Complementing my daily blog interviews, today’s Author Spotlight, the one hundred and thirty-fifth, is of chick-lit novelist chick lit novelist J W Bull, the first prize fiction winner of Shirley You Jest! Book Awards.
JW Bull is the author of Pickin’ Tomatoes and the fiction winner of The 2012 Shirley You Jest! Book Awards / Shirley LOL.
She was born in Mt. Vernon, Ohio and grew up in Charlottesville, Virginia. Raised by parents who believed in encouraging their children to follow their dreams, JW received a bachelor of violin performance from Furman University and also worked as a sous chef in a French restaurant.
Currently, JW lives in Atlanta, Georgia with her husband and two sons. When she’s not teaching violin, playing in The Georgia Symphony, or cooking she’s writing. Her next book, Musical Chairs, is a mystery involving Maggie’s cousin, Molly Malone – plucky part-time symphony player and full-time Irish fiddler. JW wants to do for classical music what multiple authors have done for gourmet food: make it fun and interesting for mass market. JW’s wacky voice and musical knowledge make Musical Chairs a must read for 2013.
And now from the author herself:
Living Monet Style
If I had to sum up a typical day in my life in just one word, it would have to be the word, multitasking. I wish I were the type of person who had the luxury of doing just one thing at a time and doing it well, but alas, I’m not – at least not in this stage of my life. I am a mother, a wife, a part time violin teacher, a part time symphony player, and in between all of that, I write. My life and limbs are pulled in so many directions that some days I feel like a chocolate covered pretzel: sweet, salty and a bit twisted. During my good days, my sweetness prevails and I am that person I’ve always wanted to be. During my bad days, my saltiness emerges and all of humanity needs to get out of my way. And every day, I’m a tad bit loopy – contorting to catch all those balls life is zinging at me.
So how do I write amidst all the chaos? I have learned to tune things out. The cacophony of voices bellowing, “Mom, mom, MOM!… Can I go to a friend’s house?… Did you go to the grocery store?…What’s for dinner?…Can I have some money?…But why, I just want to know why?… I don’t want to practice…What homework?…Did you do laundry?” fade and I am suddenly immersed in a section of the book I am writing. Sometimes, I am physically writing the book but more often than not, I am on auto pilot with life’s chores while mentally writing my book.
Where do I get my inspiration from? I pilfer experiences from my chaotic world, tweak them a bit and weave them into stories. Let me just tell you, when you’re a wife, mother, teacher, and performer, you have a whole smorgasbord of material to choose from – most of it funny. So why not use it? I have always been an advocate of laughing at oneself. I think it keeps you humble. Besides, in this economy, if you don’t laugh from time to time, you’ll just cry. And I chose laughter any day over crying.
So there is my life in a nutshell. I am a multi-tasker and not afraid of admitting it. Do I feel guilty about not mentally participating one hundred percent in every aspect of life? Sure, I wouldn’t be human, if I didn’t. But sometimes, you’ve got to look at the big picture. Multitasking is like a Monet painting. Up close, it seems like a bunch of dots. Far away, all those dots form a masterpiece. Right now, I’m living Monet style, with a lot of works of art in the process – family, violin, writing. I look forward to the day those masterpieces will be completed and I can just step back and enjoy.
Oh, me too! Thank you, and congratulations, JW.
You can find more about JW and her writing via her website http://www.pickintomatoes.com.
The blog interviews will return as normal tomorrow with children’s author and speaker Cheryl Carpinello – the five hundred and forty-eighth of my blog interviews with novelists, poets, short story authors, biographers, agents, publishers and more. A list of interviewees (blogged and scheduled) can be found here. If you like what you read, please do go and investigate further. And I enjoy hearing from readers of my blog; do either leave a comment on the relevant interview (the interviewees love to hear from you too!) and / or email me.
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Unfortunately, as I post an interview a day (amongst other things) I can’t review books but I have a feature called ‘Short Story Saturdays’ where I review stories of up to 2,500 words. Alternatively if you have a short story or self-contained novel extract / short chapter (ideally up to 1000 words) that you’d like critiqued and don’t mind me reading it / talking about and critiquing it (I send you the transcription afterwards so you can use the comments or ignore them) 🙂 on my ‘Bailey’s Writing Tips’ podcast, then do email me. They are fortnightly episodes, usually released on Sundays, interweaving the recordings between the red pen sessions with the hints & tips episodes. I am now also looking for flash fiction (<1000 words) for Flash Fiction Fridays and poetry for Post-weekend Poetry.