Jennifer's Journal


Friday, April 02, 2010

The Jennifer Blake Newsletter-April 2010


At last! I completed the rough draft for Book 2 of my medieval trilogy, BY GRACE POSSESSED, the third week in March. It's behind schedule, which means I won't have much time off before starting author revision. Meanwhile, however, I'm filling out the Art Fact Sheet for Book 1 in the series, BY HIS MAJESTY'S GRACE. This is a list of questions concerning the book's general atmosphere plus a summary of the story, descriptions of the characters and suggestions for possible scenes that might lend themselves to cover art paintings. The purpose is to allow the author some input into the cover process, which is always a good thing. I'll fill out sheets for the other two books soon, since my publisher's art department will be working on all three at the end of this month. That's because the official publication dates for the trilogy have been set for August, September and October of 2011.

On April 6th, I'll have a reissue on the stands. This will be THE QUILTING CIRCLE, a novella collection (with short novels by Jo Anne Cassity, Linda Shertzer and Christina Cordaire in addition to my lead story) that was first published in 1996. The book has a new cover and will be presented this time around in over-sized paperback known as a trade edition. (Regular paperbacks are called mass market editions.) To take a look at it:

Also out this month is a French version of another older title, GARDEN OF SCANDAL. The cover for this one has a muted and mottled yellow background with pink flowers and a girl on a swing. For French readers, it's known as UNE LIAISON SCANDALEUSE, which I translate as A SCANDALOUS AFFAIR. Well, what did we expect? :-)

This past week, I spent a couple of days filling out yet another interview questionnaire. This one is for a Yahoo group owned by writer Carrie Lofty that's dedicated to unusual historical novels. The Q&A will be posted to the group on Easter Sunday, and I'll be answering comments and queries later next week. Carrie also posts an excerpt from selected historical novels each Thursday, plus interesting historical notes. To check out this group or to join see:

I don't often recommend books, but I picked up a new mystery series this month that was actually recommended to me by a friend, Sunny Meriwether. It's the Ariana Franklin medieval series about a female medical examiner trained in Sicily then brought to England by Henry II to help deal with suspicious murders in his realm. The titles are THE MISTRESS OF THE ART OF DEATH, THE SERPENT’S TALE, and GRAVE GOODS. Well written and researched, they are something different on the mystery scene.

In token of the new NBC genealogy program WHO DO YOU THINK YOU ARE?, I'll tell you about recent progress with my family history. I'd always thought of myself as a Louisianan and a Southerner—though I've collected information on my family for decades, I'd never gone much beyond colonial Virginia. During the past few months, however, I’ve taken various lines back to England, Wales, Norman France and beyond. I've now learned that I'm actually descended from the ancient kings of Britain, also from William the conqueror and the Plantagenets who figure in my new medieval stories. How strange that this should happen just as I began looking to England for book settings! Yet, this is the kind of serendipity that often occurs in the lives of writers.

With warmest wishes, and the hope that interesting things come your way in this glorious spring,


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Anonymous librarypat said...

Have enjoyed your books for years. I look forward to your medieval series. Family genealogy research is so interesting. As you said, how interesting to find you have links to the time period and characters you are starting to read about.
I am looking forward to reading the Masters at Arms series.
Hope you and yours had a wonderful Easter weekend.

librarypat AT comcast DOT net

10:53 PM  
Blogger Jennifer Blake said...

Many thanks for reading my past efforts, as well as for dropping by. Hope you enjoy my Masters and medieval stories.

Warmest wishes for a grand spring and good books, always!

9:52 AM  

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