10 Things You Didn’t Know About… Jenn J McLeod
If you could interview anyone, past or present, who would it be and what would be your lead question?
My granddad (on Mum’s side) who died young, so I never knew him. I’d ask the question Mum never answered: “What’s the true story behind you and Grandma marrying? What about her sister, Alice. Werent you in love with her? And what really happened during wartime to you and to your children when they were sent to live in Boggabri? I have to know. My imagination is writing all these stories. No more secrets and lies.” (Maybe this is why I’ve ended up writing stories based around family secrets and lies.)
Your most played song/band?
This year it’s been I love The Fighter (Keith Urban/Carrie Underwood). I love it so much it gets a mention in A Place to Remember and as I wrote the scene I kept You-Tubing Keith and Nicole’s cutesy car-pooling version. My characters (and I) had such fun.
Favourite genre of romance?
I’m a contemporary girl! I enjoy a modern setting and a story that surprises me and makes me titter. (I also love the word ‘titter’.)
I’ve shed 10 kgs and I feel amazing. I did it by learning what a low card diet is REALLY about. So anything low carb is a favourite. (And did you know there is a reason kale was invented? Crispy kale chips straight from the oven, a little salt? Yum!)
Oh, deary me, how long have you got? Rather partial to a Lemon, Lime and Bitters. I travel through a LOT of small towns and I feel a responsibility to support the local pub by stopping to sample their LL&B. (Did you know champers is also quite low on the carbs?)
If you could have any superpower what would you choose?
Easy answer! Teleporting myself. I’d pop over to London to visit my publisher, hug everyone in the office, and see my books in a London bookstore.
If you weren’t writing, what would you be doing?
On Broadway, singing my lungs out and dancing up a storm. I come from a very musical family – there’s a few famous ones in the mix – but I chose to peck at the computer keyboard over tinkling the ivories.
Fake it until you make it. (Because you are always better and more capable than you think you are.)
Tell us something about yourself that most people wouldn’t know…
I was Miss Balgowlah Bowl Queen (circa 1978) with my win putting me into the Miss Australia Quest. Alas, no more crowns for me.
Most famous person you’ve ever met? Tell us about the meeting!
I’ve been fortunate to have met quite a few – all famous (or infamous). I used to work in the security biz with the Hotel Intercontinental (Sydney) where I met, among others, Lionel Ritchie, Kenny Rogers, and Dolly Parton. (And yes, they are that big.) I was also Director of Security at Darling Harbour (Sydney) so I got to escort The Queen and Princess Diana (and Kev the Koala.) In 2013, at the Book Industry Awards, Tony Abbot walked by and winked at me. (Does that count?) And in 2004 I met Dawn Fraser in Darwin (of all places) where I went swimming with her. (She let me win.) Oh, and Bros – the boy band. I was doing crowd control back in 1988. (But that is REALLY showing my age.)
A Place To Remember
Jenn J McLeod
A portrait . . .
An obsession . . .
A curious daughter . . .
An affair to remember . . .
A man loses five years of his life. Two women are desperate for him to remember.
Running away for the second time in her life, twenty-seven-year-old Ava believes the cook’s job at a country B&B is perfect until she meets the owner’s son, John Tate. At twenty, the fifth-generation grazier is a beguiling blend of both man, boy and a terrible flirt. With their connection immediate and intense, they begin a clandestine affair right under the noses of John’s formidable parents.
Thirty years later, Ava returns to Candlebark Creek and so does her daughter, Nina, who is determined to meet her mother’s lost love for herself. While struggling to find her own place in the world, Nina discovers an urban myth about a love-struck man, a forgotten engagement ring, and a dinner reservation back in the eighties. Now she must decide if revealing the truth will hurt more than it heals.
Jenn invites you to come home to the country, to Candlebark Creek, and to the Ivy-May Homestead—a fifth generation Queensland cattle station hiding three decades of secrets and lies.