A few months into quarantine in 2020, an author messaged me to ask if I’d like to read her upcoming romance titled Home. I’d heard of her, but never read her books. I accepted an ARC and basically added myself into Jenny Bunting’s life. Since that first message and ARC, I’ve read every single one of Jenny’s stories, as well as the one that releases in two days.
As an author, Jenny infuses humour and steam into storytelling that is entirely unique to her. I guarantee that if you pick up any of her books, you’ll experience the giggles and the swoons and you won’t regret it either. Jenny is a friendly and amusing person too. I love her sense of humour that produces these stories, but also the awesome reels/TikToks she shares on her Instagram account. Plus, I am a huge fan of Jenny’s candour.
Her debut series, Here in Lillyvale, is what got me hooked onto Jenny’s stories and since then she’s released a set of hilarious and steamy novellas and is two books into her brand new series following the Finch Family. On Instagram, she posts in her stories quite often, showing us her gorgeous dog Booker, her life in general as well as updates on what she’s watching, the reading she’s doing and basically being all kinds of awesome.
And now, you have a chance to get to know her too!
What inspired you to write—was it another author or books you read as you grew up?
I don’t remember exactly, but I feel like I was writing from a very early age. When my family bought our first home computer (this was the nineties), they moved it into my bedroom because I was constantly on it, writing my stories. I’ve just always had the intrinsic need to write and tell stories.
Why did you choose romance as the genre to write in?
It’s my favorite genre! I love love and all the highs and lows that comes with it.
Why did you choose to self-publish instead of going the traditional route?
When I started my research in 2019, I realized very quickly there was no guarantee I would traditionally publish, because there are a lot of unknown factors. I realized with self-publishing, there was a guarantee and I could get my stories to market a lot faster than if I went the traditional route.
What’s the best and worst part about being an indie author?
The readers! Hearing someone loved my story or reread it because they loved it so much is the best part. The worst part is that it is a very saturated and competitive market. It’s difficult to get seen and read, since readers have so many options.
Do you write full time or is this something you do on the side? And would you want to write full time?
I currently work full-time as a commercial auto claims adjuster for a third party administrator. I would love to write full-time but I live in a feminist household and I cannot quit until my writing income replaces my full-time income. We have a long way to go.
Other than writing, what is something you enjoy and are really good at?
I’m really good at makeup! I used to be obsessed a few years ago and I can do a really extravagant look if I wanted to.
If not romance/subgenres of romance, what genre would you like to write in?
Probably psychological thrillers! I have an idea that won’t leave me alone.
What are some of your all time favourite books—ones that you recommend to people or can reread multiple times?
My favorite non-romance with White Oleander by Janet Fitch. My favorite traditionally published romance is The Simple Wild by KA Tucker. My favorite indie romance series is probably the Clifton Forge series by Devney Perry.
What are your top 5 tips or pieces of advice for aspiring authors?
- Hire a really good editor
- Get a really good cover that is to market
- Network, network, network
- Manage and keep realistic expectations. You may need several books published to gain traction.
- Done is better than perfect.
Can you briefly tell me about the books you’ve published so far?
I’ve published a four-book contemporary romance/romantic comedy series called Here in Lillyvale (will be rebranded to the Here series this year), a three-novella forced proximity romcom trilogy called Stuck in Love and two books in my Finch family series, called Fool’s Gold and Gold Rush.
Of your books, who is your favourite character?
Dan “The Man” Price from Hubby.
What inspired your published stories? How and when did you come up with these stories and plots?
It comes from everywhere! I grab pieces from my life and stories I’ve heard from others. Sometimes, I love a specific moment and I recreate it. Like I love ‘My So-Called Life’ and took the scene where Jordan grabs Angela’s hand in the hallway and spun it to fit a scene in Fool’s Gold.
How much of yourself do you put into these characters?
No one character is me, but each character gets something from me. You can usually tell what show I’m watching at the time because it becomes a show my characters love i.e. Landon from Please Be Seated with ‘Succession’ or Reid from Gold Rush with ‘Yellowstone’.
When you write these stories, what are you hoping your readers will feel?
I want them to laugh and warm their heart at the end. I just want them to feel good.
What is a story/stories that you really want to tell?
I really want to write an age gap, nanny romance and I really want to write a book with some side characters from Hustle.
What’s next on the bookshelf for you? Anything you can tell us about a future project?
I plan to write a prequel novella for Caroline and Brady, who appear in my Here in Lillyvale series. Then, I plan to write the third book in my Finch Family series, for the oldest brother, Jackson.
What are your most and least favourite tropes?
Favorite: single dad, marriage of convenience (contemporary), friends to lovers, bodyguard, age gap, surprise pregnancy
Least favorite: rockstar, arranged baby (a baby is bequeathed in a will to two people who have no interest in children) or a baby in general is left to a man and he needs help raising it from a woman. Anything infant-centric.
What are some tropes you want to write in the future?
Nanny, marriage of convenience
What are some topics (sensitive and otherwise) that you think should exist more in romance?
Couples who choose to be childfree, older MCs
What is your favourite thing about the romance genre?
There’s comfort in the tropes, but also creativity to make it your own and bring a fresh take to it.
THIS OR THAT
- Ebooks or audiobooks
- Historical romance or romantic suspense
- Single or Dual POV
- Standalones or series
- Music or silence while writing
- Plotter, pantser or plantser
- Tea or coffee
- Cold or warm weather
- Morning person or night owl
- Illustrated cover or photo cover depends on the genre