Title: Love and Other Mistakes
Author: Jessica Kate Publisher: Thomas Nelson
Release Date: July 30, 2019 Genre: Romantic Comedy
There’s a fine line between love and hate . . . And for the last seven years, Natalie Groves has hated Jeremy Walters.
Natalie Groves was meant for great things. But soon after her fiancé left, Natalie’s father was diagnosed with cancer. Suddenly her grand plans evaporated . . . and God felt very far away.
Fast-forward seven years and an internship presents Natalie a chance at her destiny—but she needs a job to work around it. And the only offer available is worse than a life sentence. Her ex Jeremy, now back in town, is desperate for help with his infant son and troubled teenage niece, Lili. And Natalie may be just the one to help Jeremy . . . provided they don’t kill each other in the process.
When Jeremy and Natalie join forces, sparks fly. But will either of them get burned along the way?
What or who was your inspiration for this debut novel?
So many layers to this answer!
So, for Natalie and Jem’s love/hate romance, my inspiration was entirely fiction: Sweet Home Alabama, The Proposal, all those great love/hate rom coms.
BUT if we’re talking subplots…that’s where the real world comes in.
For Natalie on a personal level, she’s feels like she’s missing out on her purpose in life and doesn’t know how to fix it. Been there, done that. A few years ago I wrote a blog post called ‘No Career, No Man, No Plan’, as I grappled with a feeling that I was failing in so many areas, including my job, my love life, and my spiritual life.
It sounds ridiculous, but I felt like God had a purpose for everybody else but had decided to sit me on a shelf and leave me there, and no matter what I did I couldn’t get off the shelf. It’s been one of the major lies in my life I’ve had to deal with. Thankfully God has been shining his truth onto that area and helping me deal with it. It was great to get to take Natalie’s character through that same experience.
The other major real-life inspiration was in the story around Lili, Jem’s 16 year-old niece who lives with him for much of the book. Without giving too much away, she’s dealing with a major betrayal, and it’s a situation that involves several…well, most, of the important adults in her lift. She has to grapple with her faith as she watches the people who taught her that faith completely fail.
That came from a real place for me. The situation is totally fictional, but that feeling isn’t. That feeling of watching multiple people who were your examples suddenly do things that completely contradicted what they said they believed. It really makes you question everything they taught you.
It was cathartic to let Lili verbalize (and occasionally vandalize) emotions that I experienced but didn’t say aloud.
And there were fun little inspirations along the way! There’s a funny little line that’s a twist on an Everybody Loves Raymond joke about The Great Microwave Wars of 1993, Natalie’s Australian parents obviously come from the fact I’m Australian, their peaches and ice cream dessert is something my grandmother does, my knowledge of babies for Olly’s character comes from having my baby sister born when I was 16 and getting to spend a lot of time with her.
Whew! That was a long answer!
Did you always want to write?
From my early teens, yes. I had always loved books and movies and one day just started trying to write my own stories.
What is on the table next for you?
My next novel, A Girl’s Guide to the Outback, is in the final stages of editing! It releases Jan 28 and I CANNOT WAIT to take my Aussie hero and American heroine (and my readers along with them) out to rural Australia! The farm in the book is partly based on one I lived on a teen—actually, the farm where I first started writing!
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Australian Jessica Kate is a sassy romance author and addict.
Her novels feature wit, snark, and grit, and her StoryNerds podcast gives her a chance to nerd out with others about these ingredients in books, movies, and TV.
She has a passion for garlic bread, theme parks, and Batman.
Sign up to her newsletter at jessicakatewriting.com to hear first about her books, including her upcoming novels Love and Other Mistakes and A Girl’s Guide to the Outback.
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