By Tristan Marks
Sue Jaskula has found her true calling in the written word.
The Grimsby resident has worn many hats in her life and worked a myriad of jobs. Now she can proudly add ‘published author’ to that list.
Jaskula’s first novel, All Fired Up is already on sale at Chapters, Indigos and other locations, as well as online at Amazon and her second, Unexpected Connection, comes out July 28.
The book is a romance suspense that follows the story of respected Crown Attorney Christine whose life is shattered when she’s accused of murdering her ex in an arson. Romance ignites when her childhood friend Jake, a firefighter, tries to help prove her innocence.
Jaskula said the novel has been in the works for a while now- two decades, in fact.
“It took a lot of years to get to it, but I am thrilled to have had the opportunity to take early retirement and pursue a career in writing, a pursuit I have entered with energy and enthusiasm,” she said.
“I am currently a registered member of Toronto Romance Writers; Crime Writers Canada; and Women’s Fiction Writers’ Association.”
She explained that she began writing the story through McMaster University Writing Certificate and English Degree programs that she enrolled in while working for the university’s hospital since 2002.
“I wrote chapters of the books as assignments for the certificate program,” she said.
“I pretty much had finished the book, but I put it on the back burner until I retired.”
After retiring, Jaskula dusted off the the manuscript and sought out a publisher to print it. Eventually, she was contracted by New York-based publisher, The Wild Rose Press.
Book two, Unexpected Connection releases this summer. She said it is a twin/evil twin mystery with “a sweet office romance and some nasty unexpected connections”, focusing on the investigating homicide detective from book one.
Jaskula also added that she already has contracts and manuscripts for her third and fourth novels.
Being this prolific is no struggle for the author, who said she finds inspiration from all over her life.
“Writing comes easy,” said Jaskula.
“Sometimes, something will give me one idea- something will happen around me or I’ll do something- then I just sit down and start writing for hours.”
She continued, “I formulate as I walk the dog or as I lay half awake in the middle of the night, then rush to scribble notes or text myself lest I forget my most recent “great idea”. Then some days go by when I can’t create a single paragraph. Going for a walk or relaxing with a book usually cures that block.”
Jaskula also said that she readily draws from the people, places and experiences she’s encountered in her life, especially those from her long career history.
“My career has spanned many years in a mix of criminal and civil law and hospital surgical administrative work,” she said.
“This work experience has provided a wealth of storyline and character ideas from kind-hearted colleagues to real life murders and evil doers I’m happy to kill off – in my books!”
She added that her career in law is what draws her to the romance suspense genre.
“It’s easier to write what you know,” she said.
“It’s also what I’ve always enjoyed reading. I always loved suspense, but the romance adds something to make it more than just a ‘whodunnit’.”
Retiring to become a full-time writer has been a rewarding choice, Jaskula said.
“It’s a good retirement I’d say.”
Sue Jaskula can be found and contacted online through:
Instagram – @suejaskulaauthor, Facebook – @sue.jaskula, and; her website – suejaskula.wordpress.com
She will also be taking part in the Grimsby Public Library Author Series this Fall to feature both All Fired Up and Unexpected Connection.