Saturday, November 25, 2017

Interview With Ann Benjamin

Interview With Ann Benjamin

1. Can you tell us a little about yourself?
I'm an author and ex-pat living in Dubai, UAE, where I've lived for over ten years.  I enjoy traveling, supporting UGA football, and write about food on my blog, A to Za'atar.  I also write under my real name as Courtney Brandt, where I have authored six young adult marching novels, and my most recent YA book, The Queen of England: Coronation.  And, as Ann Benjamin I've also published Life After Joe, a contemporary romance that asks: when the love of your life leaves you, where do you go?

2. Can you tell us a little about your book?

Room 702 tells the story of one hotel room and the many stories that happen within that room during a one year period.  The fictional hotel is set in Beverly Hills and has some recurring characters and connections throughout the cast.

3. Using one sentence, can you describe Room 702?

One hotel suite. One year. Many stories. 

4. How did you choose the genre you write in?

It chose me!  While I had been writing young adult for a number of years, I had an idea for something different.  When I got the idea, it wouldn't let go.

5. When did you know you wanted to write a book?

Well, I've been writing for a long time, so I think it was a natural progression of being a long time reader and writer.  I actually started with writing fanfiction, and then progressed to original characters and storylines.  (And yes, I still occasionally write fanfiction!).

6. What is a usual writing day like for you, how is it structured?

I tend to do my best writing in the morning, so I aim to be at my computer by no later than 8 AM and put in a good few hours either writing or editing.  I then tend to focus on working on other shorter projects.  If possible, I try to write or edit six days a week.  I like keeping a novel 'fresh' in my mind.

7. Do you have a favorite spot to write?

For a long time, I wrote on a laptop on the couch, but in the last year, was able to get a large desktop and it makes having tons of tabs open at the same time.  My desk is large enough to spread out and edit a manuscript as well.

8. Do you have a favorite food or drink you must have nearby when writing?

I try and drink a lot of tea during the day.  I start with black (caffeinated) tea in the morning (with milk and sugar, of course).  Later in the day, I'll have lemon and ginger tea.  My favorite snack is gummy bears!

9. If you were a super-hero, what powers would you have?

An unlimited amount of money to buy books and the ability to stop time and read them all!  My TBR list is always growing.

10. What are writing projects are you currently working on?

I am currently working editing the first draft for the third book of a trilogy in my Queen of England series.  The second book is currently with a professional editor, so it's a lot of that fictional world at the moment.  I'm living in Victorian England, more or less.


When the love of your life leaves, where do you go?

When thirty-something Liz McNeil is unexpectedly widowed, she has no idea what to do with her life. After the initial shock of her husband’s death wears off, she packs up her car and sets off on a tour of the country with Joe’s urn in the passenger seat. Using social media to connect with a variety of friends and family, Liz works through her grief in a number of unpredictable methods. As she shares her experience via blog posts, on a road trip full of surprises, Liz takes what life has given her and makes the best of her situation.
Will Liz ever be able to experience love again? Readers of P.S. I Love You will definitely be interested in the journey of this courageous young woman and her struggle for a new normal.
Currently available on Amazon, and many other reading platforms.

FinalCover - smaller res

One hotel suite. One year. Many stories. The Winchester Hotel is an active property in Beverly Hills, California. Luxurious and discreet, it is a perfect location for business meetings, weddings, affairs, and other important life events – including the death of an A List celebrity. Told from the omniscient perspective of the room, the reader has a front row seat to the drama that unfolds in the suite. Although each chapter is unique, the characters’ lives intertwine in a way only possible in a major metropolis like Los Angeles.
Currently available on Amazon, and many other reading platforms.

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