April 19, 2014

Hot Off The Press Interview with the authors of Hot Soldiers!

(Reposted with permission from BGillilan's Blog: Hot Off The Press Interview )

Welcome back Ladies and Gentlemen, we have a new interview with the authors of the Hot Soldier Boxed Set.

We will be speaking with all six authors and they will tell a little about their story in the book, their writing experience and their selves.
Please welcome

Kate Baum

Siobhan MacKinzie

Leanore Elliott

Seraphina Donavan

Jamallah Bergman

Charisma Knight

You can find their book on Amazon
ebook $.99
paperback $12.14

Let’s get started shall we?

Q. What is the name of your book?

Seraphina: Hot Soldier Boxed Set, and my story is called Coming Home
Kate: Wrong Girl?
Jamallah: The name of my book is called “The Writer and The Soldier”
Charisma: The Last Tour
Leanore: Angel Watch
Siobhan: Suspicious Minds

Q. Would you give us a quick summary?

Charisma: Watching his entire unit get cut down in Afghanistan has left Sgt. Sebastian McElvoy questioning his sanity and whether or not he deserved to survive. Coming home to the wife he loves, the joy and peace that Rayna gives him fills him with guilt. But Sebastian isn't alone in wondering if the changes in him will allow them to resume their life together. Rayna looks at her husband and sees a man who is a ghost of his former self. Can she save him, and if she does, what will be the ultimate cost?

Siobhan: Jordan Blair is the prime suspect in the death of the man who caused him to lose his leg in Afghanistan – his former sadistic commanding officer. Recently promoted MP, Lt Rachel Carmichael, is in charge of the case and she is sure she has her killer in her sights. But there’s something about the wounded warrior that changes her mind. Rachel is drawn to him in spite of her suspicion. Proving his innocence might just be the first step towards healing…and love

Leanore: Mags Giovanni is a cop, her entire life is dedicated to law & order. Despite being what is considered a Bombshell, she has no interest in dating. Along with her good-looking partner, Max Stoker, they discover a vigilante is wreaking havoc on their beat. She meets Max’s best friend, a mysterious, quiet, sexy man. Rem Tarken is Marine Sniper who runs a YA club called Angel Watch. For the first time in her life? She wants a man to notice her. Yet, he doesn’t. She then, finds she has the wild hots for this marine, yet she feels he may be the vigilante too. Will she find love with him or will she have to arrest him?

Seraphina: Morgan Donnelly is a man in his forties. His whole adult life is spent in the military until an injury forces him out of active duty. He's got to decide whether he wants to be a civilian or ride a desk and send other young men into battle. Morgan is damaged, more emotionally than physically, though his injuries will impact him for the rest of his life... then he sees Lexi, a woman that by all accounts, should be totally off limits to him. She's too young, too sweet and then there's the added complication of him almost marrying her sister two decades earlier. But some things are just meant to be.

Jamallah: Basically it tells of a writer name Ione Finn who, after a good friend suggestion, decides to become a pen pal to a soldier. She ends up corresponding with Sgt. Mark Phillips and over a year they become very heavily involved with each other and eventually they meet in person for the very first time.

Kate: Ernestine “Ernie” Rose learned early on in life from her bitter and angry mother that she didn't need a man to succeed. While she learned those lessons well, they've made for a lonely life. It isn't until Ernie accompanies her extremely nervous friend on a blind date that Ernie discovers there's more than one way to need a man. Sparks fly between Ernie and the blind date's wingman, Chase. He inspires Ernie to do something she's never done before... let go of her inhibitions.

Q. What inspired the story?

Jamallah: I’ve known for years about where you can be a pen pal to a soldier overseas or either you can send a package to a soldier as well. So I thought that wouldn’t it be neat to write a story about what happens when two people become pen pals and what happens during that time.

Kate: I originally started this story to be part of an anthology with the theme of “wrong.”  When the idea of the hot soldier anthology dropped into my  lap, I saw the idea of a woman struggling with her soldier fantasy to add the crazy way she was raised in that men were all “wrong”.

Leanore: Soldiers I have known in my life.

Siobhan: I like strong women and I wanted to explore the possibility of a very “macho” army guy having to deal with a strong woman in authority – especially someone who out-ranked him. And the story itself came from a “what if…” question that would give me that platform to explore it.

Charisma: I’ll have to say the ladies I participated with in this anthology were great inspirations to me. I enjoyed participating with them in the group and really looking forward to doing more projects with them when the time comes

Seraphina: I worked in mental health counseling for a while. It's a brutal job and I am too pathologically empathetic to do it well and survive for any length of time. But while I was counseling, I encountered many men who were former military and who suffered from PTSD. I also encountered wives and girlfriend's who were suffering through the PTSD with their husbands and boyfriends. I felt like I could offer some insight into what it was like, and it was also a healing process for me, to be able to create these characters and give them the happy ending that sometimes eludes people in the real world

Q. Were you ever involved in the Military? Served, Retired, Volunteered, Child raised?

Kate: My husband is a veteran so I consulted with him on some details.
Charisma: No
Seraphina: I've never served, but many people in my family have. We have a long history of that. I'm also dating a man right now who spent many years in the Navy, and it shows. He's very dedicated, very driven. Whether he flourished in the military because he's those things anyway, or whether he became those things because of the military, is hard to say.
Jamallah: No I’ve never been involved in the Military but my granddad was in the Army.
Leanore: Dad was navy… stepdad was navy. I grew up right next to the largest Marine base in the world and have known many, both men & women marines in my life. At present I live almost right on the doorstep of Lackland Air Force base
Siobhan: I, personally, have never served. But I’ve met some wonderful men and women who have.

Q. Do you enjoy working with the other authors of the book?

Jamallah: Actually this is my FIRST anthology book and my first time working with other authors. It’s been something I’ve been wanting to do and I’m so glad to have been able to work with such a great ladies who not only do I call my fellow authors but also my good friends as well.

Charisma: Yes, they are a blast and I hope to do more anthologies with them.

Leanore: Oh, my gosh..YES!!!!

Seraphina: ? I love working with other authors. We all have different styles and approaches, and these are just some fantastic ladies

Kate: I LOVE working with the wicked women’s author group.  Sometimes as an author, it gets lonely since writing can be such an individual experience.  I am finding that working on an anthology project brings incredible camaraderie.

Siobhan: Always. These ladies are uber-talented. I love reading their stories and having mine linked to theirs. It’s like riding on the shoulders of giants.

Q. Can you give us an idea of some of your work?

Leanore: Mostly Erotic Romance of all genres: Western, Paranormal, Time Travel, Suspense, Fantasy, Shifter, BBW & Contemporary

Siobhan: Right now, I have three short stories out in the His Man… Series (His Man FridayHis Man Saturday, and His Man Sunday) with four more still to come. And I have three novels in the works that will be out within the next twelve months

Jamallah: Well right now I have ten books under my belt. I mainly write about Interracial/Multicultural Romance both Contemporary and Erotic. I’ve been publishing with Secret Cravings Publishing since 2011 but I recently just published my 1st self-published book called “Her Chocolate Fantasy” which I am very happy about. Most of my heroines are ‘full figured women’ who a lot of my readers can relate because the majority of what I write about comes from the heart and most of what my heroines go through; my readers have been through in their lives.

Charisma: With a gasp, Rayna McElvoy was jolted awake. She up in bed and turned on the lamp.  Her eyes filled with tears as she picked up the gold trimmed picture frame from the nightstand to stare at her husband’s image. Breathing hard, she placed a trembling hand over her breaking heart. Was Sebastian okay? After experiencing another horrific dream of his demise, she could only hope and pray.

Lovingly, she touched Sebastian’s image with her fingertips, tracing every wrinkle, every line of his stern, masculine face. His intense green eyes gazed back at her. His aquiline nose slanted and fanned into flaring nostrils. She longed to run her fingers through his jet-black hair, which had been styled into a military crew cut ever since he joined the Army.

“Sebastian,” she whispered. Her tears splashed on the glass of the picture frame.

Kate: I have authored the “Girl series” about four best friends that support each other through thick and thin.  My novellas hopefully are complementing that series.

Seraphina: Well, I write a little of everything. It runs the gamut from light hearted romp, sexy office romances, to deep and emotionally charged drama. Obviously the mental health background plays a big role in character development, so it's interesting to see what sort of torture I foist upon my characters from time to time.

Q. Do you have anything planned soon? Books, Events, Signings Etc.

Siobhan: My first novel release will be within the next two months when I releaseWilde Mountain Time, a romantic thriller. This year will also see the release of a two novel series – No Sooner Loved and A Pair of Stairs. I’ll have more information on Facebook as things progress.

Seraphina: In August, I'll be at the Author Reader Convention in New Orleans

Kate: I will be releasing book three of my series, Funny Girl, hopefully within only a few weeks of Hot Soldier

Jamallah: I have a book coming out soon “Gianni” my 3rd book in the Ciprianos of Kellington series which has been highly anticipated since everyone has fallen in love with the Cipriano family.

Charisma: I’m currently working on Book Two of my Raven’s Falls Series entitled Raven and the Rose. I’m also working on Book 2 of my Dragon’s Series, the sequel to The Black Dragon.

Leanore: I plan a 3rd book in my award Winning Nowhere, Arizona Series and a fourth in the Best-seller Velvet Western BBW Series, then 3 more Anthologies.

Q. What was the hardest part of writing a Military book?

Charisma: I wanted to include some scenes while Sebastian was in Afghanistan and that took some research because I have no idea what our military heroes go through. I don’t walk in their shoes and wanted to show Seb’s trials and tribulations.

Seraphina: Just digging into that emotion, that trauma of taking a man who was used to being on the front lines, used to being the go to guy, and then seeing him struggle with limitations and with guilt. It isn't just that they feel guilty for surviving, they feel guilty for complaining. They will compare their injuries to other people's and think they are being weak for complaining, or worse, ungrateful.

Jamallah: Making sure I had my facts straight on certain things

Leanore: The deep emotional scars, and the difficulty of the character reintegrating back into society

Siobhan: I have no military experience other than the few friends I know. It’s not a genre I read which made it very difficult to write. But fortunately, I have a great imagination, friends who had a lot to offer in the way of advice and technical know-how, and access to the Internet. 

Q. What was the hardest part about writing this book?

Jamallah: Even though this is my first time writing about a character that was in the Military, I did have a problem with making sure that when I wrote about the fact that he was a Special Forces Weapons Sergeant. I really didn’t want it to be ALL ABOUT him being a Sergeant, I wanted it mainly to be about their relationship and the fact that this man, who is lying up in a hospital bed is trying to not think about the fact that he’s in a bed and he wants to at least be able to talk with someone who he can be himself with and not just be a military man.

Seraphina: Just coordinating everything. Writing a story, organizing and collaborating and finding time to edit for the other authors and beta read, while still working and doing all the every day stuff. It's always a juggling act.

Leanore: To end the story. It went past the word limit and then kept going. It wanted to be an actual novel and I never intended that. It was supposed to be a short. LOL n fact, it IS the longest short in the Antho

Charisma: Balancing romance and the reality of a soldier. At one point, my story was becoming too dark and I had to catch myself and rewrite while placing some emphasis on the romance of the story.

Siobhan: See the previous answer – this book or any military book!    

Kate: I always seem to struggle with finding the time to write.  I work full time and am a mother so writing always takes a back seat.  I find this frustrating as I have all these ideas in my head that need to come out!

Q. What is something you won’t write about?  (cyborgs, zombies, aliens etc)

Jamallah: Honestly there isn’t anything that I won’t write about, lol. I am willing to try anything once.

Siobhan: I refuse to glorify rape as if it’s a romantic device. I have problems with anyone who thinks that women have rape fantasies. Rape is not sexy; it’s not about making love or having sex. It’s about punishing and controlling someone. It’s about violence. And it does NOT lead to romance.

Leanore: I used to have a list…I didn’t think I ‘could’ write vampires or male on male. That’s just not true. I feel if someone asks me to write a Vampire Male on Male Erotic Romance? I can do it. Leanore CAN write anything, she just never knew it before.

Charisma: Wow, I’ve written about cyborgs and aliens but haven’t tackled the zombie genre yet. 

Kate: I will never write erotica that involves nonconsensual sex. 

Seraphina: I don't see Big Foot in my future. While I have friends who can write about that, crypto zoology just doesn't seem sexy to me.

Q. What is your favorite color?

Kate: It seems to change with my moods.  Right now I’ll say I’m in a “red” mood. 
Jamallah: Cobalt Blue
Charisma: Black
Seraphina: Green
Leanore: RED, always and by far. I have almost flaming red hair too. lol
Siobhan: Cobalt blue – deep, mysterious and peaceful to me

Q. Any favorite animals?

Leanore: Cats and Birds…enemy species
Jamallah: Panda bears….any kind of puppy…..koala bears
Kate: Choosing between my dog or my cat is like choosing one of my children over the other so I have to say BOTH.
Charisma: Cats, they are awesome
Seraphina: Well, I’m a cat person
Siobhan: I’m quite partial to birds of prey – eagles and hawks. But I’ve recently been adopted by the wolf, my current totem animal

Q. What is a place you want to visit?

Kate: I’m a huge history buff but I particularly love the wild west.  My second book,Brave Girl, takes place on a Native American reservation in South Dakota.  I did a lot of research on the area and now I’m dying to get to the Black Hills. 
Charisma: Europe
Seraphina: Just spin the globe and point. I want to go everywhere
Jamallah: Would LOVE LOVE LOVE to visit Italy for a month
Leanore: Paris…Australia, New Zealand, Italy and Greece
Siobhan: I have a deep desire to go live in London, England for a year or so – to get a flat near the theater district and hit every play I can. And I figure if marriage to Tom Hiddleston goes with that, I’m good. 

Q. What is your current favorite television series?

Seraphina: Person of Interest. Jim Caviezel is so hot in that show, I can actually look at him as John Reese and forget that he played Jesus.
Jamallah: Sleepy Hollow…..OMG..I really can’t wait till it comes back on because I am in love with this show.
Leanore: Justified, Touch, The Following, House Of Cards
Siobhan: Hands down, Castle. But I’m also partial to Agents of S.H.I.E.L.DRizzoli and IslesPerception, the Dallas reboot….
Kate: Oh, that one is so easy!  The Walking Dead.
Charisma: The Originals

Q. If you could meet anyone famous from that/those shows who would it be?

Jamallah: Tom Mison, the gentleman who plays Ichabod Crane. I’m sorry but I have a thing for men with accents.

Charisma: Klaus, Elijah, Marcel, and Rebekah. I just love this show, and honestly couldn’t stand The Originals when they were first introduced on the Vampire Diaries. But now, I see the method behind their madness and I’ve just fallen in love with them!

Kate: I LOVE Darrell.  If he gets eaten by a zombie, I will never watch the show again.

Siobhan: Definitely Nathan Fillion. But I’d like to meet Clark Gregg (Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.) because I think Agent Coulson is wicked cool.

Leanore: Oh yes to all of them…Kiefer Sutherland and Kevin Bacon I have met though. (I have a background of working in clubs & restaurants in California)

Seraphina: Hmmm. No. I'd get tongue tied and weird. Maybe Nathan Fillion from Castle (and that little show that wouldn't die, FIREFLY!  Damn you Fox). Nathan and I could nerd out together, watch Star Wars. It would be awesome.

Q. What is your go-to treat?

Jamallah: Grapes or Pistachios
Charisma: Cheesecake
Kate: Anything chocolate
Seraphina: Right now, I'm obsessed with Blood Orange Sorbet. It's so good.
Leanore: Coffee and Chocolate. Both at the same time would be nice too?
Siobhan: When in doubt, a nice mug of hot chocolate with either a peppermint candy melted in it or some lovely peppermint schnapps. Mmmmm….

Q. What are three random things about you?

Jamallah: 1. I’m very shy around people until I get the chance to be comfortable around them
2. I am a big time movie buff….I love movies from the silent era up until the 90’s. I do have a movie group where we either talk about movies we like or I make suggestions about movies.
3. I get along with basically any and every one and I am a friend to the end to those that get to know me. I take my time with my fans and talk and answer questions and listen to my fellow authors when they need an ear. So yeah I’m pretty good that way.

Leanore: Random? Oh wow…I’ve been called: The Book Fairy, Wicked Leanore, The Goddess of Editing, A Knightess is Shimmering Armor, A Book Queen, A Book Slut…And often, just plain ole ‘Wicked’…But I have NEVER been known as being anything NEAR “Random”….*wicked chuckling inserted here*

Charisma: I’m a cover artist, aspiring web designer and entrepreneur.

Siobhan: 1. I’m still madly in love with Tom Hiddleston and I would love to have at least one dance with him. Just so I can stare into those beautiful eyes and dance in his arms. Heaven!
2. I am a devout Deist, with leanings toward the Pagan. I follow a mostly Celtic path with some Asatru leanings.
3. Writing is more than just my passion – it’s my sanity. When my life is screwed up beyond all measure, for whatever reason, writing helps me stay sane and on an even keel. It also takes all that stuff out of my head so that I can put more literary stuff in there. I get to share my passion and my fantasies. Does it get any better? I think not.

Seraphina: I read tarot cards. I have three tattoos. I have 7 cats. Yes, I know. I hate chick flicks. I refuse to watch movies that will make me cry. 

1)    I live in New York but grew up in Chicago.  I have the most obnoxious Midwest accent.  Even after living here for 11 years, people still ask me where I’m from.
2)   One of my favorite things to do is visit haunted places. 

3)   I guess number two relates to number three.  I am a school librarian.  One of my popular library programs is telling ghost stories.  When the bell rings, many of my students are too scared to even leave their seats. 

I hope you enjoyed the interview. For more information regarding these authors, please find them on Facebook where they are all friends.

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