J.M. ( Jenny )Green is the fabulous author of the Stella Hardy trilogy. Good Money, Too Easy and the final in the series ( and my favourite of the set) Shoot Through.
I rated all 3 books 5 stars – I loved Stella Hardy – her self depreciating, sometimes black humour, her maturity, her socio – political awareness, her ability to see things in shades of grey…her complicated life…there is so much to love about this character, so it is understandable that when I finished reading Shoot Through, I wanted to know what next to expect from J.M. Green – so I asked her 🙂
After Stella Hardy – what happens now?
“With the publication of SHOOT THROUGH, Stella Hardy has had her third and final outing. The ‘social worker-detective’ idea has generated some unusual story lines, and placed her in some dangerous, not to mention absurd, situations. Hardboiled crime as dark whimsy rather than gritty reality. It’s been a lot of fun. I’ve enjoyed testing the limits of credulity. And I confess in this series I have been knowingly but gently subversive to the crime genre, but please believe me when I say it has been reverential. I hope to be forgiven.
My next project is a shift away from crime. There’s a new novel in the works. It’s in the early stages and might not amount to anything so I won’t say much more.
As well as juggling that work, I’m studying screenwriting, which is a fantastic stretch for me creatively. Film and TV writing, as taught in the course, is highly structured.
Until now, novel writing for me has been an intuitive process. I know where the narrative is going, but I allow for surprises in the writing process – a kind of simultaneous write and plot method, seeing where the narrative drive goes. I sometimes need to backtrack but that’s okay, there’s such a lot of rewriting involved anyway. Also, with fiction the interior voices of characters makes the work is less reliant on conflict to drive the narrative.
In screenwriting plot character, theme are all worked out before a single creative word is written. These facets are gone over and over, so that when writing the actual script begins, all the creative energy goes into the language and the smaller details. Using a theme as a guide, every scene is conceived and drawn as integral in the overall story. Anything that doesn’t support the narrative is out. What remains is plotted in terms of conflict, obstacles and argument. If there’s conflict there’s no drama. It’s a sort of mantra.
This thorough and planned approach to storytelling has been a revelation and something I will use regardless of whether I continue writing fiction or try my hand at the screen.”
Thanks Jenny – looking forward to reading script or novel or both soon – no pressure here 🙂