Wednesday, April 21, 2010

SPOTTED: Jennifer Laurens + Heavenly & Penitence

Hi guys! Today, I'm here with Jennifer Laurens, the author of Falling for Romeo, Magic Hands, A Season of Eden, An Open Vein, Nailed, Heavenly and the upcoming sequel, Penitence!
Jennifer is one of the most generous and friendliest authors I've ever met! And I'm honored to present my interview with her...

What is your purpose in writing Heavenly?

I was at a crossroads in my life with my family. I have a child with autism, a son who suffered with addictions and I wanted to share some of our experiences trudging through the hardships in an effort to help myself understand better and maybe help others have hope.

What lessons will the readers pick up from your novel?

That there are spiritual forces of good out there waiting and willing to help us. That, no matter how hard life may seem, family and love and unity will help, if not heal completely, broken hearts.

Was Matthias really an angel from the time you started writing the draft?

yup. I write about angels from experience. Not that I've seen them, but I know for a fact that my daughter with autism has avoided being lost, hurt, whatever - because she's being watched over. Angels are an integral part of my HEAVENLY series and have been since inception the moment I wanted to share our family story with others who might benefit.

What is Matthias and Zoe’s relationship like?

Matthias is compassionate. He's all-loving and non-judgmental. He's what Zoe needs to have hope that, by knowing someone like him she can lift herself to be a better person, and she does. It's hard at first. She's mortal and she fights the human tendencies we all fight to be jealous, spiteful, angry. frustrated - every ugly human emotion is put to the test with her brother's addiction and the strain of living with a handicapped sibling.

Is Zoe or Matthias inspired by someone? Who?

Zoe is a combination of my two daughters. Matthias is a calming influence I've felt inside when I've needed to dig deep for hope and safety and trust when I've had nowhere else to turn.


Favorite book?

Honest Illusions by Nora ROberts

Favorite author?


Favorite movie?

I like any romantic comedy that has that watch over-and-over again quality like Foul Play, Seems Like Old Times, the Holiday, Devil Wears Prada, etc.

Favorite scene in Heavenly?

Too many to mention. I love when Zoe first sees Matthias. I love when they accidentally touch. I love her sweet connection with Luke. I love the end, her thoughts, her wishes.

Was there a part of the novel that was hard to write?

Any of the scenes with Luke. My son struggled with drugs for so long, the experience was so taxing on top of raising 6 children and having a daughter with autism, often I would write and weep. The good part was being able to control Luke's outcome. That's NOT something I was able to do for my son.

Did you include any personal experiences in the novel? Or was there a part of the novel that was inspired from your personal experience?

Heavenly is our family story is countless ways. Everything that happened with Abria, has happened at our house. Everything that happened with Luke, has happened at our house.

How does your mood affect your writing?

I listen to soundtracks I have specifically put together that keep me in the mood while I'm writing a novel. everywhere I go, driving, wherever - I play the soundtrack to 'keep in the groove' of my characters. That helps me. Heavenly, though an overall joyful story of family love and unity conquering the hardships of life, is a heavy-themed book with darker passages in Penitence and Absolution. Evil is real. I wanted to bring that to a very vivid exposure in the remaining books where Zoe struggles to keep her soul.

Is it important that you are in an ambience that you like when you write? If yes, why?

It makes writing easier.

Do you listen to music when you write? Do you have a specific song in mind?

See the Heavenly soundtrack. Yes, each novel has its own soundtrack my daughters and I painstakingly choose for the duration of the write - which is about 3 months.

See the Heavenly Playlist!
What are you working on now?

Writing a screenplay and working on another YA novel.

What tips can you give to aspiring writers (like me)?

Read across the genres, then find the genre that fits you and write. Find a supportive, non-biased critique group to give you honest opinions about your work. Write for the love of writing and not for gain and you'll always have satisfaction.

What would you like to say to the people who have read Heavenly or have included your novel in their wishlists and/or to-be-read piles?

Thank you. Please share the story with your friends. And find me on Facebook! :)

Thank you for dropping by Jennifer and thank you for sharing with us about your family and your novel!

you're welcome :)

I met someone who changed everything. Matthias. My autistic sister's guardian angel. Honest. Inspiring. Funny. Hot. And immortal. That was the problem. What could I do? I did what any other girl would do-I fell in love with him. Zoe's sister darts in front of cars. Her brother's a pothead. Her parents are so overwhelmed; they don't see Zoe lost in her broken life. Zoe escapes the only way she knows how: partying. Matthias, a guardian sent from Heaven, watches over Zoe's autistic sister. After Zoe is convinced he's legit, angel and lost girl come together in a love that changes destiny. But Heaven on Earth can't last forever.

And if you're interested, you can read an excerpt of Heavenly and an excerpt of Penitence.

Watch this trailer for Penitence (from

Right now, Jennifer is holding her Penitence Kick Off Contest at her blog.

Four lucky winners will receive a copy of Heavenly and Penitence!


  1. Wonderful interview! I'll add this to my list, they sound amazing! =D

  2. Hi!! Great interview !! :), By the way I just found your blog and now I'm following :) looking forward to stopping by often.

  3. Great interview!! I've been hearing a lot about this author!!

  4. Great interview!! Thanks for sharing that with us!
    I found you on the book blogger hop! Here's ME.

  5. Thanks for posting the interview!! I hope the books arrive safe and sound.