Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Coffee Shop Conversations: Q&A and a Giveaway with Author Alexandra Hawkins

Hello all you fabulous Dames, and welcome to Coffee Shop Conversations!
On this segment of the blog I will be conducting interviews with Authors, Bloggers and anyone else relative to the literary world and willing to answer my questions. Coffee Shops are great places to just relax, let the hair down and talk about life, love and good books! So without further adieu, let's get to chatting with my special guest:
Author: Alexandra Hawkins
"Alexandra Hawkins is an unrepentant Anglophile who discovered romance novels as a teenager and knew that one day she would be writing her own. In "The Lords of Vice" series, she has combined her love of English history, mythology, and romance to create sensual character-driven stories that, she hopes, will touch readers' hearts.

Alexandra lives in Georgia with her husband and three children. You can visit her website at www.alexandrahawkins.com."Source

Alexandra Hawkins on the web:  Facebook | Twitter | Website | Goodreads 

Alexandra's Latest Release:

Till Dawn With The Devil'
Released 8.3.10 (TODAY)

"Few women can resist a man like Gabriel “Reign” Housely, the Earl of Rainecourt. With divine good looks, delectable charms, and delicious wealth, he would seem to be every marriage-minded mother’s dream match for their daughters. But not so, given the mysterious death of his first wife. Fortunately for Gabriel, he has no plans to seriously court any of the London ladies ever again. That is, until he shares one unforgettable dance with a mysterious stranger…
Exquisitely beautiful though decidedly modest, Lady Sophia usually shuns the festive ballrooms of London society. But when a man who calls himself “Reign” enters her life—seemingly from out of nowhere—and shows her true kindness, her wary young heart begins to melt. Of course, Sophia would be shocked to learn the truth about Reign’s past. But when scandal strikes, this devilish stranger may be her only salvation…"

Book Trailer:

Get Your Copy Today:

RJ:Hey Alexandra! Thank you so much for stopping by for a little chat. Firstly, congratulations on your latest book, 'Till Dawn With The Devil', in stores as of today (August 3rd)! What have the past few months been like; with finishing the book and anticipating its release? What have you experienced emotionally as well as professionally with the completion of this new book?
AH: Thanks for inviting me to drop by, Rita!  The past few months have been busy.  If I wasn’t working on production related tasks for “Till Dawn With the Devil”, I was writing the first draft for “After Dark With a Scoundrel”.  There were also promotional tasks such as updating my website, creating marketing materials, and social networking that needed to be addressed to help get the word out on the series.  There hasn’t been much time for a break between books but all the hard work [h]as been worth it.
RJ: Why don't you tell me and the readers a little bit about 'Till Dawn With The Devil' from the author's point of view?
AH: “Till Dawn With the Devil” is Reign’s story.  Unlike the hero in the first book, Reign has been married and has known loss.  By the time Reign encounters Lady Sophia, it is not surprising that he has more or less given up on love, but he is less mercenary about it than Sin was in “All Night With a Rogue”.

RJ:Where did the inspirations for your plot, characters and setting come from? 
AH: As a reader, I’ve always loved bad boy stories so it was only natural that I would one day want to try to write my own.  The original concept for the Lords of Vice series started out as a Seven Deadly Sins’ theme.  Unfortunately, while I was working on my proposal, another author announced that she had just sold a series based on—yeah, you guessed it-- the Seven Deadly Sins.  I was bummed for about five seconds, but quickly realized that I didn’t have to scrap my entire idea because all I had really lost was a possible name for my series. 

RJ:What challenges or difficulties did you face with the writing of this particular novel? 
AH: For me, it was writing the book under a tight deadline.  I don’t view myself as a fast writer so I had to be very disciplined about my writing schedule. 
RJ: This latest book is the second installment to the Lord of Vice series, the first being 'All Night With A Rogue'. How does it differ from your previous novel and what were you trying to accomplish with this book? Also, do you feel like it's "mission accomplished"? 
AH: In my opinion, “Till Dawn With the Devil” has a distinctly darker tone than the first book, and it also includes a mystery subplot.  Although it is the second book of a series, I wanted the book to stand on its own, and I feel that I have accomplished that goal.
RJ:Lets talk about your Hero and Heroine (Lady Sophia and Reign). What are their flaws and what are their redeeming qualities? Also, why are they attracted to each other?
AH: Readers will discover from the first page that Reign has some trust issues when it comes to women.  After a disastrous first marriage, Reign is convinced that love is a frivolous emotion that not only ruined his life but also his parents’.  Nevertheless, Reign is not a coward.  He is not the type to allow old fears to hinder him from seizing what he wants in life.  For Lady Sophia, her greatest flaw is that she is too trusting, especially with regards to her brothers.  A redeeming quality would be her unflagging spirit.  She has never allowed the tragedies in her life to hold her back. 
As for attraction, I believe Reign and Lady Sophia intuitively recognized that they are kindred spirits in many ways.
RJ: How did your writing journey begin and how did you get here? 
AH: Although I didn’t know it at the time, my writing journey began in my early teens.  Back then, I loved writing poetry and short stories.  Throughout high school and college, I took writing and literature classes solely for the creative outlet.  Back then, the notion of becoming published seemed like a ‘pie in the sky’ ambition.  However, it wasn’t until I decided to quit my day job and stay at home with my daughter that I seriously considered writing a book. 
Initially my goal wasn’t to get published. I just wanted to see if I could actually complete a manuscript.  It took me several years to reach my goal.  By then, I had learned a lot about the publishing industry, and I was ready to take my writing to the next step.  I started submitting to agents, which I found to be a slow process.  My persistence, however, eventually paid off and I secured an agent.  A few months later, she sold my manuscript.
RJ:The writing process differs from author to author. Some are planners, others just jump right in. Some consider themselves night writers, while others need daylight and a park bench or a coffee shop (wink) to set the mood for creativity; whats your writing process and atmosphere like?
Weird Beethoven
AH: I’m not a morning person.  I wish I was, but my creativity seems to kick into high gear at night.  So if I was given a choice, I’d write at night.  Nevertheless, to keep up with deadlines and my kids’ schedules, I’ve learned to be flexible.  
As for my process, I’m a plotter.  Since my editor prefers synopses, the fact that I am a plotter works out for both of us! 
I do like to set the mood.  When I’m working on a first draft, I listen to classical music. 
RJ:Romances has transcended many different sectors of pop culture. I think the Beatles said it best, "All you need is love". This being a Romance Blog, I've got to ask: what are your favorite picks of the following:  Favorite Love Song? Favorite Scent on a man? Favorite Romantic Comedy? and of course, Favorite Romance Novel?  
AH: Favorite love song—Faith Hill’s “Breathe”.  Favorite scent on a man—Polo.  Favorite Romantic Comedy—“There’s Something About Mary”.  Favorite Romance Novel—Tough one because I love so many.  I guess I’ll have to go with an old favorite.  Johanna Lindsey’s “Gentle Rogue”.

RJ: What's coming up next for you (book-wise or otherwise)? 
AH: The next installment in the series, “After Dark With the Scoundrel” will be coming out February 2011.  This is Dare’s story.  The heroine is Frost’s younger sister, Lady Regan.  I’m also working on the plots for the next Lords of Vice books.

RJ: Do you have anything that you would like to address to your fans and the readers? 
AH: Readers can connect with me through various sites. I can be found at: 
I also have a periodic ‘announce-only’ newsletter on Yahoo Groups. 
RJ: Final Question: Name something shocking or interesting about yourself that the readers may not know. 
AH: I met my husband at McDonald’s.  When I was nineteen, I was working as an assistant manager at McDonald’s to help with college expenses, and this gorgeous guy came into the restaurant looking for a job.  It took him six months to work up the nerve to ask me out.  When he did, I told him that I couldn’t date employees so he quit the next day.  Four years later, we were married.
 -Thanks once again to my special guest, Alexandra Hawkins, for stopping by and telling me all about life as an author and her new book!

~*~ Giveaway Details ~*~
Alexandra Hawkins has generously offered to giveaway a copy of 'Till Dawn With The Devil' to one (1) lucky commenter! Follow the guidelines below and comment for your chance to win. The giveaway will run until Tuesday, August 10th, 2010 at 11:59:00. The winner will be announced and contacted on Wednesday, August 11th, 2010.

Giveaway Guidelines:
To be entered in the giveaway, all you have to do is leave a comment! Make sure to include your email! (NO EMAIL= INVALID ENTRY!)

-To get extra entries (do one or more of the following for extra shots at winning. Please specify in your comment which extra entries you are entitled to or I will not count them!):
+2 'Like' Alexandra on Facebook and leave her a nice note on her wall (provide a link in your comment)
+2 'Like' 'the Not Another Romance Blog blog' on Facebook and tell me if you have/are in your comment (there's a like button here)
+4 Spread the word! Tweet on twitter or Share on Facebook about this giveaway (provide a link in your comment)
+5 Be a Follower/ Become a Follower of Not Another Romance Blog (on GoogleFriendConnect) and tell me in your comment

(How to providing links: Just hover your pointer over the time stamp (the-2 seconds ago-words at the bottom of your tweet or wall post), right-click and select 'copy link location' from the menu, then come back here and paste it into your entry comment)...Still having trouble? Email me what you have done and where and I'll do my best to verify.

*You do not have to post separate comments for each extra entry unless you want them in different chronological order. All one comment with a list of your entitled entries is fine.

-Restricted to US residence only (sorry), & No P.O boxes-
To all the readers, be sure to make use of those 'on the web' links above to better acquaint yourself with this fabulous author! This has been great! Good luck to all of the giveaway contestants and I hope all of you have enjoyed this edition of: 


  1. Good interview Alexandra. I really enjoyed it. Although I haven't read your books yet "All Night with a Rogue" is on my list of Books to Read. Your story about you and your husband was like a true love story. Have you thought of using it in one of your books? I am looking forward to reading your book.

  2. Very good interview. Your books look very good! I'll be adding them to my list to get. I love bad boys! One of my favorite books too is a Gentle Rouge that and the Magic of you by Johanna Lindsey. Thanks for sharing with us today!

    Johanna Jochum

  3. wow! great contest!! would love to win this book!


  4. Marilu

    Somehow I missed this series start-up. Your interview makes me want to start at the beginning. Oh goody! More summer reading!

    I have read so many of Lindsey's books I don't remember Gentle Rogue. I think if I had to pick a favorite it might be One Perfect Rose by MJ Putney. I return to that one every so often. Love it!

    Look forward to seven dark and dashing heroes and the heroines who win them.

    Thank you for plotting and plugging away and making it all possible for your readers to enjoy.


  5. Johanna J. gets +4 and +4= 8 extra entries. (if you have problems providing links, just let me know and I'll add-in your extra entries)

  6. I love the story of how you met your husband. I worked at a Burger King for 1.5 years and there were plenty of cute guys that passed through, but I was too shy to take advantage of it.

    +5 GFC follower
    jen at delux dot com

  7. JenM,
    Same here. All the girls were crazy about the new guy so I was determined to ignore him. LOL, we've been married for 22 years. :)

  8. Marilu,

    The first book in the series was published in February so you're not late to the party. :) I'm just happy that St. Martin's has been able to publish the books so close together.

    Mary Jo Putney--Another great author! 'SILK AND SHADOWS' and 'CHINA BRIDE' are two of my favorites.

  9. Hi Toni,

    Although I don't do it intentionally, I'm sure bits and pieces (at least emotionally) do get woven into my books.

  10. Hi Johanna,

    Thanks for 'friending' me on FB!

  11. Great interview - I love the covers on Alexandra's books, too.

  12. Thank you St. Martin's press! In this age when so many books are going digital -- I, a person who loves to read in the bath, am so glad there is still a publisher of the ink and paper variety.


  13. meaghan_koci (at) yahoo (dot) com

    this book looks like fun and i look forward to reading it!

  14. You books sound great!
    lvsgund @ gmail.com

  15. I can't wait to read this one! Congrats on the release, Alexandra! Thanks for sharing that you met your husband at mcdonald's!! Also, I looove the cover for your next book too!!

    Thank you for the contest!!

    +5 i'm a google friend connect follower

    +4 i tweeted here: http://twitter.com/in_the_hammock/status/20591800414

    inthehammockblog at gmail dot com

  16. Hey, I can't wait to get my copy of this book. I've talked with Alexandra on twitter, and I have been waiting for this ever since I finished the first book. I'm looking forward to seeing if she can top Sin's pearl scene.

  17. Silk and Shadows was an *excellent* book. The plot, the characters, the interactions, the writing were all top-rate, definitely. But my favorite MJP is Angel Rogue, an off-shoot of the Fallen Angels series. Oh, Robin! lol

    Okay, so maybe it's just me, but I cannot, just can't, get into Johanna Lindsey. I've tried, really I have! I was told to read certain books and I gave them my all (even finished 2 of them!), but I was beating my head against the table most of the time. In one book, Captive of my Desires, no lie, she said "you stole my virginity" FOUR TIMES. It put my teeth on edge. So... that said... what on earth am I missing about her? WHY do you like Gentle Rogue? What is it about the story, the characters, the writing, ANYTHING, that makes it stand out, not just as good, but as the BEST?

    And just for the heck of it, since I'm posting anyway, thewife@unclewaltersrants.com

  18. I have never read one of your books and now I cannot wait! Thanks.

  19. Best of wishes..Congratulation on your release.. Can't wait to get my copy..


  20. Contest is no closed!
    (no worries Raynell, I'll add your name in the spreadsheet)

    Winner will be announced tomorrow!



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