Thursday
Jan282016

Author Interview by Ellen Harger

While I have been known to review a book or two, I’m not a reviewer by practice. I enjoy featuring other authors, hosting them to share their words with the world. Interviews are a great opportunity to showcase the work and the writer. My escape genre is mystery thriller, so when a novel promotion request came my way, I offered my space.

Ambiguity

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Allen, give me the elevator pitch of your novel. Twenty-six words or less, why will we read?
Wow! This is one tough question to answer off the top of my head but here goes: “A self-righteous mad man with a gun intent on cleansing the world of sinners may have been brain-washed to cover up a bigger mystery.”

How did you come up with the story for Ambiguity? Was it a kernel that unfurled, or did you get lost in the possibilities?
I honestly believe the story found me. I wanted a platform to explore the story that makes up Ambiguity and a novel seemed like a really good way to do this. I wanted to have characters debate such hot-topic issues as guns, religion and gay rights while at the same time having a deeper mystery for the reader to unravel. It’s a very timely novel and the story encompasses a debate that I think, in my opinion, we’re finally having in the United States. Where do we draw the line when it comes to what are religious rights and individual rights? With Ambiguity I wanted to take this complex question and stir in a very tragic event to be the impetus to debate. I decided to take characters from my novel Bridge Water and combine them with new characters to broaden the debate while at the same time using Detectives Will Jones and Kyle Edgeworth to be a part of the investigation. Their goal is to try to figure out what the suspect’s intentions were and was he influenced by someone else. Is he a fanatic? Is he mentally disabled? I really wanted to show the repercussions of the tragedy from all aspects. In its most basic sense Ambiguity is a story of secrets that will be revealed as the novel comes to a close. I guess you could say that the story of Ambiguity is like a kernel that unfurls. The story starts really hot and with the growing heat the kernel explodes. To me it’s the same as dropping a stone in a pond and watching the ripple expand from the center. I always get lost in the possibilities of a story and thanks to my characters I never knew exactly where the story is going. It makes it even more fun for me, the writer, as it does the reader.

Does your life history influence your writing?
Yes, definitely. I think it helps a story to tap into one’s own personal experiences, to take an emotional experience and express it. I guess, in a way, it’s its own version of therapy. Born and raised in the south I take all of those experiences as well and weave them into my novels. I’ve never taken something from my life and wrote it directly into my novels. I wouldn’t write about a relationship in specific terms but I definitely pull the emotional aspects of my life and use them to write my stories. If the stories in my novels like Snap and Bridge Water were based on my life I would definitely have one eventful and some would say disturbing history! For Ambiguity the comments made by religious characters are actual quotes from people I’ve known over my life. I’m from Ten Mile, Tennessee, which is backwoods country and it shouldn’t be a surprise to many that such opinions remain even today. Ironically most of the things said are things we hear virtually every day on news programs and talk shows.

Any characters based on people you know? Will they recognize themselves?

Well, personality-wise yes, they are based on people I know, but very loosely. Only one character is truly based on someone I know and he knows it as well. I actually discussed the character with him before Bridge Water was published. The character of Erik Layton  is based on a real life person. He has a personality and a quick, dry wit that is just like one of my best friends. But in Ambiguity Erik expresses opinions that are completely mine. It was fun blending my opinions in with a character that will probably be the funniest person that will ever appear in my novels.

What genres would you like to write that you haven’t written in yet?
I definitely want to write in the young adult genre! I think it’s an exciting genre and I would look at it like walking down memory lane. I wouldn’t be opposed to writing a romantic novel though the notion terrifies me. It would be a challenge for me and I love challenges! And to be quite honest the notion of writing a novel in the erotica genre is tempting for the same reasons as other genres would be. It would be challenging and terrifying! One of those areas where I’d hope I could write it and not bore everyone to death! I would have to take it personally if I wrote an erotic novel and people found it boring!

Thank you to Allen for answering my questions.

 

Thursday
Jan282016

ROGUE UNLEASHES JULY 31, 2015!

Allen’s most controversial novel since Snap arrives July 31. Combining elements of mystery and erotica with southern culture, the author explores the taboo of male male sexuality in its rawest form. Sean Tyler becomes every man’s fantasy and indulges every one of them regardless of the damage it could do. Rogue delves into unrestrained sexual desire and the urge to explore the pleasures of being a man.

Sunday
Feb222015

Writing on a Sunday Morning in February

It's been a rough week.

Two ice storms and now heavy rain have made almost all of us shut-ins. It doesn't help that I'm feeling a little under the weather as well. But it's the perfect time to write, right? There's no way that the excitement of snow falling or the dangers of ice laden trees collapsing on power lines could be a distraction. I say that with the most sarcasm I can muster as that is exactly what has NOT been the cause of my lethargic output. I'm moving forward with my brand new project but honestly I could be much further along in the writing had life and death itself not dictated otherwise.

The sudden loss of a dear friend has once again put my life into perspective. I write because I love to write. I don't write with the intention of becoming famous or rich so writing, like other activities in my life, can be set aside for a brief period to focus on things that truly are more important. So while I continue to write sporadically this week as an outlet for my sadness and frustration my focus has been to grieve; to examine memories and cherish the time we all had with a wonderful gentleman.

Mama Gene. I will never forget you!

Sunday
Jan112015

SUPERSTITIOUS ARRIVES 01/11/15!!

I am pleased to announce the publication of my new novel Superstitious today!  The eVersion of Superstitious is available for your Kindle! The paperback edition will be available next week. I'm excited to share this foray into uncharted territory and I hope you love the characters in Superstitious as much I loved creating them. I anxiously await your feedback!

Sunday
Dec072014

Guest Blog for the amazing Brandon Shire

Allen was privileged and excited to offer a guest blog for the website of the talented and amazing writer Brandon Shire. If you haven't had a chance to read it yet here is the link http://brandonshire.com/when-gay-fiction-becomes-a-personal-journey/