An Interview with Jean Hart Stewart
ARe Cafe Interview
Jean Hart Stewart was born in Ohio and lived there long enough to learn natives say Ohiah. Still pronounce it that way and get raised eyebrows. Short stint in Schenectady, New York, where the snow and cold is atrocious and moved with delight to southern California when my husband’s job took him here. Was a real estate broker for a long while, then one day simply told my manager I was quitting to go home and write. Best decision I ever made, outside of marrying my husband. He died three years ago, and I still miss him, although we talk a lot together. No, I’m not crazy, we really do.
Julie: Welcome, Jean. Please tell us a little about yourself and how long you’ve been writing. Have you always gravitated toward being an author?
Jean: I’ve been writing about ten years, have been published for seven of those years, and have just turned in the manuscript for my thirty-fourth book. I studied journalism in college but never got a chance to really write for a long while. I was a real estate broker, wife and mom and one day I realized if I didn’t do something I’d never would. I simply walked into my manager’s office and told him I was quitting to go home and write. He wasn’t happy but I stuck to it. It took me about three years of rejections and learning and then I found Ellora’s Cave as my chief publisher. I’ve published at least four books a year since then. Talk about your dream coming true!
Julie: If you could trade places with a character in your release Daunting Pursuit, who would it be and why?
Jean: Wow, that’s a tough one. Daunting has two brothers as two heroes, Ben and Garth, and both their loves have a lot of twists and turns. Love all four of the main characters. I’ll pick Jane, Ben’s love, who afraid to acknowledge her feelings while a villain is stalking her, for the female pick. I’d chose Garth as the male. He’s so certain he’ll not fall in love for a long while, and it’s fun to watch Lynette change his mind
Julie: September is series month for us here at ARe and Daunting Pursuits is part of a series, Passionate Pursuits. Tell us a bit about the series.
Jean: I love to trace a family through the years. Passionate Pursuits starts in 1898 with Lars and Sophia as he rescues her from a slave auction in Constantinople. After that everything gets really complicated. Dauntless Pursuit has the family time line as a frontispiece. I think that will help a lot keeping straight whose child marries who, and their offspring. My other two series of eight books are also pubbed by Ellora’s Cave. The first one was about druids and the second about mages. Passionate Pursuits is my first venture into erotica, and I’ve thoroughly enjoyed learning to write a little hotter. All my elves are gorgeous, with long hair they can part at will to disclose their pointed ears. And they’re all sexy as hell. Love ’em.
Julie: When you’re not writing, what do you like to do to just kick back and have fun?
Jean: Read, go out to dinner with friends, read some more. My children and family are wonderful, also my friends. All have proved themselves over and over since my husband died three years ago, and I dearly love them all. I recently downsized to a house I’m delighted with and am having fun decorating it. I’m a very lucky woman.
Julie: Dealing with writing deadlines can be a challenge. What do you do to cope with the stress?
Jean: I kick everybody out of the house when I’m really pressed to get critical editing done. Can’t stand anybody around just then.
Julie: Is there something special you do to celebrate when one of your books is released?
Jean: No, but there’s nothing like that inner glow!
Julie: What’s can our readers expect next for you?
Jean: Unexpected Christmas, an erotic novella, will come out the first of October. Just finished edits for that. Of course I’ll write the last three books in the elves’ series. They will highlight the three children of Vale; Rurik, Jakop, and Frida. They’re the grandchildren of Lars, who started off the series. It’s wonderful fun to follow a family through the years, and I love my sexy elves.