I’m happy to have my friend, Jan Cline, with me today. She’s an amazing author, singer, and has hosted many conferences in the Spokane area. She’s also a speaker. I’ve had the pleasure of sitting in on a couple of her workshops at writer’s conferences and her messages and writing tips are powerful and useful.
Her new release is All My Goodbyes. Let’s get started and meet her, get to know a little bit about her, and dig into her new novel!
Jane Cline Interview
Where do you live?
I live in the Coeur d Alene, Idaho area in the beautiful Pacific Northwest!
How long have you lived there?
We’ve been in this location for about 3 years now. Downsized from a huge house to something more manageable and closer to my son.
What do you do for fun?
We love to boat, camp, travel. I am a craft-a-holic and love to repurpose old things.
Who is your favorite author or book?
I would have to say it’s a tie between Susan Meissner and Charles Martin, with Fall of Marigolds, and Unwritten respectively as favorite books of theirs.
What is your preferred genre?
I love historical, but an occasional contemporary catches my eye. Not a fan of strong romance.
How did you start this journey to become a writer? What is the message of your book/ books?
I have been writing since I was very young – I know a lot of authors say that, and it’s true. I fell in love with classic movies as a young person, and I think that is what sparked my love for a good story. My personality leans toward theater and literature so it came naturally. I love writing stories from America’s history about people who survived hardships and depended on their faith for strength.
Tell us about your current book. Make us want to read it.
All My Goodbyes is the third in my American Dreams series – historical of course. The main character is modeled after my mother’s life during WW2. It’s a story of love, overcoming fear, and learning that life is about saying goodbyes, whether we like to or not. It’s a natural continuation of Books 1 & 2 with a special surprise at the end.
What is the inspiration for your current book?
My mother’s life was often difficult, as were many women’s lives who had to live through the tough times America experienced. She didn’t talk much about her past while she was alive. I wanted to honor her sacrifices and tell the story I wish I had known more about before.
Who was your favorite character to write and why?
There is a secondary character in the series, Elijah, a drifter who befriends the family and is somewhat of a mystery through the series. I get many comments about him, wondering who and what he was. I’ll say no more.
Is there anything of you in that character?
No, but I did find as I wrote my mother’s story that there is a lot of me in her. It was a strange thing to see that revealed as I wrote.
What sets your book apart?
It’s based on a true story, yet laced with fiction. It’s a story that is like so many untold experiences from WW2, yet it’s unique in that I’m writing about it from a loved one’s point of view.
What’s your favorite part in the book?
The ending. Won’t give that away as it’s unconventional. Your readers will see when they read the book.
What was the most difficult part to write?
The pain of war and separation. Our generation can’t quite relate to how bad things were then. Men were gone for years on end with no leave. The battles were brutal, and outcomes so unknown. It was a hard time to write about.
How do you write? Do you have a set time or place? Write to music? How many hours a day?
I am a hit and miss writer, unless I’m on a deadline. I always listen to movie scores as I write and I do best when at my desk in my office with no distractions. Sometimes I get in just little stolen minutes during the day, or sometimes I get on a roll and go for hours.
Why did you want to be a writer?
As I said, it just came naturally. I also loved the reaction from people when they read something I wrote early on. I guess it’s in my DNA!
How can readers get in touch with you?
My website is https://jancline.net. They can contact me through the website. If they sign up for my monthly newsletter, they get a free short story. I’m on Facebook at Jan Cline Author, and I’m on Twitter on occasion. Follow me on Goodreads, BookBub too.
Europe’s troubles were far away and not of concern to Martha Watkins. The United States was neutral, and the last war had claimed enough American lives. If war did come, Martha declared, she would never settle down with a soldier. “I’m not interested in anyone enlisting to go off to war.” Then came the day that would live in infamy, and the call to duty threatens to tear all their hopes of happiness apart.
He pulled her close to hold her. She didn’t resist, but wasn’t relaxed either.
“So you’ll be flying a great big plane with great big bombs to drop on the enemy. Will they shoot at you?”
“Yes. But our guns are better. Our gunners are positioned all around the plane.”
She slid down and rested her head in his lap. No crying, no more questions. Just the kind of stillness that said it was time to stop talking.
They sat on the floor for a long time. The room was dark now. Peaceful. Clark feared he would fall asleep if he didn’t go to bed. As soon as his head hit the pillow he was out, but he woke with a start, reaching for Martha. She wasn’t in the bed. He turned on the bedstand light and shuffled into the living room. Martha stood at the front window, her arms hugging her chest, moonlight kissing her face. He stood behind her and wrapped his arms around hers, tight.
“You could die,” she said softly, emotionless.
It was as if that was what she needed to hear to close the lesson on B24s, and war, and bombs. He nuzzled his face into her neck, wishing he could make it all better.
He couldn’t. No one could.
Get your copy of All My Goodbyes now! Click here.
About Jan Cline
Jan loves history and hearing, reading, and writing stories of American’s past. She often leads writer’s events and speaks at writer’s conferences, writer’s groups, and women’s groups. Her love for traveling has taken her all over the U.S. and even abroad. She lives in the Pacific Northwest with her husband and spoiled dog.