Meet My Muse with Kendra Smith
When I was first kindly asked to write ‘Meet my Muse’ I thought, I’m not sure I have a Muse. And then I realised, yes, I did, and it’s called Life. People have often asked me what inspired Jacaranda Wife, and, in truth I wanted to capture life and love – whether with a partner, what triggers an affair, or your love for your children. So Life has been my Muse for Jacaranda Wife. My heroine Katie is in a dilemma as she’s had a fling with her best friend’s husband. Moving 10,000 miles will put some distance between them – but she doesn’t bargain on him visiting.. and then there’s her marriage to consider and how she copes with the ups and downs it suddenly throws at her. I wanted to create a loveable, likeable heroine, one whom women can identify with – but one who emerges stronger in the end.
Inspiration comes all the time, whether you are taking a walk or standing in the supermarket queue. You’ll hear a conversation, notice how someone reacts, listen to a girlfriend talk about her new boyfriend, and suddenly you have a scene for your book. In Jacaranda Wife, I was inspired by what was happening to me at the time. We had recently moved back to Australia and whilst I absolutely love the country, it was a time of great upheaval for me. I wanted my heroine to grapple with conflicting thoughts and issues of love and marriage, plus explore the idea of where ‘home’ is.
Also, I was missing any creative element with words; as a journalist with young children, I needed an outlet for the stream of thoughts in my head, so I found a way to do this on the computer instead – and eventually, Jacaranda Wife was born.
However, one thing I have learned is that you might have an idea of how things are going to turn out, but your characters can act in a different way. For me it was quite hard to write fiction initially. For years as a journalist I was taught to write about facts. Is this true? What backs it up? ‘So when you say that you saw red, what colour of red was it?’
When it came to fiction, I wasn’t always sure what the rules were. But it was fun, I was learning all the time – in fact, you never stop.
But when I reached the number one spot in the Australia Kindle charts a couple of weeks ago, then I really felt I had learnt the rules! My husband came home with a lovely bottle of pink champagne that night – it was perfect, and even matched the cover!
Thank you so much for letting me take part!
Katie and Tom’s marriage is in trouble. As is their bank account.
So when Tom tells Katie that they need to talk, she knows it must be about one of two things. Either he has found out about her kiss with her best friend’s husband, or they are in even worse debt than she thought.
What she was not expecting was for him to tell her that his boss is sending him to Australia. Permanently.
But the home-loving mother of two from London realises it might just be what they need to save their marriage.
Can Katie find a way to patch up their marriage? Does Australia provide the spark they need – or does it send the whole thing up in smoke? And just which side of the globe will she decide to call home?
About the Author:
Kendra Smith has been a journalist, wife, mother, aerobics teacher, qualified diver and very bad cake baker. She started her career in Sydney selling advertising space in the late 80s. She has lived and worked in London and Sydney, working on Cosmopolitan, OK! Magazine and the BBC’s Eve as well as freelance for Woman & Home, Delicious, New Woman, Prima Baby and Junior. Born in sunny Singapore, she was educated in sub-zero Scotland, including Aberdeen University. She has lived in Australia three times. With dual Australian-British nationality, she currently lives in Surrey with her husband and three children. Jacaranda Wife is her first novel and she is well underway with her second when she’s not burning food.
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