I’m absolutely thrilled to be hosting Georgina Troy on my blog again – and this time, she’s going to be talking about the experience of writing a series. This is a subject that particularly interests me, as the fifth novel in my Heartlands series comes out next month. But I’m sure there are many things I can learn from Georgina – so over to you!
Thanks Jenny. My fourth book in my Jersey Scene series, A Jersey Bombshell, will be published by Accent Press this month. In this book, as with the other three in my series, several of the main characters make an appearance, however each book can be read as a standalone story.
I like the idea of becoming familiar with characters and discovering different sides of them by revisiting them in a series of books and this is why I’ve chosen to do this with my Jersey Scene series. Each book – as the name suggests – is set on the island of Jersey where I was born and have lived for most of my life, apart from a year or so living in South Africa.
Although A Jersey Kiss – book 1 in the series – was set solely in Jersey, the other three books so far in the series are also set somewhere else. A Jersey Affair (book 2) was set in Jersey and Sorrento; A Jersey Dreamboat (book 3) was set in Jersey and the South of France; and, A Jersey Bombshell (book 4) is set in Jersey and Vietnam. I love sharing beautiful settings from this lovely island where I live and also deciding which other place I’ve visited I should share. The next book will be set in Jersey and Venice.
Apart from using places from Jersey that I feel are beautiful, another aspect of the planning of each book is deciding what career to give my characters. In A Jersey Kiss, Bea was a divorcee who had inherited a run-down, once glamorous, home from her godmother. Her godmother had been a landscape architect and although she’d let the house fall into disrepair, she kept the grounds of the property immaculate. The hero in that book, Luke Thornton, is a polo-playing builder who she employs! In A Jersey Affair, Paige Bingham is a shoe designer and Sebastian Fielding, the hero, an entrepreneur who is about to ruin everything she has built up. For A Jersey Dreamboat, my heroine and her best friend are event planners about to lose everything due to a stupid mistake they’ve made. The hero, Ed, works as a groundsman at the manor house where they hope to hold a business-saving event, although there’s more to Ed than they’d anticipated.
For A Jersey Bombshell, I have Gabriel, a marine explorer who returns to help run his parent’s art deco hotel with his grandmother. She was an actress and used to be known as The Jersey Bombshell back in the fifties before she disappeared, suddenly cutting short her successful acting career. Gabriel returns to the island while his parents – an actor and a singer – go off on location/touring and discovers that Daisy, who he fell in love with when travelling in Vietnam and who then left him, is now working at the hotel as the head receptionist.
The most difficult thing for me with each book is being sure that I haven’t used the same name twice. Gabriel in A Jersey Bombshell initially started out as Xavier. I must like that name. However, I recalled that in A Jersey Dreamboat one of Ed’s two brothers was also called Xavier, so I had to change it.
I’ve already written outlines for the next two books in the series and know where they’ll be set and what careers the protagonists will have. I can’t wait.
Thanks so much for this, Georgina! I adore the settings for your novels. I haven’t been to Vietnam, but I know your other locations – and we had our honeymoon in Jersey! Good luck with your new book.
Gabriel has returned to the island of Jersey after ten years abroad to help his aging showbiz parents revive their failing Art Deco hotel. This proves to be something of a challenge, especially as his singer father and actress mother are more concerned with staying in the limelight than keeping track of the cash-flow. Gabriel isn’t going anywhere fast …
Meanwhile, he’s stunned to find that the hotel’s new receptionist is the girl he fell in love with years earlier in Vietnam, and someone who is tied to Jersey is the last thing she needs …
Georgina Troy lives in Jersey, an island fifteen miles off the coast of France. She’s a hopeless romantic and when Georgina realised that no one else wrote romances set in her island home with its beautiful wind-swept beaches and intriguing inhabitants, she decided she had to provide some. Her books are published by Accent Press.