Jan DeGrass writes in Gibsons, British Columbia, where she is Arts and Entertainment columnist for the Coast Reporter newspaper, and contributes a regular arts feature to Coast Life magazine.
She leads a writing critique group and assists other authors with editing their manuscripts (www.edityourwords.ca). She has received a national award for a business article that contributed to Canadian co-operative literature and was a winner for Best Coverage of the Arts by a national newspaper association. She is the author of a corporate history book and a cookbook, Take Potluck!
Her award-winning article, Loving in Leningrad, based on a true experience in the Soviet Union, drew on her university background in Russian language and literature and became the genesis of Jazz with Ella.
While on a study tour of the Soviet Union during the austere Brezhnev years, Jennifer, a Canadian student, is swept off her feet by a handsome Soviet man, Volodya. He is a discontented jazz pianist whose idol is singer Ella Fitzgerald–for him the symbol of everything mysterious and musical that can happen only in the west....