Author Spotlight: Holly Goddard Jones

the next time you see me

Today, Holly Goddard Jones is back to reveal her #literaryconfessions and #literarycrush!


Author Spotlight: Holly Goddard Jones

What are some of your favorite books, Holly?

Felicia’s Journey, by William Trevor, anything by Margaret Atwood, several Stephen King novels but especially The Stand, Faulkner’s Go Down, Moses, Cloud Atlas, State of Wonder, The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier and Clay, Serena, by Ron Rash. A recent favorite is Kate Atkinson’s Life After Life.

If you could choose to be a character in a book- who would you choose?

Most characters in books have it pretty hard—much harder than I have it. If I’m being realistic, I’d choose a boring character with a nice life, which would mean someone on the periphery of a good story. But if I mean a character who has qualities I admire, and I wish I could respond to adversity with the wisdom and grace that they do? The first two to come to mind are Elizabeth Bennet and Daenerys Targaryen. Ha!

If you were not an author, what would you like to be?

I have a layperson’s interest in criminal psychology, which is pretty analogous to what I do as a writer. Or I’d like to be in some zoological field and work with primates.


Do you have any #literaryconfessions? 

God, too many to own. I haven’t read tons of things I’m supposed to have read, like Moby Dick and Mrs. Dalloway.

Do you have a #literarycrush? 

I’m still smarting over the fact that Cassandra spurned Stephen Colley in I Capture the Castle.

What is your favorite song?

It depends on the day. But because I love The Beatles best overall and have a sentimental attachment to it, I’ll say, oddly, “You Never Give Me Your Money.”

Do you have any guilty pleasures? 

I don’t feel guilty about any of my pleasures, except the time I waste on the internet. Just because it’s more habit than pleasure.

What books are in your to be read (TBR) pile?

I just started Billy Lynn’s Long Halftime Walk. I’m also in the middle of the fifth book from A Song of Fire and Ice. I’d like to read Alyssa Nutting’s Tampa and Meg Wolitzer’s The Interestings. Oh, and Stephen King’s Joyland.


* Thank you Holly Goddard Jones for the author spotlight!


To connect with Holly, please visit her website or Facebook.


Interview with Holly Goddard Jones, author of The Next Time You See Me

the next time you see me

I had the opportunity to review Holly Goddard Jones debut novel, The Next Time You See Me, and I really enjoyed the book! So much so that I decided to ask Holly if she would come by Traveling With T for an interview- and lucky for me, she said yes!

Interview With Holly Goddard Jones

Holly, how did the idea of The Next Time You See Me happen?

I read a story about a little boy going into the woods and getting scared by a hermit, and it got me to thinking about a little scraggly, undeveloped area near the subdivision where I grew up. As a girl, I went into that wooded area sometimes to explore, play pretend, gather bugs and leaves for school science projects. My parents didn’t like me going—partly because it was private property, partly because they didn’t like me venturing so far out of sight of adults—and of course that was part of the attraction and the thrill. When I was a girl, about eight, a woman’s dead body was found about half a mile from my home, and so I always wondered what would happen if I’d have been the one to find the body. So the book took off from that premise: a girl finds a body. In this case, she makes an unusual choice about what she finds.

Are any of the characters based on you, Holly?

All of the characters I write have some of me in them. The story above might make you think that the little girl, Emily, is based on me, and she has a few things in common with my 13-year-old self. Or you might see me in Susanna, an English teacher in her late 20s. But I identify as much with the characters in the book who aren’t obviously like me: Wyatt, Tony, Sarah. In fact, if there are tender truths about me in my fiction, I tend to place them with unexpected characters, as a way of forging a connection with them.


How long did it take to write The Next Time You See Me?

About four years.

Gillian Flynn wrote a blurb for The Next Time You See Me. How was having an author like her, months after her Gone Girl success, writing a blurb for your book?

I was so grateful to her. I loved Gone Girl, and so it was an honor.

Do you think The Next Time You See Me would make a good movie? Have you ever wondered who could make up the dream cast?

I think it would make a better television show than a movie—something in the vein of Twin Peaks or The Killing. As for casting the characters, I find that really hard. I have a vision of each of them in my head, and they’re not really people who’d fit some typical Hollywood standard for beauty. Anna Kendrick could maybe play Susanna, just because she’s close to the right age and to me she’s pretty but very real looking. I had to think hard to come up with that one. It seems to me that there’s someone obvious out there who’d be great as Wyatt, but I’m drawing a blank. Wyatt’s supposed to be 55 in the novel, but I think he’d have to be played by someone older, since your average overweight Kentucky factory worker is going to wear 55 a lot differently from, say, Kevin Bacon, who is 55 according to IMDB. Maybe Phillip Seymour Hoffman in 10 years.


Do you have a writing space? A writing routine?

I just moved my office to a downstairs bedroom, so that’s where I’m writing now. I don’t have much of a routine. I wish I did.

Holly, are there any upcoming events that fans can attend to meet and greet with you?

I’ll be doing some festivals this fall: The Eudora Welty Writers’ Symposium, the Kentucky Book Fair, and the Southern Festival of Books. All that info will be up on my website at some point.

The ending- did the ending of The Next Time You See Me reveal itself as you were writing? Or, Holly, did you know how the book should end from the moment you began writing?

I had a vague sense of what the tone of the ending would be, but I didn’t know the specifics until about two thirds of the way in. Then I had the idea for the Thanksgiving epilogue. I skipped ahead to write that—I hardly ever write out of order—then went back and wrote to the end. If you write a character-driven novel, I do think that the book you write has to teach you what it’s ending will be.

What are you working on next, Holly? Are you still gathering ideas or do you have a book in mind?

I’m working on a new novel and am perhaps a quarter or a third of the way into the rough draft.


*Thank you Holly Goddard Jones for agreeing to be interviewed!

holly goddard jones

Holly Goddard Jones debut novel, The Next Time You See Me, was published February 2013 by Touchstone Publishing. To connect with Holly, please visit her website or Facebook page!

Literary Friday ya’ll…….

It’s Friday and my #literaryfriday is almost to the limit with good stuff. So sit back and enjoy 🙂

1. Deep South Magazine and their #literaryfriday: Erika Robuck’s Call Me Zelda trailer, Joshilyn Jackson’s birthday, and much more!

2.Deep South also unveiled their picks for Ten Reads for Spring. Out of the 10, I’ve read 2- and they were very good!

Julie Kibler’s Calling Me Home made the list (and it was She Reads Feb Book Club Pick!) Holly Goddard Jones The Next Time You See Me also made the list.  Here are my reviews for Calling Me Home and The Next Time You See Me

3. It’s the first day of March- and She Reads wants you to know that our March read will be The Silence of Bonaventure Arrow by Rita Leganski. It’s her debut novel.  At the end of the month, there will be a discussion on She Reads and we’ll have a Twitter chat as well (both are hosted by me!)

Good news if you like Goodreads- A group on Goodreads called Southern Lit Lovers will be teaming up with She Reads for the reading of The Silence of Bonaventure Arrow- there will be tons of chances to discuss this book during March. Southern Lit Lover is moderated by Jo (Twitter handle @BloominChick) and she is looking forward to some great discussions!

EVEN BETTER NEWS: Jo @BloominChick is giving away copies of The Silence of Bonaventure Arrow on her blog! Check out Jo’s Blog Diggin’Around for a chance to win! Giveaway ends SUNDAY 11:59pm EST.

4. She Reads has some great posts this week- in case you’ve missed them, here they are:

Tell Me Something True-A Visit With Alison Atlee

Tell Me Something True- A Visit with Maryanne O’Hara

A Room of Her Own- The Writing Space of Julie Kibler

5. Liked Julie Kibler’s Calling Me Home? Want to discuss it? Come on to She Reads and let’s discuss- the discussion is happening through the weekend!

6. My #fridayreads is Skelton Keys by Laura Childs. What is your #fridayreads?

7. More #giveaways:

Drey’s Library is giving away The Comfort of Lies by Randy Susan Meyers!

Goodreads is giving away The Girls’ Guide to Love and Supper Clubs by Dana Bate.

Happy Reading 🙂


Interviews, Giveaways, and Happy Pub Days!

Today’s a day where several books are released- and it’s got Twitter and Facebook a-buzz with the excitement. Out of the 5 books that I know that were released today- I’ve read 3- so buckle up for the wild ride through interviews, reviews and giveaways!

Happy Pub Day to Gods of Mischief by George Rowe, The Next Time You See Me by Holly Goddard Jones, Calling Me Home  by Julie Kibler, The House Girl by Tara Conklin, and The Comfort of Lies by Randy Susan Meyers!


She Reads is giving away a copy of The Comfort of Lies by Randy Susan Meyers. Just comment on She Reads post for a chance to win!

Women’s Fiction Writers is giving away a homemade bracelet to celebrate Julie Kibler’s pub day of Calling Me Home. They also have an interview with Julie Kibler for your reading delight. Read the post, follow the directions, and good luck to you for the bracelet!


Bookmagnet interviews Tara Conklin, author of The House Girl.

Bookmagnet also interviewed Julie Kibler, author of Calling Me Home.

Book Reviews:

Katherine Scott Jones reviews Gods of Mischief by George Rowe

Bookmagnet (aka Jaime Boler) reviews The House Girl by Tara Conklin.

Bookmagnet reviews Calling Me Home by Julie Kibler.

And lastly I (Traveling With T) review:

Calling Me Home by Julie Kibler

The Next Time You See Me by Holly Goddard Jones

Gods of Mischief: My Undercover Vendetta to Take Down the Vagos Outlaw Motorcycle Gang by George Rowe

It’s a good day book lovers- a really good day!



The Next Time You See Me by Holly Goddard Jones

When Gillian Flynn, a writer who has quite a way with the words when it comes to mystery and suspense, gives a blurb for the book- it sets a readers mind to a certain way. Holly Goddard Jones book, The Next Time You See Me, does not disappoint. It’s got all the makings of a creepy, suspenseful mystery.

Set in a small southern town, the book focuses on the lives of several residents and they ways they are connected. Susanna, a young wife, teacher and mother- married to a band director at the high school. Emily, a student of Susanna’s and a socially awkward teenager. Wyatt, a factory worker who fears he’s let his life slip away with nothing really to show of it. And Tony, a former star athlete who has a connection to Susanna that not everyone is aware of.

A body is discovered by one character around the same time that Susanna begins to suspect that her sister, Ronnie, is missing. Is the body that was discovered Ronnie? Not many folks are taking seriously the possible disappearance of Ronnie because she’s the type of woman who would leave for a few days without telling. As the story unfolds, the reader begins to see how each person is connected to one another and how October 23 is a fateful day for many of the characters.

The Next Time You See Me connects the characters of this small-town in such a believable way. The reader is completely immersed in the life of the characters: their wants, desires, secret struggles and regrets. The storyline is filled with mystery and suspense- the reader not only wants to know what happens; but has to know.

Recommened for readers who like suspenseful mystery books. For readers who like books that have several characters who are connected in ways that are not apparently obvious. For readers who enjoy a book that can lead to long discussions of motivations of characters.

Thank you, Touchstone Books, for supplying this review copy. All opinions expressed above are mine only.