Tuesday, December 17, 2019

#CharacterInterview - "Waiting for a Miracle" by Jennifer Wilck

Thank you so much, Harriet, for chatting with me today. Let's get started... 

What’s your name? 
Harriet Cohen

What do you look like?
Oy, I really wish people would place less emphasis on looks. You young people today…Okay, fine. I have salt and pepper hair (more salt than pepper), which my gorgeous young hairdresser takes beautiful care of every other week. We are NOT going to discuss my wrinkles or age spots—I’ve lived a very good life and they are signs of wisdom. My nails are done in my favorite color—purple—every week. Anything else?

What time period does your story take place? 
Present day, New York City.

What’s your goal in this story?
I want my son, Benny, oh sorry, Benjamin, to be happy. His wife died a few years ago—Lauren was a sweetheart—and it’s time he moved on. I want to set him up with my neighbor, Rachel. She’s a kindergarten teacher, and is such a shayna maidel—that means beautiful girl in Yiddish. She and I watch the Bachelor every week—love that show! But Benjamin is stubborn, so it’s going to take some work.

What conflicts are you facing?
Other than my stubborn son, you mean? Well, Rachel just broke up with her boyfriend. He was a schmuck if you ask me. And she seems a little hesitant to get back to dating. Time’s going by, though, and I think the two of them would be perfect together.

What is your occupation? Are you any good at it? Do you like it? 
What skill do you have that you’re proud of? Why? Matchmaking, of course! Helping someone fine their bashert, their one true love, is actually a mitzvah, a good deed. And I’ve set up lots of people, successfully (we’ll skip the stories of the few that didn’t work). Trust me, Rachel and Benjamin will be perfect together.

What did you think the first time you saw Rachel? 
The first time I saw Rachel, I was a little nervous, because she’s young, and I thought she might be a partier. We live in a small apartment building and the last thing I want is loud music at all hours of the night. But she’s lovely, and like I said, she likes watching the Bachelor with me.

What is the best piece of advice you ever received? 
Never go to bed angry. My husband and I were married fifty years, until he died, and we always settled our arguments before we went to sleep.

If you could go back in time, what one thing would you change in your life?
I’d let my husband live longer. I miss him.

Why do you think your author chose to write about you? 
Probably comic relief. She thinks I’m funny. I think I’m wise.


Benjamin Cohen, widowed father of six-year-old Jessie, is doing his best to hold it together through order and routine. The last thing he needs is his matchmaker mother to set him up with her next door neighbor, no matter how attractive she is.

Rachel Schaecter's dream of becoming a foster mother is right within her grasp, until her meddlesome neighbor tries to set her up with her handsome son. What's worse? He's the father of her favorite kindergarten student! She can't afford to let anything come between her and her dream, no matter how gorgeous he may be.

Can these two determined people trust in the miracle of Hanukkah to let love and light into their lives?


Maybe it was too soon. He stuffed his hands in his pockets. No, it wasn’t too soon. While he hadn’t mapped out a complete plan, he’d made the final decision yesterday. He’d made significant tweaks to it after their argument. And now it was time to follow through.
Removing his hands from his pockets once again, he knocked on Rachel’s door and paced until she opened it.
“Hi,” he said. He smiled, but he suspected it was more like a grimace. It felt tight and unnatural. Should he stop? How long did you leave a smile on your face before you let it fall? And who asked these questions?
“Hey,” she said. Surprise made her brows lift. Her voice was quiet, her expression wary.
He ignored his face, his thoughts, and his plans, and focused on her. “Hi.”
“You said that already.”
Great. He raised his hand to...he didn’t know what to do with it. “Can I come in?”
She stiffened. She was going to turn him down. But then, she stepped away from her doorway and motioned him inside.
He stepped over the threshold.

“I thought I heard you!”
His mother’s voice over his shoulder made him turn. His stomach dropped. Just what he didn’t need. She peeked out of her doorway. “I thought I heard your footsteps on the stairs, but when you didn’t come to my door, I figured I was mistaken,” she said, walking into the hallway. “And then I thought I heard your voice, and I was right.”

He clenched and unclenched his jaw. “Hi, Mom. I’m here to see Rachel.” God, it was like high school all over again.
His mother’s face brightened. “I see. Where’s Jessie?”
“She’s at a friend’s house for a play date.”
“So you’re having your own?” His mother’s raised eyebrow set his teeth on edge. She’d never been this excited, or sarcastic, about his dates back when he lived at home. Not even with Lauren. Guess this was her idea of progress. In his opinion, it needed work, preferably back in her own apartment.
“We’re going for a walk,” he said.

“We are?” Rachel asked.

He turned toward her. “Please?” The last thing he needed was a witness. Especially when the witness was his mother.
Her brown-eyed gaze shifted between him and his mother. “That’s right, Harriet, a walk. It’s a gorgeous day.”
The sleet and cold were miserable, but he wanted to kiss her for going along with him. Not in front of his mother, though. And certainly not until he settled what happened between them.
“You two have fun,” she said, her voice filled with glee.
He clenched his fist so tight, it was a miracle his hand didn’t shatter.
He waited for his mother to close the door, but she remained stationed in her entryway like a guard at Buckingham Palace, minus the stone face. Then he waited for Rachel to go inside and get her jacket. He’d never been a fan of waiting. He was less so now.
After the longest thirty seconds of his life, Rachel was bundled. She looked like the sexiest abominable snowman he’d ever seen. Once again, he wanted to kiss her, and once again, he’d have to wait.
“Bye, Mom,” he said as he descended the stairs.
“Bye, Harriet,” Rachel said right behind him.

“Bye, kids!”

Buy Links


Jennifer started telling herself stories as a little girl when she couldn’t fall asleep at night. Pretty soon, her head was filled with these stories and the characters that populated them. Even as an adult, she thinks about the characters and stories at night before she falls asleep or walking the dog. Eventually, she started writing them down. Her favorite stories to write are those with smart, sassy, independent heroines; handsome, strong and slightly vulnerable heroes; and her stories always end with happily ever after.

In the real world, she’s the mother of two amazing daughters and wife of one of the smartest men she knows. She believes humor is the only way to get through the day and does not believe in sharing her chocolate.

She writes contemporary romance, some of which are mainstream and some of which involve Jewish characters. She’s published with The Wild Rose Press and all her books are available through Amazon and Barnes & Noble.

Author Links


  1. A great character interview! Best of luck with the book!

  2. I think I love Harriet! Best of luck with your books

  3. What a great interview! I love Harriet! All the best, Jennifer!

  4. Great interview! Thanks for sharing.

  5. I enjoyed hearing from Harriet, Jennifer. Continued good luck with the book :)

  6. I loved listening to Harriet. I wish her much success in getting her Benny and Rachel together. Happy sales, Jennifer.

  7. Jennifer - I preordered this book and read it right off - loved it! Harriet is indeed "a pill," as my mother says of anyone causing fun trouble - which is Harriet, for sure. A lovely and sweet story.


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