JR: Heidi, thanks so much for hosting me here today. I'm looking forward to getting to know your readers!
WHAT MADE YOU DECIDE TO START WRITING?
JR: I don't know if I ever made a conscious decision to start writing. Storytelling has always been a part of me. An outlet to keep the characters quiet in my mind. Now, the decision to pursue publication was a very conscious one and born out of frustration at not achieving what I wanted to in my nursing career.
WHAT AUTHORS HAVE INFLUENCED YOUR WRITING STYLE?
JR: I'm a huge Dean Koontz fan and would really love if he could write another book on writing. I would love to have his descriptive authority. I like the suspense style of James Patterson, Harlen Coban and Linwood Barclay. If at any point I was compared to one of these authors, I will melt into a puddle of tears.
WHAT ADVICE WOULD YOU GIVE TO ASPIRING AUTHORS?
JR: Early in my writing journey, I found it hard to find my own sense of discernment. I would constantly ask others to review my work and then feel like I had to change everything that they wanted changed. Well, at that point, it wasn't my story anymore and I was essentially a ghost writer. For years, I was perpetually stuck on the first 30,000 words and never making any forward progress. What I eventually did was decide that the first draft was all mine. No other eyes would see it. It would simply be about getting the words on the page and having a finished book. After that, then it is the time to seek the advice of a few trusted people, to strengthen what you have. It takes time to learn which elements should be kept (regardless of who is telling you to cut them out) and which are good to let go.
TELL ME MORE ABOUT YOUR MEDICAL BLOG.
JR: Redwood's Medical Edge is designed to help contemporary and historical novelists write medically accurate fiction. When thinking about building my author platform, I really struggled with what I could do that would be unique. There were so many voices, much better than mine, doing extremely well with blogs on writing, blogs on faith and blogs on the Christian (insert topic of choice here).
What I found myself doing was answering medical questions for other writers, a lot, and loving it. Not only have I been in nursing for nearly 20 years, but I've been a long time teacher of advanced resuscitation classes and love reading medical stuff for fun. Hence, a blog was born that I felt could really help writers ferret out these medical issues.
TELL ME MORE ABOUT YOUR "REAL JOB." HOW DOES IT INFLUENCE YOUR WRITING?
JR: Currently, I work as a pediatric ER nurse. I don't know if I could do one job without the other. Nursing gives me fodder for the stories I tell and writing gives me an outlet for the tough emotional situations I encounter on a daily basis.
WHAT DOES YOUR WRITING SCHEDULE LOOK LIKE?
JR: I don't have a set writing schedule because my work days are never the same two days a week. Yes, I still work weekends and holidays. So, I do a monthly word count goal. I designate certain days to be writing days to help meet that goal. Also on writing days, I'll try to do one-three blog posts and one marketing activity.
At night, I'm generally reading two hours before I go to bed. This may be research but is generally the fiction books on my TBR list.
TELL ME ABOUT YOUR LATEST RELEASE.
JR: Proof examines the real life possibility of DNA testing actually setting a guilty criminal free. Lilly Reeves is the fifth known victim of a merciless serial rapist. Though she correctly identifies her assailant to the police, DNA testing clears him. Lilly knows to regain her life she must prove his guilt by unraveling his DNA mystery.
HOW MUCH TIME DO YOU SPEND IN RESEARCH BEFORE YOU WRITE A STORY?
JR: I am a research nut. I love to research and can get easily sidetracked looking up information or reading more books than I probably need to get all the nuances right that I want to. I find it hard to say I'm going to spend this much time researching and then just write the novel. I research before and during and probably don't stop until the book is with the publisher for their edits.
WHAT IS THE MOST INTERESTING THING YOU HAVE LEARNED FROM YOUR RESEARCH?
JR: So many things are interesting to me. The DNA mystery in my first novel is very intriguing-- especially knowing that it could actually happen. Also, the current research into medical applications for spider venom is amazing. I know-- I'm a little strange.
HOW MANY BOOKS HAVE YOU WRITTEN?
JR: Great question and a little hard to answer. I wrote two "books" in high school. Looking back, they may be termed more novellas as I'm sure the word length is not what would be required of a novel. I'd written a partial novel early in my adult writing career that was very much a learning piece. The idea was soundly rejected as being too controversial and the plot was an utter mess and I put it on the proverbial back burner. I was just trying to accomplish too much. That being said, I've written two full length novels that are scheduled for publication and actively working on a third.
HOW DO YOU LIKE TO SPEND YOUR TIME WHEN YOU'RE NOT WRITING?
JR: I do have a very creative spirit. I'm also a quilter and a cross-stitcher. I love to make handmade gifts for my friends and family and am looking forward to passing down these skills to my two, beautiful daughters. I am a book junkie so if you're in a hurry-- quilt stores and books stores are a bad place to take me.
HOW CAN READERS CONTACT YOU AND/OR LEARN MORE ABOUT YOU AND YOUR WRITING?
JR: They can find me at www.jordynredwood.net. I love to hear from readers and you can reach me via e-mail at email@example.com.
Jordyn Redwood is a pediatric ER nurse by day, suspense novelist by night. Her debut medical thriller, Proof, examines the real life possibility of DNA testing setting a guilty criminal free. It has been endorsed by the likes of Lynette Eason, Dr. Harry Kraus, and Rick Acker to name a few. You can find out more about Jordyn by visiting her blog: www.redwoodsmedicaledge.com and website: www.jordynredwood.net.
Dr. Lilly Reeves is a young, accomplished ER physician with her whole life ahead of her. But that life instantly changes when she becomes the fifth victim of a serial rapist. Believing it's the only way to recover her reputation and secure peace for herself, Lilly sets out to find--and punish--her assailant. Sporting a mysterious tattoo and unusually colored eyes, the rapist should be easy to identify. He even leaves what police would consider solid evidence. But when Lilly believes she has found him, DNA testing clears him as a suspect. How can she prove he is guilty, if science says he is not?
Jordyn is giving away a paperback copy of her book, Proof.
To enter the giveaway,
(1) be (or become) a follower of Sleuths and Suspects
(2) leave a comment for Jordyn
(3) be a resident of the U.S.
The giveaway ends on June 16th. A winner will be announced on June 17th.