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Ask Me Anything!

First of all, Happy Veteran's Day! Thank you to all veterans today for your service and sacrifice. That includes my dad, my brother, my father-in-law, and both of my grandfathers (RIP). 🇺🇸🙏

On my Instagram and Facebook accounts, I asked people to hit me up with their questions – any questions – about Yours Truly! Here are a few of the results. And don’t forget to SUBSCRIBE HERE to receive an exclusive sneak peak of the upcoming SEQUEL to The Catch!

“Is it true that you have four college degrees?”

No; I have only three! I have bachelor’s degrees in English Composition, French, and Clinical Nutrition.

When I went to college the first time around (at the University of North Texas), all I knew was that I was good at writing and languages. And I had been studying French since I was thirteen. I didn’t have any other plan for what I would do with my life. I had allowed myself to be convinced that I could never make it as a fiction author (kicking myself now).

Young woman with auburn/red hair in a tropical-print jumper an d a pearl necklace.
Me at age 20.

So for a while after I graduated, I bounced around at various jobs, trying to figure it out. My first job was as a secretary at the PageMart headquarters in Dallas. I remember my boss taking a long, morose look at my shiny new Nokia flip phone and saying, “Why would anyone buy a pager when you can get one of these?”

Then I worked at a company called Sold On Hold, writing the ads you hear when you’re waiting on hold. And then I worked as a secretary again, this time at an apartment management company (ugh).

Woman in her twenties with red/auburn hair pinned up, wearing glasses, smiling at the camera.
Me at the apartment management company. I hated it.

Then I worked at The Science Place Museum in Dallas, where I met the father of my three girls. I worked in the Education department, giving classes and presentations about science to school groups that came through the museum. My specialty was going out to the schools themselves, which meant loading the giant purple Science Place van with Tesla coils and pig hearts and cow eyeballs, and driving all over the Dallas-Fort Worth metroplex. It was a blast, and extremely eye-opening. I got to see public schools that had lain untouched since the 1950s. I even saw a perfectly preserved nuclear fallout shelter in one old elementary school. (There was also one in the Science Place museum as well, which the city of Dallas would have used in the event of nuclear war.)

All the while, I was learning more about nutrition because I had a gallbladder attack. Finally, when I was thirty, I decided to go back to school to become a Registered Dietitian. I graduated from UT Southwestern in Dallas in 2008, and I’ve been working as a dietitian ever since. My most recent job is at a nonprofit, where I’ve been providing nutrition counseling to people living with HIV and AIDS and other chronic conditions for the past nine years.

A group of young women posing for the camera, all wearing T-shirts that say "UT Southwestern."
With my fellow Clinical Nutrition graduates from UT Southwestern.

A female Registered Dietitian in a white lab coat sits at a table with a binder in front of her. She's looking over her left shoulder and smiling  at the camera. She has auburn/red hair pulled back into a pony tail.
Me working in the hospital as a dietitian.

A woman with red hair smiles at the camera while providing a cooking demonstration. She is cooking banana pancakes. She is wearing a black apron. The text in the photo says, "Doin' my dietitian thang."

“What is your favorite thing to do on a rainy day? And why?”

Sleep!! Either that, or sit on the sofa by the fireplace with a blanket, a cup of tea, and a good book or movie. 📖 ☕️ I'm pretty lazy. But unfortunately (or fortunately, depending on your perspective), I don’t get many opportunities to do that, because I have kids, and they get bored. I’m pretty good about letting them get bored and find their own creative ways to amuse themselves. But there’s a limit to everything, and when they reach the limit of their creativity, I play board games or card games with them. We like to play Skip Bo, a game I played with my own family growing up. We also like Uno, Monopoly, and Sorry. Have you ever played Story Cubes? Highly recommended! Or if I have a bunch of money burning a hole in my pocket (yeah, right!) I’ll take them out bowling, or to a museum, or to the pottery painting studio Color Me Mine. Or we’ll watch a movie, either at home, or we’ll go out and see one in a theater. And every once in a blue moon we’ll go splashing through puddles. I’ve been meaning for a while now to take them to roller skating lessons!

“Why did you have to leave Texas?”

Sometimes I ask myself the same question! At the same time I was finishing my nutrition degree, my then-fiancé was finishing his computer science degree. In 2007, he did an internship at Facebook, which was then a company of just a couple hundred employees on University Avenue in downtown Palo Alto. He was offered a job at Facebook, so we got married, packed our broke selves and whatever meager belongings we could fit into our two cars, and moved out to California like a couple of latter-day forty-niners! To be perfectly honest, I had never quite felt at home in my own home state. I mean don’t get me wrong, I miss my family and friends like crazy!! And I also miss the FOOD (barbecue, down-home southern cooking, Blue Bell ice cream, etc.). But in every other way, I feel much more at home here in California. My daughters were born here, they’re growing up here, and I suspect this is where I’ll spend the rest of my life – at least until we all get taken out by The Big One.

“Hmmmm so you mentioned you’re an author so what’ve you authored that is available online for people to read….get an idea of your style?🧐🙂”

Thank you so much for asking! You can go to the Amazon page for my #ContemporaryRomanceNovel The Catch. There, you can read or listen to a sample from the book to get an idea of my style. I say “listen” because there’s also an audiobook version! If you buy the book, it would make it much easier for other readers to find my book if you would please leave a review. Authors live and die by Amazon reviews! Also, you can SUBSCRIBE to my monthly newsletter here, and you’ll receive an exclusive sneak peak of the upcoming sequel to The Catch!

"But Jenna, why did you do sake bombs outside FB in ‘07?"

In 2007, my then-boyfriend / soon-to-be-husband-and-father-of-my-children was doing an internship in Mountain View, California. I spent some time with him there while simultaneously doing my own dietetic internship rotation in San Francisco. One night we met up with all of his fellow interns at a now-defunct institution called Miyake in Palo Alto. It was literally right across the street from the old Facebook headquarters on University Avenue. We took our photo in front of Facebook. Unbeknownst to us, my then-boyfriend would get hired by Facebook the very next year.

Three men and one woman stand in front of the Facebook headquarters in 2007. Two of the men are pointing at the sign that says "Facebook."
In front of the ancient ancestral homeland of Facebook, in 2007.

But anyway, we all went to Miyake and had an absolute freaking blast doing sake bombs. Here’s the evidence. I still have video evidence, too, but I keep that close to the vest, so to speak. ;)

A young woman smiles wide-eyed at the camera. Her right arm is in the air. She is obviously drunk.
You can see it in my eyes - I was having fun.

Wanna know more?

There'll be plenty of opportunities to ask me anything about other topics, but first you have to follow me on Facebook and Instagram, because that's where I'll be posting the prompts! And don't forget to SUBSCRIBE to my monthly newsletter, where you'll get an exclusive SNEAK PEAK OF THE SEQUEL to The Catch, and you'll be the very first to know the very latest updates on its upcoming re-release and the upcoming two sequels! What do you want to know? What would you like to see from me here on my blog? Got something to say? COMMENT and SHARE this post!!

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