbor, no matter how attractive she is.
Rachel Schaecter’s dream of becoming a foster mother is right within her grasp, until her meddlesome neighbor tries to set her up with her handsome son. What’s worse? He’s the father of her favorite kindergarten student! She can’t afford to let anything come between her and her dream, no matter how gorgeous he may be.
Can these two determined people trust in the miracle of Hanukkah to let love and light into their lives?
Six-year-old bodies were good at many things— bouncing, hugging, and racing. Rachel was thankful they were also good at hiding her surprise. Never in her wildest dreams did she imagine her favorite student, and her student’s father, would be at her neighbor’s house the same night she was invited to celebrate Hanukkah.
She met the hard gaze of Jessie’s father across the room. Eyes narrowed as if he suspected her reasons for being here. His broad shoulders were stiff. His jean-clad muscular legs were spread apart in a solid stance. Square hands fisted at his sides, and one of them held a menorah. Did he plan to throw it or club someone with it?
Giving Jessie a last pat, she rose. With an arm around Jessie, she extended her other hand to her father. “Happy Hanukkah.”
“Oh, please,” Harriet said, “Such formality between you two. Rachel, this is my son Benny. I mean Benjamin.”
Benny. Rachel filed the information away for later, along with his flushed skin at the nickname. Interesting.
“And Benjamin, this is my neighbor, Rachel. We’re not at a school event. You can call each other by your first names.” Harriet pointed at Jessie, who gripped Rachel’s hand so hard, Rachel’s fingers lost their circulation. “Except for you,” Harriet added. “You have to call her Ms. Schaecter.”
Jessie giggled. “Yes, Grandma.”
Jennifer started telling herself stories as a little girl when she couldn’t fall asleep at night. Pretty soon, her head was filled with these stories and the characters that populated them. Even as an adult, she thinks about the characters and stories at night before she falls asleep or walking the dog. Eventually, she started writing them down. Her favorite stories to write are those with smart, sassy, independent heroines; handsome, strong and slightly vulnerable heroes; and her stories always end with happily ever after.
In the real world, she’s the mother of two amazing daughters and wife of one of the smartest men she knows. She believes humor is the only way to get through the day and does not believe in sharing her chocolate.
She writes contemporary romance, many of which feature Jewish characters in non-religious settings (#ownvoices). She’s published with The Wild Rose Press and all her books are available through Amazon and Barnes & Noble.
Where to find Jennifer