Interview with Jo Watson, author of Finding You
04 May 2017
What can you tell us about your new release, Finding You?
Well, Finding You is the 3rd book in this series, and it’s definitely the most heartfelt and emotional I would say. It centers around Jane who’s adopted. Because of this, she’s always felt a bit different and has never really been sure about her place in the world. As her 25th birthday looms she has a bit of a quarter life crisis meltdown and decides to go to Greece to find her biological father. It’s a very un-Jane-like thing to do, but she does it anyway. And all she knows is that his name is Dimitri and that 25 years ago he was a tour guide in Greece- she isn’t even sure what island he’s from. So she takes a crazy chance, packs a bag and books a one-way ticket to Santorini. I’m not going to spoil the story, but let’s just say she meets a hot Dimitri of her own, and the two embark on a wild adventure together. She also lands up finding much, much more than what she bargained for!
What’s the last book you read?
I read Dr. Seuss “One Fish, Two Fish, Red Fish, Blue Fish” to my son last night. I never get bored of reading Dr. Seuss books. He’s definitely one of my favorite writers and certainly one of the most creative.
Who is your favorite couple from literature?
I’ve been asked this question so many times and I always find it very hard to answer because I don’t actually read much romance. I’m more a non-fiction, thriller type gal! Bizarrely enough, believe it or not, I’m not a romantic person. At all. My husband and I both forgot our wedding anniversary last year, and will probably forget it this year too and for the rest of our lives together. I’m not sure how it is that I actually manage to write romance, I ask myself this question all the time. (Perhaps I have a suppressed romantic inside dying to come out- I don’t know.) I know I haven’t answered the question but can I go with not answering this question and promising to read more so that next time someone asks, I’ll have a real answer for them?
What’s a typical day like for you?
My life has been rather disruptive of late. My family has been living between South Africa and Qatar for the last year so anything that resembles a daily routine has been tossed out the window. I’ve hardly been able to write lately it’s been so frantic. But usually I do the whole ‘pack a healthy lunch and drop the child off at school’ thing and then ideally come home and write. I built myself an office in the garden so I’m not stuck in the house all day long. Then at some stage I fetch said child, feed it again, and then work some more while the nanny tries to keep him from barging into my office every five minutes to show me the weapon he just made from sticks and mud.
When you were a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?
I’ve always wanted to be in the theater- since I can remember. I used to put on plays for friends and family as well as write them. I did go on to study theater, and worked in it for a while- writing, directing and producing my own shows. Unfortunately, where I’m from (South Africa) it’s very difficult to make any kind of a real living doing that. So I decided I didn’t want to be poor and went into TV instead, which somehow eventually lead me to writing books. But the common denominator is storytelling. You could say that I’ve always wanted to be, and have always been a storyteller. My medium has just changed over the years.
If you could invent anything, what would it be?
I would clone and duplicate myself. That way I could be all things at once, well, I could be good at all of them. Writer, mother, wife, friend… I find it hard to juggle things like most people do. I would love a few replicas of myself who could help me out. (One that cooks and cleans would be super great too!) I’d also invent a machine that reads your mind and writes what you’re thinking. I seem to do my best writing in my head while I’m driving or doing something else and never remember it! I tried recording myself talking, but that didn’t really work, the sound of my voice was far too irritating to listen to.
What scene in Finding You was your favorite to write?
To be honest, Finding You was a very hard book to write. I’m also adopted and even though that was 36 years ago, I still found it very emotional and difficult to write at times. In fact, there were some moments I absolutely “hated” writing, and it took a huge amount of energy just to get through. I was very surprised by how hard this book was to write, I went in thinking I was going to write a fun, cute, romcom, but what came out was a bit different- it’s far more complex and raw and real than the previous two books. I think writing the last line was my favorite thing to write- honestly, this book took it out of me a bit! It was cathartic, but hard.
Do you have a motto, quote or philosophy you live by?
I couldn’t really think of any specific one, so I asked my husband what he thought and he replied, “Where’s my phone?” Apparently those are the words I utter the most and apparently my life seems to revolve around finding it, because inevitably I’ve lost it. Other than that, I don’t really prescribe to living by mottos and such. I just live. Probably badly half the time, but here I am!
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