Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Interview and Giveaway - Ashley Townsend with Rising Shadows

Rising ShadowsRising Shadows
by Ashley Townsend
ebook, 177 pages
Published June 16th 2012 by Kirkdale Press

Premise: Ganked from Goodreads:

Sarah Matthews is nearing the end of another eventless summer in the small town of Bethany, Oklahoma, bringing her closer to the start of her freshman year of college. Disheartened over the reality that yet another unexciting season is coming to an end, Sarah wishes for an unforgettable adventure. 

When mysterious circumstances transport Sarah and her younger sister back in time, she gets more of an adventure than she could have ever imagined. The two sisters find themselves trapped in the twelfth century in a place shrouded with mystery and deception. Assassination plots, kidnappings, and tumultuous adventures force Sarah to rely on the Shadow, a masked hero who comes to her aid numerous times. 

In order to uncover a conspiracy and save those closest to her, Sarah requests help from the Shadow and also from Will, the handsome and equally intriguing blacksmith she befriends. Sarah is strangely drawn to the excitement that seems to follow the town hero and begins to look forward to their secret encounters. 

She also finds herself caught in a romance with Will, despite the fact that their equally fiery personalities have a tendency to clash as they attempt to work together. But Will’s past is filled with secrets and pains, and Sarah finds it difficult to break through the walls he has built around him. 

Can the faith and love of God that Sarah exhibits in her own life cause his hardened facade to fall away as he discovers that forgiveness and mercy are never too far from reach?

Colorimetry welcomes Ashley Townsend and her new release, Rising Shadows, for a fun visit!! This interview just gets rollin' 'til I feel like giggling. *___*  What?!  Read on and see what I mean!!

What is your inspiration behind Rising Shadows?

     I was reading a lot of science fiction and fantasy when I originally wrote “Rising Shadows” and have always been fascinated by the idea of time travel. If anyone figures it out, sign me up! Then a few years later, while I was playing with the story, I discovered BBC’s “Robin Hood” series. As a kid, the Disney film was my favorite movie, and I had always loved the legend of Robin Hood, so when I started watching the show, I knew I had to write in a character like that—a masked do-gooder with a heart of gold. Thus, the Shadow was born! And he was really what shaped the rest of the story.  

I totally know what you mean. Robin Hood totally rocks.

Do you have a favorite scene?

     YES! There are two scenes that really stick out to me for different reasons. 

     One of my favorite moments between Will and Sarah is when they wait out the rainstorm in the livery, just after Karen gets arrested. It was the first emotional encounter readers get to see between the two, and I really enjoyed revealing a bit of Will’s protective and caring nature so early on in the story. I also loved seeing Sarah’s response when reality finally hit and she realized that it wasn’t just a fun adventure; it was the first time where both characters felt real to me. This scene was very raw for both characters, and I think readers will really enjoy it! 

     The other scene I loved writing was the shack fire. It was the first scene that I had no idea was coming, and it was also the first one that while I wrote, I was actually anxious for the characters and totally caught up in the moment. I loved seeing Will break (sorry, my love!), and readers get to see a part of him that he doesn’t show very often—this sort of helpless hero hidden behind a tough exterior. I loved seeing his protective side come out, and when they’re trapped, he really exposes this raw vulnerability, and at the same time strength, that readers don’t always get to see.

Ashley Townsend*shiver* That is cool... writing a scene you didn't see coming!!

 Favorite character?

     Will Taylor is definitely my favorite character. No matter how much time I spend with him and how well I think I know him, I am constantly discovering something new. Out of the entire cast of “Rising Shadows”, Will seems to have the most interesting back story and off-screen life that makes me want to be his shadow and see what he’s up to. He also has a lot of depth and emotional range as he loves, struggles, fights, cares, and overcomes the demons of his past. Readers will see a lot more of his struggle in future books; he’s going to run and fall, but I’m more interested to see if he can pick himself back up.

Argh... that is very teasingly maddening!!  You're making sure I MUST read this book... and the whole series. I saw on your blog how excited you are to share book 2, but you're holding back... I found this complaint:
I am simply dying to give you a little taste of what I’ve been working on after “Rising Shadows.” I want to ask your opinions about the plot, share the profiles of the new characters, spill the beans about where I want “The Shadow” trilogy to go, shock you with who’s going to end up dead in the sequel, explain the repercussions of time travel and how I’m introducing new legends, and maybe, possiblywhisper about what will happen to Will and Sarah because of it. Every time a new idea or scene pops into my head or I spend hours writing plots and scenes that surprise even me, I immediately want to share it with my readers and friends to get their opinions. But, alas, I cannot spoil too much as of yet. I told you my life is difficult. *sighs*
Lol. I love your eagerness. It's very contagious!!

 Tell us something personal... do you have pets? hobbies? favorite reading/writing nook?

            I have two dogs who are quite the characters: Tawney, my sweet white lab, just cracks me up everyday and is as much of a spaz as I am, and Milo, our old mutt, makes me roll my eyes and smile constantly at his crazed antics. They’re more like a small circus than house pets.

            I love reading and writing (shocker!), but I also really enjoy outdoor sports, though I don’t get to play as much as I would like, and just about anything creative interests me. I am seriously passionate about music, as well; I play guitar—I’m always trying to improve—but I also love to just listen to music while I write, read, or study. I can’t drive without a CD in the car, either. One of the highlights of my summer was compiling the playlist for“Rising Shadows” that I have on my site and discovering new artists through it.

            The most peaceful place in the house is my bedroom, and I love to write on my comfy bed by the window. I can write just about anywhere, but I am easily distracted, so quiet is better!

Since you admitted to it first, I'll agree. I am easily distracted on occasion myself. Shocking, I know.

Thanks for sharing so much fun stuff. I'm totally intrigued about your book and your answers are fun. I simply must check out this Will, sounds like. Lol.

About the Author:
Ashley Townsend is a twenty-year-old college student and author whose greatest passion lies in creating stories that captivate and entertain her audience. Born in Southern California and raised in Colorado Springs, Ashley dedicated her free time between homeschool classes with her mom to devouring adventure novels and defending ice castles in her backyard. Her thirst for books expanded until she began to run out of options at her local library, and the lack of reading choices ultimately drove her to write her own stories and adventures for entertainment.

Rising Shadows is her first book, and she hopes that God will use her wild imagination and love of storytelling to further entertain and encourage readers in their walk with God. She currently lives in Southern California with her parents and three sisters.

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Reviews:  I'd So Rather Be Reading * Labor not in Vain

Interviews:  Susan Heim * Christian Bookshelf Reviews

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