Conference Spotlight on: JANE PORTER

We’re thrilled to invite JANE PORTER into the spotlight today, ahead of her visit down-under to attend “From Here to Eternity.”  Since we believe in keeping some of the good things till last, Jane will present the closing address: AND THEY ALL LIVED HAPPILY EVER AFTER…  She is also on the Sunday afternoon panel “My Brilliant Career” and will co-host a “Now We’re Talking” chat with Megan Crane on Friday afternoon.

Jane is the bestselling author of 30 novels for Harlequin Mills & Boon and Grand Central Publishing.  She was a RITA finalist in 2002, 2003, 2008, and 2010.  Jane’s July ’06 release, Flirting With Forty, went back for seven printings in six weeks before being made into a December 08 Lifetime movie starring Heather Locklear.  A busy mother of three sons, Jane holds an MA in Writing from the University of San Francisco and makes her home in Bellevue, Washington. 

Welcome to the Romance Australia blog, Jane.  Can you describe yourself in ten words or less?

Emotional, fierce, funny, loyal, creative, stubborn and loving.

What motto best sums up your approach to life and writing?

Go for it. And be yourself all the way.

What are you most looking forward to doing on your visit to Australia?

Seeing Melbourne and catching up with my amazing Australian writer friends.

What are you most looking forward to at “From Here To Eternity”?

Just relaxing with incredible friends that I haven’t seen in way too long!

Standing in the coffee queue at conference, what is the best conversation-starting question?

Tired yet?

What kept you motivated when you were striving for publication?

I refused to accept that I could not succeed. I just wouldn’t quit, even when the rejections kept coming…for 14 years!!

What are you working on right now?

I’m working hard on a new trilogy about an Irish-American family in San Francisco and the complex relationships between the four spirited sisters.

What were you doing twenty years ago?

Teaching jr high in a private Catholic school and getting my Masters in Writing.

What’s the best thing about writing for a living?

Staying in your pajamas all day!

On my desk I always have…

Pictures of my kids and a cup of something warm to drink.

If you found yourself standing next to Jane in a conference queue, what would you ask her? Jane has a giveaway pack, including her most recent single title release SHE’S GONE COUNTRY and western themed goodies, for one commenter/conversation starter.  AND THE WINNER IS: H Maree Davis.  Congratulations and happy reading!

Leave a comment


  1. If I found myself in line next to Jane at the conference I’d ask “Have you been to either of the US Melbourne’s?”

    Sadly, as lame as that is, it’s a big improvement on any time I’ve found myself next to someone I recognised. I have a long history of making a complete idiot of myself.

    I hope you have a fabulous time when you come to Melbourne Jane and that you don’t end up standing next to me.

    H! 🙂

  2. Hi Jane,

    I heard you speak at our RWNZ conference last year, and you were an inspiration! RW Australia is very lucky to have you as a speaker this this year — sooo wish I could go 😦

    If I ever did find myself standing in line next to you, I’d have to ask what you’ve probably heard so many times already that it’s just tiresome. It would be: “When is your next book coming out? And would you please sign my copy of your book for me?” because I’m a total fan-girl, and I love your stories. Sorry I couldn’t be more original, but hey, isn’t that what every reader wants to know when they meet one of their favorite authors? LOL

  3. Christine Taylor

     /  April 21, 2011

    Hi Jane

    So looking forward to meeting you at the conference. I would love to know what was the single most important thing that kept you going after 14 years of rejections!! (I want some of it in a bottle to keep beside my laptop!)

  4. Cath Evans

     /  April 21, 2011

    Hi Jane,
    I was thinking I’d have to remember your line – “tired, yet?” – and use that if I stood on the coffee line near you!

    But I’m with Christine, 14 years of rejections and not giving up is the inspirational stuff I admire. After an apprenticeship of so long, you deserve every accolade you receive!

    Can’t wait to hear you speak in Melbourne.


  5. Anita Joy

     /  April 21, 2011

    I’m so uninspired when it comes to these things so I tend to stick to tried and true, like “what session did you just do?” or “don’t you love conference?”.

  6. Hi Jane

    I’m another looking forward to hearing you speak in Melbourne. Lovedlovedloved the sessions you presented at the Gold Coast conference. If I’m caught in a queue next to you at conference, I’ll ask about the experience of seeing your story turned into a movie — the fun parts and the not-so-fun (if there were any of those.)


  7. Hi Jane,
    How exciting to have a book made into a movie! Any idea what it was about that particularly book that touched a chord, obviously with readers, but also the head honchos in movieland?

  8. Jennifer St George

     /  April 21, 2011

    Hi Jane

    So looking forward to hearing you speak at the conference. Just visited your website and was interested to hear that you are learning to surf. Our family moved our whole lives to a small Australian coastal town as my husband’s passion is surfing. So, it can become addictive!!

    If I find myself next to you in a queue at the conference I would love to know what you know now that you wished you’d known before you were published.

  9. Louise Reynolds

     /  April 21, 2011

    Hi Jane,

    Very much looking forward to hearing you speak at conference! What a treat. If I was standing beside you in the conference queue I’d probably be thinking, wow, great hair 🙂 As to a conversation opener, I’d ask if you’d consider setting a book in Australia.

  10. AJ

     /  April 21, 2011

    I’d ask what keeps you going during the tough times now you are published and if that is different to what made you keep trying in the face of rejections.

  11. Sue Rees

     /  April 21, 2011

    There’s something about your name, Jane, that must draw the romantic literary muse…Austen, Porter…! Think I should change mine by deed poll?

  12. Hi Jane,

    What would I ask if I found myself standing next to you in the coffee line. Well after making a fool of myself being star struck standing next to you in the first place. I’d ask how you keep your writing fresh and your characters happy.

    I love the sound of your new trilogy, Irish-American family relationships are always great. Maybe it’s the Irish blood in me. LOL.

  13. Welcome to the blog Jane and I hope you enjoy our conference and Melbourne. If I found myself standing in line next to you, I would ask about your wip and the four sisters: what do you do to ensure that their voices and characters are distinct?

  14. So lovely to have you here in spirit (and later in body!).

    If I was standing next to you in line at conference I’d probably ask you…how you squeezed four sisters into a three-book trilogy and what the fourth sister did to tick you off so much you’d rob her of her own book!


    Just love the cover of Gone Country (and the idea…)

  15. (and, no, ‘tick’ was not the first word I used… but I’ve become proficient at self-censoring). Heh.

  16. Oh, I have lots of questions, but the first one I would probably ask is “Do you make sure you get the nice piece of cake?” (a Flirting with Forty reference).

    I’m looking forward to hearing you speak and also finding out the answer to my question!

  17. Jane it’s so fabulous that you’re coming here again. So many people still remember that amazingly heartfelt and motivational speech you gave to a conference in… was it the first Gold Coast conference so many years ago. And then there was that brilliant Alpha male talk at… maybe a Melbourne conference. And now this is your third, I think — you spoil us, girl! Too generous for words. Can’t wait for whatever you go this time around. And then there’s just the catching up, which I’m so looking forward to.

  18. Zoe Younger

     /  April 21, 2011

    In a queue with Jane Porter? I should be so lucky. Jane, you were so gracious and kind to me when I was a total newby at the Gold Coast conference I’d love to say thanks very much for the inspiration and encouragement. You made me feel like I had finally found my home even when I had virtually no voice by the end of the conference. I’ve kept up with your books and newsletters and am looking forward to catching up again.

  19. THIS is hy I love attending the Australia conferences! You are all so kind and fun and down to earth. When I attend the US conferences I’m a little overwhelmed by the sheer numbers of the thing but when I last attended the Gold Coast conf, I was so relaxed and happy to just be there.

    I don’t know why it took me so long to sell (my craft wasn’t strong enough???) but the persistence I learned in those years has paid off once I sold because its a tough business–full of challenges and rejections and there is no resting on your laurels ever.

    I’ve added a copy of Easy on the Eyes to the giveaway so fingers crossed whoever wins it, will enjoy the books and goodies!!


  20. Melinda

     /  April 23, 2011

    So looking forward to hearing you speak at conference Jane. As others have said, persevering through a 14 year apprenticeship is inspirational.

    Sharing your love of travel, Jane I’d ask you about your favourite places and to share any secret travel destinations and I’d recommend a great travel itinerary around Australia for when conference finishes.

    Of course there won’t be any long queues at the 2011 conference! (fingers crossed).

  21. Hi Jane, so looking forward to seeing you down in Melbourne. I met you at the GC conf, it was my first conference ever. My youngest daughter was just a few months old (I remember it well as I was still breastfeeding, and it was such a palaver just to get away for the 1 night I was there), she’s five now, and at school, wow how times flies!

    Best wishes

  22. kees2create

     /  April 23, 2011

    Hi Jane, lovely to meet you via the blog. I really wish I was going to the conference this year. I’m holding out for 2013 in Perth and will be there for sure!

    I’m fairly certain that, as a complete newbie, if I was in line for coffee at the conference I’d be totally starstruck AND dumbstruck surrounded by such a warm, wonderful, talented group of writers. The only question that would spring to mind is: “Can you please pack me in your suitcase and drop me off in San Francisco on your way through to Washington?” With a copy of your book, of course 🙂

    All the best for your visit to Melbourne and I really hope I get to meet you at the next conference.
    Regards, Juanita

  23. Thanks to everyone who stopped by and welcomed Jane. There will be some interesting conversations at this conference, I can tell.

    We’ve drawn a winner of Jane’s giveaway and that lucky person is…

    H Maree Davis. Congratulations, H!


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