Monday, March 22, 2010

Chatting with Lisa G. Riley and Roslyn Holcomb




Lisa G. Riley
Biography


Author Lisa G. Riley’s work has been called “character and issue driven; exciting, passionate and thought provoking.”  The author of several multicultural novels and stories, Ms. Riley writes in several genres including romantic suspense, erotica and paranormal. Her latest story, Do Me Right, is an erotic contemporary suspense novel available at www.loose-id.com on April 6th, 2010.  Her first foray into historical paranormal romance, Given, was written with Roslyn Hardy Holcomb and is also available at www.loose-id.com.  Ms. Riley resides in Chicago where she is hard at work on her next project, Give Yourself to Me, a paranormal erotic contemporary set in New Orleans. Please visit her at www.lisagriley.com or at www.lisagriley.wordpress.com 


Roslyn Hardy Holcomb, is the author of the best-selling novel Rock Star. Her most recent books are Pussycat Death Squad, Morning Star and Santa Baby which are available from Loose Id. She was born in North Alabama and has had a disparate career and varied interests. Her lifelong devotion to needle arts led to a stint on the editorial staff of Oxmoor House, the publishing division of Southern Progress, Inc. where she wrote instructional copy for craft publications. Regular volunteer work and a passion for child welfare inspired her to leave that field to pursue an advanced degree and a career in social service. Specializing in teens and adolescents she worked at Job Corps and in the Independent Living unit of a child welfare agency, where she helped teen foster children transition into self-sufficiency. Shortly after her young son was born, she decided to become a stay-at-home mother and pursue a writing career fulltime.

33 comments:

Dyanne said...

Good morning Lisa and Ros, Welcome. I have to tell you both that your writing as a team is a flawless operation. Most excellent.

This is a surprise for the readers I've invited. The first person besides the three of us to post will automatically get a $5.00 Amazon gift card.

Dyanne

A.M. Wells said...

Good Morning, Dyanne and welcome Lisa and Ros

Read the except you posted to Dyanne's group and wanted to know is this a family of shifters. And do you guys have plan to collaborate on any other book?

Dyanne said...

Congratulations, A.M. Wells. I didn't even announce this in group, but you've just won a $5.00 gift card for being the first person to post. Thank you. I'm sure pretty soon Lisa or Roz will answer your question. Again, congrats.

Dyanne

roslynholcomb said...

Good morning A.M. thanks for your question. Given is a story about a family of shifters. The Eshu originated in West Africa and are known as "witch smellers" for their ability to detect their enemy the Thakathi. The Thakathi are evil and bring pestilence and death usually in the form of smallpox. The Eshu are followers of Obulaye, the smallpox god, who orders them to destroy the Thakathi. After an epic battle the Thakathi cast a spell to strip the Eshu of their powers and sell them into bondage in the Americas and thus they begin the Atlantic slave trade.

Lisa and I have plans to write several other books together, including a sequel to Given called Taken, which is about Grace, Jacob's sister.

Lisa G. said...

Thanks for the compliment, Dyanne and thanks for this forum!

Hi, A.M. What's up? Can't wait to to read your debut. It's due out in May, right?

In answer to your questions, yes, this is a family of shifters. In fact, last year Ros and I wrote a novella called Taken, and it's about Jacob's (from Given) sister. We've decided to extend the story to full-length, though.

As for collaborating with a crazy chick named Ros again...I don't know. It's something I'd have to give serious thought to just because she's so freaking hard to work with! She's crabby, mean and, well...just LAZY.

Just kidding. Yes, we are going to work together again. We're actually doing so now.

Congratulations on winning the certificate, A.M., and thanks for joining us today.

BTW, Dyanne, this is the 2nd time I've answered the questions. For some reason the first answer didn't post.

Lisa

A.M. Wells said...

Wow, Thanks Dyanne.

Ros sounds like you guys on a roll, wish you both all the best and continued success.

bookchick1327 said...

Hi, Ladies.
I hope you are all doing well. I'm huge fan of both of your works. I just finished Given which I highly enjoyed. It was the first AA romance that I have read in quite a while. Thanks for bringing me back into the fold. :)I'm reading Santa Baby and have started Rock Star again. I'm looking forward to Do Me Right. I was wondering what makes you decide on the race and culture of your heroes and heroines? Dyanne as well. You also write both AA and IR romances do you have a method or a way to your inspiration?
Thank you,
Kim

Patricia said...

Hi Ladies,

I'm so glad I signed in to check email today, I spotted Brenda's email and came right over.

Wow, Lisa you did a historical. I know Roz loves the genre. How did she twist your arm or did it need twisting at all?

What was it like doing a historical?

Btw, I love historicals!

Patricia

Anonymous said...

----Original Message-----
From: KarenD <kld9105@hotmail.com>


I'm curious, is that explanation based on what is within the story itself only

or based on myth the story is based on. In other words, is this entirely the

author's imagination or did you research and base the story on actual cultural

myths within an actual society's structure. If so, did you use muses within the

story line?



Karen D.

Lisa G. said...

Hi, Kim. How are you? I'm so glad you liked the book, and thanks for the compliment!

For me, the race of my characters come to me, so it's not really a decision that needs to be made. For instance, in the story I'm working on now, an actual picture of the female lead flashed into my head immediately after I talked about what the story would be about. BTW: she's tall, dark, and kick-ass. He soon followed, not a picture, but an idea for him: big and blond.

The one exception to this general way things usually happen for me was Given. We were asked for a monoracial, and since the idea for the story came easily and just flowed, we did it. My inspiration comes from things happening around me, news stories, people, etc. Thanks for asking.

Hi, Patricia. How are you? Yes, I did an historical and really loved the experience. No arm twisting involved. I loved researching and learning more about the time period--of course my "brilliant" writing partner already knew a lot about it.

I've always loved reading them and always wanted to write one. In fact, I've got tons (okay, only several) ideas for plots.

Thank you ladies for joining the chat and for the great questions.

Lisa

Lisa G. said...

Hi, Karen D. Eshu is a part of West African myth. The Thakathi and Obulaye also exist as myth. Each culture has its myths and this is one of them. Yes, we did our research.

Those were great questions! Thanks!

roslynholcomb said...

Hello bookchick, another very good question. My characters come into my mind fully formed. Now sometimes they diverge along the way from what I originally intended, but changing them, or deciding in advance what they are usually doesn't work. I think it only worked with Given because we'd already written Taken. Jacob was part of that book and his character spoke to me and I thought he was interesting. I'm not sure that deciding on a character's race in advance would work otherwise.

As for inspiration, that comes from pretty much anywhere. My mama used to say that I had the ability to be endlessly fascinated by absolutely nothing. (No, it was not a compliment, but she was right.) One night I was talking to Lisa on the phone and she used the expression "off like a prom dress." I'd never heard it before and thought it was hilarious and would make a great theme for a book series. My mind starts churning with "what ifs" and the next thing you know I've got Jack and Dyanne, they get pregnant on prom night, have a shotgun wedding, divorce twenty years later and now they're having a post-marital affair.

I think I've said before that Rock Star came about because of my love for rock music and my absolute obsession with VH1's Behind the Music. After watching what seemed like hundreds of rock bios that involved somebody dying of a drug overdose I got to thinking about the impact that would have on a band. The "what if" questions started firing and I had a book! (If only it were that easy!:D)

roslynholcomb said...

Hello Karen D. the Obulaye really is an African god for smallpox, amongst many other things. If you've read my book Try a Little Tenderness you'll immediately know that I'm absolutely obsessed with viruses and pandemic diseases. I've read a few dozen books about smallpox and it's of particular interest to me because I think it's amazing that there are diseases so virulent, so absolutely horrific that there are gods for them.

Eshu is actually an Orisha or one of many of what I can best describe as demi-gods. When I was doing my research I wanted to find a shape-shifter based in African mythology, and I knew I wanted to link it to the slave trade and the decimation of that continent. Eshu is a trickster god able to take on the form of any animal. In some Caribbean countries he is able to take on any form, period. A poster on my blog told me that in the Yoruba language Eshu means devil. Now from what I understand of Yoruba (meaning take this with a grain of salt) they don't see the devil as Christians do. He's more of a trickster, more of a flim-flam artist, as you were. Of course, someone more knowledgeable on the subject can correct me, but that's my understanding. :D

So, the short answer to your question is yes, there is some cultural and mythological basis for our story, but we've used artistic license to bend it to suit our own storyline.

Carmen said...

Hello everyone, just dropping by to say 'hi' ((waving))... I am loving the cover of Given and am looking forward to reading it. Take care and good luck to you.

Carmen

Mimi Tremont said...

Congratulations Ladies! I can't wait to read this best selling book!

How did the concept for this book come about? Did you think up the paranormal elements first? Or did the historical side come to you first?

I'm totally curious because honestly, just reading what you've said above makes me want to smack myself on the head and scream, "WHY DIDN'T I THINK OF THAT!" Then of course I remember that I only like to READ historical and I'm all better again. LOL!

Dyanne said...

I totally agree with you Carmen. I love the cover.

Lisa G. said...

Hello, Carmen. Isn't that cover fabulous? It was designed by Cris Griffin over at loose-id, and I was immediately over the moon when I saw it! Thanks for the well wishes and I think you're going to love Given!

Hi, Mimi! How ARE you? It's been so long! I'm afraid I can't take credit for the Eshu idea, that was all Ros. I'm just glad she invited me along. The historical side came first, I believe. Maybe Ros remembers. Do you, oh wise one?

Anyway, Mimi. I think you'll love the story.

Thanks to both of you for joining the chat!

Minnie Estelle said...

Congratulations Lisa and Ros. What a novel idea, Shape-Shifters helping during slavery. Wouldn't that have been nice. I'm a vampire fan and in the middle of writing mine. It sounds like an exciting read. You ladies are reaching, expanding her genres--great! I wish you both the best.

Lisa G. said...

Hello, Minnie. How are you? You're right: it is an exciting read--even if I DO say so myself! Thanks for the well wishes, and good luck with your story.

Lisa G.

roslynholcomb said...

Hello Mimi, the idea for the slave liberating shape shifters came from my obsession with history. I'd been on an Underground Railroad glom and those "what if" questions started again. Lisa G. is a history buff as well so when we started talking about doing a historical I knew I wanted to do one that took place at that time. The paranormal elements came about because I'd never done a paranormal before and thought it would interesting and fun, but I knew I wanted African shape-shifters, which only made sense since they were black people. The helping to liberate slaves was a natural. For one thing it was commonplace for free blacks to do so, but also, I've had enough of these books and movies where black folk have these magical powers, but somehow never seem to help black folk. (Glaring at Stephen King and The Green Mile.)

roslynholcomb said...

I too absolutely adore that cover, I think it's simply beautiful.

Dyanne said...

I think it's time to give another gift certificate. This name I'm not drawing, I'm giving it to Karen for trying so many times to get on and leave a comment.

flikchick said...

Hello Ladies!

I'm an individual fan of both of you. I'm so excited and GRATEFUL to see this cover, and others like this showing AA characters. I started really romance (historicals)books in the fifth grade.

As I got older, I always wondered why I never saw books and covers with people that looked like me, why it never occurred to anyone to write one.

I only became aware that there were actually some writers out there writing them about a decade ago. Its inportant for our little girls to see that in literature I think. So bravo to you both, and all the others doing this for those little girls like me who were wondering where we were at in this genre.

Ljay

flikchick said...
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flikchick said...
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Lisa G. said...

Hello, Ljay. Thanks for stopping in and thanks for being a fan. I'm so glad that we can accommodate your love of the romance genre.

As for it not occurring to people to write books featuring people that look like you; it occurred to people, many of them, they just couldn't get any publisher to buy them at first. But now, the market is open to an extent, and we're all better off for it.

Ros and I worked hard on Given, and had a lot of fun with it, and are proud of the end product.

Congratulations, Karen, on winning the gift certificate!

Best,
Lisa

Dyanne said...

Lisa, and Ros I'm thrilled to have spent the day with you. To the ones who left comments, tomorrow I will write all the names down and draw the $10.00 winner.


For the members of my Yahoo group who commented I will draw a separate special prize and post the winner tomorrow to the group. Thanks everyone. Keep posting. I"m just stopping by now because I have to make dinner and more than likely will not be back on the computer tonight.

Also don't worry if it says it has to be moderated. I'll approve all comments later and figure out later why that's necessary.

Dyanne

Just A Man 2.0 said...

Think I missed the chat, but enjoyed reading the conversation!

Anonymous said...

I tried posting earlier but ran into security certificate issues. I wanted to say thank you to Lisa and Roslyn for chatting with the fans. And thank you to Dyanne for hosting the chat as well. I look forward to more great reads in the future.
best wishes to everyone.
Kim

cinquetta said...

AHCRAP! I miss the interview...Damn! Hopeful next time i get to join in... good luck!!!!

Lisa G. said...

Just A Man, Kim and Cinquetta, I'm sorry you guys missed chatting. Kim, if you're bookchick, then I'm sorry you issues after your initial post.

Ros and I really enjoyed the chat, and I especially like how simple it was to get in on it.

Dyanne, I think you're wonderful, but you already know that! Thanks so much!

Best,
Lisa

Dyanne said...

Right back at you, Lisa

Lisa G. said...

Okay, inspired by Dyanne's generosity, I did my own little raffle. The winner will get a signed copy of one of my books. I'm giving her the choice between two titles.

And the winner is...

Mini Estelle!

Mini, please e-mail at lisa@lisagriley.com for your list of choices.

Best,
Lisa G.

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