Books · Publishing · Writing

SLAE: Q & A

Hello hello!

Sometimes Love Ain’t Enough is almost a month old, and I wanted to celebrate by answering some questions about the book and my process writing it.

Have you ever considered writing under a pseudonym, and why or why not?

I thought this question was a good one to answer, because I did write SLAE under a pseudonym! Not a very creative or secret pseudonym, but a pseudonym nonetheless. I like to keep things simple, but I decided to go ahead and create a pen name for my new adult/adult work to keep it separate from my children’s/young adult work. I did this mainly because the heat levels differ vastly (expect open-door spicy from my adult titles!) and I wanted to make that line clear for readers.

The heat level may differ, but I think my voice stays true throughout my work. So if you read and enjoyed The Girls of Fall, I’m pretty confident you will like my college romances!

Here’s the breakdown:

  • Jessica: children’s books, YA, poetry
  • J.L.: new adult and adult romance

If you’re planning a sequel, can you share a tiny bit about your plans for it?

Yes, definitely! SLAE is the flagship novel for a series of interconnected work, all centering around and about Penn Warren University students. Right now, I have at least three books planned, but the door is open for more (novellas, short stories, special extra scenes from different characters).

What part of the book was the most fun to write?

I had a lot of fun writing the whole book. I may be biased, as the author (LOL), but I really love all the characters, their dynamics, and the humor in the book. Even in its dramatic moments, I still enjoyed the writing process.

If I had to pick one part, I would say I loved writing Vivien’s answers for her column in the paper. I did a lot of dating in my twenties and have a lot of opinions about dating, so it was really fun to channel that in my fictional advice column.

What is a significant way your book has changed since the first draft?

Ooh, this is a good one. The first draft was definitely shorter, by about 10,000 words, but the heart of the book never changed. In revision and edits, I worked on expanding scenes and solidifying character reactions and emotions. Also, Vivien’s column responses were added last, so I guess that is the biggest change!

What inspired the idea for your book?

Alright, alright, alright, let’s get personal! 😀

The dynamic between Vivien and Justin was inspired by a relationship I had in my early twenties. As all my friends can attest, that era of my life was dramatic and emotional and volatile for really no good reason (other than I was young and infatuated). Like Vivien, I thought if I held on long enough, was different enough, was cool enough, eventually he would choose me. Like Vivien, I had to chose myself and finally walk away without looking back.

How did you come up with the title for your book?

It’s actually a song! Sometimes Love Just Ain’t Enough was actually one of the first songs on my SLAE playlist.

I feel like the message of the song really captures the heart of the book and speaks to Vivien’s relationship with Justin, which she has to overcome. Sometimes love isn’t enough. You can love someone and know they are not the right person for you. You can love someone so hard, and they will still never love you back.

I also really loved that the acronym spells SLAE. ❤

If anything I shared here has piqued your interest, grab your copy today!

Also, in case you missed it, I have work in a couple anthologies to raise money for charitable causes! The Bluebonnet anthology is raising money for Uvalde, and I’ll have poetry in GIRLS, which is raising money for abortion rights.

I hope you enjoyed this little sneak peek into Sometimes Love Ain’t Enough. If you have more questions abut SLAE, let me know in the comments! I also hope you follow along for more updates and thoughts about writing.

I’m hoping to be more active here on my website. I really enjoyed blogging way back in the day, and I think posting here will help stretch my writing muscles and provide a creative outlet other than my books. Sometimes I need the distraction! 🙂

If there’s a topic you’d like to see me cover (writing, publishing, marketing, etc.) feel free to let me know! I have some ideas already, but I’m always open to taking requests.

xoxo

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