by Josanna Thompson
GENRE: Historical Fiction / Romance
Sarah Campbell is a rarity among women in her time. Raised by her Scottish father and the natives of a remote island in the South Pacific, Sarah and her father embark on a perilous journey to Scotland. Their crew betrays them and murders her father for the purpose of selling Sarah into slavery. She is rescued by an unlikely hero, Hassan Aziz, the most feared pirate on the Barbary Coast. She quickly discovers that she is unprepared for the complex world that is suddenly thrust upon her. Sarah must find a way to survive in a world that intrigues and terrifies her.
“Explain it in a way that she can understand,” Hassan shouted. “I want her to understand your treachery. Tell her now, or I will cut off your ears, your nose, and every part of your body until you confess your sin.” While several of his crewmen held Emile steady, Hassan pressed his saber against the doctor’s ear. “This is your last opportunity to confess,” he warned as he pushed his saber deep enough to draw blood.
Beads of sweat rolled down Emile’s forehead. “I deceived you, Sarah.” His voice quivered as he spoke in English. “We intended to murder your father when we decided to give you passage to France.”
“What murder?” Sarah asked.
AUTHOR Bio and Links:
Josanna Thompson is the author of A Maiden’s Honor and The Woman from Eden series. She has lived in many different places in the United States, including the Southeast, the Midwest, California, and the Northeast. When she is not writing; she enjoys traveling, exploring, and scuba diving.
Where are you from? Tell us a little about yourself!
Hi there! I’m Josanna Thompson, I was born in Georgia and spent the first part of my life as a nomad. I’ve lived in Ohio, Missouri, Illinois, Washington, DC, Virginia, California, and Pittsburgh. My nomadic life came to an end when I married the love of my life. We lived in Michigan for a few years, got tired of our jobs and moved to New England. We love this part of the country and have lived here ever since.
Anyway, my husband gave me a precious gift when he encouraged me to become a full time writer. I’m thrilled to say that I released A Maiden’s Honor to the world last October, and I have many more stories to tell.
I’m also a passionate historian who loves to dig in and learn about the people and cultures from long ago. An avid traveler, I’ve been fortunate to visit many of the places in my stories. Exploring magnificent places like the Alhambra and the Topkapi Palace in Istanbul have helped me to bring my settings to life.
When I’m not writing or traveling, I live a quiet life with my husband. I also enjoy cycling and scuba diving.
Tell us about your book? How did it get started?
I’m going to preface this by saying that it’s not in me to write a simple story, although I’ve tried. A Maiden’s Honor is no exception. The seed for this was planted after reading a steamy romance set in the Ottoman Empire. Ok, the story wasn’t great, but I was fascinated by the setting. Finding a protagonist, Sarah Campbell was a challenge. She took many forms until I discovered Paul Gaugin’s journal of is life in the South Seas. I was fascinated with this insights into the Polynesian people. The more I learned about them, the more Sarah Campbell’s character and her story came into focus. Somewhere down the line, I began to write A Maiden’s Honor.
How do you create your characters?
Most of my characters some to me in the most unexpected ways. They whisper in my mind, and they tell me their stories.
Where do you write? Is there something you need in order to write (music, drinks?)
I have a laptop, and I can write anywhere. When I’m at home, I sit in a comfortable wing-back chair in my family room. I must say that I have the best summer office in the world! I sit on our porch behind our house. I set up two hummingbird feeders which are frequently visited even when I’m sitting a few feet away from them. We also have a large stone water feature. It’s heavenly listening to the sound of moving water while I’m writing. Our back yard is also wooded. Every once in a while I’ll see a deer or two. I’m always sad when I have to say goodbye to my hummingbirds and move back indoors because of cold weather. I always look forward to working outside, especially after the last winter snow melts.
How do you get your ideas for writing?
My ideas come from a number of sources, including novels, and some come from reading straight history.
Many of my ideas come from spin-offs from my primary stories. I’m currently writing the sequel to A Maiden’s Honor. I have ideas for at least a half a dozen spin-offs centering on the minor characters, especially those who are in desperate need of redemption and deserve a second chance.
What do you like to read?
I love reading historical fiction, the meatier the story, the more I will love it. However, I don’t read a lot because I don’t want to steal ideas from other authors. I also want to keep my own story ideas original.
What would your advice to be for authors or aspiring in regards to writing?
I’m going to refrain from telling aspiring writers to keep writing. That’s a given. This is the advice I wish someone had given me while I was writing A Maiden’s Honor.
- Start building a following now.
- Build a presence on social media. I’ve made a lot of great friends on Facebook and am starting to build relationships on Twitter too. I wish I had done this sooner. The friendships that I’ve made on FB has provided an invaluable support system. We encourage each other. More importantly we cross promote each other’s books. If you do it right, you will create a small army of readers and reviewers. This is vital for releasing your first book.
- Also check out FB chat groups for your genre. Get involved in the conversations. It’s a lot of fun too.
- If you don’t have one already, start a blog, and do guest blogs when you get the chance.
- Never stop learning about marketing. There’s a lot of resources out there. I also started a Book Marketing FB group, called, wait for it – The Book Marketing Forum. It’s packed with useful marketing articles.
Anything else you’d like to share?
Thanks for hosting this blog stop. I had a great time.
GIVEAWAY INFORMATION :
Josanna Thompson will be awarding a $25 Amazon or Barnes and Noble GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour.