Monday, December 30, 2013

Celebrating Debutantes 2013: Jen McConnel (Interview)

Debut author Jen McConnel shares her excitement about her novel, The Secret of Isobel Key, future projects and more on this interview!

Jen McConnel

1. What do you feel about the number '13'?

Absolutely love it.  I actually met my husband on Friday the 13th many years ago, and ever since, I've considered 13 one of my lucky numbers!

2. What's the best thing that happened after your book was published?

It's not out yet, so I'm not sure! But the whole process has been amazing, and I'm so excited to see ISOBEL out in the world.  Probably the best part so far is simply seeing this book move from being self-published to released by Bloomsbury Spark; I love the way the story has changed, and I couldn't be happier to be a part of such a wonderful new imprint.

3. How did you celebrate the publishing of your book?

We popped the champagne after I signed my contract, and I'm hoping to celebrate on the launch day with a fancy dinner with my sweetie.  I'd like to have a party with some of my friends, too, after the holidays.

4. Do you read reviews of your book?

Sometimes.  I say I'll only read the ones that are three stars and above, but it's hard not to look.

5. What is your best or most unforgettable moment with a fan?

I met a young reader a few years ago, and we snapped a picture of us together.  When she heard about this first book, she sent me an awesome letter with a copy of the picture.  Her enthusiasm was totally contagious, even when we met and I was still unpublished.  It was great to hear from her again and to know that she was excited for my story.

6. Was there any book/s from other debut author of 2013 that you loved? 

There are so many amazing new books this year, but the one I can't stop thinking about is THE MADMAN'S DAUGHTER by Megan Shepherd.  It was haunting, and I can't wait for the next book in the series!

7. Are you interested in writing in a different genre or for a different audience?

Yes! Although THE SECRET OF ISOBEL KEY is NA, I also write YA. I love paranormal and contemporary stories.  My writing is as eclectic as my reading tastes, and I love exploring different genres.  

8. Share us one embarrassing moment you've had.

I don't know how many times I've taught a class with food in my teeth, but the worst was spending a whole day in front of my students (and I teach adults, so you would think someone would mention this) with the price and size sticker prominently displayed on the back of my new pants. *facepalm*. 

9. Favorite color? Today? Orange!
Favorite movie? Practical Magic
Favorite ice cream flavor? Mint chocolate chip
Favorite song? "Only the Good Die Young" by Billy Joel

Ultimate celebrity crush (dead or alive)?
Harrison Ford in the INDIANA JONES era.

10. What's next for you?

I'm gearing up for the release of ISOBEL in December, and then I'm shifting gears and getting ready to celebrate the launch of my first YA novel, DAUGHTER OF CHAOS, coming in March 2014 from Month9Books.  It's going to be a busy a year, and I can't wait!


More about Jen!

Jen McConnel first began writing poetry as a child. A Michigander by birth, she now lives and writes in the beautiful state of North Carolina. When she isn't crafting worlds of fiction, she teaches college writing composition and yoga. Once upon a time, she was a middle school teacher, a librarian, and a bookseller, but those are stories for another time. Her debut NA novel, THE SECRET OF ISOBEL KEY, is coming December 2013 from Bloomsbury Spark . Visit to learn more.

Check out Jen's debut novel!

The Secret of Isobel Key
by Jen McConnel

Published December 2013 by Bloomsbury Spark

Blurb (Goodreads):
Lou is in the middle of a quarter-life crisis. Fresh out of college, she’s unemployed and unsure of herself. But when she gets the chance to escape to Scotland with her best friend, it could be the answer to her quest for self-discovery. The trip is not at all what she expected, especially when her tour guide turns out to be the dreamy historian Brian, and together they embark on a hunt for information about Isobel Key, a woman accused of witchcraft in the seventeenth century.

They set out to learn the truth of the condemned witch, but Lou isn’t prepared for the knowledge that awaits her. She must face her own demons if she has any hope of righting the wrongs of the past.

Flashing between seventeenth century Scotland and a contemporary romance, THE SECRET OF ISOBEL KEY is a mystery that will please readers of all ages.

The Escapist

Check out debut author Emil Ostrovski on Oops! I Read A Book Again!

Yesterday: Christa Desir (Fault Line) and Heather Reid (Pretty Dark Nothing)
Tomorrow: Jacqueline Green (Truth or Dare) and Robin Constantine (The Promise of Amazing)

Calling YA/NA/MG debut authors of 2014! Want to join us on this fun event? Fill out this form! Don't forget to spread the word with your debuting friends!


Don't leave with your thoughts unshared!