About Author

Jane Harvey

Jane Harvey
BIOGRAPHY

“Harvey’s writing is descriptive as opposed to prescriptive, capturing people in all their simplicity and depth without being moralizing. It unravels outward appearances, suggesting that immediate perceptions may prevent, or at least delay, meaningful connection.” Independent Book Review.

Jane Harvey is a pen name. ‘Jane’ crafts fun fiction for the thinking woman, where she enjoys exploring unexpected friendships and writing happy endings. This is lucky, because in real life her (prize-winning) fiction is a little bleaker. She was born and raised on the island of Jersey, and lives with two males and a dog.

Jane Harvey's Books

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Book
The Landlord of Hummingbird House : First Impressions and Second Chances
(3) $0.99 kindle Free with KUeBook,
The Landlord of Hummingbird House : First Impressions and Second Chancesby Jane HarveyPublish: Aug 31, 2021Contemporary Romance Women's Fiction
Buttercups in the Basement: Book Two in the Hummingbird House Series
(3) $4.49 kindleeBook,
Buttercups in the Basement: Book Two in the Hummingbird House Seriesby Jane HarveyPublish: Aug 31, 2022 Series: The Hummingbird House SeriesWomen's Fiction

Jane Harvey's Series in Order

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  • The Hummingbird House Series

    1 Buttercups in the Basement: Book Two in the Hummingbird House Series - Published on Aug, 2022

Jane Harvey Interview On 06, Dec 2021

"Born and raised on the island of Jersey, Jane Harvey enjoyed anything creative, from art, books, and writing. She wrote epic sagas from a young age. In 2019, she published her first short fiction collection. Her target audience is women aged 25 and over. With her descriptive writing style, Jane has made fans with her debut novel, "The Landlord of Hummingbird House"."
Born and raised on the island of Jersey, what do you miss the most about your childhood?

This might sound odd, but something I miss about my younger years is studying. I can’t say that I loved everything about school, but I have always enjoyed learning, and I didn’t appreciate how much harder it is to study once you have additional responsibilities - and life in general - to deal with. I also know that I am a much better student in adulthood than I ever was the first time around!

As a teenager, what were you obsessed with?

I’m not sure I was obsessed with anything exactly, but I did enjoy anything creative, from art, books and writing, to finding unusual ways to dress and do my makeup. I made some very questionable outfit choices.

Do you remember the first book you ever wrote?

I wrote epic sagas from a young age, whenever there was an opportunity to write a story, but they were truly awful and I’m not sure they count as a ‘book’. Although I also studied Creative Writing as part of my first degree, and was published in periodicals and magazines around that time, I didn’t settle down to writing properly until around three and a half years ago. I made a conscious effort to be structured and organised about my writing, and this paid off, as it is now wholly engrained into my lifestyle. I am certain I will never stop. In 2019, I published my first short fiction collection. My first novel is easy enough to remember, as this was only published a few months ago!

How did you discover that you wanted to be a writer?

I have always loved words, reading, language, writing, but it was around that time a few years ago that I realised I actually needed to write, rather than simply wanted to. I was sleeping very badly – as I am prone to – and it struck me that my life had been taken over by work and chores. There was no creative outlet, and it was exacerbating my sleep and mood issues. So I started writing short stories, instead of tossing and turning in bed. And it paid off.

What are your best tips for descriptive writing?

There are some standard tips around description that are worth repeating: using all the senses is one; varying your sentence lengths and/or using them to emphasise mood and tone is also effective. You don’t want all your sentences to be similar, as rhythm is important, and shorter sentences will add tension or emphasis. I am also a big fan of a metaphor: they can be highly effective and evocative, but I do try to reign myself in from overkill in this area! Too much imagery can make writing flowery and unrealistic.

What made you decide to write under the pen name, Jane Harvey?

I have a lot of short fiction published under my birth name, Dreena Collins. These short stories and flash fiction pieces lean towards the dark and gritty, and are a little more ‘literary’ in style. I set myself a challenge to write a happier, more accessible piece and with that I realised I needed a second persona to author this, so as not to confuse my readers. Jane Harvey has her own brand.

What inspired the plot of your novel, The Landlord of Hummingbird House?

The idea for the plot grew out of a short story I had written where two characters in a story lived in the same block of flats but kept missing each other, by minutes. That story ends with them both entering a lift together, and the reader has the dramatic irony of knowing that they could help each other, and have a lot in common. In The Landlord of Hummingbird House, the characters meet all the time, but the novel has multiple points of view and we have that same insight which comes from knowing where they have misunderstood each other, or how they could help one another.

Do you ever wish you had a second chance to meet someone again for the first time? Why or why not?

No; I’m not a fan of regrets. I try to look forward rather than back, where I can.

What is the best way a fan has ever shown an appreciation for your work?

Oh, there are a few little things readers have done which have touched me. Early on, I had a stranger – another author- write a long, detailed blog post as a review of one of my story collections. That was a wonderful encouragement. I have had messages from people all around the world to tell me how my writing has moved them. Some of my readers gave contacted me to tell me how they have bought my book as presents, for others.

My favourite review ever simply said: “I really, really, really liked this book.”

Who is your target audience? What are some things you wish your readers would take away from your books?

As Jane Harvey, my target audience is women aged 25 and over, though I do know several men have read and enjoyed my book. The book is a light, women’s fiction type novel, but it is also full of modern issues and diverse characters, so my readers need to be open minded and inclusive people. I hope readers take away from the book that as human beings, we often have more in common than we realise, and that is dangerous to pigeon-hole and judge people without getting to know them first. The Landlord of Hummingbird House focusses more on friendship than romance: the characters are from various generations, classes and backgrounds but come to support one another. Sometimes, we miss out if we don’t accept different types of people into our lives.

How many of your family or friends have been the model for one of your characters?

I don’t ever model people on friends and family – I try to draft whole, new people for my tales. I have stolen and adapted a few phrases and anecdotes, though!

What are some must-have snacks or other items when you sit down for a long writing session (be it cookies, tea, coffee, a notebook for scribbling, etc)?

I need my phone as well as my laptop, and I jump between the two for research and to note things. Don’t ask me why – habit, I suppose. I don’t take many breaks when writing so I only drink tea or eat if my husband brings me something! I like to write with a laptop tray, wearing pyjamas.

Why do you write? What does writing mean to you?

It is good for my mental health, and a hugely pleasurable experience. There are very few times in life that you can hold something in your hands and say you made it, and it is wholly your own work. Creating something – be it music, art, or writing, etc – is magical. No one else could have produced the stories I have written. It is an immense feeling of accomplishment to make something, and call it your own.

What are you working on now?

I am at the final, final, final editing stage of another novel. This one is darker, and the genre is psychological mystery, so it won’t be published under Jane Harvey. It’s definitely a Dreena piece!

What do you think of AllAuthor? Has this website been helpful to you?

The website has a lot of tools for writers – I love the magic tool and the tweeting functions, which make life very easy for me, as a writer. I have also come across some new writers via the website. As a reader, it’s very easy to navigate and a lively place to visit.

Jane Harvey's Favorite Quotes

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Ask Jane Harvey a Question

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      • Jane Harvey Jane Harvey 1 year ago
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      • A ‘good cover’ is to some degree a subjective thing. There are a myriad of different styles around, and that’s an amazing thing. What I like, might differ from your taste. However, a genre appropriate, legible, professional-looking cover is essential for readers to know that an author can be trusted to deliver.

        Titles are a minefield for writers and I know lots of authors struggle with them. I love an original title, and allowing the connotations and possibilities to rise up in my mind!
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      • Jane Harvey Jane Harvey 1 year ago
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      • I have written on and off for my whole life, but only with any great organisation and dedication for the last three years or so. Life got in the way. The trigger for my writing now was a period of intense insomnia. I started getting up, to write, instead of staring at the ceiling or catastrophising. I’m not sure that it solved my sleep issues - but, overall, it helped my spirits.
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    • AllAuthor AllAuthor 1 year ago
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    • Writing can be an emotionally draining and stressful pursuit. Any tips for aspiring writers?
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      • Jane Harvey Jane Harvey 1 year ago
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      • I set myself realistic but challenging targets for word count or completion etc. Compartmentalising helps, as the idea of a while book or while collection can be overwhelming! Also, don’t forget to praise yourself, to be proud of what you’ve achieved, however titchy tiny that is.
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