INTERVIEW with Alicia Dean author of RUINED ~ Giveaway

14 May

Please help me welcome author Alicia Dean to the blog today. I think you’ll enjoy getting to know her a little better as she takes the hot seat and lets me interview her. Afterward, please check out her latest release RUINED and then enter her giveaway 🙂 I love the sounds of this book because it takes place in the 20s, one of my favorite time periods.

Let’s get started!


Describe yourself in 3 sentences.

I am a mother, a writer, an editor, and an Elvis fan. I have a bad habit of saying ‘yes,’ and therefore, I way overbook myself, but I love what I do. I am probably a little too interested in murder and mayhem.

What’s the first thing we see when we walk in your door?

My bar area with my knick knacks (some are Elvis-related J). Beyond that, my kitchen. But please don’t look too closely, it’s a mess.

What makes you buy a book…the author, cover, blurb, first paragraph, or something else?

The cover catches my attention, then I read the blurb. If I’m still engaged, I read the excerpt, and if I am not drawn in right away, I don’t buy it. I have too many books to read, and write, and too little time to read a book that doesn’t grab me.

What character in your book did you have the most fun writing and why?

My heroine, actually. I’ve never written anyone like her. First of all, it’s set in the 1920s, and I’ve never written in that era. Secondly, she’s from England, and all my other characters have been American. But, the main reasons I had fun was that she was a prostitute, she lied a lot, and she didn’t read all that well, she was close to illiterate. Definitely a different character than I’m used to writing about.

What inspired you to write your latest release?

I would say it was a combination of the Martini Lounge where I meet friends for drinks every Friday, and those friends; Kathy L Wheeler, Amanda McCabe, and Krysta Scott. We had the idea to write novellas centered around an establishment like the Martini Lounge, and the Martini Club 4 Series was born. RUINED is my contribution to the project.

Where do you write?

In my bedroom at my desktop and in my recliner on my laptop. I always tell myself I need to get out of the house and write in different environments, but I’m a bit of a hermit.

Describe your hero in 5 words.

Strong, loyal, hot-tempered, former boxer, rugged.

Now your heroine.

Survivor, gullible, dishonest, caring, British

As a writer I love choosing character names. Tell us how you chose the names for your hero and heroine.

For my heroine, I looked at a list of 1920s names, and Eliza seemed to fit. For my hero, a friend of my son’s, Vincent, passed away not long before I started writing the story. I named my hero Vincent as a tribute. It’s funny, but it fits him perfectly. For the last names, I just ran a list through my head until something seemed to fit.

Describe your writing day.

I usually prepare the night before for whatever I’ll be writing. I don’t normally get an entire ‘day’ for writing, but I try to get as many hours in as possible. I will often silence my cell phone because distractions can completely take me out of the zone. I can’t sit for several hours at a time, so I usually write for an hour or two (much of that time is spent banging my head against the desk in an effort to shake the words loose), then I have to get up and do something. I wish I could say I get up and clean house, but that’s doesn’t usually happen. 🙂

About the Book – Just $0.99!


Ruined (Martini Club 4 – The 1920’s)
by Alicia Dean
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Kobo Books
Genre: Vintage Historical Romance
Release Date: February 26, 2015
Length: 120 Pages

She vowed she’d be no man’s doxy, but fate had other plans…

After the Earl of Goodwin attempts to force himself on her, housemaid Eliza Gilbert flees England for New York, hoping to build a better life. But the land of opportunity proves as harsh as the London docks, and she finds herself in a situation more dreadful than the one she escaped.

When Vince Taggart’s childhood friend disappears, he heads to New York in search of her and meets Eliza, a woman with a less than honorable reputation. Inexplicably captivated, Vince can’t force himself to stay away, especially when he learns Eliza may be the key to finding his missing friend.


Eliza sat on a barstool at Club 501, her legs crossed, sipping a White Lady. The joint was wall to wall people. There weren’t many places as nice as Club 501 that sold liquor. Most were seedy, dangerous. Club 501 had opened a few days ago. The two level speakeasy was as luxurious as a palace with its rich gold and mauve tones, velvet upholstery, and long oak bar.

Meggie was on stage singing “Crazy Blues.” She wore a one-shoulder peach calf-length gown with a scalloped hemline trimmed in shimmery silver braid. Her eyes were half closed, blonde curls glistening beneath the spotlight.

Eliza closed her eyes and let the loveliness of Meggie’s voice soothe her. Uncanny how she could sing without the hint of an accent.

In the worst of times, Eliza used a mind trick where she traveled to another place and removed herself from whatever was happening. She’d had to use the trick many times as a scullery maid, and when Lord Renwald had trapped her in the barn, but the night he’d nearly raped her, that had been something altogether different. Rather than using a mind trick, she’d fully escaped. Meggie’s voice brought her that kind of escape. She was transported to another place.

The song ended, and Eliza opened her eyes, clapping more loudly than anyone else in the place. Meggie winked and curtsied, then went into her next number. Some day, she was going to make it big, Eliza just knew it.

“Need anything else?” Charli appeared at her shoulder, holding a tray full of empty glasses at shoulder level. She wore the Club 501 uniform—a mauve dress that came to mid-thigh with sheer voile that fell to her ankles. She’d acquired a position as cocktail waitress a few days after Meggie had been hired as a singer.

“No, thank you. Last night was a late one. I ought to take it slowly.”

Charli wrinkled her pert nose. “What a sweet deal you landed, while I’m stuck in this dive slinging booze.”

Eliza pursed her lips. “Now, Charli, this is hardly a dive. Serving drinks here might not be the wealthy lifestyle you’re accustomed to, but things could be worse—much worse.”

Sympathy shone in Charli’s brown eyes. “I know, luv. Selfish of me. I know what you’ve been through, how awful things were for you before we found you on the docks, then again when you arrived and had to take a position at that ghastly old factory.” She let out a sigh. “It’s just that I had such high hopes. I wanted so much to start a great life doing what I love most.”

Eliza squeezed her friend’s hand. “You’ll get your bakery, I know you will. You keep schmoozing Mrs. Carter, and you’re a shoo in.” Mrs. Carter was a successful businesswoman who owned a string of department stores. Charli all but panted after the woman.

Charli giggled and playfully slapped Eliza’s knee. “I do not schmooze her. I just find her interesting.” She glanced over her shoulder. “Sorry, gotta run. These blokes might perish if I don’t keep the hooch flowing.” She cocked an impish grin. “See ya, luv.”

Eliza scanned the crowd. Jess was supposed to come in, but so far, Eliza hadn’t seen her. She was feeling slightly abandoned. At least Oscar wasn’t present. Now that he was her employer, she could barely relax when he was at Club 501. She always felt she was on the clock.

Her gaze bounced over a man, then zeroed back. The bloke was looking directly at her. She caught her breath. He was leaning on the bar a few stools down, talking to Charli. He had this…magnetism, some kind of forceful presence that made it impossible to look away.

He was broad, muscular and dressed like a dock worker with brown suspenders over a yellow shirt and a newsboy cap over his dark blond hair, but what caught her attention right off was his smile. His white teeth flashed, and a dimple creased the right side of his face.

Charli moved away, and the man looked up and caught Eliza staring at him. His grin widened. His eyes were so blue—so electrifying, that Eliza could feel their allure even in the dimly lit, smoky bar.

He winked and gave her a finger salute off the brim of his cap.

A tingle ran from her toes, all the way through her body, making her head swim. My, but he was a fresh one. With superhuman effort, she dragged her attention away, but it didn’t keep her heart from racing faster than a thoroughbred at Churchill Downs.

She swallowed and took a deep breath, fingering the pendant at her neck, trying to slow her heart rate. What on earth was wrong with her? She met plenty of handsome men—men more pleasing to the eye than he with his workmen clothing and slightly crooked nose. But never had any man sent her blood rushing through her veins like this.

She gulped from her glass. Get ahold of yourself. She was not the kind of girl to pick up strange men in bars—even if they did have a devil of a smile and eyes like an angel.

About Alicia Dean
Website | Twitter | Facebook | Google+ | Pinterest | Goodreads | Amazon Author Page

Award-winning, multi-published author Alicia Dean began writing stories as a child. At age 11, she wrote her first ever romance (featuring a hero who looked just like Elvis Presley, and who happened to share the name of Elvis’ character in the movie, Tickle Me), and she still has the tattered, pencil-written copy. Alicia is from Moore, Oklahoma and now lives in Edmond. She has three grown children and a huge network of supportive friends and family. She writes mostly contempo.

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28 responses to “INTERVIEW with Alicia Dean author of RUINED ~ Giveaway

  1. ChristineWarner

    May 14, 2015 at 11:41 am

    Thanks for joining me on the blog Alicia and congratulations on your latest release! Love the cove and blurb 🙂

  2. Alicia Dean

    May 14, 2015 at 11:55 am

    Thank you for having me, Christine! I really enjoyed answering your questions, although some of them made me think. I hate it when that happens. 🙂 Thanks again!

  3. LilacMoonBooks

    May 14, 2015 at 12:44 pm

    Love the 1920s clothes and surging modernity. What a wild time! Sounds like you have right spanking adventure here!

    • Alicia Dean

      May 14, 2015 at 12:55 pm

      It was a wild time, and such a blast. 🙂 Thank you!

  4. Diane Burton

    May 14, 2015 at 2:14 pm

    I really enjoyed this book. Love the way you use the expression of the 1920s, makes it seem so “real.” Best wishes, Alicia.

    • Alicia Dean

      May 14, 2015 at 4:07 pm

      Thank you, Diane. I appreciate your kind words…and your awesome review! 🙂

  5. maureenbonatch

    May 14, 2015 at 3:52 pm

    Former boxer? Wow, that sure is an interesting fact. Great post!

    • Alicia Dean

      May 14, 2015 at 4:07 pm

      Yes, former boxer who crippled a guy in the ring. 😦 He now runs a boxing gym. Thank you for stopping by!

  6. coryellsusan

    May 14, 2015 at 4:24 pm

    Interesting learning those tidbits about you. I can’t write if there are dirty dishes in the sink…wish I could block them out (as you seem to be able to do)! Nice post/

    • Alicia Dean

      May 14, 2015 at 4:30 pm

      Thank you, Susan! I actually do a little bit of housework, it’s just not my priority. I can definitely write even if the house is messy. 🙂

  7. darcyflynn

    May 14, 2015 at 5:57 pm

    Hummm, prostitute who lied a lot…I can see why you enjoyed writing her. 🙂 I love to read about characters that are completely different from me. Loved the excerpt!

    • Alicia Dean

      May 15, 2015 at 8:31 am

      LOL, yes, it was quite fun! 🙂 Thanks, Darcy.

  8. Leah St. James

    May 14, 2015 at 6:17 pm

    I loved this story! I’m going to have to reread it though, paying more attention to Eliza’s lies! That’s really nice that you named Vincent in honor of your son’s friend. How sad.

    • Alicia Dean

      May 15, 2015 at 8:32 am

      Thank you, Leah. Yes, it was very sad. 😦

  9. Betty W

    May 14, 2015 at 7:00 pm

    What an awesome cover! The excerpt was amazing! This sounds like a fascinating book! Thank you for the great post and contest!

    • Alicia Dean

      May 15, 2015 at 8:33 am

      Thank you so much, Betty. I appreciate you stopping by and your kind words. You’re welcome…best of luck in the contest!

  10. M.J. Schiller, Romance Author

    May 14, 2015 at 11:07 pm

    “I am probably a little too interested in murder and mayhem.” Love it! Fun interview! I read this and loved it and recommend it highly.

    • Alicia Dean

      May 15, 2015 at 8:33 am

      Haha, yes, you know me, M.J.. 🙂 Thank you so much!

  11. amy2read89

    May 15, 2015 at 1:32 am

    Love the story and cover, going to have to add it to my tbr pile 🙂

  12. Liz Tyner

    May 15, 2015 at 7:22 am

    Sounds like a great story with really fascinating characters! Enjoyed the except and the interview.

    • Alicia Dean

      May 15, 2015 at 8:34 am

      I appreciate you stopping by, Liz. Glad you enjoyed!

  13. Judy Ann Davis

    May 15, 2015 at 8:55 am

    I loved the characters. What fun. I also enjoy the 1920s era when everything was a bit edgy and exciting.

    • Alicia Dean

      May 15, 2015 at 3:44 pm

      Thank you, Judy! Yes, it was an exciting time. 🙂

  14. Novel Book Tours

    May 15, 2015 at 9:10 am

    Awesome interview, Christine – Thanks so much for participating in Alicia’s RUINED blog tour!!!

  15. ChristineWarner

    May 15, 2015 at 11:15 am

    Thank you everyone for coming by and thank you Novel Book Tours for the opportunity to have Alicia on the blog 🙂

  16. kateivan

    May 15, 2015 at 3:42 pm

    I love stories set in this era (if I had the chance to travel in time, I’d visit the Roaring 20’s first to see what my grandparents were up to). Adding this book to my TBR right now ….

    • Alicia Dean

      May 15, 2015 at 3:45 pm

      Awww, how cool would that be? 🙂 My dad was born in 1925, so I could have seen him as a toddler. LOL. Thanks so much…hope you enjoy!


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