Leaning more toward romance and with longer page counts than short form erotica, I am delighted to have had the honour of interviewing the immensely gorgeous and talented Jennifer Sweet.
Over to you Jennifer…
When did you start writing feminization books and what was your inspiration for it?
I’ve been a longtime fan of the genre but first wrote my own feminization stories about 8 years ago, initially for self-expression and exploration. They were serialized stories for the fiction site BigCloset TopShelf and people really seemed to enjoy them! I then started taking writing more seriously last year and have been publishing at a regular clip for almost a full year now. The creative satisfaction alongside the overwhelmingly positive feedback keeps me motivated!
What was your first book that you wrote?
It was a story called You’re Beautiful – a simple, short story about a boy letting his sister (and subsequently his friends) encourage him to explore a female version of himself. It’s nothing special, but it crucially set the stage for the pacing and style of my later books.
Why did you decide to become an author?
Like any other author, fate kind of forces your hand. You write because you need to write. I truly believe that.
What has been the high point of your career?
Genuinely each time I get a review or email from someone saying they loved a book I wrote becomes my latest high point.
What are your favorite stories to write, and as more romantic feminization stories, how do they differ to erotica?
My favorite kinds of stories are ones where the main character is gently pushed to explore their feminine side and grows because of it. I would categorize this genre as Coming-of-Age Feminization Fiction/Romance.
To date, I’ve only written one book that could truly fall under the erotica umbrella and that’s Anthony’s Influence. But to me, just because a book contains sexual elements doesn’t make it erotica. The exploration of one’s sexual desires is itself a huge part of self-discovery and coming of age. Sex scenes can also serve the plot, which is why I include them in a majority (but not all) of my books. Oh, and they’re also very fun to write 🙂
Who do you think are your biggest fans, your core readership? How would you describe them?
I think my readers tend to be hopeful, aspirational people looking for fun, gender-positive stories. There are lots of crossdressers, non-binary, or transgender folks out there who always desired that little push to explore their feminine sides in their early years, so I try to tell stories that either take them back to those days or give the chance to live vicariously through them.
What makes your heart race as a reader, and also a writer?
I love characters who are experiencing things for the first time. Whether it’s clothing, situations, friendships, or sex & romance, the discovery phase, to me, is the most exciting part of it.
What is your favorite book that you have written?
Probably Misscast. It was my first book to do well and the one I probably spent the most time working on. It holds a special place in my heart.
What is your best-selling book, and do you know why it sells so well?
Just Let Me Do Your Hair is my best seller to date. It’s hard to say exactly why, but it’s currently my longest book (just north of 300 pages), so that may have something to do with it.
Do you have a writing routine?
Not really, but I almost always write in the early morning or late evening to work around my 9-5. The weekends are big writing days too. I try to keep myself disciplined and write at least a couple chapters per week.
How do you keep your ideas and stories fresh?
While my stories revolve around a similar theme, I’m always trying to come up with interesting but grounded settings and scenarios. I keep a word document with ideas that I’m constantly adding to, ready for when it’s time to start a new book – and I have way more ideas than I’ll ever be able to get to!
What’s the secret to a strong title and great cover art?
I’m still figuring that out, though I feel strongly that the model on the cover shouldn’t be some generic, random person unrelated to the story. I want them to resemble my main character(s) as much as possible and hopefully reflect a real moment from the story.
Do you enjoy hearing from readers?
Of course! Any time someone reaches out with a kind word it makes my day.
Which authors inspire you?
My favorite author is John Green. His ability to write thought-provoking, coming-of-age romance is astounding. His books have been my #1 influence to pursue writing.
How much of your work is based on personal experience versus fantasy?
Each my stories are a work of fiction, but most settings and certain moments are based on either my own experiences or the experiences of close friends.
Do your friends and family know that you are an author? If so, how did they react when they found out?
I’ve told many people that I self-publish romance novels, though I only go as far as that description. Most people are interested and supportive, though it’s always a conversation killer when I say, “but sorry, you can’t read them!” I don’t give out my pen name, nor do I give any specifics of my genre beyond “romance”. Maybe one day!
What mistakes have you made in your career?
God, so many… I only recently set up a website, author email address, and mailing list. I currently don’t run any advertising (relying exclusively on my readers from other fiction sites or the Amazon algorithm) and I’m still finding out what makes a quality title and cover.
Communities on Reddit have been very helpful in discovering what steps an author can take to grow or maintain their audience business/marketing-wise. But the number one advice I always see is to just keep writing, writing, writing! The best way to sell your old books is to write more books.
What have been your personal triumphs?
I’m incredibly proud that I’ve built an audience that not only enjoys my books but keeps coming back for more. It’s their kind, motivating words that keep me going.
What advice would you offer a writer who wants to embark on a successful romance or erotica career?
Be consistent. Writing an entire novel is incredibly daunting, but writing just one chapter or even one scene is much less scary. So, look at it through that lens and it’s much easier to chug along. Even a chapter every three days for just one month can be nearly half a novel!
Finally, can you offer us three tips you find might help newcomers to be more confident, release the inner femme and connect with others as their feminine self?
I must admit, I’m much more of a storyteller than I am a self-help guru, but I’ll try! If I had to pick three, I would first say to use the wonders of online communities when first exploring yourself. There’s an abundance of positive, affirming people out there to be your support system if you don’t have anyone in your immediate circle. Second, I implore you to take the leap and treat yourself to a girly night in, either alone or with a close friend. You can achieve this with complete anonymity as Amazon and other retailers can supply wonderful, discreet packaging for delivery or pickup. Only through experimentation will you learn exactly what you like! Lastly — and I understand this is way easier said than done — stop caring about what other people think. It’s your life. Live it on your own terms.