Interview with Jenny Gardiner

JennyGardiner_ThroneForALoop2_200Having achieved your goal to be a published author, what is the most rewarding thing?   

The best thing is being able to write books that readers love to read. I’m so lucky to be able to do this for a living and sure there will be people who just hate your book, but there are so many more who take pleasure in the story and it gives them a chance to escape and get lost in the world you’ve built up. It’s a pretty cool thing to get to do!

Are you a member of any writing organizations and, if so, have they helped

Over the years I’ve belonged to a number of organizations—I used to be on Backspace which was a great site, so much collaboration and writers helping each other in so many ways. I joined RWA in my early days as an author and that has been a great resource for networking and learning a lot about the industry. NINC is now a huge go-to group for me—so much great information to share with others who have been publishing for a while. I also have a few group blogs and things that I’m on, like the Girlfriends Book Club, and we support each other a lot. It can be a tough business so it’s essential to surround yourself with people who can help you and you can conversely help them when they need it.

Will you share some encouraging words for authors still struggling for that first contract? 

Absolutely! Most importantly, have faith in yourself. Publishing can be fraught with rejection, but you have to trust in your gut and know that what you’re doing is what you want to be doing and that you will be able to usher that book to publication—now there are so many ways in which to do it so it makes it a little bit easier. But be your own biggest supporter because sometimes you’ll find you are the only one standing up for yourself. And nowadays, the best thing you can do is write and write and write some more. Stay away from Facebook haha!

What’s next for you?

I’m working on more books in the It’s Reigning Men series—I’m having a lot of fun writing it and people keep asking for more. I’m also noodling on a few new series so in my spare time I’m going to get writing some of them as well. At some point I’ll work on some single titles I’ve started but not picked back up on, but that’s down the road a bit.

Do you have a view in your writing space?  What does your space look like? 

It depends on the day. My desk it a built-in desk in my kitchen, so I’m looking at pretty Italian tile “backsplash”, which I like a lot because I chose the tile when we built this house nearly 20 years ago. But behind me is a beautiful wooded lot, it’s very quiet, if anything you might hear barking dogs nearby but not much else. Sometimes I’ll go on the back deck and write though the deck chairs are uncomfortable and then if the deer come and start eating my flowers then I get distracted into yelling at them! On a nice day I write on my porch swing, which I love—I see flowering trees and neighbors houses and flower beds. It’s very peaceful and all I hear are chittering squirrels and birds chirping. In the wintertime I usually sit in the living room with a fire in the fireplace and write there—it’s super cozy and makes me happy.

What did you want to be when you were a child?  Did you always know you wanted to be a writer?

I think I knew eventually I’d be a writer—it was just what came naturally to me. Plus I seriously sucked at math (and still do sadly) so it limited my options—not like I could have been an engineer, or doctor 😉

What is your favorite part of writing?

Just making stuff up out of thin air! I started out as a journalist and had to be so married to the truth, so it was very liberating to no longer have to worry about that! I also love to hear from readers. You write these books and then they’re out there and it’s great to hear when people enjoy  them!

What is your least favorite part of writing?

Edits/reivsions—hate them!

What is your next project and when will it be released?

It’s Getting Hot in Heir, book 7 of the It’s Reigning Men series releases May 24! I’ve got my work cut out for me!

How much time do you spend promoting your books?  What works best for you?

Not nearly enough but it just gets tiresome—just a lot of throwing spaghetti at the wall. I do a newsletter, Facebook/Twitter announcements, I’ll sometimes do BookBub ads when I can get them, but after that, I return to writing…

How has your experience with self-publishing been?

It’s been great but it really means you are an entire publishing house, which can be exhausting.

Where do you get the ideas for your stories?

I often hear things in the news that sound like interesting launching points for a book. Or else I just think of something that would be interesting to me to read and then go from there…


Sawyer Patterson has never been one to care much about first impressions, except when it comes to royalty, because snagging a palace endorsement could make or break his fledgling catering business in Monaforte—the European principality where he’s settled following culinary school and an apprenticeship at a renowned French patisserie. Despite his anti-royalist upbringing, when he’s hired for a birthday party for Princess Isabella, he doubles down to ensure the birthday cake he makes for her will leave a lasting impression…

To support her good friend Clementine’s new event planning business, Isabella Annelisa Violetta Stefania, Princess Royal of Monaforte, hires her friend to help plan an epic birthday bash for herself. The occasion is the talk of the town, and she has faith Clementine will hire only the best to pull it off. It’s bad enough when Bella’s nemesis from boarding school shows up as the hired caterer, but when his cake ends up making her the laughingstock of the party, the gloves are off and she’s determined he’ll never get business in her town again..


Isabella Annelisa Violetta Stefania Easton was perfectly suited to be the princess royal of Monaforte because she liked nothing better than a good party. And who spends more time celebrating at festive occasions than royalty, for whom life always seems to be one big fête?

So it was kismet when her dear friend Clementine sort of stumbled into an event-planning business. Isabella, always up for helping others, wanted to support her friend’s enterprising spirit. Plus, she was in the mood to celebrate her upcoming birthday. No doubt, someone would have organized some sort of gathering for the event without enlisting her friend’s help, but it seemed like more of an adventure to put it all in Clementine’s capable hands and see what sort of bash she cultivated with only the seeds of an idea from Isabella.

The two of them hatched the plan over drinks while warming by a fireplace at their favorite restaurant on a bitterly cold January evening. The holidays had concluded and it seemed a good time to start thinking of something else they could do to stave off the winter funk that always wanted to settle in at this time of year.

“Your birthday falls on the weekend that everyone will be celebrating Valentine’s Day,” Clementine said. “So it seems obvious to go with the whole red hearts and valentines theme. Hmmm, let’s think how we could vary this so it’s not too clichéd.”

“Not queen of hearts,” Isabella said, tapping her pointer finger against her cheek in thought. “Because I’m not the queen. Mother wouldn’t appreciate that.”

“Would princess of hearts be weird?”

Isabella scrunched her nose. “Yeah, sorta. Reminds me of Princess Diana, and I don’t want people thinking that.”

“How about we shun the whole annoyingly predictable-slash-hackneyed Valentine’s Day trope and go for a lonely hearts theme.”

Isabella knit her brow and looked at her friend in disbelief. “Really? You’re suggesting my birthday party be a loser-girl bash? Because, in case you haven’t noticed, it’s not like I have a boyfriend anyhow. Such a theme will only reinforce the status quo in everyone’s eyes.”

“Yeah, but that’s just because you scare men off.”

Her friend’s eyes popped wide open. “What?”

“Well, not you, personally, but your position. Your status. I mean, being princess can be a little off-putting, amiright?”

JennyGardiner#10546Jenny Gardiner is the #1 Bestselling Kindle author of the novel Slim to None and the award-winning novel Sleeping with Ward Cleaver. Her latest works are the It’s Reigning Men contemporary romance series, featuring the best-selling Something in the Heir, Heir Today Gone Tomorrow, Bad to the Throne, Love is in the Heir, Shame of Thrones, Throne for a Loop, and the upcoming It’s Getting Hot in Heir. She also published a memoir, four other novels and an essay collection. Her work has been found in Ladies Home Journal, the Washington Post,, and on NPR’s Day to Day. She has worked as a professional photographer, an orthodontic assistant as well as a publicist to a United States Senator (where she first  learned to write fiction). She’s photographed Prince Charles (and her assistant husband got him to chuckle!), Elizabeth Taylor, and the president of Uganda. She and her family now live a less exotic life in Virginia.

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