AWW Feature: Q&A with Jaye Ford, author of Scared Yet?

I am thrilled to welcome Jaye Ford to Book’d Out today.

Jaye Ford is a former print, radio and television journalist and public relations consultant, who decided at 40 that her dream to become an author would never be realised unless she sat down and started writing. Author of Beyond Fear (2011) and Scared Yet? (2012), Jaye now writes full-time from the home she shares with her husband and two children at Lake Macquarie in the NSW Hunter Valley.

Jaye’s first book, Beyond Fear, was the highest selling debut crime novel in Australia in 2011. A terrifying thriller, Beyond Fear tells the story of Jodie Cramer who at 17 survived survived a terrifying assault at the hands of three strangers. Her schoolmate Angie was not so lucky…Now thirty-five, Jodie is a teacher and mother of two – and her past is a horror she’s buried deep. When she sets out for a weekend in the country with three friends, all she has in mind is a few laughs and a break from routine.However, unknown to the four women, their secluded cabin was once the focus of a police investigation and, like Jodie, it nurtures a dark secret. As her friends relax, the isolation reawakens Jodie’s terrifying memories. When she finds evidence of trespassers, she is convinced they are being watched. But no one will believe her and as her past threatens to overwhelm her, she begins to doubt herself – and her sanity.Until two men knock at their door …

Scared Yet? has been released this month by Random House Australia to a stellar reception from eager fans. It is a psychological thriller that begins with Livia Prescott fights off a terrifying assault in a deserted car park, the media hail her bravery. And after a difficult year – watching her father fade away, her business struggle and her marriage fall apart – it feels good to strike back for once. But as the police widen their search for her attacker, menacing notes start arriving. And brave is not what she feels any longer . . .Someone has decided to rip her life apart, then kick her when she’s down. But is it a stranger or someone much closer to home? In fact, is there anyone she can now trust? When her family and friends are drawn into the stalker’s focus – with horrifying consequences – the choice becomes simple. Fight back, or lose the people she loves the most . . .  I posted my review of Scared Yet? yesterday with a five star rating and a recommendation you pick up this fabulous page turner.

Jaye graciously agreed to participate in my Australian Women Writers feature by answering a few questions here at Book’d Out and I am excited that I will be able to meet her in person in April when she will be speaking at my local library.

Q&A with Jaye Ford

Jaye: Thank you for having me at Book’d Out

Q. What was the inspiration for Scared Yet?

Jaye: A couple of years ago I heard a forensic psychologist talking about her research into stalking. The statistics and stories were both horrifying and fascinating and of the 50 or so people in the room, most had a story to tell. I came away from the meeting thinking, ‘There’s a story in this!’

 Q. Both Beyond Fear and Scared Yet? are psychological thrillers, what is it about the genre that appeals to you? Have you considered writing in another genre?

Jaye: I’ve always loved a story that sucks me right in, that’s intense and visceral and the psychological thriller is such a great vehicle for that.  I like that I can go anywhere with the story, that it can take twists and turns, be both physical and psychological, that I can create ordinary characters, give them complex interiors, thrust them into extraordinary experiences and make them find out what they’re made of.

My first attempts at getting published were actually in the romance genre but the feedback I got was that my characters weren’t romantic enough and they tended to get caught up in dramatic, adrenaline-charged events. After two manuscripts that didn’t sell, I figured maybe romance wasn’t my thing. When I started writing Beyond Fear, I realised I was at completely home with the genre – and now I’ve got too many story ideas to think about another genre.

 Q: I know I had to double check the doors and windows were locked while reading Scared Yet? What scares you the most?

Jaye: Intruders, stalkers, things that go bump in the night – the kind of stuff I write about. I’d hate to be in one of my books! On an emotional level, I fear losing the people I love. I think a lot of people do, so I write about that as well.

 Q: Livia Prescott, the protagonist of Scared Yet?, is an ordinary woman facing an extraordinary circumstance, what trait do you think helps her best to survive her ordeal?

Jaye: Her resilience. I had the words ‘Never give up, never back down’ written on the white board in my office as I wrote Scared Yet? to remind me where Liv was coming from. She’s got a lot going wrong in her life and plenty of reason to cave but she keeps holding on.

 Q: How do you hope readers feel when they finish Scared Yet?

Jaye: Satisfied, entertained, like they’ve enjoyed the rush of fear without the reality and perhaps a little introspective about what they have deep inside that would make them want to hold on like Liv.

 Q: What can we look forward to next from you?

Jaye: I’ve just started working on a new thriller called Blood Secret, which will be out next year.

 Q: Name your three favourite novels by Australian Women writers?

Jaye: I’d hate to write a definitive list because there are so many good ones out there. The three crime novels by Australian women that I’m loving at the moment are:

The Mistake by Wendy James

The Old School by P M Newton

A Beautiful Place to Die by Malla Nunn

Q: What is your preference?

  • Coffee/Tea or other? Coffee during the day, tea at night
  • Beach/Pool or River? Beach on a beachy day, pool for convenience
  • Slacks/Jeans or Leggings? Jeans
  • Butterfly/Tiger or Giraffe? Giraffe – strange yet elegant
  • Swing/Slide or Roundabout? Each has their own particular thrill!

Thank you, Jaye!

You can find Jaye

Website I Facebook

Scared Yet? is available to purchase

Australia: @Random House Australia I @ BoomerangBooks I @Booktopia I @Readings

International: @Amazon {Kindle} I @BookDepository (e-format)

Random House Australia is currently running an competition to win 1 of 20 Jaye Ford book packs

5 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Patty
    Mar 08, 2012 @ 06:21:18

    Wow…I am scared just hearing about it…but it looks really good!!!



  2. Nikki-ann
    Mar 08, 2012 @ 06:38:02

    Brilliant Q&A! It sounds like I’d definitely enjoy Jaye’s books. I’ll have to check if they’re available over here.



  3. 1girl2manybooks
    Mar 08, 2012 @ 09:25:48

    Great Q&A Shelleyrae… Am definitely going to be tracking down both of Jaye’s books. AWW2012 has done sooo much for my (already crazy) TBR pile, lol



  4. Trackback: Bookish News and Publishing Tidbits 8 March 2012 | Read in a Single Sitting - Book reviews and new books
  5. The Australian Bookshelf
    Mar 08, 2012 @ 18:59:40

    I love how Jaye come up with the story… i imagine there are plenty of stories in forensics that would fit the ‘psych thriller’ genre perfectly! Great Q&A Shelleyrae



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