Writers on Wednesday: Jane Routley

Welcome to Writers on Wednesday. This week I am interviewing another great Australian author, Jane Routley ...

Tell me a bit about yourself … 

My main ambition at the moment is to see a live volcano. I write Historical Fantasy with a chick lit twist. (Girls just want to have fun and agency as well.) I also do customer service for the railways.  I enjoy working with the public.  They are so quirky.  I’ve started writing about my experiences in my Blog. In my spare time I love to garden, read and bushwalk. Apart from ten years living in Copenhagen and Frankfurt, I’ve lived in Melbourne all my life.

 Tell us about your most recently published book?

My fourth fantasy novel the Three Sisters is coming out from Clandestine Press in December. Two sisters, a powerful warrior and a mage who refuses to grow up, seek to rescue their kidnapped sister from a ruthless colonizing power but the forces arrayed against them are darker than they think. My books were originally published by Harper Collins but are now being republished in ebook from Clandestine Press and in hard copy by Ticonderoga Press.

Tell us about the first time you were published? 

I plied a New York agent with chocolate ice-cream and free accommodation when I was living in Frankfurt and he agree to read my novel, Mage Heart.  In a couple of months he had sold it to Harper Collins books.

As writer, what has been your proudest achievement so far?

Winning two Aurealis awards for Best Fantasy novel of the Year in 1998 and 1999

What books or writing projects are you currently working on, if anything?

I’m just finishing up my fantasy novel Shadow in the Empire of Light. An orphan without magical gift in a family full of mages finds herself sorting out all sorts of problems when the family visit the estate she lives on. Its being considered by a number of publishers.

Which do you prefer? eBooks or Paper Books? Why? 

I prefer to read paper books, basically because I’m a Luddite and anything to do with computers makes me grouchy and head achy.  Although I have to say I love Blogging.

Indie Publishing, or Traditional Publishing?

Despite my previous remarks, I’m so very grateful to the internet for the ease with which you can talk to readers and other writers and get your books out there.  Thank you Internet! I’ve tried traditional publishing.  It can be very heart-breaking and you have no control at all unless you’re a bestseller.

Aside from your own books, of course, what is one book that you feel everybody should read? 

That’s such a hard question.  I guess Tolkien is a must for fantasy readers but I’m a big Jane Austen fan.  She is such a good describer of character and has such elegant prose.

Finally … is there anything you would like to say to your readers in Adelaide, Australia? 

What a beautiful city you have.  All those wonderful parks and the Adelaide Hills.  I stayed in South Terrace this year and was impressed by how many good restaurants were within walking distance and how suitable the centre was for biking.  Oh and the sustainable housing.


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