Good morning everyone! I am happy to have author Jillian Eaton on the blog today and we’ll be chatting about her Regency romance, The Forgotten Fiancée! So I hope you’ll join us and in the process discover a new to you author!
She loves ducks, coffee, horses, hearing from her readers, that awful (but delicious) fake butter they put on popcorn at the movies, anything sci-fi related and staying up really late finishing a good book.
She isn't very fond of laundry.
Adria: Hi Jillian! Thank you for stopping by my blog, I really appreciate it and I hope you’re up for some silly questions as well as some serious (sort of) ones ;)
Adria: First things first, if you had to stand up in front of 200 people and only had three minutes to describe your book, The Forgotten Fiancée what would you say?
Jillian: It's a story about loss and reconciliation and heartbreak and romance. A story that will make you cry, but will also make you laugh. Ultimately, it's a story that redefines what a 'second chance' means.
Adria: Who or what inspired you to start writing romance?
Jillian: I've always loved historical romance, first as a reader and then as a writer. I've also always loved to write. When I first started getting serious about it I tried to make myself write young-adult. I got one novel out of the deal, but the rest just weren't clicking. Then I tried to make myself write contemporary romance. It didn't go so well. Finally I settled down to write about my true love (historical) and the characters just bloomed to life. If we ever discover reincarnation is a real thing, I wouldn't be surprised to find I lived in the Regency Era in a past life. It's just a period of time I've always felt comfortable with. Fingers crossed I was a duchess and not a scullery maid.
Adria: Tell me a bit about your lead characters, Miles and Dianna. Where did you get the inspiration for them? What makes them such an ideal couple and what makes their story so romantic?
Jillian: Dianna actually made her first appearance in The Runaway Duchess as my main character's best friend. She was only ever supposed to have a supporting role, but as the story developed she kept inserting herself more and more and this big back story appeared between her and her missing fiancee, Miles. One year later and here we are!
When the story begins, Dianna and Miles are in a very dark place. They've just seen each other again after four years (not to mention one very traumatic event) and want completely different things. Namely, Dianna wants Miles' head on a platter and Miles wants Dianna in his arms. It's clear from the start that there is a sexual chemistry between them, but it isn't enough. At least not at first...
Adria: Were there any specific challenges you faced while writing The Forgotten Fiancée?
Jillian: In a word, yes. Within three weeks of starting to write The Forgotten Fiancée something occurred in my life that was eerily similar to something that happens in the novel. It was the first time real life intruded on my fictional life, and I had to put what I'd written so far away in a drawer for about six months. When I found myself in a happier place I was able to finish what I'd started, but it was definitely the most difficult novel for me to write so far, at least from a personal perspective.
Adria: Have you ever been out and about in your everyday life and witnessed something so interesting/funny/intense that you just had to put it in one of your books?
Jillian: I've definitely plucked random people off the street before and inserted them into my books, using either their appearance or their mannerisms or a combination of the two. Some funny things have happened to me... but none that would be really appropriate for a Regency Romance. Unfortunately.
Adria: The Forgotten Fiancée takes place in Regency England, much like a lot of my favorite historical romances, in your opinion, what is it about that time period that draws authors and readers alike?
Jillian: I think it's the time period that we can relate to the most. It's a period of change. It's a period of growing independence, especially for women and the middle class. The Regency Era provides a great backdrop of old traditions and new ideals that, as both a writer and a reader, I find absolutely fascinating. Plus I just really, really love Judith McNaught and Lisa Kleypas.
Adria: Can you describe your romance writing style in five words or less? Is it sweet? Sassy? Something else entirely?
Jillian: Adventurous, romantic, witty, charming, and sexy.
Adria: What are you currently working on now?
Jillian: I'm finishing up my annual Christmas novella. This one is called The Christmas Widow and it was so much fun to write! You can look for it on Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and Kobo 12/02.
Adria: What has been your most memorable fan interaction?
Jillian: This is an easy one. The first time I got an e-mail from a reader asking when I was going to write about Dianna and Miles was definitely the most memorable, and the most inspiring, as at the time I had no plans for Dianna beyond her appearance in The Runaway Duchess.
Adria: If you could only grab five items from your closet on your way out the door, what would they be?
Jillian: Well... My purse, my car keys, my awesome red sunglasses I got from Target last summer, a scarf (which my boyfriend insists makes me a hipster, but I beg to disagree), and... my kindle. Which is technically usually in my purse, but if it wasn't I would make sure to grab it.
Adria: What was the last movie you saw in theaters (It was Captain America: The Winter Soldier, how sad is that? I don’t go to the movies very much)?
Jillian: The last movie I saw was Interstellar, in IMAX no less which was absolutely incredible/mildly terrifying. Awesome movie. Highly recommended. Just expect to come out of it scratching your head.
Adria: What song is currently on repeat in your head (Mine is All About That Bass by Meghan Trainor. It’s pretty catchy, especially the live performance she did with Miranda Lambert)?
Jillian: So I'm a bit of a Taylor Swift fan which means I already have her new CD. I'm adjusting from the switch from country pop to pure pop. Some songs I definitely don't love, but one I'm obsessed with is Bad Blood. It's my jam.
Adria: Do you have any hobbies outside of writing?
Jillian: Yes! Before I was writing full time, I was a barn manager and riding instructor. I still teach one riding class at a local college, and take lessons with one of my best friends every other week.
Adria: Last but not least, I want to thank you for taking the time to answer my questions Jillian. Is there anything else you’d like to add?
Jillian: Just a big thank you! These questions were great. Oh! And I want to do a shout out to my dogs -- they can't read, but they're great writing buddies. Love you Finn, Chase, and Jett!
Engaged to be married since they were children, Miss Dianna Foxcroft and Lord Miles Radnor, Earl of Winfield, were perfect for one another. Until the day he left her standing at the altar and disappeared for parts unknown, breaking their engagement... and Dianna’s heart.
Four years have passed since that fateful day, and Miles has at long last come home to England. His sudden return has filled Dianna’s head with questions, and her heart with doubt. She wants to trust the man Miles has become… but how can she forgive the boy who betrayed her?
He may have traveled the world, but Miles has never forgotten the blue-eyed beauty he left behind. Determined to win back the heart of the only woman he has ever truly loved, he seeks Dianna out only to discover she despises the very sight of him. Or so she says…