Interview with fantasy author E.V. Jones
I’ve mentioned before that one of the greatest things about running a book blog is I get to meet other great authors. But it is even better to get to share them, and their awesome books, with you!
Today I want you to meet Yvonne Jones, who writes with her pen name E.V. Jones. Want to know why? Well you’ll have to keep reading to find out!
Drum roll please and welcome to the blog, author E.V. Jones!
First, a couple of questions to get to know more about E.V.
Welcome to Autumn Books, E.V. Let’s start off with some fun questions. If there was one place in the world you’d love to visit, where would it be?
IRELAND! I’ve always been absolutely fascinated by the people, the customs, the land and the history.
What a great choice! I’ve been there once and been longing to go back. Once is not enough. I hope you make it soon! Now how about what’s your favorite comfort food?
My family and I all decided (actually my kids decided) to all become strict vegans, or as we’re called, “uber-vegans”. While it didn’t take much getting used to, I have to say, my favorite comfort food is potato enchiladas. They are the absolute best enchiladas I’ve ever had. If you’d like to have a great healthy twist to enchiladas, try the recipe form Forks Over Knives. It’s the ULTIMATE comfort food, especially in the Fall or Winter!
Potato as a favorite food totally makes sense with a desire to visit Ireland. I wonder if you’ll be able to find enchiladas there? Would you care to brag about your family?
Well as long as you asked, of course! I have 6 children ages 9-17, three boys, three girls. About 1 ½ years ago, (same time we decided to become vegans) I pulled ALL of my kids out of the public schools and decided to homeschool them. After getting our curriculum together and doing some testing on where they truly were academically, we found our 2nd grader was testing at a 4th grade level and our 6th grader was testing at a 9th grade level. (Not too surprising though considering these two children are the ones who always said how bored they were with school).
Homeschooling has also allowed our kids to explore more of their own personal interests as well as excel in their music, developing their own band called Summer Monkeys. They have played venues from Cellular Field (White Sox Stadium) to Mall of America to Great America, played on a major news morning show-WGN and were just invited to the studio to play on March 24 for WGN morning t.v. news. They play all charitable events for free because they believe in giving back. I’m a very proud mom and feel they will grow up to be as beautiful, giving, kind adults as they are kids!
They sound like amazing kids and an incredible family! I bet they love that you are a writer! Now that we’ve covered some favorite things, what makes you angry?
Mean people. I just don’t like them. There’s never a reason to be mean to another human being. No one knows what others are going through in their lives and to expend such negative energy on others is just wrong.
So true! Now let’s swing the pendulum back the other way. What music soothes your soul?
Celtic music, some classical and the opera singer Bocelli.
Considering your desire to see Ireland, Celtic music doesn’t surprise me in the least. I have a deep love of it too. I bet we know some of the same songs! Ok, last question. What are three things you think we can all do to make the world a better place?
1) Be open to others beliefs, cultures, and ways because whose really to say any one way is right?
2) Remember, everyone has a story. For example, those who become drug users, alcoholics or turn to crime, were all 7 year olds. I don’t believe any of those at the age of 7 planned on becoming addicts, committing crimes becoming alcoholics, etc. We need to be empathetic to their history.
3) Give of yourself through volunteering, charities etc. It can be very humbling and something every child should experience. It is one of the most important things we try to instill into our own kids.
Now on to the writing questions!
Getting to know the person behind the book is always great. But this is a blog about books! So let’s get into the writing questions. What is your latest book?
The Wish is my debut novel and is Book One of Four in the Cloverleaf Chronicles Series.
I do! Apparently there are quite a lot of authors named Yvonne Jones, and apparently, a couple who have penned stories I would not want my readers of Middle-Grade age stumbling upon. So, I came up with E.V. Jones. My father was Greek and called me by my Greek name of Evonthia. My middle name is Veronica, so that’s where E.V. Jones comes from.
Evonthia is such a cool name! I love how you came up with your pen name. I would never have guessed there were several Yvonne Jones out there. Good call to separate yourself, and your audience, from them! Now some writers edit excessively as they write; others wait until a novel is finished to do the bulk of the editing. How about you?
When I write, I just sit down and write. I don’t outline, I don’t edit, I just write. I usually need to get my thoughts out on paper then when I’m done, I read what I wrote and begin my edits and revisions.
I guess you are not a plotter then. lol. You might not plan out your novel, but what about your characters? How important is the choosing of character names to you?
Names are extremely important in my story. I purposely choose names that fit the character to help give a more three-dimensional feel to my characters. Their names usually mean something, for example in my book, Shannahan=wise one, Alastrine=protector of humans, Kellen=warrior, to name a few.
I love those names! Kellen sounds like someone who would be a great warrior. Who is your favorite character you’ve written and/or from a book you’ve read?
So far my favorite character is Patrick. He’s an easy-going, fun-loving, “kid at heart” wise guy. He’s the friend everyone wishes they had.
Don’t you wish characters could become people? Well, except for the villains, of course! What do you like best about the books you read? What do you like least?
I LOVE twists in stories. Just when you think the story is over, something else pops up and before you know it, you’ve just been drawn down a path you never expected. What I don’t like is when a story is setting up the obvious (for example the resolution to a conflict you know the protagonist is going to face) and I think to myself, “there’s no way this going to happen, it’s so obvious! There has to be a twist!” But then there isn’t and it ends exactly how I thought it would! There’s one series I read and am still disappointed that I knew exactly how the series would end before I even finished the series!
You sound like a fun and challenging reader to please. Which, I bet, makes you quite the author when you write! How much research was involved in writing your book? How did you go about it?
Research entailed digging into Irish folklore, myths, and legends. I also realized that I needed to add a bit of Irish “twang” to the dialogue. That was a lot of fun! Learning Irish sayings and saying them to my kids was a hoot. For example, “what’s the craic?” means what’s up, “cooking with diesel” means now we’re getting things done and my favorite is, “Leg it!” which means pick up your pace. I also did research on Irelands famous tourist sites such as Hill of Tara and Forest of Wicklow and made them significant sights in my story to bridge our everyday world with magical places beyond our reach.
It sounds like you are all set to take your research to the next level: Ireland! And maybe you’ll find a faery stone too. 😉 Is there a question I haven’t asked you that you would like to answer? If so, what is it?
This is something I’m asked by the students when I do school visits: Where did you get the idea of your characters from? Answer: Just about every single main and supporting character was constructed by someone I know. For example, the main character Jack is a combination of my oldest son George and my youngest son Jack in regards to his looks and mannerisms and Jack’s parents, Tom and Maggie are my husband and myself. I like to use those I know or have met to develop my characters because it makes the characters more real and easier for me to develop.
And it is so easy to find inspiration from the people around you when they are part of your books too! Have you received reactions/feedback to your work that has surprised you? In what way?
Overall, not really. Although I did write The Wish (and the series) as a Middle-Grade book, I’ve had odd (but good) responses to young adults liking my book. I love the idea of a book breaking free from an “age expectation” and having others outside of that group enjoying it.
That is great. I wrote my epic fantasy aiming for young to new adult but have found fans who are over 90 years young. I’m always amazed by their stories and honored to have them as readers. You just never know who will pick up your book. Do you write anything besides novels? Care to share?
I have 6 children ages 9-17 (3 boys and 3 girls) and they have a band called Summer Monkeys. I will often sit and help them come up with lyrics to their songs. I even wrote a song for The Wish (when someone decides they’d love to make it into a movie, lol) with the help of my oldest daughter (and lead vocal) Isabel. I came up with the lyrics and idea of music in my head, then made Isabel sit down at the piano and play what I “attempted” to sing. We had the song completed in 30 minutes.
That is fast! Far faster than writing a book. And how very cool. I hope you’ve recorded it and use it for your book trailer! Now, were you “born to write” or did you discover your passion for writing later in life?
I’ve always enjoyed writing, but just poems as a kid. It wasn’t until I started having children that my love for writing was reignited! When my oldest son George was diagnosed at 7 years old with auditory processing disorder, one of his teachers recommended George write stories then read them out loud as a form of speech therapy. So we started having story nights where he and I would just sit and write stories 1-2 times a week for 30 minutes. He would then read what he wrote to me to help him with his processing of speech.
One of the stories I wrote during one of those nights with him is what ultimately developed into The Wish many years later when the 1 ½ page story I wrote resurfaced in my mind and I decided to expand on it. It was because of George that The Wish and, ultimately, the series, was born!
What a fantastic inspiration for a story! Do you feel The Wish is your personal favorite or one of your previous novels?
Actually, I already wrote book number 2 in the series and have started book number 3. But, between book one and book two, I definitely have enjoyed book number 2 much more. I think because I (and the reader) know the characters. That’s fun, like meeting up with old friends again!
I couldn’t agree more about that. It is part of why I love writing series. That and I just love really big plot lines! Thank you so much for your time, E.V. It was really fun getting to know more about you, your family, and your books. Best of luck with the launch of book 2 and beyond!
E.V. Jones lives in Geneva, Illinois with her husband and 6 children. The Wish is her debut novel and is Book One of Four in the Cloverleaf Chronicles Series.
Links to Connect:
Upcoming Author Events:
March 17, 4-6p: Barnes and Noble in Naperville, Illinois
April 2, 3p-5p: Barnes and Noble in Roseville, Minnesota-Har Mar Mall