February 14, 2014

Thank You!

Today we wrap up the Addicted to Heroines Blog Tour. Thank you for visiting, reading, participating, and entering our giveaway! We will announce and contact the giveaway winners soon. We hope you've learned a little more about our amazing authors and their books, and if you've already read one or more of them--thanks again, and please don't forget to share your review.

Until next time, friends!

February 13, 2014

Q&A With Isabella Today!

I’m a fan of fictional characters having social media accounts–because, you know, I already imagine them as friends in my head and it’s just cool :)

I thought it’d be fun for Isabella to venture into the world of Twitter, and not only that, but interact with you all! One of the highest praises the Gray Tower Trilogy receives is that of its heroine, Isabella George. I’m sure there are questions about her life, the story, other characters, and possibly her future that you would love to ask her about. Well, here’s your chance!

Today I'd like you to follow Isabella on Twitter @AlchemicalSpy and submit your questions or comments to her. She'll be popping in throughout the day answering your questions and responding to tweets. I hope you can join in! If you don’t have a Twitter account, sign up today, and let’s have some fun.

February 12, 2014

What's Wrong With Being Nice? Likable vs. Unlikable Heroines

To be a heroine, you've got to be tough.

You can't easily give up, you have to face and overcome your fears, and yes occasionally you may have to kick ass and take names.

I remember coming home from school in the afternoons and watching the Wonder Woman television show with my big sis. We loved it! She was beautiful, independent, and fought for justice. We liked all that, and we liked her.

We're supposed to like our heroes and heroines, right? We have to relate to them on some level because whether consciously or subconsciously, we expect them to be a better version of ourselves. We admire people we can look up to. They don't have to be perfect, because we cringe at the idea of the too-perfect-for-everyone Mary Sue.


Is there such a thing as an unlikable heroine? Is there room for the trash-talking, unconventional, witchy (with a "b") heroine who we'll root for and follow? Is there a double standard, where some "anti-heroes" can get away with being the lovable jerk, but not the gals?

Well, I discuss all this today in a guest post at indie author Khaalidah's blog. Hop on over and take a peek, and don't be shy about sharing your feedback and thoughts.

--Alesha Escobar

Khaalidah's Blog

February 11, 2014

Character Interview: Holly in the hot seat

In Naked Came the Sharks, Holly Rivera Berry is chasing her dream of becoming an investigative reporter in San Francisco when she has to return to her hometown of Bonafides on the Texas Coastal Bend to settle her recently deceased father’s estate. She discovers that just before he died her father researched the possibility that via an old Mexican land grant the Rivera family owns The Gap, a natural channel to the Gulf of Mexico. Land speculators plan to erect luxury homes, resorts, hotels, and a casino along The Gap and Holly comes to doubt that her father died of natural causes.
Some fans found Holly taking a break at a Bonafides beachfront bar, the Tropics. They bought her a margarita and some nachos and plied her with questions.
Andrea: Tell us about the San Francisco paper that you work for, the Mission Crier.
Holly: It’s a shopper, like the Pennysaver. Lots of classified ads plus some syndicated content like jokes, helpful household hints, Top Ten lists and trivia. It’s a two-person operation. My boss manages the distribution, sales, and negotiates the contracts, and I do the layout, paste-up and prepress.
Alice: Did you resent Rusty quitting your job for you?
Holly: I did. I’d about had it with arrogant men making decisions for me. I had to admit thought that although it was something I thought about doing but I wouldn’t have done it, or at least not so impetuously.
Alice: Did you ever call your boss to tell him that though Rusty spoke for you, you want to confirm that you want to quit and start your own more significant newspaper?
Holly: I did call to apologize and then I gave proper notice and arranged an exit that wouldn’t leave him in the lurch. That wouldn’t be professional. The newspaper biz is actually a fairly close-knit community. Burning bridges is not a good career move. I did tell him that I was thinking of starting my own publication. Since we parted on good terms, he said I could call on him if I needed advice.
Alice: Will you start that paper in a future book or will you make use of your detective talents and start an agency?
Holly: Start a paper, definitely. Being a journalist is like being a detective in some ways except I get to share what I’ve learned with a lot of people instead of just the person who hired me.
Alan: There should be consequences to murderer for this brutal act. Do you intend to prosecute? And inasmuch as the cartel group collectively hurt you too, the same question applies to each member of the cartel.
Holly: That’s a criminal act so pursuing all that would be up to the county court. If I’m called to testify of course I’ll tell what I know. Those crimes should be punished and those people shouldn't get away with anything.
Alan: The Cartel members may be released from incarceration someday. Some might now be incarcerated at all. Do you have any fear they may try to hurt you again?
Holly: Now there’s a scary thought. I wouldn’t put it past them. I think the best thing that I can do is become a person to be reckoned with so they’re less likely to try.
Alan: Are you planning any civil lawsuits against cartel members? You obviously suffered at their hands.
Holly: So much has been going on, I really haven’t thought about that. I’m sure after a while I’ll get angry enough about what they did to want to take action but for now I want to look ahead, not back.
Alan: What will you name your new Bonafides newspaper?
Holly: Good question! You’d think since this is my dream I’d already have a name but I don’t. I have in mind to run a contest and invite people in the community to suggest a name. It would be a good way to get readers invested in the paper.
Alan: Do you think you will be successful if you attempt to convince Rusty to get his law license reinstated and him return to practice? If so, will he be a part in the Rivera land grant case?  Or, do you think Rusty is too close personally?
Holly: I don’t like being told what to do and by the same token I wouldn’t presume to tell Rusty how to manage his career. He enjoys being a fishing guide and he might not be real eager to get back into a suit and tie. But I think he’d be great and I’d certainly support him if he wanted to return to the legal profession. He certainly has gotten me interested in finding out more about the land grant but I would need help.
Alan: Do you trust your brother after all this?
Holly: Oh, poor Tres. He does have some issues, doesn’t he? I’ll always love him, but trust him? I want to be supportive and give him the benefit of the doubt. Let’s say I’ll proceed with caution.
Alan: Most importantly, what will become of Forceps?  Will Forceps learn some new and exciting phrases?
Holly: What a character he is. “Polly want a cracker” might be too much to hope for, but we can try.

February 7, 2014

Author Interview: Alesha Escobar

As part of the Addicted to Heroines blog tour, Alesha Escobar is my guest today. She's answered my questions about the way she writes her stories.

Go to Amazon to see this.
Go to Amazon to see this.
You're young, compared to me, Alesha. When did you start writing, and what prompted you to write?

I started writing at the age of seven. I began with short stories, which I’d also illustrate with pencil and crayon, and it grew from there. 

What really fascinated me about writing was the humor, wonder, and means of expression I could make use of through stories.

You must have a rich imagination to begin writing at such a young age. Some ideas come from day dreams. Have you ever woken with the urge to write down what you remember of a dream?

Yes, several times! I remember reading some advice that you should never turn a dream into a story--but I disagree. Inspiration can come from anywhere, right? Why not our subconscious?

Tell me about your current work, and who’s the heroine of the story.

I recently finished Circadian Circle, the final book of my Gray Tower Trilogy. The heroine is Isabella George, a wizard and spy who’s helping the Allies against Nazi occultists. However, she encounters enemies of her own, and must forge her own destiny before others do it for her. Anyone who loves a blend of history and fantasy, of magic and suspense, will love the Gray Tower Trilogy.

I see that the first book in the series, The Grey Tower, is offered for free on Amazon at the moment. Readers could take advantage of that. Tell me, what makes your spy heroine special, or interesting?

Many of my readers have said that they identified with Isabella and understood her desire for a “normal” life. I think that’s what makes her interesting, because she’s not jumping into the fray the hero--she gradually becomes one by refusing to abandon who she is and what she stands for.

Can you share with readers what to expect when they pick up (or download) your books?

An exciting, action-packed reading experience woven in a story of magic, espionage, humor, and with a dash of romance.

That sounds good--a mixture of real life with a touch of the magical. If you were only allowed to read three more books the rest of your life, which would they be, and why?

The Bible, because I would always want to seek God (and it’s technically a collection of books, so that’s a lot of reading to occupy me). Paradise (The Divine Comedy), by Dante Alighieri, because it is utterly beautiful, and the final lines are magnificent. As for my third, it would have to be something humorous--I love laughter.

You're blessed with a sense of humor. Where can readers find you online?

If you had the chance to invite anyone to lunch (living or dead) who would it be and why?

My mom. I lost her in 2011, and I’d give anything to spend time with her again.

Sad. But loss is part of life. Although we never forget our loved-ones, everyone should appreciate them fully while they are still with us. But back to fiction. Who is your literary hero(ine) and why?

Britomart, from Edmund Spenser’s “The Faerie Queene.” She’s the sole female knight at court, and not only is she brave and virtuous, but she’s also able to prevail against the villains where several of the other knights fail. I truly enjoyed her as a literary character!

I see you love a female character who steps out of the expected role. Fiction takes the reader away from their cares. And you love to write about heroines. What would you do if you could no longer write?

I love making things, whether it’s baking a dessert, stringing together a necklace, or mixing my own hair conditioning concoction. I would definitely get serious about one of these.

Thank you for taking the time to share your thoughts, Alesha.

February 6, 2014

Author Interview: Francene Stanley

Today Francene Stanley shares about heroines, her amazing stories, and the second book in her Moonstone Series: Tidal Surge.

We continue Liliha's story, where her gift of an enchanted moonstone ring starts to take a rather dark turn. Check out what Ms. Stanley has to share about the series, and what her idea of a heroine is.

This interview can also be found at Alesha Escobar's blog.


Author Interview

When did you start writing, and what prompted you to write?

In 2005, after I'd embroidered all the pictures I could possibly use, I started to write poetry. Same thing happened. Too many poems. I published one poetry book but it didn't sell. Then I decided to compose music and use some of my words that way. You can listen to one song I wrote for my first novel, Still Rock Water:

But that's skipping the next step. I had no idea how to market my songs although I've kept a record of all 150 of them. Then, I started to write the story of my life. At least I've got that safe. But then what? I'd write fiction. After online classes and joining critique groups, I honed my skill. I've been writing novels for about eight years now—and loving it. Six books are published two through Solstice Publishing and 4 co-written novels by Double Dragon Publishing. One more has been accepted, and two more are ready to go to the publisher. That leaves one draft to polish.

Amazing! Tell me about your current work, and the heroine of the story.

At the moment, I'm editing The Seashell Effect, the third in the Moonstone Series. Liliha's husband has just been murdered and his mad, former girlfriend has been apprehended. But that leaves Liliha alone again with only her ancient moonstone ring for comfort. You see, the ring sends her into visions where she can help people in danger. Unseen, she enters a complete stranger's mind and whispers advice. She decides to try to contact one of the people from a vision and see how their life turned out. Of course, problems loom.

Liliha apparently has much to endure. What do you feel makes your heroine special, or interesting?

Liliha's naivety makes her vulnerable and prey to all sorts of scoundrels. Her good looks and calm exterior draw them to her. Somehow, through her grief, she has to find a way to make everything right, to help them toward fulfillment and to ensure they learn and grow from their contact.

What would you do if you could no longer write? Say technology was lost and you couldn't use anything we take for granted nowadays.

I love this question because it plays right into my futuristic novels. In the Higher Ground series, the world had tilted on its axis hundred of years ago, fault-lines shifted and the Earth partially flooded. Everything people took for granted was ruined. Survivors relied on their memory and passed down what they could to the future generations. Of course, recollections fade and become twisted. My heroine, Cerridwen, teaches her friends to write each letter of the alphabet with charcoal on rock or a stick poked into the soil. She tells stories to gatherings and spreads the word about past times. I would act the way my characters do.

How fun is that? I'm going to add this to my reading list. I'm already on Still Rock Water and love it. Can you share with readers what to expect when they pick up (or download) your books?

An awareness of the spiritual side of life. The knowledge that nobody is free of faults, and although we strike problems, there is always a way to overcome them. Even the toughest person can find redemption.

Agreed. Thanks so much for stopping by and sharing about your books, Francene! Where can readers find you online?

I write a daily blog and share my views on news items that interest me. Generally, I've experienced something about the subject, be it nature in all its forms on Earth leading to the environment, behavior, society and writing novels. You can see a fresh article each day here. Year 2014:



February 5, 2014

Welcome to the Addicted to Heroines Blog Tour 2014. Today I'd like to introduce you to author Samantha LaFantasie.

Tell us, Sam, have you ever had a dream that you've wanted to turn into a story?
Yes! It just so happens to be Made to Forget.
I've read Made to Forget and that had to be one scary dream. What are you working on now and who’s the heroine of the story?
My current work is Echoes of Memories, the second part of the Nepherium Novella Series. Elsa is still the heroine of this story, only this time, things are much tougher on her and she’s forced into some situations that she has to fight herself out of, literally.
Wow, I've read the first story in the series and I can't imagine things being harder for Elsa. What would you say makes her special, or interesting?
She’s not the damsel in distress, but she’s not a pushover either. Elsa also doesn’t remember much of the past 6 years of her life due to a mysterious accident. She has to overcome that and discover who her friends truly are and more importantly, who her enemies are.
Can you share with readers what to expect when they pick up (or download) your books?
The Nepherium Novella Series are sci-fi/fantasy featuring paranormal elements mixed into our world 240 years into the future. It’s got a very techy feel and moves along in Elsa’s perspective. The story does make use of strong language.
Speaking of a future time, imagine the ability to use technology (computer, pens, pencil, paper, ink, paint, etc.) to write is no longer in existence. What would you do if you could no longer write?
I would shrivel up and die? Produce stories verbally, of course. Probably around a campfire or with my kids snuggled up against me. When there’s a will, there’s a way. 
If you were only allowed to read three more books the rest of your life, which would they be, and why?
Hehehe… I have a brilliant way around this one! First: Dragonlance Chronicles Special three book edition, featuring Dragons of Autumn Twilight, Dragons of Winter Night, and Dragons of Spring Dawning.
Second: Romeo and Juliet by Shakespeare
Third: The book I lost and can’t remember the title too.
If you had the chance to invite anyone to lunch (living or dead) who would it be and why?
Cleopatra, to get the REAL story. And besides, she’s one of the most famous heroines of history.
Now that would be some kind of "ladies do lunch." So, where can readers find you online?

February 4, 2014

Interview with Devorah Fox


When did you start writing, and what prompted you to write?

I feel as though I have been writing all my life. I have a memory of writing a novel in the 3rd grade. It was about a Korean orphan immigrant—not that I knew anything about Koreans, orphans or immigrants at age eight. I also illustrated it and I recall not being able to decide which I liked better, writing or drawing.
Today I do both writing and graphic design. Had I realized sooner that’s indeed what I’m meant to do I wouldn’t have spent so many years doing something else.

Have you ever had a dream that you've wanted to turn into a story?

I don’t recall having a story-idea dream but sometimes I wake up with a name in my head. That’s helpful because I find it a challenge to come up with names for characters.

Tell me about your current work, and who’s the heroine of the story.

My newest release is Naked Came the Sharks, a contemporary thriller of murder and mayhem in the Texas Coastal Bend. Holly Rivera Berry, the heroine, is a late twentyish young woman in San Francisco trying to make her career dreams come true. She returns to her hometown of Bonafides in the Texas Coastal Bend for what she thinks will be a few days to wrap up the estate of her recently deceased father. Instead, she finds herself mired in suspicious and deadly conspiracies.
Now I’m working on The King’s Redress, Book Three in The Bewilidering Adventures of King Bewilliam with an eye to a Summer 2014 release.

What makes your heroine special, or interesting?

In Naked Came the Sharks, Holly’s has lofty aspirations for herself as well as a strong streak of independence. She doesn’t like being told what to do by anyone, even those who are well-intentioned. The combination puts her on a path from which she won’t be swayed.

Can you share with readers what to expect when they pick up (or download) your books?

The common denominator in all my novels is ordinary people triumphing over extraordinary challenges. That’s “ordinary” as in “not superhuman or paranormal.” King Bewilliam of The Lost King and The King’s Ransom obviously isn’t “ordinary” he’s a king. However he doesn’t have special abilities. In fact at the start of the series he doesn’t even have royal status. Both King Bewilliam and Holly Berry rely on their personal strength and commitment to their values and goals to surmount the obstacles that they encounter.

If you were only allowed to read three more books the rest of your life, which would they be, and why?

Joseph Campbell’s The Hero with a Thousand Faces, Julia Cameron’s The Artist’s Way and Gabrielle Rico’s Writing the Natural Way. I learn something new every time I pick up one of these books.

Where can readers find you online?

 What inspired you to write?

The Lost King was inspired by the predicament of a friend whose personal and professional life cratered overnight. He was having a hard time making a comeback and I wanted to write a happy ending for him. That turned out to be a bigger challenge than I had anticipated; I now have Book Three in the series in progress.
Naked Came the Sharks started as group effort with three other writer friends. We all belonged to the same book clubs, the same writer groups, did read-and-critique of each other’s projects. One evening we decided to collaborate on a story. We had the most fun. Eventually we put the manuscript aside and went on with our lives. Two of the four co-authors passed away but they were always on my mind, and so was that story so I picked it up again, put some more work into it and released it so that others could enjoy it.

If you had the chance to invite anyone to lunch (living or dead) who would it be and why?

I’d invite my husband and parents, all long gone. They all saw me as a novelist decades before I ever did. I would love to be able to show them that they were right and to thank them for enabling me to do this.

 Who is your literary hero(ine) and why?

Rebecca from Ivanhoe. Let’s say that was my first literary heroine. Like my heroes, she stood up for what she believed and did the best that she could with what she had. No, she didn’t “get the guy” in the end, but she defended her honor and was true to herself. In many ways, my characters also stick with what they know is right despite the opposition.

What would you do if you could no longer write? Say, for example, the ability to use technology (computer, pens, pencil, paper, ink, paint, ect.) to write was no longer in existence. 

I’m told that sooner or later I’ll develop macular degeneration, so while I still can I am writing as much as possible. I’d like to think that I’d find some other creative outlet but I suspect I’ll just sit around and sulk.

Also posted at:

February 3, 2014

Even though our bags are packed with plasma swords, golden knives, mystical stones and one seriously formidable ballpoint pen, the women of the Addicted to Heroines Blog Tour made it through Security and are off and jetting around the World Wide Web.

OK, maybe those fearsome weapons exist only in our imaginations and the arsenals of our novels’ main characters but the authors, the books and the tour are very real. Meet my fellow travelers Samantha LaFantasie, Alesha Escobar and Francene Stanley. Get to know the feisty indefatigable women of the Nepheriumseries, the Gray Tower Series, the Moonstone series and my very own Naked Came the Sharks. 

Start here at Blog Tour Central. Catch our updates on Facebook. Follow our tweets at #ath1. Be inspired by Elsa, Isabella, Liliha, Holly and a legion of other memorable fictional female heroines on Pinterest. And don’t forget to enter the contest for the giveaway.

Want to make your blog one of our stops? We’d be delighted. Link to us and share our interviews, discussions and guest posts with your readers. See you on the tour!