Author Spotlight: Jane Carter
Describe yourself in one word:
What is your background with regard to writing?
I was writing books when I was 6. With a journalist for a father that perhaps was not so surprising. By 11, I wrote plays and won a Sun Herald Junior play competition, I dabbled in poetry and then – nothing. I wrote nothing for forty years. I read. I read lots of romance. I loved them passionately. Kids, living on a farm, running a trucking business, ate up all the available hours. So when I did start to write – all I wanted to write about was love in the country. Aussie farmers would make the best heroes, I thought..
When did you first begin writing with a view of embarking on a career as a published author?
I was fifty two. My daughter sent me to a Writing Romance Day with Lilian Darcy. Light bulbs went off all over the place. I realised writing and getting published was a business. Lilian Darcy explained what a query letter was and told us how to write one. So I wrote A Dream of Something More. Unbelievably, it was picked up by the first editor to read it and it was published in 2009. The query letter must have worked.
You have two books currently available through Momentum Books, A Dream of Something More and High Country Secrets both of which released in 2014, you sure have been busy! What would be an average writing day for you?
I write when I can, whenever I can, and the characters and story are in my head wether I am writing or not. I had to settle down after ADoSM and I wrote another three books. This is where the RWA has been invaluable in my life. The encouragement, support and opportunity they offered got me over the line again when Joel Naoum wanted to publish ‘High Country Secrets’ for Momentum Moonlight.
A Dream of Something More explores the ways in which life changes for central character Robbie after her marriage break-down, notably how her determination for a career is seen by those closest to her and the residents of the small-town of Farrow where she lives. What was the most challenging aspect of writing this particular aspect of the story?
Small town peer pressure can be very hard on an individual. I have watched time and time again women giving up their dreams and aspirations for others. I wanted Robbie to get away and do this for herself. Until she did, she didn’t have the confidence to accept Nick’s love for her.
High Country Secrets focuses on central character, Jessie Cranfield, who though engaged to be married, is attracted to her former neighbour, Michael D’Larghi. Their attraction inadvertently uncovers family secrets and threatens to tear both their lives apart. What inspired this concept for you?
Cooma. Without a doubt. Cooma has an extraordinary history largely unrecognised. Thousands of migrants were placed in a small country town in the 1950’s to build the Snowy Hydro Scheme. And the incredible, amazing way they wove their cultures and histories together created a new Australia. We talk about multiculturalism now. This story was nothing short of inspiring.
What do you want readers to know about the romance genre?
Romance is about women, for women, largely written by women. We are the heroes and the catalysts. The Romance genre has given me so much pleasure over the years, I would like to ‘pay it forward’
What’s next for you?
Ric and I picked up a load of cattle one day to deliver to Carcoar – and I discovered they were headed for Kazakhstan. This might sound like a strange plot for a romance novel, but the story was roaring in my head by the time we got home.
What book is currently on your nightstand?
Catherine Coulter and I’m reading it again, The Devil’s Embrace. Wonderful.
What advice would you give your 16-year-old self?
Be true to yourself. Self deception is very destructive.
What do you find easiest to write? And, the hardest?
You make it sound like I’m in control. The characters write for me so it’s only hard if I’m not hearing their voice clearly.
Favourite travel experience?
Walking around Paris with our kids and buying camembert cheese and baguettes at the local bakery and sitting at the bus stop to eat them.
Number one thing to do on your bucket list: Finish my book
Milk, dark or white chocolate? Dark
Red, white, bubbly? White and dry
Salty or sweet? Salty
Beach or mountains? Beach
Give or receive? To receive you first have to give.
About the Author:
Jane Carter lives in Goulburn, NSW, with her husband, Richard. Raising five children, farming, and helping to run a livestock transport business kept her busy until a few years ago when the last of the children left home and she started writing. Her first book, A Dream Of Something More, was published in 2009. Although she worked in film and television before she was married, forty-four years in the country have made her passionate about rural Australia, the farmers and the townies she lives among. She loves their stud sheep, adores her grandchildren and anything at all to do with boats.