Wednesday, December 12, 2018

Writing Wednesday: Got Backstory? Peggy Jaeger on writing and her new #HolidayBooks release CHRISTMAS AND CANNOLIS

As a special Writing Wednesday treat, I've got my sister Wild Rose author extraordinaire
here today to talk about the importance of a character's backstory, and how she came up with one for her latest heroine. Oh, and if you haven't heard, she's got a FABULOUS new holiday release out this week titled Christmas and Cannolis (which I've already read, loved and reviewed HERE) Take it away, Peggy!

As a writer, backstory is extremely important to me when I’m fleshing out my characters and giving them reasons for the way they talk, act, dress, interact with others, etc.

When the concept for CHRISTMAS AND CANNOLIS came to me one afternoon, serendipitously as I was making cannolis (!)  to take to a dinner party, I wanted to make sure I gave my heroine, Regina, a solid reason to explain why she is the way she is: a workaholic, relationship-avoiding, good daughter. To do this, I rummaged around in my memory banks and came up with the idea for her backstory and found an incident that occurred while I was in high school to a fringe friend.  I modified it a tad and viola, I had Regina’s character arc.

Regina San Valentino is the only girl in a family of 4 older brothers, all of whom are protective, overbearing, loud and loving – just like her father, Sonny. Regina was the favored child as the only girl, and doted upon by her family. So much so that she was a victim of smother-love. She never dated, wasn’t allowed to go over to friends’ houses for sleepovers, and was generally always with a parent, a brother or her cousins. Family was everything. Regina wanted to be a normal teenager, date, hang out and have fun, but she towed the family line like a good little Italian/American girl. Until one day, she tore that line and broke free. Regina’s one act of teenage rebellion changed the course of her life forever and led her to the moment CHRISTMAS AND CANNOLIS begins.

I don’t want to spoil the story by giving away the details of what that was, but suffice it to say, that one incident set Regina on the course that has brought her to the owner of her own bakery, childless, and single at the age of 32.

My own backstory as the step-daughter to a family exactly like Regina’s has enabled me to walk the walk and talk the talk of a member of such a loud, loving, loyal family.

Katie – a special thanks for hosting me today and letting me rant about backstory. I love knowing the reasons that make people – and characters – tic. I truly could talk for days about this – basically because I’m so nosy!!! Hee Hee
About the Book:
With Christmas season in full swing, baker Regina San Valentino is up to her elbows in cake batter and cookie dough. Between running her own business, filling her bursting holiday order book, and managing her crazy Italian family, she's got no time to relax, no room for more custom cake orders, and no desire to find love. A failed marriage and a personal tragedy have convinced her she's better off alone. Then a handsome stranger enters her bakery begging for help. Regina can't find it in her heart to refuse him.

Connor Gilhooly is in a bind. He needs a specialty cake for an upcoming fundraiser and puts himself—and his company's reputation—in Regina's capable hands. What he doesn't plan on is falling for a woman with heartbreak in her eyes or dealing with a wise-guy father and a disapproving family.

Can Regina lay her past to rest and trust the man who's awoken her heart?
Grab your copy on AMAZON today!


  1. As always, my wonderful writing fried, it is always a pleasure to visit you and have you visit me!! Enjoy the holiday season and thank you so much for hosting me today and letting me rant! hee hee

    1. and this is why every writer needs an editor: You are NOT a wonderful writing fired, but a wonderful writing FRIEND!!!! egads!

    2. LOL, Peggy - I got your meaning the first time. By the way, I love your cooking elf, and the meme! Not sure where you had time to play with that when you have 3 NEW BOOKS out this season! Big congrats and happy holidays!

  2. This sounds exciting. I just ordered the book!

  3. Thanks for reminding me of the importance of character back story, Peggy. All the best.

    1. C.B. - you're such an outstanding writer I'm sure you didn't need reminding!! hee hee. But thanks!


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