Today I have the lovely Angela Christina Archer talking about her historical novel
"The Woman on the Painted Horse".
Living in a small town in Oklahoma with my husband and two daughters, I spend my days enjoying the outdoors with my family and chasing around two horses, four goats, six chickens, a dog, and two cats. I live life on a farm, milking goats, collecting eggs, and cooking and baking from scratch. It's hectic, at times, but I wouldn't have it any other way.
Growing up, I always wanted to write a novel. I never believed I could, though, so every time the desire flickered, I shoved the thought from my mind. Burying it deep down and ignoring it until one morning I awoke with the determination to finally follow my dream.
(1) What actually inspired the writing of your novel(s)?
Honestly, I have no clue. When I started toying with the idea of writing (something I had always wanted to do, but never thought I could), I knew I wanted a story with William and Alexandra, I just didn't know what their story would be until I started my research.
(2) Alpha or beta hero – profession/title/rank?– brief description!
William is definitely an alpha hero, but in a very lovable way. I tried to give him a few flaws because perfect can be boring, which he is not, but he doesn't have so many that he wouldn't be loved. Protective, driven, down to earth, he knows what he wants and will fight for it.
(3) Can you describe your heroine’s personality- title/rank?– description!
Alexandra can annoy a little, and yet draw you into her world all at the same time. She is every bit a young lady, but also a seventeen year old who has moments of weakness followed by moments of an inner most strength that gives her a poetic beauty, blending softness and harshness all at the same time.
(4) Are there secondary lead characters with important roles?
While most authors would probably tend to say their lead characters are their favourite characters, I have to admit that mine is John, Alexandra's brother. When I first wrote him, he was mean, arrogant, and I fought with him daily. I didn't like him and he didn't work well at all. When I finally had the light bulb moment to change him into a kind and caring person, he flourished, and he lights up every scene he is in.
(5) Where is the novel (s) set? – time-frame – country etc.
Montgomery, Alabama in 1861.
(6) What is it about your chosen era/periods that you most enjoy?
I've always loved the Civil War era. I don't know why, I just have. Although, I will say in writing in other time periods, I have discovered other eras I equally love. I just love history and diving into research is probably my favourite part of the process.
(7) Which if any of your characters do you dislike, and why?
I wouldn't say that I dislike any of my characters, but I would say there are a few I really don't know very well. Although, I developed each one as I should, I never spent a lot of time with Alexandra's parents.
(8) Do you avoid sex scenes, gross violence or other in your works?
I would love to say I avoid sex scenes since I can't stand writing them, but it's a romance, so I had to have a few in the novel. They are not explicit, though, very behind closed doors. I don't have much violence in the novel, either, however, dealing with slavery, I did have a few scenes that I've been told were hard to read. Not because of the details I wrote, but because of the realness in the issue at the core.
(9) How would you rate your novel – historical fiction, romantic fiction, tear-jerker, emotional drama, swashbuckling adventure, or...?
Historical Romance. I think one of my reviews says it all. "Debut author, Angela Christina Archer, took me back to a genteel age which is now an all-but-forgotten era, Southern life in the mid 1800's and the build up to the War Between the States. I was vested in the story early on, and the author's voice kept me turning the pages to find out what happened next. I especially love how this author handled major issues of that time (which are still issues in today's world) of slave runners, mixed racial relationships, and how those Southern attitudes and traditions throttled so many--yet, they persevered."
Back cover blurb:
Alexandra Monroe is a slave smuggler, smuggling slaves north to Tennessee where they can live as free people. Her crime is sedition and her punishment, if caught, is death. The daughter of one of the wealthiest men in Montgomery, Alexandra lives a life not by her own accord, but a life she willingly accepts for her secret quest to save the lives of slaves. Her ultimate sacrifice is to marry the town's most eligible bachelor, Thomas Ludlow.
One afternoon, Alexandra comes face to face with handsome William Graysden. He captivates her, and her thoughts confuse her. Born a Creek Indian, not only is William forbidden because of his race, but also because Alexandra is a closely betrothed young woman. William and Alexandra fascinate one another, finding in each other a bond they don't wish to ignore. After a series of events; however, William is forced to face the choice to continue the dangerous pursuit of Alexandra's affections or forget about her.
THE WOMAN ON THE PAINTED HORSE weaves through the social disparity in Deep South 1861—a time where blackmail, money, and greed could be more powerful than love.
Author web site/blog/s.