Thursday, 23 April 2015

Getting to Know the Authors: Featuring Lisa Jensen!

Bio in Her Words:
    I might have been a pirate in a previous life, or else I watched too many old Errol Flynn movies on TV in my formative years.
    My historical/fantasy "Alias Hook," presents the flip side of the Neverland from the caustic perspective of its prisoner, Captain Hook. It will be published by Thomas Dunne Books in July, 2014.
   My historical pirate novel, "The Witch From the Sea," published in 2001, is the first book in a planned trilogy.
    In real life, I'm a film critic for an alternative weekly in Santa Cruz, CA, a position I've held since dinosaurs roamed the earth. I also reviewed books for the San Francisco Chronicle for 13 years, where my specialty was (surprise!) historical fiction, and women's fiction.

What has she written?
She has written Alias Hook by Lisa Jensen!

    "Every child knows how the story ends. The wicked pirate captain is flung overboard, caught in the jaws of the monster crocodile who drags him down to a watery grave. But it was not yet my time to die. It's my fate to be trapped here forever, in a nightmare of childhood fancy, with that infernal, eternal boy."
    Meet Captain James Benjamin Hook, a witty, educated Restoration-era privateer cursed to play villain to a pack of malicious little boys in a pointless war that never ends. But everything changes when Stella Parrish, a forbidden grown woman, dreams her way to the Neverland in defiance of Pan’s rules. From the glamour of the Fairy Revels, to the secret ceremonies of the First Tribes, to the mysterious underwater temple beneath the Mermaid Lagoon, the magical forces of the Neverland open up for Stella as they never have for Hook. And in the pirate captain himself, she begins to see someone far more complex than the storybook villain. 
   With Stella’s knowledge of folk and fairy tales, she might be Hook’s last chance for redemption and release if they can break his curse before Pan and his warrior boys hunt her down and drag Hook back to their neverending game. Alias Hook by Lisa Jensen is a beautifully and romantically written adult fairy tale.

Now on to the Interview!
1) How old were you when you started writing, in your opinion?
I know I was writing stories by the sixth grade, because I recently found some of them that my mom kept. I started writing film reviews right out of college, but I was in my 30s, writing book reviews for the San Francisco Chronicle, when it occurred to me to try to write book-length fiction.

2) What do you want a reader to gain from reading your works?
Every book is different, in terms of theme and intent. But in general, I try to write characters that readers will fall in love with, and want to follow through all their adventures.

3) What are your three top suggestions on becoming an author, or being a pleasure writer?
The only way to become an author is to write. But here are somre hints aboout the process:
Write what you want to read.
Don't let anyone else tell you what, or how to write, or box you into a niche.
Don't get discouraged. Nobody can tell your story but you!

4) What is your favorite novel, why?
A Christmas Carol, by Charles Dickens. It's a model of economy; it takes place in one night, yet encompasses an entire lifetime. And every page is teeming with comedy, compasssion, and life.

5) Who is your favorite author, why?
Dickens, because his scope is so broad; Diana Gabaldon, because her characters are so rich.

6) What are your favorite pass times besides writing?
Reading. (I never have enough time for it, but your own ideas get stale if you don't keep reading!) Drawing. Baking. Movies. I'm a terrible gardener, but I love my succulents!

7) Who in your life do you credit your imagination to the most?
My mom always urged us kids to get out and be ceative. My dad was a great reader. My husband is an atist who inspires me every day. Pick one!

8) What are the top five things on your bucket list?
Um, I don't really have a bucket list—if you mean like parachuting out of a plane, or bungee-jumping over the Grand Canyon. (So, obviously, nothing to do with heights.) But I do try to make the most of every day, because you never know what opportunity might turn up.

9) What is your funniest childhood memory?
My entire childhood was funny—at least, I remember laughing a lot! My family was very upbeat and we always saw the humor in every situation. And we used to do things together, like quizes and crossword puzzles and trivia games, and crack each other up with our answers!

10) To the youth of today, if you could tell them one thing, what would it be?
Be kind, be courageous, find something to do that you love, and never give up on yourself!

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