Friday, October 21, 2011

AUTHOR ALYSON REUBEN STOPS BY + GIVEAWAY

Please welcome fellow The Wild Rose Press author, Alyson Reuben to the blog. Alyson has graciously offered a free pdf of BEAUTIFUL CAGE to one lucky person who leaves a comment. Please remember to include your email address!
The many faces of Alyson Reuben
Caroline: I love the montage of photos above. Great shots. Readers love to get to know authors. Please tell us about growing up.


Alyson: I’m the oldest in my family. You know those ugly stories that younger siblings tell about the oldest? Well, we have our share of those. Especially coming from my brother, Dereck, two years younger than me. He swears I led him around on a leash and made him do my bidding. Swears I intentionally got him into trouble, then stood back and laughed. Is any of that true? Of course not… but do you really think I would tell if it was? LOL My baby brother, Brandon is eleven years younger. I babysat him while my parents worked, so our sibling relationship is different from most, simply because there’s an element of nourishing that is more of an exception than the norm.

We grew up together in Brown County, Indiana, known as ‘little Tennessee’, a very rural, beautifully scenic area of Indiana. We moved to our current small town when I was a teenager, and although we’ve all moved away a couple of times, we find ourselves right back here again.


Caroline: I babysat for my brother who's just over ten years younger than I am. Were you the shy kid or the tomboy? Share anything that lets readers get to know the real you.


Alyson: Growing up in the country, I was a happy medium of princess and tomboy. I could make mud cakes and play with toads as easily as any boy. At the same time, I loved my dolls, collected 36 of them, and rotated their names on a list that hung from my wall, taking whichever doll was next on the list with me wherever I went. So I guess you can say I’ve always believed in diplomacy, fairness, and equality. Ha! And this attitude has carried over to my ten-year old daughter, who owns a gazillion Barbies and takes turns playing with them all!


 Caroline: I was a tomboy/princess also. Best of both worlds, right? When you’re not writing, what’s your favorite way to relax and recharge? Hobbies?

Alyson: When I’m not writing, I’m usually spending time with my fabulous family. But I do have other hobbies. Lots of them, in fact. Besides being an author, I’m also an artist. In fact, I thought at one time that I would pursue art as a career, but later changed my mind. I love to sketch and paint. Sometimes I paint wall murals. I also enjoy sewing and quilting. Antique shopping is high on my list. There are so many ways to use, refurbish, or reconstruct the vintage goodies I find. Touring old houses is another hobby — I like to visit and learn about them (they provide excellent settings for my stories, also). Reading is probably my best way to relax. Unfortunately, I don’t do it as often as I used to, since I became seriously involved in writing. However, I’ve recently committed myself to reading someone else’s book for at least an hour a day, which usually ends up being longer. While reading, I like nothing more than to curl under a warm blanket with a cup of hot tea or coffee at my side. Sometimes, my cat Benji settles on my lap to join my peaceful escape.



Caroline: Sounds as if we have a lot in common. Describe yourself in three or four words.

Alyson: Four words that describe me: Passionate, scatterbrained, loving, eclectic.

Caroline: Tell us something about yourself that would surprise readers.

Alyson holding a copy
of BEAUTIFUL CAGE
Alyson: I have directional dyslexia. I can’t distinguish my directions — not even left from right — without pausing to think about it very carefully. A handy trick I’ve learned is to form an ‘L’ with my thumb and index finger, indicating my left. Embarrassing, but totally true.


Caroline: I know others with that problem. Would you like to share any guilty pleasures that feed your muse?


Alyson: Guilty pleasures? Does excessive coffee-drinking and eating chocolate and pretzels count?

Caroline: Eating chocolater a guilty pleasure?  Of course not! Chocolate is a necessity. Are you a plotter or a panzer?

Alyson: I’m a little bit of both. For the detailed historical parts, I have to rely on research and careful planning. But for the human interaction and romance scenes I’m totally a panzer!

Caroline: Tell us about your writing schedule. Do you set goals? Do you write daily?


Alyson: Yes, I set goals. I try to finish a rough draft within a certain time frame. Sometimes I make the deadline. Other times I don’t. But I’ve discovered that I can’t rush my stories too much.


And, yes, I write every single day. I write at crazy hours. I write in my sleep. Well, not really. But I do dream about characters sometimes. And I often wake up at absurd hours to jot down inspired scenes.


Caroline: What is it about a lot of us writers who keep late hours? What long-term plans do you have for your career?


Alyson: My long-term plans? I may have to write one or two more books before making it to the NY Times Bestseller list. Just kidding.

Making it to the top of the shining list has never been my number one priority. My first one goal is to tell the best story I can, and to leave my readers with lasting impressions of the characters and their story. To me, that’s what being an author is all about. I hope to continue sharing my stories for the rest of my life.


Caroline: Well said. Would you like to tell us what you’re working on now?


Alyson: I’m currently working on two stories at once. The sequel to A BEAUTIFUL CAGE, tentatively called A BEAUTIFUL TEMPEST. It centers on Rebecca’s American cousin Anna Bloomberg and Holden Ellsworth, an American soldier fighting in WWII Italy. Also, I’m writing a story that’s very different from my others. I consider it women’s fiction. In CASTLES WE BUILD, set in the roaring twenties, Julia finds herself in the impossible situation of being married to her second husband, a wealthy Industrialist, when her first husband, supposedly dead in WWI, returns for her.


Caroline: Both sound intriguing. What advice would you give to unpublished authors?


Alyson: Most important - keep writing! This sounds simple, but most writers know it isn’t as easy as it sounds. Don’t let anyone discourage you. Especially those who are closest to you. Criticism or a sense of disinterest coming from family and friends can be crippling— but only if you allow it to be. Also, in between writing, build your internet presence by blogging and participating in author/reader events.


Caroline: Oh, yes, building your brand is necessary. Tell us about your latest release.


From The Wild Rose Press
Alyson: A BEAUTIFUL CAGE

Wanted by the Gestapo, Rebecca Bloomberg is on the run for her life. Sheltering in the home of a reporter who writes absurd lies for a Nazi propaganda newspaper is hardly an ideal solution. Irresistibly drawn to the man, she dares not trust him, until she discovers his journalist position is a mask for involvement in an anti-Nazi resistance ring.

Gustav Von Furst has done all he can to perfect his mask. Neither his family nor his close friends know the truth. Hiding a Jewish girl is the most foolish risk, yet there is something about her that makes him want to protect her.

Eager to forget the outside world, Rebecca and Gustav are caught up in a private world of forbidden passion—until unexpected danger lands on their doorstep and they’re faced with a decision that will change everything. Will love demand a sacrifice too great to give?

Caroline: That sounds exciting! World War II and the Nazis are so important in our history, but many young people know almost nothing about either. Can you give us an excerpt?

Alyson: Here's the excerpt:

Splaying his hands across her bottom and mid-back, he pinned her tight.

She froze, motionless, staring up into his shadowed face, into eyes that glittered in the low light. How did he manage to look both irritated and roguish at the same time?



“Let me go, I—” But the words were smothered in her mouth as his lips plunged down over hers. She pushed at him, but he was unmovable. And with each passing second his lips ravished hers, she grew weaker, reserves fading. Even while she thumped his shoulders with her fists, her traitorous mouth opened wide for him.


At what point had she started losing control of her life? Was it when she lost her family? Lost James? When she was assaulted in the alley? Or when it was decided she must stay inside the von Furst home?


Well, there were some things she could still control. And this was one of them. With that resolve, she shot up on tiptoe, angling to bite his lips, digging her fingers into his back. She was going to take control of this kiss, dammit, whether Gustav liked it or not.


Caroline: This sounds like a timely book. As I mentioned earlier, I believe it's important the world remember the Holacaust. Where can readers find your books?

Alyson: Buy links:


Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Beautiful-Cage-Alyson-Reuben/dp/160154958X/ref=sr_1_1ie=ITF8&qid=1319007144&sr=8-1



Barnes & Noble: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/a-beautiful-cage-alyson-reuben/1105584348

The Wild Rose Press: http://www.thewildrosepress.com/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=176_145&products_id=4606

My author links:
website: http://www.alysonreuben.com
blog site: http://www.abiteofreubensandwich.blogspot.com
twitter: http://twitter.com/#/alysonreuben
facebook: http://www.facebook.com/pages/Alyson-Reubens-Author-Page/107423069337260
Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/5171065.Alyson_Reuben

Caroline: Alyson, thank you very much for sharing with us today. I can hardly wait to get my copy of A BEAUTIFUL CAGE and start reading!

Alyson: Thanks again for inviting me to on your blog!

Remember that Alyson is giving away a free pdf. of A BEAUTIFUL CAGE to one person who leaves a comment and email.



Prizes! Fun! Join In!
Please join me Monday when the Spooktacular Blog Hop begins, sponsored by the blogs "I'm a Reader, Not A Writer" and "I'd Rather Be Reading." From October 24-31, comment on any of over 400 blogs to be entered in a drawing on each blog. Click on the graphic at the top right sidebar to see who's participating. Winners will be announced on November 1-2. My blog will be offering a free pdf of one of my books (winner's choice) each day during the Blog Hop. And my giveaway includes International participants.
Readers, thanks for stopping by!

19 comments:

Alyson Reuben said...

Thanks so much for having me as a guest today, Caroline!! I'm glad to be here :)

Jannine Gallant said...

You mean there's a name for why I say left and point right!! Great interview, Alyson. I love the premis for your WIP - as if having one husband isn't trying enough at times. Your poor heroine has to deal with two! LOL

Alyson Reuben said...

Ha! Yeah, Jannine, there's an actual name for it. And I think there are more of us that suffer from it than meets to eye ;)

Glad you like the story idea for Castles We Build! LOL You are SO right! Being stuck with two husbands is a real ordeal!!!

Justen said...

I absolutely love this. How great to really get to know the author's we so love to read! I've been fortunate to read A Beautiful Cage and marveled over Alyson's art work. Equally amazing in both departments. I'm really looking forward to the sequel to A Beautiful Cage. Coming soon I hope!

Susan Macatee said...

This sounds like a great story, Alyson! And I'm always on the lookout for great books to fill my Nook.

I was a tomboy/princess growing up too. Hung around with my brother's friends, but also had a slew of Barbie dolls. And I also thought I'd end up with a career in art, even considered art college--until I discovered my passion for writing.

Best of luck with your book! The cover's beatuiful!

Alison H. said...

Hi Alyson! What a great interview - I enjoyed learning so much about your background and writing. I've never heard about directional dyslexia (but it explains a lot).

Alyson Reuben said...

Thanks, Justen, for being one of my best supporters!!! Yeah, I love to be a guest on blogs so people can get to know the real me behind my stories ;)

Alyson Reuben said...

Wow, Susan, it sounds like we have a lot in common! I know what you mean about your passion for writing overshadowing your a potential career in art. Do you still do art as a hobby?

I hope you get a chance to read A BEAUTIFUL CAGE!

Alyson Reuben said...

Ha, Alison! Yeah, I used to just think it was me with this problem, but then I did research on it and discovered that it's really a 'condition'. lol

Thanks for stopping by! You're always so nice and supportive :)

Calisa Rhose said...

I'm so anxious to read your book Alyson! Loved getting to know you better.

Margaret Tanner said...

Hi Alyson,
Great interview. Your story sounds great. Love the world War 2 setting and your extract really grabbed me

Regards

Margaret

melora said...

Ha, I had a bunch of barbies too, but I tended to favor maybe 2-3 and the rest were chopped liver, poor things. I am amazed though, that you could remember all of their names!

Beautiful Cage sounds interesting, I'm putting that on my TBR pile.

melorabrock {at} gmail {dot} com

Alyson Reuben said...

Thanks, Calisa!!! I hope you get to read it soon, and that you love it!

Alyson Reuben said...

So glad you like the excerpt, Margaret — thanks! To me, there's just something about WWII that's fascinating, and I have to write about it:)

Alyson Reuben said...

LOL, Melora! Oh well, at least your favorites were well-loved!

I'm so glad you're adding A Beautiful Cage to your TBR pile! I hope you fall in love with Gustav and Rebecca's story :)

Alyson Reuben said...

Please stay tuned to find out the winner of the free ebook...

Darlene said...

Please enter me in the draw, and thanks for the giveaway!

darlenesbooknook at gmail dot com
GFC (Darlene)

avalonne83 said...

Great giveaway! I'd love to be entered.

Please count me in. Thanks,

avalonne83 [at] yahoo [dot] it

Vinci said...

Greetings:
follow your well designed blog by
gfc as dayleb - vinci.
email subscriber too,
dayle b at telus dot net
Would like to enter your amazing
sounding books.
Thanks for the spooky giveaway