1.) What was your first job? Did you like or dislike it? Why?
Ha! I worked in the seafood department at a grocery store because I was too young to be a cashier and they thought my goal of going to college for Marine Biology would come in handy. Yeah, dead fish, lobsters, seafood. All it did was make me smell fishy when I got home after a shift!
2.) Do you have a pet peeve? If so what is it?
I am conscientious to a fault. So those that are not drives me a bit bonkers (e.g. following through on commitments, not responding to emails/messages, being late, disorganized…yeah all that). But we are who we are. So, if I had to pick another one, it would be reckless drivers.
3.) Would you describe your style as shabby chic, timeless elegance, eclectic, country or ____?
Hmm, I’m a jeans and t-shirt kind of woman. I like classic. Not big on trendy stuff though I do like to look at it. I go for simple, practical, and comfortable. When writing, some days the yoga pants don’t get swapped for jeans until after lunch!
4.) Tell me about your book A Hundred Kisses and where you got your inspiration for it?
It’s 1296 in Scotland and Deirdre MacCoinneach has already lost two husbands. She wishes to understand her unusual ability to sense others’ lifeblood energies…the good, the bad, the interior motivations and emotions of those around her. Did this unusual gift kill the men she married, on their wedding nights? Her father’s search for a new and unsuspecting suitor for her becomes complicated when rumors of witchcraft abound.
Her answers may lie with an old aunt on the isle of Uist.
Under the façade of a trader, Alasdair Montgomerie travels to Uist with pivotal information for a Claimant seeking the Scottish throne. A ruthless baron hunts him and a dark past haunts him, leaving little room for alliances with a Highland laird or his tempting daughter.
Enter a journey.
Awestruck when she realizes that her unlikely travel companion is the man from her visions, a man whose thickly veiled emotions are buried beneath his burning lifeblood, Deirdre wonders if he, too, will die in her bed if she follows her father’s orders. Amidst magic, superstition, and ghosts of the past, Alasdair and Deirdre find themselves falling together in a web of secrets and the curse of a hundred kisses…
My inspiration for this came first from my love of Scotland and history. I love stories of loss and hope and of course a happy-ever-after. Early feedback from beta readers and agents helped me go deeper with my story. I explored Scottish lore and myths, hence the paranormal element to it. I am a nature-lover and tend to thread in spiritual elements, so Deirdre’s ability came about. The prequel, A Hundred Breaths, will be out early next year, and tells the story of her mother who hailed from the mystical isles and has a unique ability of her own. Oh, and there are Vikings! And yes, it will be a trilogy—I am working on book three!
5.) Who is your role model? Why?
It depends on what part of my life. Parenting: my children inspire me. Former career as a scientist: the women who paved the path for this generation (e.g. college professors, and Eugenie Clark, marine biologist). Writing: Diana Gabaldon and JK Rowling. Poetry and art: my mother.
6.) How much of your book is realistic?
Most of it is real. I love history so I did a boatload of research for this book. At some point though, with any story taking place before the 15th century, an author needs to fill in some blanks. But whenever possible, I researched for accuracy, down to food, fauna, locations, clan history, names, and political history. The “magical” ability Deirdre possesses is a product of my imagination, but loosely based on Scottish lore books I’ve read. Sometimes you need to improvise!
7.) What are your ambitions for your writing career?
I’ve been writing on and off for twenty years. Last year, my first book was released by the The Wild Rose Press. Though I had written three “practice” novels before that and with no publication success. Now I have contracts for three more books – the prequel (a historical romance), a contemporary romance novella, and a contemporary women’s fiction. I also enjoy writing travel magazine articles when I can. I would love to write a children’s book series (however, that one is proving more difficult), keep with the romance and women’s fiction novels, and pursue a few mainstream fiction novel ideas, too.
8.) Share one fact about yourself that would surprise people.
I love sharks!
Audio book: A Hundred Kisses by Jean M. Grant
Social Media links:
Also available as e-book from , , , and .
Jean’s background is in science and she draws from her interests in history, nature, and her family for inspiration. She writes historical and contemporary romances and women's fiction. She also writes articles for family-oriented travel magazines. A Hundred Kisses is her first published novel. On the front for publication in early 2019: the prequel (A Hundred Breaths), a contemporary women’s fiction, and a contemporary romance novella. She’s also writing the third book in the “hundred” trilogy.