Riding the Waves Conference Spotlight ~ Jaye Ford

Welcome to a conference spotlight

from the

Riding the Waves conference!

Today we have Jaye Ford who will be presenting the workshop THE GNARLY WIPEOUT! Writing action scenes that hit hard



Jaye Ford picBio

Jaye Ford writes fast-paced psychological thrillers featuring gutsy female characters in Australian settings. Her first book, Beyond Fear, was the highest selling debut crime novel in Australia in 2011 and the fifth highest selling debut across all genres. It won two 2012 Davitt Awards for Australian women crime writers – Best Debut Novel and joint winner Readers Choice – and was also shortlisted for Best Novel. Jaye is a former print, radio and television journalist and was Australia’s first female presenter of a live national sports show, later running her own public relations business. Her third thriller, Blood Secret, will be released in Australia in September 2013.



Tell us about yourself in 10 words or less.

Thriller writer, all-round action girl (well, I’ve read the manuals).

What prompted you to put together this workshop for “Riding The Waves”?

In the last few years there’ve been some terrific conference workshops on how to fight so I thought it might be interesting to talk about how to write it. I hear a lot of writers say they find the action scenes difficult but it’s my favourite part of the writing process. I love throwing myself into the fast-paced, adrenaline-charged moments, imagining I’m doing something sweaty and daring and not just sitting in my office in a comfy chair with a cup of coffee. I also love embracing that sense of fury or injustice or whatever makes a character desperate enough to do what needs to be done. And I find once the fighting is done, I often make few changes to my original draft.


What will participants take away from this session? (OR what is the key outcome or take-home message?)

I’ll be talking about ways to build a sense of suspense and physicality. Not just fights but the kind of action that’s in running, hiding, searching, surviving a car crash or jumping out of a plane, just for example. I’d like people to leave with fresh ideas on how to approach their action scenes and feeling inspired to try some new tools for building pace, tension and impact.


Do you use examples (from your own books, other books, movies etc)?

There are lots of ways to knock a character out or down or just far enough away to make a run for it and, like weapons, some work better than others. So I’ll be talking about authors who inspire the way I write action, including some of the good ole hard-boiled detective writers. I’ll also be using excerpts from my own books to give example of some of the techniques we’ll be looking at. And by the way, I can’t throw a punch or wield a knife so I won’t be demonstrating any fight techniques!


Which members will benefit most from this session?

Anyone who wants to writes scenes with a physical impact would get something from this workshop. For beginners, it should provide some inspiration and a place to start; for unpublished writers, some new tools to experiment with; and for those already writing in the suspense/thriller genre, the discussion and examples will hopefully get their brain cells firing on new or forgotten approaches to their action scenes.


What is the best part/aspect of conference for you?

I love running with my pack at the RWA conference. Being surrounded by writers and writing brains, discussing words and story with people who get it. I always leave feeling so inspired and energized and enthusiastic to get stuck back into whatever I’m working on.


Cover Just Breathe

What is your latest/current/upcoming book release and where can members find out more about you?

I’m very excited to have two books released in 2013. My third thriller, Blood Secret, is out in Australia in September: when Renee Carter’s de facto disappears, she discovers he may not be who she thought he was – but either is she and her bloody past may have come back to find her. I also made my debut in the romance genre in February, writing as Janette Paul. Just Breathe, released under the Random Romance digital-first list, is a romantic comedy about a yoga teacher who’s broke but rich on the inside and a millionaire businessman who’s rich but looking for something money can’t buy.

You can find out more about me and my books at: www.jayefordauthor.com or keep up to date on my Facebook page  or at the Random House website: www.randomhouse.com.au


Cover Scared Yet


Thank you, Jaye!

Our next conference spotlight will be featured tomorrow.

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