Becca Wilhite Blog

July 15, 2013

Introducing Jenny Proctor

Filed under: books,recommendation — becca @ 7:21 am

Guys, I have a new friend for you. I’d like you to meet the (truly) lovely Jenny Proctor, whose book “THE HOUSE AT ROSE CREEK” is available right now. 

Here is the description from the Deseret Book website, (one of the places you can order yourself a copy).

Deep in the rolling hills of North Carolina lay the idyllic town of Rose Creek. Home to the Walker clan for generations, the family farmhouse was the ideal place to grow up. And for Kate, orphaned at age six, the home her mother grew up in was a haven of healing and love. But as the future beckoned, Kate slowly pulled away from her family and her home, never to return. Until now.

 

Beautiful career woman Kate Sinclair has built a successful life for herself, even as she’s haunted by the decisions that led to her estrangement from those once so dear to her. When tragedy strikes her family, Kate realizes the time has come to return home. Awaiting her is an animosity she expected, as well as a shock she never could have anticipated: her family’s home is in danger of being destroyed.

 

Despite her reservations, Kate makes the decision to stay in Rose Creek for a time to help her family. As she slowly begins to reestablish her roots in the close-knit community, she finds herself increasingly attached to Andrew, a man with charm, charisma—and a secret.

 

And when Kate discovers the diary of an early family member who has immigrated to the United States, she finds strength in his belief in God as she explores her new relationship with Andrew and works to rebuild ties within her family. But when the pressures of the house problems and the disdain from family members gets too tough, the lure of the city calls, and Kate is forced to make an impossible decision: will she return to the life she worked so hard to build in the city or risk everything for an unknown future in Rose Creek?

Sounds so great, right? I know. Jenny and I met virtually and then we met actually, and she is lovely (I think I already said that) and witty and clever and sincere and such a good writer. She cares about many of the same things I care about, and she finds funny in the right things. Do I need to tell you how that’s a joy? I think you already know.

This week Jenny and I “sat down” (at least I was totally sitting) and had a little chat about books and writing and being published and well, you get to read it. It’s as if we were actually in the same room! in the same state! and you were there too!

How did you come to write a book? Have you always been a writer? 
Well, funny thing. I guess the answer is yes, and no. When I was growing up, I liked writing when it was required of me. English papers were fun, never hard, and I kept a constant journal. I guess in many ways I was a writer before I really knew I was a writer, if that makes sense. It wasn’t until I started blogging, of all things, and I had a few people mention that I was a good writer that i started thinking about taking my words a little more seriously. I felt inspired to take an Independent Study Creative Writing class, and I fell in love with fiction. The House at Rose Creek actually stemmed from a short story that I wrote in that creative writing class. I wrote the story of the main character Kate’s ancestor, Ian, and then Kate’s story evolved from there.
How do you feel about your book cover? 
I love my cover! It wasn’t what I expected, but in a good way. I was so sure they were going to put a picture of a big white farmhouse on the cover. (The farmhouse is pretty central to the story, and with the book title, it wasn’t too far a leap, no?) The thing is, I know exactly what the farmhouse looks like, and I worried that as great as Covenant’s graphics team is, their depiction might not live up to what exists in my head. When it wasn’t a house at all, I was surprised, then relieved, then absolutely thrilled with how gorgeous it is. I think it’s perfect and wouldn’t change a thing.
How do you react to getting published? Giddy hand clapping? Tears of Joy? Grateful sighing? 
I’m definitely more exuberant over exciting things than I am tearful. My kids were the first to hear the news when I found out The House at Rose Creek was going to be published. They were all outside on the trampoline and I ran out onto the back deck and yelled across the yard. I’m pretty sure I pumped my fists in the air and jumped around a little, and thoroughly startled them, and the dog.
What’s in the future for you book wise? 
I’ve just sent my second novel over to Covenant not too long ago, and am hoping they love it just as much as I do. It’s also set in Rose Creek, and could be called a companion novel, though it’s definitely not a sequel. It’s another love story, about an English teacher named Henry who works at a rehabilitative boarding school in Western North Carolina. The honest truth?  I’m pretty sure I love this second one far more than I love the first, and I really love the first one! My current work in progress is something a little different, something (not LDS Fiction) that might be suited for an even broader audience. I’m very excited about it and can’t wait to see where it takes me.
What makes it easy for you to write? What makes it hard? 
That’s a tough question, because really, there isn’t much about my life right now that seems to make writing easy! I have six kids, ranging in age from 12, down to 1, and it’s summer time. So life is crazy busy and full of children and it’s been really hard to carve out real time to write. If it doesn’t happen late in the evening after kid’s bedtimes, or early in the morning before they’re awake, it generally doesn’t happen. And for right now, that’s fine. I figure there’s a time and a season for all things and the season I’m currently in requires me to focus on keeping the baby from eating the cat litter and teaching my three year old to leave my lipstick alone and not drink water out of the toilet. (Can we pretend that doesn’t just happen at my house so I feel a little better about things? Just for a minute? That’d be great.) Having said that, I still try to write a little bit every day, even if it’s just a couple hundred words. The longer I go without writing, the harder it feels to pick it back up. I keep my goals small, and do the best I can, and try not to discouraged when some days, it just doesn’t happen.
What are your favorite books to read? 
I’m not one to jump on the science fiction or fantasy bandwagon, though there are definitely a few titles in each genre that I do like. Mostly, I love books about people and relationships (not just romantic relationships but people relationships) and the way we all fit together in the world. I love books that make me think and that make me cry (no small feat… I’m not an easy crier) and that challenge my way of thinking. And of course, I love a good clean romance.
What makes you laugh? 
My kids make me laugh a lot. My oldest is just old enough to really demonstrate witty, playful sarcasm in ways that make me laugh out loud frequently and I love him for it. Also, just today, my three year old brought me her finished Popsicle so I could read her the joke off the stick. I read the first part of the joke, and she burst out laughing, slapping her hand against her knee. She didn’t even need the punchline. That made me laugh too.
Have you ever found a mysterious book or journal in an old building? 
Wouldn’t it be cool if I had?! I’ve never discovered any treasures myself, but I love old things and old places and always feel I should be looking. . . I try to stop when I’m in other people’s houses though, cause that could get a little awkward. (Oh, I’m sorry. You didn’t want those floorboards ripped up? I was certain it sounded a little hollow underneath. . .)
Thank you, Jenny, for stopping by to let us inside yourself a little bit. Let’s all go pick up a copy of “THE HOUSE AT ROSE CREEK” and explore the workings of Jenny’s mind a little more.

2 Comments

  1. Jenny and Becca in the same place at the same time? There really is no other word for it but lovely! Love you both!

    Comment by Kimberly — July 17, 2013 @ 8:32 am

  2. Love this interview with Jenny. Have loved this beautiful young lady since she was tiny and full of life and love. She is the one person I know that can handle all life hands her, a husband, six children, a writing career and still be that cute, bubbly, interesting and loving person. Can’t wait to get my books, I ordered one for me and my two daughters, one daughter-in-law and three granddaughters! Jenny is going to be tired from signing all of these!

    Comment by Jo Ann Forbes — July 17, 2013 @ 8:54 pm

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