Interview with Jennie Leigh

Do you remember the first story you ever wrote?
I'm not sure if it was the first story I ever wrote, but I know it's one of the very first. In fact, though it's been through many revisions through the years, I still have that story in my "To-Be-Published" list. It is about a woman with a special connection with horses and has several animal characters. I'm an animal lover myself and owned horses as a girl, so I love to include animals in my stories.
What is your writing process?
Hmm...chaotic. Possibly manic. I sometimes go days without writing anything, then sit and write for hours on end with almost no stopping. I've tried to force myself into a more regimental process, but it just doesn't work for me.
When you're not writing, how do you spend your time?
I'm a reader as well as a writer, so I do a lot of reading. I also enjoy sewing, photography, video games, and cooking. When these aren't occupying my time and attention, I have a pair of dogs and a trio of cats that keep me on my toes.
How do you discover the ebooks you read?
I'm a serial downloader. I receive several emails that keep me updated on books that are new on the market or fit with my favorite genres. My level of control when it comes to downloading a book I find interesting is very low, so I have hundreds of unread books waiting for me to find time to get to them.
Do you remember the first story you ever read, and the impact it had on you?
I couldn't even begin to name the first story I ever read. My mother was a reader and read to me from birth until I was old enough to read myself. I have always had eclectic tastes in my reading choices, though early on I went through a serious horse phase that had me reading every book I could get my hands on that involved a horse or horses. Thus, I read all "The Black Stallion" books as well as "Black Beauty." I also loved anything about animals in general and read much of Jack London's work.
What do you read for pleasure?
Almost anything. I write romance and love to read it as well, but I'm also a fan of several other genres, including science fiction, fantasy, action and adventure, horror, and suspense. I collect cookbooks and love to browse through them to look for new things to try.
What is your e-reading device of choice?
I have an iPad Air. I absolutely love being able to carry around an entire library in my hand.
Describe your desk
My lap. I do have an actual desk, and I wrote at it for years until I got my first laptop. Since then, I do almost all my writing on my laptop on the couch. I'm not an organized person by nature, so my actual desk is consistently cluttered.
Where did you grow up, and how did this influence your writing?
I'm a Southerner. I was born in Memphis, TN and raised in northern Mississippi. I think it influenced me by leading me to set most of my stories in rural settings. I'm a country girl at heart, though my husband has always called me a city girl. My mother's family is from rural Tennessee, and I spent a lot of my childhood playing in the woods. I consider myself to have been fortunate to have grown up before the electronic age. Though I love my laptop, cell phone, video games, and all the other modern conveniences, I'm still grateful to have spent my childhood playing outside. I've never lived a day in my life without a dog and a cat as part of my family, and had other various animals as well through the years, so I often include animals in my stories.
What motivated you to become an indie author?
I began writing in my late teens as a hobby and an outlet for emotional strain brought on by the unexpected loss of my mother. I never seriously considered trying to become a published author because, though I loved writing, I didn't want to go through the process of trying to break into the traditional publishing world. Once the internet took off and self-publishing became something that was not only easy to do, but also increasingly common, I decided to give it a try.
What is the greatest joy of writing for you?
I grew up like so many others, in love with the happily ever after promised by fairy tales. I have always had a strong and fertile imagination, so I love putting it to work to come up with new characters and stories. I often laugh and even cry at some of the things I write. I fall in love with my characters and love writing the happy endings for them.
Published 2014-03-20.
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