The Mistress of Pennington's Tour

Monday, 13 September 2010

Guest Blogger Interview-Alison Chambers

Welcome to my blog, Alison! I so enjoy getting to know other Wild Rose Press writers I have spoken to. Can't wait to learn more...

What is your writing routine?

There’s nothing hard and fast about it. I write when I want to, when I feel the urge. Though I do try to write three double-spaced pages a day; five thousand words a week is optimal. That way you can have a book finished in six months and then allow a few more months for editing. I also need to find time for promotion so I spend a few hours a day doing that, preferably in the morning.

2) Which author/s inspire you to write?

I started reading mysteries and thrillers, first Nancy Drew stories as a girl, then mysteries by Mary Roberts Rinehart and thrillers by Alistair MacLean. As I got older, authors like Mary Stuart, Danielle Steel and Barbara Taylor Bradford inspired the romantic side of me. Today, I enjoy Clive Cussler, Douglas Preston and Lincoln Child and Dan Brown.
In romance, I like Christina Dodd and Kat Martin.

3) Which is your favorite romance subgenre to read? To write?

Romantic suspense, without a doubt, on both counts. The intrigue of the mystery blends with the excitement of the romance and creates a good, well-rounded story. I think it helps give the characters more depth when you show their romantic sides. And they’re hard to write because you are essentially telling two stories, layering one on top of the other.

4) How do you deal with criticism/rejection?

It’s never easy but if you choose to give up, what have you gained? It helps to realize that all of the top authors received a lot of rejection and bad reviews at one time and they didn’t quit. You just have to have a thick skin about it. You can even learn from the negative comments when you can stand to read them. The constructive criticism can help.

5) What do you expect from an editor?

Editors can help reshape the story so it’s the most powerful, can find the weak spots and the mistakes. Editors make you a better writer.

6) Tell me about your latest release

“The Secret Sentinel” is part “National Treasure,” part “Romancing the Stone.” It’s the treasure hunt of a lifetime!

7) Tease us with a blurb or short excerpt

Three lost keys to untold riches. Three cryptic rhymes. A secret society's deadly plot.When museum curator Savannah Rutledge steals her father's treasure map to impress her boss, Winston Gale, and his handsome son Eric, she unleashes a Pandora's box of horror. Her father is killed and she is framed for murder. To atone for her father's death, she sets off on a cross-country chase for the treasure that ends with a dangerous showdown in the Superstition Mountains near Phoenix. To get there she and a sexy stranger, Antonio Desada, follow a perplexing trail of clues that lead them to the keys that will unlock the mystery. Constantly moving, they must elude the police and the vicious Gales, hot on their trail once they realize they're missing a critical part of the map. Seductive and mysterious, Desada also provides the keys to a treasure of another kind. Will Savannah find the treasure—and love--before it's too late?

8) Which is your favorite character in the book? Why?

I love Savannah the best because she was presented with a terrible problem in the beginning. Her father was murdered and she believes it’s her fault. She resolves to avenge his death against overwhelming odds.

9) What is next for you?

My next book throws two opposite types together into the jungles of Belize—the stars of two top TV reality shows—in search of Montezuma’s lost gold.

10) What are you working on right now?

I’m working on a story about a search for the mysterious Virgo Stone. Both new books are in the same vein as “The Secret Sentinel”, part “National Treasure,” part “Romancing the Stone,” two of my favorite movies. A reviewer said she hoped I’d make a series out of “The Secret Sentinel” so I am in the process of doing just that.

11) Your biggest piece of advice to aspiring novelists?

Never give up, keep reading and learning and trying. That’s all that matters. And read and write what you enjoy.

12) Where can readers find you?

Visit me at “The Secret Sentinel” is available from Thanks for having me Rachel!

Great having you, Alison! I agree with so much you have said, we work with the same 5,000 word goal a week, love romantic suspense and believe the same things about editors, LOL! Alison is waiting to hear from you, folks!


  1. That's great to know we think alike Rachel! Alison Chambers

  2. What a great interview....Always nice to read about other authors.

  3. You have a great name, Savannah, my character in the Secret Sentinel is called Savannah...

  4. HI Rachel and Alison!

    Alison I am totally with you on Nancy Drew, Dan Brown, and Clive Cussler!

    I am impressd that even though you write "when the mood strikes you", you still put out a consistent number of pages each day/week. I wish I could do that...but real life always seems to get in the way.

  5. It seems to work out better that way than if I try to force it.

  6. I enjoyed your interview. My writing schedule is shot to pieces, so I may try your way and see if I can 'catch up'.