Name: Janice Petersen (writing under the pen name Jayne Wolff).
Current town/city of residence: I live in the town of Franksville on a small hobby farm on the outskirts of town.
Connection to Racine County: I grew up not far from where I live now and have lived here all of my life. I graduated from Racine Lutheran High School in 1976, and was involved with Racine Dance Theatre for about eight years. I lived and worked in the city of Racine for most of my life, and when I remarried, we bought this beautiful house and live in country solace.
Occupation: I am retired. Not because of age, but of disability. I had to have three back surgeries in the course of four years, so the outcome was such that I am no longer able to work a full-time job.
Title of book and publisher: The book I wrote is the first in a series. The name of the series is “Fiona’s World.” The name of this first installment is “At the Edge of the Garden.” The publisher is Dorrance Publishing.
Synopsis of book (plot): My book takes place in 1914 Ireland. It is about a little girl who happens to be an only child. She, her parents, their housekeeper and a gardener all live in a grand house with a magnificent, maze-like garden, where Fiona grew up and loves to play. It is in this garden that she meets a beautiful faery named Una. They bond instantly because Fiona has never seen a faery before. And, she finds out that they chose her to tell their histories, traditions and ways. And from Fiona, they learn about the human condition.
Is this your first book? This is my first book. I am hoping to have a series of three books.
Why did you write the book: I wrote this book for a lot of reasons. As I’ve said before, we live in a beautiful country solitude that is hard to find these days. I am an avid gardener and a lover of tiny things...tiny villages, lilliputian scale items I can create with. Faery gardening wasn’t always as popular as it is now. I got my first “faery house” from a catalog having no idea what to do with it. It came with three faery figures and had a staircase outside and a working door. Well, eventually, the house and the figures got worked into my rock garden and now takes up the whole north side of my house. And that started about 10 years ago. When I garden, stories and “what ifs” and plots came into my mind. And before you know it, I had created a story. I entered a poetry contest that year, and I did not win, but it got me noticed. Dorrance approached me and asked if they could read my manuscript when it was finished. So I sent it to them and within a week they called me on the phone and asked me if I would be interested in having them publish it. So, in September 2012 I signed with them.
How long did it take you to write the book? It took me all summer to write the book. With all the natural beauty and wildlife around here, inspiration is everywhere. I was painting the wrap-around, massive porch of ours during the day and writing at night. When an idea came to me, I would wrap up my paintbrush and go jot it down. It was a hot summer.
How did you get interested in writing? I always loved to read. And that is what I credit for being able to write now. I have no formal training except what was offered in high school. I would write short stories here and there, but I never thought I’d be doing this. We joke about my talent coming out so late in life, but I think every day we are discovering something new about what we are capable of doing. And we have the freedom to control our destiny to a point.
Where is the book available for purchase? “Fiona’s World” should be available on Amazon, eBay and through the Dorrance bookstore via email at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 800-788-7654.
If you are a Racine County author and would like to be featured in Our Authors, please send request to Loreen Mohr via email at Loreen.Mohr@Lee.net; send letter to Loreen Mohr, The Journal Times, 212 Fourth St., Racine, WI 53403; or via fax at 262-631-1780.