1. What inspires or motivates you to write your novels?
I love writing stories and feel very lucky that it’s my job. But first and foremost, I’m a mama of two. They are 100% my motivation. There was a time where I worked at 40+ hour work week from home, while caring for my children as a stay-at-home mom, then squeezing in time to write. This mama couldn’t do it all and we finagled a way for me to focus on my real babes and book babies for a while, losing the stressful day job. On the days where my muse takes the day off, I try to remind myself that I’m fortunate to be doing what I’m doing. It’s why I’m so grateful to the readers who buy and share my books, so that I can continue to stay home with my little monsters.
2. How did you go about getting the research for your novel?
For Becoming Bonnie (the story of Bonnie before Clyde) and Side by Side (Bonnie and Clyde’s crime spree story), which both feature Bonnie and Clyde, I would’ve loved to travel to their haunts, but it wasn’t in the cards. I’m very thankful to historians. I poured over their articles, books, etc. I also referenced photographs, diaries, poems, memoirs, and newspapers quite a bit. Plus, there are a few Bonnie and Clyde enthusiasts who have blogs full of information. I had a wealth of knowledge to learn from about the infamous duo!
3. What are your goals for your readers to take away after reading your novels?
When writing Becoming Bonnie
and Side by Side
, I sought out to answer the question of who they were besides outlaws. What made them tick. What made them enter into a life of crime. I was surprised — often — by the information I found on them, such as Clyde having a bit of a moral code, along with the fact that Bonnie was in a coma after a car crash. There was a lot the 1967 film left out. I hope readers walk away feeling like they have a greater insight into criminal duo.
4. What is a typical day in the life of Jenni L. Walsh?
My day feels very scheduled, haha. I’m up before five to get a few hours of writing in before my two-year-old is up. He’s normally up first, with my four-year-old soon after. I try to set my computer and phone aside in the morning hours to focus on the kiddos, but sometimes I sneak a peek (sorry, kids). My two-year-old still naps (hooray!) so after lunch I’ve got a small window where I try to answer emails, research, get odds and ends done. My four-year-old is with me so I don’t usually have the… quiet… to get actual words down on the page. Once nap time is over, it’s back to the kids/housework/dinner prep until my hubby gets home from work. I hand the kiddos over and try to get in a quick work out or an hour of writing. Then dinner. Kids go down. And, honest to God, I’m in bed by 8 with a book and a glass of wine.
5. How would you like the readers to connect with you?
Yes, let’s connect! I love hearing from readers. I’m on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter, all under the name “jennilwalsh”! I also have a newsletter. If ya sign up now, you’ll receive the first three chapters of Side by Side as a sneak preview. The book’s out in June 5 🙂