Friday, April 6, 2012

Interview: Kristen Ashley

I was born a middle class white child in Gary, Indiana, 
USA. One of the last of a dying breed. I nearly killed 
my mother and myself making it into the world, seeing as
I had the umbilical cord wrapped around my neck
 (already attempting to accessorize and I hadn’t
taken my first breath!). Mom says they took me
away, put her back in her room,
she looked out the window, and Gary was on fire (Dr. King 
had been assassinated four days before). She remembered 
thinking it was the end of the world. Quite the dramatic 
beginning.Nothing’s changed.
All I’ve ever wanted to do was write (well, and be the 
Queen of the World, but you gotta start small).
Considering I’m self-published and can write whatever
I dang well please, I do. My writing is all over the place,
I’ve written about Rock Chicks and Hot Bunch Boys
(action, adventure, romance);
 ghosts, reincarnated lovers, genies, vampires and 
werewolves (my paranormal/ghost series); serial killers
and stalkers; and parallel universes.
Even though I jump genres, there is always a theme to my 
books… humor (hopefully), engaging characters (again, 
hopefully) and romance (definitely).
My loves are movies, music, food and fashion and I partake
 of all of them as often as I can (the middle two more than
 the others, the former, which takes time I don’t often have 
and the latter, which takes money I rarely have). In fact,
 I love food so much, I like to share my good fortune so
 I put my recipes on offer for you on this page (see top 
menu and don't miss them, they're awesome!).
I am American but I live in the beautiful West Country 
of England with my two pookies, one is furry and feline, 
the other is less furry and human. I came to England by 
way of Denver, where I lived for twelve years, but I grew 
up in Brownsburg, Indiana. My family was (is) loopy (to 
say the least) but loopy is good when you want to write. 
My Mom moved us in with my grandparents when I was six 
(long story). My grandparents had a daughter much younger 
than my Mom so we all lived together on a very small farm 
in a small farm town in the heartland. I grew up with Glenn 
Miller, The Everly Brothers, REO Speedwagon and Whitesnake 
(and the wardrobes that matched). Needless to say, growing 
up in a house full of music, clothes and love was a good way 
to grow up.
And as I keep growing up, it keeps getting better.
So here I am, thank goodness.

Is There a Message in Your Novel That You 
Want Readers to Grasp?

It depends on which book as I have a lot of messages J
But I would say the prevailing one is that women should 
embrace themselves for who they are, what they look like 
and all the gifts they can give. Nutty, zany, shy, wounded, 
whoever they are, however they act, they should go with
 it and see themselves through those around them who 
love them… have pride in it and own it, proud.

Is there anything you find particularly 
challenging in your writing?

No, not really. Writing comes easy for me.
 I love every second!

How many books have you written and 
which is your favorite?

I have published twenty-nine books. 
I have five more, one complete and due 
out in April, the rest incomplete and coming 
soon.  And I also have a million in the 
hopper which means my head 
(okay, a million is a bit of an exaggeration but close!).

It is impossible to pick a favorite, though. 
That would be like picking my favorite child! 
I’m proud of them all.

If You had the chance to cast your main 
character from Hollywood today, who would 
you pick and why?

I don’t think of my characters as actors, models, 
sports stars because they are very real to me. 
I know exactly how they look (in my head). So this is a 
very tough question. I will say the first time I saw a picture 
of Joe Manangiello (which was before I saw him in True Blood), 
I freaked out because he looked exactly like I pictured Lee 
Nightingale in Rock Chick. So if Joe wanted to play Lee, I 
would not say no. And if Dwayne Johnson wanted to play 
any of my heroes, I would not say no to that either. He 
could take his pick even if he didn’t resemble them, I 
wouldn’t care.

When did you begin writing?

I finished my first book (still unpublished and rubbish!), 
when I was 34 (about ten years ago). But I started 
writing in earnest seven years ago and started publishing in 
earnest about four years ago with my eBooks coming 
out one after the other (as I had a huge back library 
of finished work) last March, 2011.

How long did it take to complete your first book?

Oh goodness! I don’t remember exactly. It took 
months, not years though.

Did you have an author who inspired you to
 become a writer?

No, I always knew I was a storyteller, loved 
writing and knew that was what I wanted to end up 
doing. No one inspired me. That said, I have a 
number of favorite authors. Romance is Judith McNaught, 
her work is heartwarming, her heroes are awesome, 
her heroines spunky and there is a lot of humor in her 
work that I love. She also rounds out secondary 
characters beautifully. I love the Stephanie Plum 
series by Janet Evanovich too but mostly because I adore 
Joe and Ranger. Non-romance, Carl Hiaaison, 
Dennis LeHane and Kurt Vonnegut. My favorite book 
of all time is To Kill A Mockingbird.

What is your favorite part of the writing process?

The beginning. I love it when my characters 
(hero and heroine) meet and feel the connection
 (however that may be) and start to get to know one 
another or start on their path to togetherness. Whenever 
I reread my books, I always get nostalgic when I read 
the beginnings.

Describe your latest book in 4 words.

Hot. Trust. Risk. Love.
 (This is for my upcoming Knight.)

By the way, great question!

Can you share a little bit about your
 current work or what is in the future for 
your writing?

In mid-April I’ll be publishing Knight which will be 
the first in a series of erotic romance. My books are
 quite steamy but I’ll be amping up that steam 
significantly. I’ll be exploring sexuality as pertains 
to relationships and love stories. I also have 
always wanted to write about anti-heroes and this 
will be where I’ll be introducing readers to my bad 
boys J. These will be men who intend to remain bad, 
not find redemption. I was quite anxious about this 
new road as I didn’t want to offend readers so 
for the first time I recruited a team of beta-readers, 
my Team Action, who read with me as I wrote 
Knight. They loved it, were very supportive and 
encouraging and made me feel tons better! I’ve put 
the working chapters out there and the response has 
been overwhelmingly good about this new risk I’m 
taking which makes me very excited. But my readers are
 phenomenal, so warm and encouraging so I probably 
should have expected nothing less. So, fingers crossed, 
folks will embrace it and want more… because I’m 
going to write more.

And I write quickly and am very prolific so the future 
of my writing is lots and lots of books coming your way! 
The end of the Dream Man Series with Motorcycle Man, 
the next in my Ghost Series with Lucky Stars, and the next 
in my Colorado Mountain Series with Chace and Faye’s story.

Then ever onward!

You can contact Kristen via:

Website/Blog: my blog is there and I cross-post 
it on Goodreads.

Twitter: KristenAshley68

Links to Purchase

1 comment:

  1. Great interview! I can't wait for Knight and especially Motocycle Man to come out, I am reading Lady Luck right now and loving it. Your gorgeous alpha males are spoiling me for all other men lol!