Archive for the ‘Nina Jones and the Temple of Gloom’ Category




some links

Filed under: interviews, Nina Jones and the Temple of Gloom, reviews, the web

I interrupt this Robert Downey Jr fest to post a few links, all about me, I’m afraid:

There’s an interview with me up today on the Minxes of Romance, where you can sign up for my newsletter to enter my contest for ARCs of GETTING AWAY WITH IT. If you haven’t already.

QVC presenter and lovely charming lady Debbie Flint has done a blog about my Cornerstones writing commercial women’s fiction course. There’s a video of my post-its, too.

There’s also a good roundup of the content of the course on Lisa Bodenham-Mason’s blog.

I did a guest blog about why CARS is the perfect movie for learning character arc and structure, on The Writing Playground.

There’s a fab review of NINA JONES AND THE TEMPLE OF GLOOM on Singletitles.

And as always, don’t forget to check out my fabulous fellow bloggers on The Heroine Addicts.

Me…I’m trying to get this scene right! Agggh!!





book signing and magic

Filed under: Nina Jones and the Temple of Gloom, writing

I’ve got a book signing today, whoo-hoo! Book signings are one of the things I dreamed about before I was published. Sitting there in a bookshop…among lots and lots of books…one of them MINE, ALL MINE!

Of course in my dreams, I had a queue of bookbuyers out the door, and in reality it isn’t quite like that. Okay, not like that at all. But my friend Biddy is coming to make sure I’m not all alone, and this time I chose a book shop with a coffee shop in it, so I will be well-supplied with lattes. And I will definitely be sitting next to lots of my book, which is mine, called Nina Jones and the Temple of Gloom. I wrote it, and now I get to sign it. Which is so incredibly cool.

It’s from 12.30 to 2.30 pm in the Waterstones in the Oracle shopping centre, Reading, if you are so inclined.

I’m also in a stupendously good mood because yesterday was a great writing day. I wrote nearly 3000 words—usually I try to stop at 2000 a day to spare my hands, and lately it’s been a relief to stop, but I couldn’t stop yesterday until I’d finished the scene, and today my head is zinging with ideas for the next scene.

And I have a great hero. He is beautiful and sexy and bitter and wounded and pretty much a dickhead. God, I love dickhead heroes. (And no, he doesn’t look like John Cusack—he looks like someone else and I’ll post a picture of him soon.)

I’m 25,000 words into this story and it’s come to life for the first time. Which is a pretty good sign to me that I’ll have to cut a lot of the beginning, but that’s fine. It’s come to life, and that’s the magical part. It will all work out.





hanging out with dead people

Filed under: Nina Jones and the Temple of Gloom

So did I mention my friend Ruth and I did a photoshoot in a graveyard to promote Nina Jones and the Temple of Gloom?

I’ve posted some of the pictures up on the main website already, and I’ve been using them when touring blogs etc, but I thought I’d post a few here, too.

Julie Cohen in a cemetery

This is my new photo on my front page of my website. I’m holding Ruth’s umbrella. I really want a pink umbrella.

Julie and an angel

It was snowing and I thought she was getting wet. 🙂

Serious Author

I think this is lovely, gloomy and atmospheric.





Nina Jones, shoes and a giveaway

Filed under: contests, Nina Jones and the Temple of Gloom

Hooray hooray! Nina Jones and the Temple of Gloom is officially out, and to celebrate I will be giving away a signed copy to a lucky person who sends me an email using the “contact” button on my website.

But first, I need to continue talking about shoes.

You see, the heroine of my novel, Nina Jones, is a woman who knows all about the power of a good pair of shoes. She has lots and lots of shoes, some of them very expensive and some of them very uncomfortable, and here is an excerpt from the book telling you why:

I’m a great believer in the power of high heeled shoes. They’re beautiful, they’re stylish, they can rescue a so-so outfit, and they make you appear to have legs up to your armpits, especially if you have passably long legs anyway. Also—and this may be obvious but it’s really vital—the taller you are, the more people will assume that you know what you’re doing. I read an article about it one time. I’m five foot ten in bare feet, so high heels make me taller than most women and quite a few men. Therefore I appear both more confident and more competent, merely by putting on my shoes.

Most importantly, they’re uncomfortable. When you wear heels for every minute of your professional and social life you’re instantly proclaiming yourself as a person who is able to withstand blisters, pinching, and calf ache, because looking good is more important than pain. Besides, blisters can provide a handy distraction from an aching heart.

I rub the toes of my left foot against the aching arch of my right, and touch the spot on my cheek where Edmund kissed me. Who am I kidding? Blisters are no distraction from an aching heart at all.

I made Nina love shoes because—well, because she’s a chick lit heroine, der! And chick lit heroines always love shoes. Even I love shoes, and I am NOT a chick lit heroine (too old, too cranky, too married). But as I wrote the story, shoes began to form a very important part of the plot and of Nina’s character arc.

She chooses her shoes specifically to impress Edmund, her boss, who is happily married and with whom she is unrequitedly in love. She meets sexy, romantic Spaniard Juan, who will change her life, while she’s stuck in a chair, caught by the buckle of her shoe. When she decides to change her life completely, she donates her shoes to charity.

And then when her life has changed completely, but not the way she thought it was going to, an encounter with some shoes makes her confront her long-buried feelings about her life. A pair of shoes (and some fake tan) is the key to her deceiving her entire family, and leads to her confrontation with her mysterious and angry upstairs neighbour. A pair of cheap secondhand shoes teaches her that feeling comfortable and rather ordinary isn’t quite such a bad thing after all. And one of the most emotionally significant scenes in the story takes place while she’s barefoot.

In short, Nina’s relationship with her shoes is as complicated and as difficult as every relationship. I loved writing that part of the novel.

Anyway, if you’d like to read the book and want a chance at a signed copy, please send me an email using the “contact” button, or alternatively leave a comment on this post with your email address in it, and I’ll choose an entry at random to win.* You don’t even have to say anything, but it’s always nice to hear from you, so I hope you will.

*Warning: you’ll be entered on my newsletter mailing list if you enter. This is pretty harmless and very occasional, and you can unsubscribe at any time.





playing in a cemetery at the Playground

Filed under: Nina Jones and the Temple of Gloom

Highgate Cemetery

Highgate Cemetery

Today I’m blogging about Highgate Cemetery at The Writing Playground, and giving away a copy of Nina Jones and the Temple of Gloom.

See you there!





publication week

Filed under: Nina Jones and the Temple of Gloom

Nina Jones and the Temple of Gloom

Ohhh I do so love the exciting day when it’s BOOK RELEASE WEEK, especially when it coincides with me randomly clicking on Amazon and seeing that the book’s on their romance bestseller list.

It’s the first of March and Nina Jones and the Temple of Gloom is out there, on the shelves, ready to be picked up and read!


The official release date is Thursday the 4th, and I’ll be celebrating by having a giveaway here on this blog. Meanwhile, I’m blogging about it all over the place in the next couple of weeks. And I’ll talk about the book a little bit here, too.





first review for Nina Jones

Filed under: Nina Jones and the Temple of Gloom, reviews

I’ve just had a wonderful weekend with dear friends, the highlight of which was probably having a snowball fight in an ancient henge.

And got back home to find the first review for Nina Jones and the Temple of Gloom, on It’s one of those lovely, thoughtful, personal reviews that you get sometimes when the reader has really related to your book and understood what it’s about. Here’s a bit of it:

It’s tricksy in many ways, this book, as you think initially Nina is one of those shallow chick lit heroines who is all shoes…blah blah…shopping…blah blah…London clubbing…blah blah but then you get the feeling that actually, maybe there’s something else going on. And the further you get drawn into the story the more you find that no-one is quite who they seemed to be. Not the crazy bat freak or the struggling father or the happily married couple or Nina. And even places behave differently, so that sunny Spain turns sweaty and sour and a bat watch in Highgate cemetery at dusk sees some rather heated passion amongst the gravestones…





Nina Jones excerpt and signings

Filed under: excerpts, Nina Jones and the Temple of Gloom

I’ve been working like crazy to get ready for NINA JONES AND THE TEMPLE OF GLOOM to come out next month. I’ve ordered some gorgeous postcards to promote it, and I’ve set up a book signing on 27 March at the Waterstones in the Oracle, Reading.

I’ll also be talking about the book and signing copies, as part of the Reading Library Local Author Day on Saturday 6 March, from 11 pm.

Don’t worry, I’ll be reminding you of all these things, and if you’d like to be reminded in the comfort of your own inbox, please sign up for my newsletter by sending me an email via the “contact” button, above.

Meanwhile, I’ve added an excerpt and a really cool photo to my website, here.


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