Wednesday, 20 June 2012

Meet a Writer Wednesday Presents...

... Juanita Kees

1.    Tell me about your book FLY AWAY PETA and where you got your inspiration for it? 

I was a bit of a dreamer at school and loved to make up stories in my head which I would then pen down on any paper I could find. Peta started out as a 16-year-old runaway in the back of my arithmetic book many years ago. She dreamed of escaping the confines of strict parenting (as all teens do!) and finding the man of her dreams. She grew and developed with the story as I got older and edited the original version. I submitted it to an editor who came back with a ‘thanks but no thanks’ accompanied by some very good suggestions for improvement – which changed the story completely.
I love old towns and always wonder about the people who live there. How did they get there? Who and how many generations had lived in the run-down house at the end of the street? What is their story? My inspiration for the setting came from visiting small, rural towns in South Africa and Australia and my imagination did the rest. I started asking “What if?” and all of a sudden I had Jaime and Peta begging for their story to be told.

2.    What was the first thing you wrote?

The music and lyrics for a song called ‘The Rose’ – sadly not the Bette Midler version!

3.    Was there ever a time when you nearly gave up on becoming an author?

Never! I wasn’t prepared to let go of my dreams, no matter long it took for me to achieve them.

4.    What advice would you give to someone still trying to become an author?

Never, never give up on your dream! The only way you’ll become an author is to write. So write and learn, and keep developing your craft even when you do become a published author.

5.    Who is your favourite character/s you’ve created?

TJ Stevens in my WIP, TAMING THE TIGER. She’s fun, she’s feisty and determined.

6.    As an author, who and what do you recommend reading?

I love Nora Roberts. She is the queen of dialogue. My favourite genre is contemporary, but I do enjoy a good historical and the occasional chick-lit. I also love adventure. There are too many to name but here are a few examples of my favourites: Stephanie Laurens, Jill Mansell, Sue Moorcroft, Cathryn Hein, Karly Lane (aka Karly Blakemore-Mowle), Andy McDermott, Matthew Reilly and Cecelia Ahern.

7.    What’s your next project? What do you look forward to in the future?

My next project is TAMING THE TIGER which was a 2011 Mills & Boon New Voices entry. TJ and Scott are now nagging for their story to be told. They’ve been waiting patiently for Jaime and Peta to have their moment and are now demanding that it’s their turn :)
What I look forward to in the future is that I can sell enough books to sit at my desk and write, write, write without having to work to pay the bills. I think that’s every writer’s wish!
8.    If you could speak to one kind of animal what would it be?

A dragon! I love dragons and would love to know what makes them tick J

9.    If you were having a dinner party and could invite four guests, dead or alive, real or fictional, who would you have?

The Avengers – they can invade and save my world at any time!

10. If I came to your home and looked inside your refrigerator what would I find?

Chocolate, wine and cheese – always ready for a party!

11. What’s your favourite thing to do on a Sunday?

Relax and read in my garden

12. What was the last movie you went to see?

The Avengers

13. If McDonalds sold hotdogs, could you order a McWeiner and ask them to supersize it with a straight face?

Yes, but I’d like to see the person on the other side of the counter do the same!

14. If you could have one piece of technology from a sci-fi film or book what would it be?

My own light-sabre

15. Star Trek or Star Wars?

Star Wars, without hesitation.

16. If you could secretly observe one person for a day who would it be?

Ooooh! George Clooney…*sigh*. Although, I’d be a lot happier if he took me home with him instead :)



Blurb: Fly Away Peta

The time has come to face her worst fear and the clock is ticking…
Peta Johnson will go to extreme lengths to protect her daughter Bella. When the Bella is kidnapped, the search for her takes Peta back to the small Western Australian country town of Williams, a place she’d vowed never to return to. The town where her dreams were shattered and her nightmare began. Back to the place she’d been destined to meet two very powerful, yet very different men. One would break her heart, the other would destroy her soul. Both would change her life forever.



Juanita is a freelance writer and writes blogs, web content, advertorials, newsletters and business documents.  Having recently graduated from the Australian College QED, (New South Wales, Australia) with a diploma in Proofreading, Editing and Publishing, she proofreads and edits manuscripts, manuals, standard operating procedures and other business tools. You can find out more about Kees2Create Writing, Proofreading and Editing services at
Juanita escapes the real world by reading and writing romantic fiction. Over at Mission Romance, she conducts interviews with fellow authors and writes book reviews, as well as the odd blog about the frustrations and delights of being a writer.
When she’s not writing, editing or proofreading, Juanita is the cleaning fairy and mother to three boys (hubby included, his toys are just a little more expensive). Her not-so-miniature Daschund, Sam is her critique partner and keeps her company while writing.
Juanita loves to hear from fans and would love for you to enjoy her writing journey with her at:

Twitter: !/Kees2Create


  1. Hi Sonnet and Juanita-Are you popular this week! Great interview and excerpt. Can't wait until your book comes out!

  2. Hi Dina :)

    Thanks for stopping by and saying hi! And thanks Sonnet for having me as your guest. I hope everyone enjoys this book as much as I enjoyed writing it.

  3. Lovely interview, Juanita and Sonnet.

    I agree about Nora Roberts' dialogue. Hers is amazing. As for the Avengers, Thor can come to my dinner table any time!

    Wishing you all the very best with Fly Away Peta. Awesome blurb!

  4. Ooh, I'd never thought of a light-sabre. I think I'd have to go for a sonic screwdriver, mainly in the hope that the Doctor would come looking for it!

    Best of luck with Peta, Juanita. It looks great and you've earned this moment!

    Thanks for hosting, Sonnet!