Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Terrific Tuesday: New Release Day: Olivia's Journey

We are super excited to release Olivia's Journey and her author B G Lashbrooks. Check it out...


  • Author: B.G. Lashbrooks
  • Genre: Historical, Romance, Young Adult
  • 190 Pages (PDF)
  • Cover Artist: Elaina Lee
  • ISBN: 978-1-936852-24-6 
It’s the Spring of 1865 and Mr. Lincoln runs the country...probably better than Olivia’s hard-fisted uncle runs his farm in Southern Indiana. Olivia would give anything to escape his abuse, but as long as he provides a shelter for her and her two younger sisters, she has no choice. But she soon has to make a daring decision when she finds a Confederate soldier bleeding alongside the river that borders her uncle’s farm. Soon Olivia and the soldier are running for their lives through Yankee country, with only Olivia’s twelve year old sister for company. But then the War is declared over and the President dead, what will that mean for the Confederate man who’d done so much to help Olivia? What will that mean for her?

Wow we are super excited to check out this book. Find out more about our new author and her process of writing. 


What inspires you? 
There has always been the need to succeed as an author, to tell a good story. That was my primary inspiration for a long while. That changed drastically recently. My perspective changed this past December; I gave birth to a beautiful little girl. Now she is what inspires me—she deserves a mother who sets goals and works toward achieving them. I want her to go for her dreams; how is she to learn to do that if she doesn’t see me do the same? As for the romantic angle of my stories, the inspiration for those comes from having a strong marriage to a man who fully supports my dreams. I couldn’t have done this without him, in any way.

Do you have a writing routine? 
I used to have a writing routine. Now I am getting to the point of having a ‘writing&baby routine’. I used to get up around 10, let the dogs out (apparently they need to go out 837 times each day), grab a light breakfast, and hit the computer. I’d shoot out ten-twenty pages each day (when not procrastinating by surfing the internet…). I’d take a shower around noon,  then back to the computer. I found the ideas were freshest when I first woke, so I’d make notes quickly. I’d write until my husband got up (night shift) around 5. Then it was our time until he’d leave. After he was gone I’d be back at the computer doing non-fiction articles and projects that paid the bills. I’d do this until about two or three in the morning, if not later.

Now, however, my routine is drastically changed.  I am up between 6-8, mixing a bottle and making cereal. After that, it’s diaper and dress the baby and squeeze in some breakfast while I flirt with the husband. Then he’s off to bed (still nightshifting it) while Evie naps. I try to get the non-fiction done during that nap. If I manage that, I have the entire afternoon to pow-wow with fellow authors—the Astraea group is very active and great, BTW—and work on current projects. All of this is around Evie’s needs, of course. Sometimes…she just needs to be cuddled and have her little dimpled cheeks kissed…

I put her to bed for the evening, and try to spend two more hours writing. It isn’t always easy, and a lot of things have to be reprioritized, but my writing is important to both my husband and me.

Is this your first published book?  
Olivia’s Journey is my first published book-length project. I’ve had several short pieces (around 6, I think) published in literary journals and other venues. I can say that everything I’ve ever submitted has now been published, which thrills me.

How did you get the idea for your book?
Olivia’s Journey came from one line while I was mostly asleep. “I knew my uncle would kill him…” Well, I wanted to know why the uncle would kill him, who the ‘him’ was, where this was, and who said it. So I started asking myself questions and the story grew.

I didn’t know it was a Civil War piece until I was several paragraphs into it. This completely threw me for a loop—at that point I hated learning about the Civil War.  But Olivia needed her story told, so I started researching and researching and…

I spent twice as much time on research as I did on writing. Now this doesn’t surprise me; I’m kind of a research-a-holic…

Plotter or Pantser?  Why?
I am a Plotantser, with more of an emphasis on pantser. I like to ‘daydream’ my books, rather than outlining them. Often, that’s how I fall asleep at night…making up stories in my head to relax myself. I put a lot of emphasis on the mental development of my stories rather than the details. I know a basic what is going to happen, but I let the actions of the characters and the plots develop organically from my characters’ actions.

How do you develop your plots and characters?
This is different for every character. Mostly, names. Weird, I know, but usually I ‘hear’ a name; I don’t know where they come from. I just ‘hear’ them and the character grows to meet the name. Once I have the name and general description of a character, I start designing a back history and personal quirks. Then I design the temperament. How would they react in this situation? What would they say? Do they have a quirkword that they use? I have a romantic suspense character named Jules. She’s a medical examiner with an obsession for pencils, who routinely wears a sweatshirt with the words “I see dead people.” written on it.  She likes the word ‘freaking’, too. It makes her seem real to me.

For my plots, I like a ‘natural progression’ type of writing. What would happen next, type plotting. I want my stories to grow organically. I don’t write to a real outline, I just put my characters in situations and have them react to the situation in logical and realistic ways—according to them.

When writing Olivia’s Journey, I mostly asked myself what is the biggest obstacle I could put in her path that would disconcert her or cause her the most problems. Finding a dying man—an enemy—who needed her was the worst thing that could happen to her at that point. After all, her uncle needed little excuse to abuse her—if she helped his enemy…

Then I’d ask how she and Grayson would react to each situation.

Do you listen to music while writing?
Sometimes. It depends. If I have a strong female character, I may make a youtube playlist of songs that personify that character, for example.  I have one character that sounds just like Cher’s ballad from Burlesque. I also like silence to write in. I don’t like a lot of noise and stimulation around me the majority of the time.  When I do find I need something, it’s television. I like to have it on if I am having trouble with dialogue. I’ve found that I can more easily develop character voices if I hear a variety of different voices and dialogue. No two characters speak completely alike, after all. The majority of my writing is romantic suspense, so I watch a lot of crime dramas. During the writing of Olivia’s Journey, I swiped my husband Cory’s copy of Cold Mountain and played it over and over and over again. Poor guy still won’t watch Cold Mountain…I think I burned him out!

Favorite line in the story (can be funny, romantic, etc.)
It’s a bit more than a line, but it’s my favorite…

I grabbed at his arm, trying to pull him to a stop. He continued walking, but his pace did slow enough for me to match. “Grayson, please…”
“Please what? Please don’t touch you? Not a problem, if that’s what you want.” His voice still held a tinge of hurt and my heart tightened. “Didn’t know my touch was so offensive.”
“It’s not! I didn’t mean it that way! I mean, I like it when you touch me!” It occurred to me then what I had said, and I stopped walking, still grasping his sleeve. A man passing on the street must have heard me too, for he chuckled at Grayson and said a quick lucky you as he passed. I was thankful it was dark and that Grayson and the man couldn’t see the flames licking my cheeks.

A random fact about your story.
The cities mentioned in Olivia’s Journey—although I don’t mention them by name, just by special distinguishing details such as particular limestone used or a distinguishing feature such as the sulfur springs common in the area—are places in existence during that time frame. I meticulously researched OJ to make it as accurate as possible. And the courthouses mentioned—are still standing today.

What are you currently working on? 
I don’t work on one project at a time—I have focus issues and this makes it difficult to concentrate on only one work. My current roster of projects include a paranormal series focusing on my take on the vampire/werewolf/demon mythologies that I hope to submit to Astraea in a few months, a few women’s fiction pieces, and--the heart of my writing—a huge romantic suspense project. I’ve finished one manuscript and am half finished with two others in this series. It features a division of the FBI that I created and the sixty or so agents within it.

I am also toying with Rachel’s story. She’s Olivia’s younger sister. But that is further down the road.

Welcome Welcome B G glad to have you one board. 


  1. You and I write a lot alike! I love that term - plotantster. Must remember it. I also daydream my stories and they are firmly in my head as I write. But also character driven. Can't wait to dive into Olivia's Journey...and I love sequels...just sayin' - no pressure or anything.

  2. Your days sound like mine. A whole lot of crazy some days. Glad you are able to fit the writing in.

  3. Well I'm a protageditorist lol

  4. What a great interview. The story sounds very interesting. I love the time period and gotta have my romance.

  5. I like 'protageditorist' too!
    The post looks absolutely wonderful, Bri!

    Kay, the best part of writing a story is being entertained by it! It's far better than television!

  6. Sounds like we write books in much the same way! I have a general idea of the beginning, middle, and end. But everything in between those points is up for grabs.

    Congrats on the release!