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Monday, August 31, 2020

Blog Tour-A YEAR IN HER LIFE by Alice Benson With An Interview & #Giveaway!



I am thrilled to be hosting a spot on the A YEAR IN HER LIFE by Alice Benson Blog Tour hosted by Rockstar Book Tours. Check out my post and make sure to enter the giveaway!

About The Book:
Title: A YEAR IN HER LIFE
Author: Alice Benson
Pub. Date: July 16, 2020
Publisher: Black Rose Writing
Formats: Paperback, eBook
Pages: 320
Find it: GoodreadsAmazon, Kindle, B&N, TBD

Bonnie is a young woman, engaged and passionate about her new job, her feminist ideals, and her friends. Bonnie is also single and looking for a soulmate. Her last boyfriend dumped her after she supported him through law school. Her new boyfriend is nice, but a little boring and they’re not attuned politically. Then Bonnie meets Jane. She’s a little older, experienced, and compelling. They share a commitment to feminism and social justice. Unfortunately, Jane is married. Still, Bonnie finds her attraction growing. She denies it because Jane is off limits, but Bonnie is compelled and sure the attraction is mutual.

Set in 2016, the election is a backdrop to Bonnie’s turbulent year of searching for love. This is a story of growth and maturation told in a voice that grows from timid to hopeful to confident and explores the complexity of relationships as well as themes relevent to the current times.

Interview
Hey Alice!! First I want to say welcome to Two Chicks on Books I’m glad you could stop by for a chat! A YEAR IN HER LIFE sounds AWESOME and I can’t wait for everyone to read it!
Thanks so much!!  Alice

For the readers: can you tell us a little bit about the A YEAR IN HER LIFE and the characters?
Bonnie is a young woman, engaged and passionate about her new job, her feminist ideals, and her friends. Bonnie is also single and looking for a soulmate. A large part of the book is focused on Bonnie’s search for love and her choices, both healthy and unhealthy.  Her last boyfriend dumped her after she supported him through law school. Her new boyfriend is nice, but a little boring and they’re not attuned politically. Then Bonnie meets Jane. She’s a little older, experienced, and compelling. They share a commitment to feminism and social justice. Unfortunately, Jane is married. Still, Bonnie finds her attraction growing. She denies it because Jane is off limits, but Bonnie is fascinated by Jane and determined to find out if the attraction is mutual.
What are you working on now?
Right now, I’m working on my third novel, and I’m almost finished with the first draft. This book explores relationships between mothers and daughters and grandmothers and granddaughters. I don’t have a daughter, but I do have two granddaughters, so it’s been pretty illuminating to write about these types of connections. I’m also working on a short story inspired by Covid and issues with masks.
Were any of the characters in the book inspired by people from your real life?
Often my characters are composites of a variety of people from my life. Bonnie’s relationships with Vickie and Linda reflect the close friendships I have with a number of women who have supported me through struggles and challenges over the years. Nancy, Bonnie’s boss at Transitions House, is based on my boss when I worked in a domestic violence shelter. My boss was as kind, caring, and compassionate as Nancy is. Fortunately, Jane is completely made-up.
Who was your favorite character to write? What about your least favorite?
Bonnie was my favorite character to write, although I did get a little frustrated with her. Bonnie is pretty self-involved, but at the same time, she’s constantly striving to be better, and I liked that about her. I sometimes got a little frustrated with her, because she had such a hard time making up her mind about Larry. Also, it took Bonnie a very long time to face up to the fact that her relationship with Jane was not at all good for her. Bonnie also smoked a lot and drank a lot of wine. I always say that Bonnie smoked a lot of cigarettes for me, because I had to quit.
I was planning to write that Jane was my least favorite, because she was so mean and manipulative, but in some ways, that was really fun and cathartic to write. Jane got to do things that I would never do, and I guess that’s a good thing. We don’t want to spend time with cruel people, but they make for more interesting stories. Maybe that means I don’t have a least favorite. J
What is your favorite passages/scenes in A YEAR IN HER LIFE?
My favorites scenes in the book are the conversations Bonnie has with her friends. I loved writing those, and I still love to read them. I tried to reflect the love and caring and support inherent in deeply-held friendships.
What kind of research did you have to do for the story?
I didn’t have to do much formal research. I worked in a domestic violence program for about thirteen years, so I’m familiar with many of their ins and outs. I did have to check on current laws and programs, because things have changed in the sixteen years since I left. Because the story is set in 2016, I didn’t have to do much historical research. We all lived through it. I did have to Google some specific events to refresh my memory, so that real incidents were placed in the appropriate time frame.
Who is your ultimate book boyfriend?
I have always had a thing for Alex Delaware from the mystery series written by Jonathon Kellerman. Alex is smart and determined and, from his description, very cute. He’s pretty intense, loyal, and loving.
What inspired you to write contemporary?
Contemporary is what I like to read, and writing about relatively current events comes more naturally to me. I can use the writing to explore issues and themes that I’m thinking about every day. When I see a news story, I can use the writing to explore what would that incident would feel like for me or how would I react to it. Also, contemporary seemed to be the best genre to tell the story I wanted to tell. Writing a contemporary novel allowed me to tell the story that was in my head, one that reflects reality, but is ultimately, a story that is fiction, one that I made up. I could play with events and characters and have things happen in such a way to control the outcome that best suited the integrity of the book I was writing.

Lightning Round Questions

What are you reading right now? Or what do you have on your TBR that you’re dying to read?
I belong to three book groups. We’re reading How To Be An Antiracist by Ibram X. Kendi in one of them, and the book is a great explanation of racist ideas and thinking, as well as a fascinating memoir. It’s sparking some very interesting discussions. I also just finished The Night Watchman by Louise Erdrich which is a powerful, beautifully-written novel.
Instagram, Twitter or Facebook?
As many writers do, I find marketing and self-promotion challenging. I think Twitter is my favorite platform, because I’ve found so many supportive writers in the Twitter community.

Favorite Superhero?
Shuri from the Black Panther.
Favorite TV show?
The Great British Baking Show
Sweet or Salty?
Both/Combo. I love chocolate covered peanuts or kettle corn with butter.
Any Phobias?
Just the usual ones – spiders and snakes. And, while it’s not exactly a phobia, I do hate to fly.
Song you can’t get enough of right now?
Rain on Me
2020 Movie you’re most looking forward to?
Wonder Woman 1984

Thanks so much Alice for answering my questions! I can’t wait for everyone to read A YEAR IN HER LIFE!


Thank you! These are great questions. Please let me know if you have questions or need further information. This was so fun. Alice

About Alice:

Alice Benson lives in Wisconsin with her partner and their small dog, Max. She discovered writing as a passion in the third act of her life and devotes as much time as possible to it. When not writing, she works in the human service field. Published works can be found in New Purlieu Review, Epiphany, Lady Ink, Delta Woman ezine, and Diverse Voices Quarterly. Her Life is Showing is Alice's first novel and was published in January, 2014, by Black Rose Writing.





Giveaway Details:
3 winners will receive a paperback of A YEAR IN HER LIFE, US Only.



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