6:04 PM

In the Author Spotlight & Contest

Jane Lovering

CONTEST: Since Please Don’t Stop the Music is a romantic comedy, I’d like to give away a copy to one commenter who tells me an amusing story of real-life romance. It can be their own, or a friend’s, but I’d like to hear about all those ways in which falling in love can be one big laugh!

AL: Hi Jane! Thanks for being in the “Author Spotlight” this week.

Jane: Thank you for allowing me to burst in and ruin your carpet in this fashion. It’s very understanding of you.

AL: So, tell us what’s happening with you.

Jane: Well, I work in a school, run a house, five kids, two dogs and a husband, so everything is pretty busy most of the time. When I occasionally surface, well, I’ve just taken up the horse riding that I haven’t done properly for years, and I sometimes have time to read a book or two.

But mostly it’s trying to get to the bottom of the laundry pile, cook food that doesn’t poison anyone, and remember not to leave the house in my slippers.

AL: Tell us what you have on the bookshelf for us to read.

Jane: My third novel, Please Don’t Stop the Music hits the stands on 01 February, to keep my previous books Slightly Foxed and Reversing Over Liberace company. Please Don’t Stop.. is
my first release from British indie publisher, Choc Lit, and I’m looking forward to hearing what

people have to say about it!

AL: What other works are you deep into?

Jane: I’ve got another novel due out in September called Starstruck, which is another romantic comedy set at a Sci-Fi convention in Nevada, I’m working up a vampire trilogy and I’m on the first draft of a novel about an astrophysicist who sees mysterious lights in the sky. So, you know. Quite a few irons in the fire there.

AL: Have you ever wanted to write your book in one direction but your characters wanted to go in another direction. What did you do in such a situation?

Jane: It happens all the time. Most of the books I write, I start with the characters but not much of a clue as to which way the story will go, and I let the people dictate the action. I did once try to steer things (in the vampire books, as it happens), but then it all ended up with everyone trying to turn evil and, let’s face it, a book full of baddies isn’t really much of a read, is it? So I deleted everything, waited a few weeks for everyone to come to their senses, and then went back to the beginning and let them get on with the book they way they wanted it to happen. It turned out all right, I think. But I learned not to try to force a book to go the way I think it should.

AL: Which of your hero(s)/heroine(s) is most similar to you?

Jane: They all have aspects of me, but I like my heroes and heroines to be a bit more complicated than I am. My life and character would bore any reader to tears within seconds, so I tend to invent people who have interesting personality glitches or physical flaws that make them behave in sometimes quite bizarre ways. Of course, my friends and family will tell you that’s me to a T, but I maintain that I am quite normal. For a person made of cheese.

AL: Where do you get your ideas? Do you jot them down in a notebook in case you forget?

Jane: Ideas are sleeting through my head at all times, but I usually manage to ignore them unless I need to start a new WIP, when I attempt to capture one or two and force them into submission. I sometimes write things down in a battered notebook which resides beside my bed, but I have most of my ideas in writing-unfriendly situations, such as driving the car or showering, so I rely on memory a great deal. Which is strange, because I can remember plot points and character arcs and yet forget to buy that loaf of bread that I actually went out for. Whilst still in my slippers. One of these days I’m going to leave the house completely naked because I’m trying to keep a particularly juicy storyline in my head. There’s only so many memory cells…

AL: It’s time to get personal! What type of music do you relax to?

Jane: I love Pendulum, because I’m a big fan of drum n’ bass. I like FallOut Boy (was destroyed when they disbanded), My Chemical Romance, Hadouken… loud, shouty kinds of music with a good hook. And Gregorian Plainsong chants, for some reason. Antidote, probably.

AL: If I asked your best friend what type of person you are, what would he or she tell me?

Jane: Well, you’d have to bust them out of the asylum first, of course. Then they’d probably tell you that I’m bossy, noisy, slightly bonkers and…d’you know, I really need new friends…

AL: Where would you like to travel if you had the chance?

Jane: I’d love to go back to Slovenia, where I went last summer, and found to be the most beautiful place. Africa, Japan and New Zealand also beckon, where they are probably, even now, changing the visa laws to stop me ever setting foot.

AL: Can you share some of your plans for 2011 and beyond?

Jane: I’ve got the two books coming out this year, hopefully another one or two next year… so it’s pretty much writing and marketing all the way! I’m also hoping to travel a bit; in the next two years three of the children will be off to University and the remaining one can mind the pets. I’d also like to perfect my jumping technique and make those figure-eights just a little more rounded. Oh, and eat more chocolate. Must pencil that in.

AL: Fun question! If you could meet someone famous in either history, or present day…who would you like to meet and why?

Jane: I’d love to meet Casanova, just to have the opportunity to tell him he’s not my type.

AL: Please share a favorite quote(s) with us.

Jane: “Sweet, maybe… passionate, I suppose… but don’t ever mistake that for nice.” It’s a Doctor Who quote that I’ve actually worked into Starstruck. Applies to so many people, although I exempt myself from that list, being neither sweet nor passionate. But I am a rabid Doctor Who fan.

AL: Thanks so much for sharing with us, Jane.

Jane: You’re welcome. I’ll show myself out, shall I? Oh, and thanks for not mentioning the stains…

AL: If you’d like to find out more about Jane please visit:




How much can you hide?

Jemima Hutton is determined to build a successful new life and keep her past a dark secret. Trouble is, her jewellery business looks set to fail - until enigmatic Ben Davies offers to stock her handmade belt buckles in his guitar shop and things start looking up, on all fronts.

But Ben has secrets too. When Jemima finds out he used to be the front man of hugely successful Indie rock band Willow Down, she wants to know more. Why did he desert the band on their US tour? Why is he now a semi-recluse? And the curiosity is mutual - which means that her own secret is no longer safe ...


I squeezed past Jason, who was on his way up the stairs with Harry, and opened the front door to Ben. He was carrying a bottle of wine, wearing a suit minus the jacket and with the top shirt button undone. He had his hair loose but sort of swept back. It suited him.

“Hello.” We faced each other across the crumbling front step.

“You found us all right then?” I took the bottle he held out.

“Your instructions were great. The taxi driver never knew this place existed before now, it’s a lovely village.”

“Thank you,” I replied without thinking.

“Build it yourself then, did you?”

“Ah, I see Mister Polite has released control of your body. Come in.”

Ben followed me into the living room and then we stood, side by side, silent. He was wearing the nice aftershave again. “This is fun,” he said finally.

“Yes. Not a bit awkward or anything.” I could see him eyeing up the dress, and to forestall any difficult questions I grabbed the bottle from the dining table and poured him a glass of white wine. “So. Sit down.”

“Yes! Ma’am!”

“I didn’t mean – ” I took a giant sip of my wine. “Please. Sit down. If you can bear to soil yourself with our petty furniture that is.”

“I’ll try.” Ben sat. I perched on the arm of the saggy but comfortable chair opposite and carried on drinking. “So, is it just yourself here or–?”

“Oh, no, I share the place with Rosie. She’s my friend, the one I told you about.”

“Harry’s mum?”


“Right.” Ben took a sip of his wine and looked around at the walls. They were plain stone, whitewashed and hung with several of Rosie’s pictures, but even so they didn’t merit quite the scrutiny that he was giving them. The silence stretched.

“Dinner will only be a minute!” Rosie stuck her head into the room again and I seized on the distraction.

“Ben, this is Rosie. Rosie, this is, obviously, Ben.”

Ben stood up and smiled. “Hello.”

Rosie came out of the doorway towards us, grinning a grin which slowly left her face and she turned to stare at me.

“Jemima?” she asked.

“What? You told me to invite Ben, so I did. That’s still all right, isn’t it?”

Rosie looked from me to Ben and back again. “Well, yes, of course. Sorry, I’m just – distracted. Um. Nice to meet you – Ben. Jem, could you come and give me a quick hand, the chilli is playing up out here.”

“All right.” I followed her into the tiny kitchen which was full of bubbling noises and steam, which accounted for the frantic nature of her curls. She shut the door behind us.


“What?” I was genuinely puzzled by her reaction. “I know he’s a bit skinny but he’s OK, honestly. Well mostly OK. Especially when he’s not wearing Lycra.”

Rosie dropped her voice so that it was barely audible over the sound of the boiling. “Don’t you know who he is?”

“Yes, I already said. It’s Ben.”

Rosie ran her hands through her curls. She now looked as though she’d been attacked by an evil hairdresser. “Jemima,” she said very evenly. “I know I’ve never asked questions about your past or anything but just tell me this. Did you spend the last five years on the moon? That man, in there,” Rosie put both hands on my shoulders. “That man. That is Baz Davies.”

“His name’s Ben.”

“No!” Rosie shook me now. “Baz Davies! The Baz Davies. Lead singer and guitarist in the biggest band to come out of Yorkshire in the last ten years and I am including the Arctic Monkeys in that. Haven’t you ever heard of Willow Down?” She sighed. “Listen. Willow Down. Huge. Sensation. Made Coldplay look like some outfit touting round Working Men’s Clubs. Went to the States. Huge in States. Baz Davies...” she flung out an arm to indicate the living room, “... dropped out. Went to ground. Band fell apart.”

Benedict Arthur Zacchary Davies.

“Oh,” I said.

“He’s been off the radar for five years.. No-one knows what happened, they were in the middle of a tour of the States that was, apparently, phenomenal. I saw them once.” Rosie’s eyes suddenly went misty. “Fibbers, that club in York. They played Foolish Words, my favourite, I got drunk and went home with a bloke who turned out to be hung like a mule. Ah, happy days.”

I walked out of the kitchen and back into the living room. Ben was still perched on the edge of the sofa, rolling his now empty glass between his fingers.

“We subdued the chilli but I’m afraid the rice might go for your throat,” I said.

Ben looked at me. “You know.”

“What? That you used to be in a band? Yes. Rosie recognised you. Saw you play Fibbers, apparently.”

He gave a short laugh, then shook his head. “That’s gone, not me any more. This is who I am.”

I felt a little tremble down my spine. “Yes.”

“I’m not that person now.” Ben stood up.

“I understand.”

“I’d better go.” Ben handed me the glass. “I’m sorry. I thought it would be all right, but people keep – it’s like they won’t let it go.”

REMEMBER: Since Please Don’t Stop the Music is a romantic comedy, I’d like to give away a copy to one commenter who tells me an amusing story of real-life romance. It can be their own, or a friend’s, but I’d like to hear about all those ways in which falling in love can be one big laugh!


Mandy Baggot said...

I paraded through A&E plastered head to foot in mud for love. The object of my affection (now my husband) broke his leg playing football and I was the first aider. I went in the ambulance with him, he was taken off to be seen and I went into the waiting room. There were people there with awful cuts to limbs and head wounds etc and they were all staring at me in horror. It was only when I went to the loo and looked in the mirror I saw the reason. I looked like some sort of swamp monster, there was mud all over my face, my tracksuit (classy), everywhere, I looked like I'd be bathing in it. It was nothing lip gloss and face powder could fix and nothing else I could do but stick with it and go and hold the hand of the boy I was desperate to impress hoping my sense of humour would override the bad bad image. And despite my ghastly appearance that day I got the guy and we're still going strong! Surely that deserves a book!

Jane Lovering said...

Ah, the good old tried and tested 'covered in mud' approach, Mandy. It has stood many of us in good stead, in fact I still swear by it and my husband has never seen me without a light coating of soil.

desitheblonde said...

you and your hubby are special and then my bf put up with me a lot going to school full time and doing surgery between class and then fighting cancer he beat his me still have it but trying the med first then i had b a h a and now they say i have to have heart surgery
and he put up me all the time for now 3 year and counting