Saturday, 4/13/19 I was honored to speak on a panel at the first San Diego Writers Festival held at the downtown Central Library.
Here is an interview Susan J. Farese of SJF Communications wrote for the Festival’s website that I thought you might enjoy reading.
SJF: In a nutshell, tell us about your book or written piece.
JGH: My books, The Black Velvet Coat and The Silver Shoes are dual-timeline historical novels about women searching for their place in the world. In both, a present-day artist discovers a vintage piece that connects her to an original owner from the past. The third of the series, The Green Lace Corset, is scheduled for release Fall 2020. My poems have appeared in a variety of publications, including A Year in Ink, San Diego Poetry Annual, The Avocet, and Wild Women, Wild Voices.
SJF: What has your experience been as a writer in San Diego?
JGH: Almost twenty years ago I began attending Judy Reeves’s Brown Bag Writing Group. There, characters began to appear out of nowhere and my first novel was born. I also studied poetry under Steve Kowit at San Diego Writers, Ink, where I am a past board president and continue to volunteer and teach workshops. In our spaces at Liberty Station, I meet with fellow members at Room to Write, co-facilitate the Tuesday Brown Bag group, and read at monthly Dime Stories.
SJF: How has storytelling influenced your life?
JGH: I’m an intuitive artist and I write without an outline. When I write, characters and settings seem to appear on the page out of nowhere. It’s so enticing that I have to keep writing to find out what happens next. This has led me to a happy, fulfilled life.
SJF: If you had a magic wand, what kind of opportunities would be available to writers in San Diego?
JGH: I wish there were more grant opportunities for writers.
SJF: What are you excited about when it comes to participating in the inaugural San Diego Writers Festival?
JGH: I’m excited to be involved with the festival because I love to spend time with other authors and share what I’ve gleaned over the years with new writers.
SJF: What advice would you give to a new writer in San Diego?
JGH: I suggest aspiring authors write with their hearts and not their heads, develop a daily writing practice routine, and find a community of other writers. If someone has a publishing goal, they should make sure their work is the best it can be by joining a read-and-critique group and later hiring an editor. It’s also important to stay positive and consider all options. There are so many choices now. Keeping a balanced life is imperative too. I schedule time for walks, yoga, and tap dance lessons. I also make sure to spend time with loved ones.
SJF: Many thanks, Jill! Learn More about Susan J. Farese at SJF Communications.
One of the best things about going to a conference is to see friends!