Jan Jones grew up in North Finchley and will always be a London girl at heart. She worked in the computing industry before moving to Newmarket and starting a family. She writes poems, short stories for women's magazines, serials, Regency romance and contemporary romantic comedy. She is passionate about the Romantic Novelists' Association and organizes the annual RNA Conference. She won the RNA Elizabeth Gouge prize in 2002, the Joan Hessayon Award for a debut romantic novel (Stage by Stage) in 2005, and was shortlisted for the Love Story of the Year in 2010 with her Newmarket Regency Fair Deception. Jan Blogs at Jan Jones.
Why do you blog? > I blog because I like the sense of communicating with friends and readers, sharing part of my life with them.
What would be your main blogging advice to a novice blogger? > Write what YOU want to write, not what you think you ought to write or what other people tell you to write. If it doesn't come from the heart, it won't be interesting and people won't read it.
What are your favourite blogs? > Only three? Elizabeth Chadwick for fascinating historical facts, Diamond Geezer for a unique and always interesting take on London, Susan Alison because her paintings give me a smile that lasts all day.
Who are your intellectual heroes? > Shakespeare. He wrote what was wanted by the public of the time. He had an innate sense of timing. He didn't compromise on beautiful language. And he was flawed, as we all are, but didn't let it stop him.
What are you reading at the moment? > Re-reading Fire and Hemlock by Diana Wynne Jones. Fabulous book that really makes you concentrate, with a creeping sense of horror and a beautifully understated love story.
What is the best novel you've ever read? > Pride and Prejudice. No question.
What is your favourite poem? > So many to choose from! I think John Donne's 'No Man is an Island'.
What is your favourite movie? > L.A. Story, with Steve Martin.
What is your favourite song? > 'Bridge Over Troubled Water' (Simon and Garfunkel).
Who is your favourite composer? > Neil Young, the Canadian songwriter.
What do you consider to be the main threat to the future peace and security of the world? > Accountants!
What would be your most important piece of advice about life? > Be true to yourself. Be happy.
What do you consider the most important personal quality? > Compassion, closely followed by a sense of humour.
What personal fault do you most dislike? > Intolerance.
In what circumstances would you be willing to lie? > For my children.
What is your favourite proverb? > A stitch in time saves nine.
What commonly enjoyed activities do you regard as a waste of time? > Watching rubbish television.
What, if anything, do you worry about? > Everything, really, but to a lesser extent than I used to.
If you were to relive your life to this point, is there anything you'd do differently? > I'd go to university full time instead of doing my degree part-time the way I did.
What would you call your autobiography? > Nearly Here.
Who would play you in the movie about your life? > Julia Roberts.
Where would you most like to live (other than where you do)? > I'd like a tall, thin London house near King's Cross.
What would your ideal holiday be? > Greek Islands.
What do you like doing in your spare time? > Writing!
What is your most treasured possession? > My computer – it's where I keep my writing and the portal to my friends.
If you had to change your first name, what would you change it to? > I've always fancied Ellie.
What talent would you most like to have? > I'd like to be able to draw.
What would be your ideal choice of alternative profession or job? > Librarian.
If you could have one (more or less realistic) wish come true, what would you wish for? > I would quite like to be a best-seller.
How, if at all, would you change your life were you suddenly to win or inherit an enormously large sum of money? > I'd buy a London house, that's for sure!
What animal would you most like to be? > A cat.
[The normblog profile is a weekly Friday morning feature. A list of all the profiles to date, and the links to them, can be found here.]