Monday, February 03, 2014

Author Interview: Jennifer Reinoehl: Life In General Is A Pretty Big Challenge

Jennifer Reinoehl is a jack-of-all-trades freelance author. You will find her freelancing profile here. When she is not writing, she can be found checking out stacks of books at the local libraries. In college, she did biomedical research on a variety of topics including the medicinal uses of insects and performed microsurgery on mosquito larva. She has been happily married to her husband for fourteen years. She recently was given the honor of working as a dresser on the Broadway Musical "Wicked" when, ironically, one of the other dressers broke a leg. In her spare time, she volunteers with organizations that teach children and improve their self-confidence. She has a blog where she talks about the ups and downs of freelancing and offers advice about writing in general and a website. You can follow her on Facebook, connect with her on Goodreads, or invite her to work on your writing or editing project.

Welcome Jennifer!

Your real name and pen name?
I only write under my real name: Jennifer (J.J.) Reinoehl

Please share some of the best memories of your childhood:
My childhood was rather rough. Needless to say, I survived it and moved on.

About your education:
I have a B.A. in Theatre and a B.S. in Biology.

What career did you plan during your education days?
A farmer or a doctor. I've pretty much just always wanted to own a big house and have enough money and knowledge to help others. I also come from a family of farmers, so I have a connection to the earth and self-sustaining practices.

What languages you can speak and write?
English, French, Spanish. I read Italian and Latin but don't speak them very well. I also can say and read a few words in German, Swahili, Russian, Chinese, Korean, and Vietnamese.

What is your biggest source of inspiration in life:
The Bible

What is the biggest challenge you have faced? How did you overcome it?
Life in general is a pretty big challenge. I am still working on it.

If you had to live a day of your life as one of the living or dead
personality, who would it be and why?
I wouldn't want to live as anyone other than myself. I may not always make the right choices or do the right things, but I am happy with who I am.

What is your favorite genre and why?
I like to read most genres. I prefer to write non-fiction and postmodern fiction, but I write across a variety of genres, too. Non-fiction allows me to research, learn something new, and then teach others. I also like to hear other people's stories, so I enjoy writing the occasional memoir. Postmodern fiction allows me to use abstraction to teach.

When did you start writing? What is the purpose of your writing?
I started writing when I was a young teenager. I mostly wrote short stories as a way of expressing my feelings about the world around me and the things that happened to me. The purpose of my writing now is to make statements and to teach others.

Which of your work has been published so far? Would you like to share
a synopsis of your work?
I have had two short stories published in "New Views On Gender" an Indiana University publication. "Memory" was a postmodern fiction work that followed a man losing his memory at the end of his life and was loosely based on my grandfather's description and my observations of what his life was like with Alzheimer's disease. "Vicksburg, MS" was a non-fiction piece that described the fear I had as a mother when I had to take my daughter to the doctor and have her hospitalized while on vacation. I also wrote "HIV and AIDS: The Essential Guide" which is available in paperback on Amazon-UK or as a downloadable e-book. This book explains everything you need to know about HIV and AIDS, its treatments, and how to help friends and family diagnosed with the disease. I have self-published a teaching guide for the book "Cheaper by the Dozen" which is also on Amazon which uses the book to help teach English. And I have self published a picture book "Sal, Captain of the Baby Guards" on Amazon that helps children deal with childhood fears that come from overactive imaginations.

What are your forthcoming writings?
I just submitted an inspirational historical romance to Harlequin: "An Inconvenient Widow," but it will be at least 3 - 6 months before I hear back from them. I have a series planned that deals with the supporting characters, children, and grandchildren of the characters from this book, so I am hoping it will get picked up. I have another teaching guide on "The Island of the Blue Dolphins" started. I also wrote "The Simple Job" which is a postmodern work that deals with the topic of taking a job that sounds too good to be true. It needs a few more edits and formatting before I self-publish it. I also am planning on self-publishing a Radiotherapy and Chemotherapy Guide similar to my HIV and AIDS guide. Again, this book is finished, but it needs a final edit and a beta reader or two to make sure that I didn't get too academic in my descriptions. I also co-wrote a book with my husband: "The Lost Histories of Eden: The Corruption," which tells the story of the pre-flood world when angels took humans as wives. It's an alternate history with fantasy and a touch of steampunk mixed into it. This is also a two series story, so we want to have it edited and marketed in order to reach a large enough audience to sustain the ensuing books. This will cost several thousand dollars, and we are saving for it.

What are your future plans?
(See above) Outside of writing, I want to further my education, move to the country, and travel as much as possible.

What four top most things you take care of while writing a book?
The research is the most important. I want everything I write to be well researched. If I break the rules or step outside of reality while I am writing something, I want to do it on purpose, not accidentally. Next, I want to have a believable plot. I don't like when things magically appear in stories without an explanation. If there is a wealthy old friend of the family, I want him there on page 1, not on page 150 when the main character is going to be thrown into debtors prison and the man suddenly appears to bail him out. Then, I want my characters to have depth and be individuals. Finally, I want to make sure anything I write is well-edited.

Your dream destination on Earth?
I want to visit Equatorial Africa - specifically Cote d'Ivoire. I love the tropical regions, and I have always wanted to see this country.

Your origin of birth and other countries you have visited/ stayed.
What best things you liked in these countries around the globe?
I was born in the United States. I have visited Canada, the Bahamas, the United Kingdom, and lived in France for 9 months. Other countries are beautiful. I love the unique history, cultures, and foods I discover while visiting.

Your favorite time of the day?
Sunset. It is the best "happily ever after."

Your zodiac/ sunsign?

Your favorite color and why?
Green. It is the color of the earth and health.

Your favorite book and why?
It is difficult to choose one because I like many books. The Bible is probably top on the list, with Pride and Prejudice second if we are going by the number of times I have read them. But there are so many that would qualify as my favorite for one reason or another.

Your favorite celebrity and why?
Hmm. I don't really follow celebrities like other people do, so I think I am going to change this to my favorite person from history: Socrates. Socrates was different even from the other philosophers of his time. He wasn't afraid to go out on a limb to teach ideas that were new and unique, and he didn't charge people for it. He resorted to logic to defend his positions and stood by what he said even when it meant his death. Even though he was a rebel, he obeyed the laws of the land and refused to escape his punishment.

Your favorite food?
I like a wide variety of foods. My favorite thing to eat is something new that I haven't tried before. Just don't tell me what's in it!

Some quickies: 
(Sun) or Moon,
(Laughter) or Smile,
Morning or (Evening- because of sunsets),
Coffee or Tea
Mountain or (Sea),
(Long Drive) or Short Drive,
Silence or Conversation (both),
Water or (Fire),
Air or (Earth),
Mars or (Jupiter - because it's stormy, turbulent, and mysterious),
Moon or (Sun - still the sun),
Tulip or (Rose),
(Red) or Blue,
(Left) or Right,
(Glance) or Stare

What three words come to your mind for each –
Technology (frailty, reduction, superficial),
Life (green, happiness, vibrancy),
God (strength, hope, love),
(dying, false, chimera),
Terrorism (fear, misunderstanding, ignorance),
Racism (hate, evolution, eugenics),
Childhood Abuse (therapy, healing, overcoming),
Love (sacrifice, sacrifice, sacrifice),
Parenting (love, guidance, nurturing),
Old age (wisdom, comfort, respect)

State your signature line/ tagline/ best quote
I have a lot of favorite quotes, but one of my favorites is probably from Jonathon Swift's "Gulliver's Travels": "I cannot but conclude the bulk of your natives to be the most pernicious group of little odious vermin nature has ever suffered to crawl upon the surface of the earth."

The last line of your autobiography would be…
I wouldn't write an autobiography. I do keep a journal sporadically, though.

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