Interview with Jena Baxter, author of Reflections

Born in Ojai, and raised in the San Fernando Valley, California, Jena always loved to read, and dreamed of writing a novel. Having the ability, but lacking the confidence to do so, she enrolled in the UCLA Writer's Extension, and soon her first novel was in process.

Jena writes YA, historical fantasy, and paranormal romance. She is also a screenwriter, and reads for a screenwriting contest annually. She spends her free time with her husband, amazon parrot, and toy maltese. You can visit her website at

Connect with Jena:

Author Website

About The Book

Title: Reflections
Author: Jena Baxter
Publisher: Independent Self Publishing / Jenabaxterbooks
Publication Date: October 31, 2013
Pages: 320
ISBN: 978-0991167715
Genre: YA / Historical Fantasy

When Juliette has a domestic servant beaten for pursuing a young man above her station, she finds herself cursed by a witch to live in a world behind her own mirror. She is unable to leave except on the first night of a full moon.

Juliette is forced to seek what food and shelter the new world provides with the help of a unicorn, a man who is half bear, and a centaur. Together they struggle to survive against lions, wolves, and the challenges of watching their friends live and die through the back of the mirror, as their own world, family and friends moves on without them.

Reflections begins in Regency era London, and ends in Clover Springs, California, an all but abandoned Gold Rush town.

A tale of love, friendship, and facing unavoidable challenges.

For More Information:

Q: Welcome to The Writer's Life! Now that your book has been published, we’d love to find out more about the process. Can we begin by having you take us at the beginning? Where did you come up with the idea to write your book?

I wanted to write a novel about Hans Christian Andersen’s short story, The Little Matchgirl, so I researched the Victorian Era to get a better grip on society at that time. I read that when someone died, the family stopped the clocks, opened the windows and covered the mirrors. This kept the recently departed from becoming confused and then trapped in a mirror. My imagination went wild.

Q: How hard was it to write a book like this and do you have any tips that you could pass on which would make the journey easier for other writers?

My first draft was Nanowrimo style, which is writing a novel in a month. I’m part of an online writers group, and I had an incredible amount of help with critique’s from London, Kent, New Zealand and Indonesia, as well as the United States.

My advice for other writers is to be prepared for changes and for critiquer’s to call you out on historical authenticity. Even speech patterns and specific words change over time. While it’s fiction, the timeline is important as well.

Q: Who is your publisher and how did you find them or did you self-publish?

I went to a writer’s conference when Reflections was in its final stages and came home hyped about self-publishing. It wasn’t my initial plan, but I wanted to try it. I have another story I’ll be querying soon and hope to compare the two experiences.

Q: Is there anything that surprised you about getting your first book published?

I was less prepared than I thought. The editing process, the cover and marketing, all take time and effort. My husband worked on the website, formatting and cover. I’m doing my best to deal with the marketing.

Q: What other books (if any) are you working on and when will they be published?

I actually have a number of stories in process right now.

In February I will release a historical paranormal romance, The Carriage. It’s about a teenage girl whose sister gets tired of her harassment and sends her randomly through time. She winds up in the Victorian Era, where her modern attitudes clash with the culture, and she meets a man recently deceased and brought back to life as a supernatural creature.

Veiled Memories is about a Warrior Angel sent out on a Guardian assignment to restore a broken marriage. He falls in love with his charge, realizes something terrible is ahead, and that Lily and her husband must be together to meet it.

I also have a fantasy called One with the Dragon, and another called The Covens of Misty Haven. Both are in the first draft stage. I also still plan on writing that Little Matchgirl novel.

Q: What’s your favorite place to hang out online? It’s a website where writers connect with other writers.

Q: Finally, what message (if any) are you trying to get across with your book?

I think every good story has a theme, even if it’s unintentional. Reflections simply states that there are consequences for every action. Sometimes there’s forgiveness, but you can’t take anything back once it’s done.

Q: Thank you again for this interview! Do you have any final words?

Thanks for the interview. I’m really excited to have my first story out there.

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