UPDATE: Gennita Low is giving
2 copies of her book VIRTUALLY HERS
Gennita Low, Jenn to her friends *wink* unwraps a layer or two about her writing life in this installment of Spotlight. I first discovered the multitalented Jenn on Facebook, thinking I was friending a fellow writer, who penned the Shadowy Assassins Series and Virtual Series. But I soon realized there’s more to her than a typical writing career: Jenn runs a roofing construction company. And she rescues Pomeranians, the ones that aren’t so cute and tiny. Oh, and she’s familiar with more languages than fingers on one hand: Chinese, Malay, German, Russian, English, and French!
Q) Okay, Jenn, we need some back story. How did you become an author, roofer, and multi-lingual mom to six dogs?
A) I like to tell people that I ran away from home to become a world famous author, but ended up as a world famous roofer first ;-). Life is strange that way. When I started my journey here in the States, nobody could pronounce the name Gennita, so I ended up as Jenn or Jenna for a long, long time. Then, 2002, an editor, Gena Pearson, bought my manuscript and after asking if I had another name because Jenny wasn’t “suspensy-sounding,” to our shock, we both had the same name; hers was Genitta, with two ts. How’s that for serendipity?
As for my love affair with mutant poms, I have always loved pomeranians. My first one ran away from her home and stayed with me for a month before her owner found her. She later gave me one of Lady’s kids.
Are you sure you want to hear the story of my original six mutants? They were dad, mom, and their four kids, and they were crazy furbabies who lived with me for almost 24 years. My blog readers are very familiar with their stories. Right now, I only have three mutant poms who aren’t related to those six but they too enrich my life. You’re thinking “crazy dog lady,” aren’t you ;-). Only with mutant poms, by which I mean poms that aren’t tiny.
Q) Now, about your work, where do you begin your writing? The end? Middle? How do your characters reveal themselves to you?
A) I begin my writing right from the beginning. I see a scene and go straight with it. My characters sort of walk onto a stage and then suddenly, voila, I have that scene that’s pivotal to their story. It does vary: sometimes it’s a line of dialogue; sometimes it’s a joke. For example, I had a long running joke in my first book, Into Danger. The main character, a Navy SEAL, was very INTRIGUED by the idea that there was a tattoo of Tweety Bird somewhere on my heroine’s body, and he spent an inordinate amount of time thinking about its whereabouts, since he couldn’t ever see it on her in spite of her revealing clothes. In the pivotal scene that those two naughty protags showed to me, he finally got his wish and found out about Tweety Bird, and …well, it wasn’t exactly where he thought it was.
Q) You’ve won some contests, how challenging was the process, would you do it over again, and how has this changed (or not) you as a writer?
As a writer today, I don’t enter into any contests any more, other than the major one, RWA’s RITA, an industry award. It’s an entirely different challenge because it’s read and judged by one’s peers. I think contests are very important for beginning authors to find where they are on the writing ladder–beginning, intermediate, etc.–so they could improve or make changes. It hasn’t changed me as a writer, but it definitely has opened more doors for me.