Daily Archives: November 17, 2022

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Author Jina Bacarr–Romance Makes the World Go Around!!

November 17, 2022 by in category Writing tagged as ,

I started out working as a reporter writing articles for a travel magazine based in Beverly Hills and then as a columnist for a computer magazine where I wrote about technology ‘Sweet Savage Byte’, as well as writing for academia, radio commercials and PR copy for a local AM/FM station. I’ve also had three plays produced in Malibu and I worked for a time writing scripts for children’s and daytime TV before publishing nonfiction books about Japan, and then later fiction.

Jann: You have an amazing writing career. How did it get started?

Jina: I’ve always written, having grown up with my Irish grandma who inspired me to write – a fine woman who was never without a story on her lips or a rosary in her hands… blue or white or green beads fastened together by her nimble fingers into a holy circle. I’d sit at her feet, holding my crayons in my left hand and coloring in my ballerina book or playing with my paper dolls, all the while making up stories of my own.

My first writing job was an article about the uniqueness of European bathrooms called ‘A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Loo’. After college, I was torn between working part time as an illustrator for Frederick’s of Hollywood or working as a reporter for a travel magazine. I needed to pay the rent, so I wrote articles under different names and never looked back.

Jann: Why romance, time travel and World War 2?

Jina: Romance makes the world go round no matter what century you’re in… time travel because I spent a lot of my childhood in museums. The voices of the past speak to me through stiff ivory-colored crinolines and worn satin slippers. I’ve always wondered what it was like to walk in those slippers when they were new. World War 2 because I love the clothes, the sophistication, the Victory Red lipstick… the drama and power of the women who helped win the war. They were feminine and daring and strong… and fell in love with brave pilots. Who doesn’t love a guy in a sheepskin leather jacket and aviator sunglasses?

Jann: Historical romance readers look for accuracy from the author. What are your favorite sources for research and how much time did you spend on research. Do you research before, while you write a first draft or after?

Jina: Re: doing research, I love the joy of finding old books or films produced during the time I’m writing about; e.g., there is an enormous amount of material from the 1930s and 1940s, both first person accounts published during the war as well as films. Newsreels, but also home movies shot by participants on both sides. I have a wonderful ‘coffee table’ book that’s filled with scenes of Paris during the Occupation, as well as detailed timelines both in print and on the Internet that help me in setting up scenes so I can drop my characters into the historical moment, then turn them loose and see what they do. They always surprise me!

I research during all phases of the writing process… from creating the characters to researching the weather on a certain day to the phases of the moon (I have RAF landings in France that depend on moonlight). I never hesitate to check a date or place at any time, right through the proofreading.

Jann: Your new historical, The Orphans of Berlin, is described as Heartbreaking and based on a true story. How did you find the story this book is based on?

Jina: It’s based on the Kindertransport, the children’s transport. It’s well documented in films and books… I was fascinated by a documentary featuring an American couple who orchestrated a Kindertransport at a time when the US limited immigration, making it impossible for German Jews escaping death at the hands of the Nazis to come to America. I discovered that Jewish children from Germany and Austria and other European countries were sent to England and also to France by their desperate parents. Since I write about Occupied France, the story took off from here.

I also write about a personal journey in The Orphans of Berlin related to my American heroine (all is revealed in the acknowledgements).

Jann: What major conflicts do your leading characters in The Orphans of Berlin, Kate Alexander and the Landau sisters, have to work through?

Jina: Kay Alexander is a debutante albeit a reluctant one. It’s a life chosen for her by her society mother, but Kay is determined to be her own person in spite of her mother’s domineering ways. Kay has to work through the delicate balance of finding her independence, yet never giving up hope her mother will see her as an individual. She loves her mom and is proud of her heritage, and wants to use her fortune to help others.

Rachel is twelve when we meet her, a time in the Jewish religion when a girl becomes an adult. We follow Rachel through the trials and tribulations every girl faces growing up: her maturing body, feelings for boys, seeking independence from her parents whom she adores, and yearning to be her own person. What makes all this so difficult is that Rachel faces the trials of impending womanhood in a time when the Nazis set about destroying her world of tradition and ancient culture… and also taking on the duty to keep her younger sisters safe in a dangerous time.

Jann: I understand there is a handsome British pilot. What can you tell us about this character? 

Jina: Max Hamilton-Jones is a daring pilot from a tough, English upbringing in Blackpool in Northern England. He grew up around airplanes and joined an air circus when he was a teenager. He has a fierce sense of protecting the innocent and uses his flying skills to fight in Spain before WW2… he’s an avant-garde artist who captures human foibles with his amazing sketches featuring slices of life. He loves beautiful woman and sees into the soul of his models with his pen… he’s sexy, witty, and protective of Kay and Rachel and her two sisters. I love that.

Jann: Are you working on something now that you can share with us?

Jina: I’m writing my fourth book about the Holocaust in Occupied France… this time I’m tackling the subject of rape during the war: how many cases were never reported and the stories of these Frenchwomen lay buried in the shadows.

I want to shine a light on one such story…

Jann: You’re a multi-published author, is there a character in one of your books whose personality most matches yours? If so, which book and character and why?

 

Jina: Aye, it’s Ava O’Reilly, my Irish heroine from Queenstown in The Runaway Girl, my story about the Titanic. Ava pokes her nose where she shouldn’t, is outspoken with her opinions, and is filled with colorful, witty phrases. Of course, Ava speaks her mind; me, I write it down in stories, but there’s a lot of Ava in me.

 

 

Jann: Where can we get your books? 

 

Jina: Readers can find my books published by Boldwood Books at Amazon US, UK, CA, AU, and international Amazon sites, Barnes & Noble, Kobo, Apple, and in the UK, in brick and mortar stores, The Works and Waterstones.

Facebook https://www.facebook.com/jina.bacarr/

Twitter https://twitter.com/JinaBacarr

Blog https://jinabacarr.wordpress.com/

TikTok https://www.tiktok.com/@jinabacarrauthor

The Orphans of Berlin

US https://amzn.to/3TMKZlf

UK https://amzn.to/3Qjp5mB

Jann: What’s your all-time favorite book? 

Jina: Time and Again by Jack Finney

I love exploring the science behind traveling through time, the whys and what ifs. Mr Finney made me believe in time travel. I love his wit, his passion for the lady he loves in his time travel novel, his historical accuracy and gripping detail that put you there.

A true gentleman and a scholar for any time.

[I wrote two novels about time travel: Her Lost Love – WW2 on the home front where a lonely woman goes home on a magic Christmas train to save her fiancé who died in the war; and Love Me Forever – a female re-enactor goes back to the Civil War dressed as a soldier and meets her double, a Confederate spy.]

Jina, its been great to have a peak into your writing world. You write amazing stories. Good luck on The Orphans of Berlin. Have a wonderful holiday season.

 

Some of Jina’s Books

(Click the cover for more information. Hover over the cover for buy buttons.)

A NAUGHTY CHRISTMAS CAROL

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A NAUGHTY CHRISTMAS CAROL

A SOLDIER’S ITALIAN CHRISTMAS

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A SOLDIER’S ITALIAN CHRISTMAS

HER LOST LOVE

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HER LOST LOVE

COME FLY WITH ME

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COME FLY WITH ME

LOVE ME FOREVER

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LOVE ME FOREVER

RESISTANCE GIRL

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RESISTANCE GIRL

THE LOST GIRL IN PARIS

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THE LOST GIRL IN PARIS

THE ORPHANS OF BERLIN

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THE ORPHANS OF BERLIN

THE RUNAWAY GIRL

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THE RUNAWAY GIRL
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