Today I’m over the moon to have Jack Jordan pop by the book review café for a grilling. Jack is the number one bestselling author of two novels: Anything for Her (2015), and My Girl (2016). If you are a crime thriller lover then I would highly recommend you get yourself a copy of My Girl it’s dark, and genuinely disturbing! My Girl is one book that will definitely be on my list of my top reads of 2016. Anything For Her is sitting patiently on my TBR pile and I’m hoping to get to it soon.
Hi Jack I’m so excited to have you pop by the book review café, thank you for agreeing to this interview. Tell us a little about yourself and your background?
Thank you for having me!
I began writing six years ago, and published my debut novel, Anything for Her, in June 2015, followed by My Girl, July 2016.
I’d describe my thrillers as ‘chillers’. I like to push my characters and my readers to their limits.
I describe myself as an introvert disguised as an extrovert, an intelligent person who can say very unintelligent things, and a self-confessed bibliomaniac with more books than sense.
For those readers who haven’t yet heard of you or your book My Girl can you provide us with an introduction?
Paige Dawson: the mother of a murdered child and wife to a dead man.
She has nothing left to live for… until she finds her husband’s handgun hidden in their house.
Why did Ryan need a gun? What did he know about their daughter’s death?
Desperate for the truth, Paige begins to unearth her husband’s secrets.
But she has no idea who she is up against, or that her life isn’t hers to gamble – she belongs to me.
From the bestselling author of Anything for Her, Jack Jordan’s My Girl is the new chilling thriller that you won’t want to miss.
Where did the idea for My Girl come from?
It’s difficult to say without sabotaging the twist!
Paige’s behaviour was something I really wanted to write about. Addiction is one thing, but what Paige does to get her fix is unimaginable to some people, but when it comes to psychology, her behaviour is a symptom of what she experienced early on in her life. I wanted to highlight the stigma around this behaviour and shine the light on why some people act the way they do.
The subject after Part 1 of the story has happened all over the world, and continues to crop up in the news every few years. After reading books and watching documentaries on these occurrences, I knew that my next book had to expose what really can happen to innocent people in the hands of others.
What was the hardest part of writing My Girl?
I think writing about Paige’s destructive behaviour was the most difficult. When I first started writing the book, I knew that many people would judge her for her actions; I’m very protective of her. At the beginning of the book, Paige acts out and gets herself into some dire situations, but it isn’t until Part 3 that the reader truly understands why her brain is wired the way it is. I wanted to do Paige justice: to expose why such behaviour can stem from particular traumas, and why it is important to analyse a person’s behaviour before passing judgement.
Do you have any strange writing habits or rituals?
I’m very secretive about my books when I’m writing them. Many people ask about my upcoming work, and I always find it difficult to answer, because books can change dramatically or be pushed back for the future. New books are also very delicate, and need to be nurtured before they can be scrutinised. My closest friends and family tend to find out about my new book along with the rest of the world!
Have you always wanted to be an author, and when did you first realise you wanted to write?
I’ve always loved reading and writing, but I didn’t know that it was possible to have a career in writing until about six years ago. It just didn’t seem possible, like a whole different world.
It wasn’t until I experienced agoraphobia that I turned to writing as an escape. I wrote short stories to pass the time, until one day one of my stories grew and grew until I was staring at a novel made up of 100,000 words.
To this day I’m extremely thankful that I had this condition – if I hadn’t, I may never have started writing. I can’t imagine doing anything else.
Do you write an outline before you start writing?
Absolutely! I’m not a fan of going into a project completely blind. I need something to go on or I get lost in my own story. I think of a plot for a long time, sometimes years, and when it comes to forming an outline I have lots of notes and ideas to use. Once I focus all of my energy into the one project, more ideas come until I have a full chapter timeline to follow as I write the first draft of a book. Chapters and elements of the story always change, but I really benefit from having the timeline to follow.
How long did it take to get your first book Anything For Her published?
After sending three novels to agents without success, I was adamant to get my next book out into the world. I self-published Anything for Her in 2015. Self-publishing isn’t easy – an author has to take on numerous roles and tasks, from project management to marketing and promotion. It certainly taught me a lot. I poured all of my knowledge into the publication of my second novel, My Girl, and it really paid off.
What authors/books do you like to read in your spare time?
My taste in books is very vast. I love everything from classic literary fiction to terrifying horrors! My top 5 reads of 2016 so far are: Gone with the Wind by Margaret Mitchell, The Lottery by Shirley Jackson, The Nightingale by Kristin Hannah, Bird Box by Josh Malerman, and The Road by Cormac McCarthy.
What book are you reading now?
I’m currently reading Purple Hibiscus by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, and a non-fiction title for research (I can’t give out the title or it’ll spoil the surprise of book 3!).
Are you able to tell me anything about your next book?
All I can say right now is that it will be very different from my first two books. This book has been screaming to be written for years!
Since the publication of My Girl, so many doors have opened up for me in the publishing world, which is really exciting.
How much time does social media take up of your busy writing life and how important a part do you think it plays?
A lot. It’s almost a 24-7 thing. I’ll be responding to messages from readers from all over the world and from different time zones, so it really can take over an author’s life! After publishing a book, a lot of my time is dedicated to social media presence and communication with my readers. When the hype dies down, then I focus on my next project – and it’s almost a relief!
I think social media is incredibly important for authors in the 21st century. With phones and social media being a part of our everyday lives, social media presence is an incredibly important tool when it comes to promoting one’s work, connecting with readers, and growing a fan base. It can be overwhelming, but the pros are too important to pass up.
Describe yourself in five words?
Ambitious. Kind. Intelligent. Bookworm. Introvert.
During all the interviews you’ve done what question have you not been asked that you wish had been asked – and what’s the answer?
Q: Describe your publishing journey in one word.
Being a published author is hard work. Scrutiny, exposure, jealousy, praise, pressure. It’s an experience that brings good times and bad, and as a writer I’ve had to build a very thick skin to continue with my career. It’s certainly not a 9-5 job, and stress has become a daily companion, but writing is my one true love, and I couldn’t imagine a life without it.
My thanks to Jack Jordan for taking the time to answer my questions, you can find a link to my review for My Girl below
About Jack Jordan
Jack Jordan is the number one bestselling author of two novels: Anything for Her (2015), and My Girl (2016).
You can find out more about Jack here:
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You can get your copy of My Girl here: Amazon UK
You can grab your copy of Anything for Her here: Amazon UK 🇬🇧
You can read my review for My Girl and a guest post from Jack here……. My Girl review & guest post