I love finding out more about the Avalon authors through these interviews and talking to Sandra was no exception. Her response to my rather mundane question about where she lives was a real suprise! Read on and see why . . .
1. Tell us about your new book for Avalon. Is it your first?
PRICE OF VICTORY is my first book for Avalon. It is about a woman who
dreams and strives to be on a women's pro racing team. To do the
research, my husband joined a bicycle club and raced so I could get
the feel of the action. I met several women pros and appreciated all
of their input. Two of them read my manuscript to make sure I had the
bicycle terminology correct. At the time I wrote this, the races
mentioned in the story were actually occuring. At present, some of the
races are no longer staged.
2. What part of the world are you from? Have you always lived there?
I'm a western and outdoors gal. I was born in California and grew up
in several different areas including the San Francisco Bay Area, Tahoe
area, and the Southern California beach area. My dad specialized in
getting hospitals out of bankruptcy so we moved every year. The
continual moving turned out to be great because I'm not a pack rat and
its easy for me to make friends. When I married, my husband and I
lived the the Redwood country for awhile, then we traveled for a year
in Central and South America and ended up in Arizona where we became
desert rats. We love the dry climate and open spaces. But we are
backwards snowbirds now and travel in our motorhome most of the year.
I have my computer on my dashboard in front of the motorhome and my
husband points the window to the best view and says "Honey, here is
your beach office." or "Here is your mountain lake office." or "Here
is your desert view office." My great grandparents came west in a
covered wagon so I guess I inherited those traveling genes.
3. What other skills do you have besides writing a good story?
I also write children's picture books. I just received two new books
last week. PERCIVAL THE NAUGHTY PRAIRIE DOG is about a prairie dog
who calls out the different predators and laughs when his cousins run
for cover. But when a coyote comes, they don't listen to his warnings
anymore and Percival must rescue them. HECTOR WANTS TO PLAY is about
a Gila Monster who after sleeping in his burrow for several months,
comes out and wants to play with the other desert animals. But they
are afraid of him because he is a monster and won't let him play until
he rescues them from danger.
Another activity I really like is pickleball. Yes, I said
pickleball. You can see a great video at www.usapa.org. It's a
cross between ping pong and tennis and got its name when the inventor
of the game had to chase his dog named Pickle whenever he took off
with the wiffle ball. Lots of fun.
4. What's your blue sky dream? ie if you could have or do anything
what would you choose?
I'm doing it. smile Retired, traveling in my motorhome and writing.
I have to say, I've been very blessed. My family and friends are
wonderful. Hubby and I have been married over 44 years and he is still
my tall, dark and handsome hero.
5. Apart from writing what do you enjoy most?
God, family, friends, pets, traveling. My husband and I love to
travel in our motorhome and see the beautiful sights of nature in the
North American continent. We love all the information in the National
Parks and National Monuments. We hike, bicycle, and sight see. We have
two dogs, a Labrador Retriever and Toy Poodle; two opposites that like
to keep us on our toes.
6. The Price of Victory has a great cover, did you have any input?
Isn't it romantic and fun? All of the credit goes to my editor and the
artists at Avalon. They had fun with this one on their own.
7. What are you working on at the moment?
Cruising For Love is a romance set on a steamboat cruise in the South.
My husband and I took the cruise up the Mississippi before Hurricane
Katrina. I had so much fun interviewing the staff on the paddleboat.
I was amazed at the information I gleaned. I also met a steamboat
captain and she helped me with the storm scenes and the procedures to
evacuate due to a storm. I have some revisions and hopefully the
Avalon editors will like the changes.
8. Any tips for aspiring authors?
Join local and national writing groups in your genre. Find other
writers and network and get into a critique group. I write romance so
belong to the Romance Writers of America. I also belong to the
American Christian Writers of Fiction. Both of these groups are
extremely supportive and helpful to aspiring writers. Even if you
don't write romance or inspiration, the workshops and industry news
you learn from these groups will make it worth your time to attend
some of their events. There are a list of organizations on my website
Read, read, read. Write, write, write.
Thanks Lis for inviting me to the Avalon Blog. I am so excited to be
part of the Avalon team. It will be a pleasure to see my books in the
My new release PRICE OF VICTORY is available. Please go to or call
your local library and ask for PRICE OF VICTORY by Sandra Leesmith.
And check out the Seekerville blog (seekerville.blogspot.com)
yesterday and learn why it is important to support your local library.
To give you a pick-me-up for the day, I set out a table of chocolates
from my favorite--Sees Candies. Grab a cup of coffee or tea and
please join me. Anyone who comments can be put in for a drawing of my
novel THE PRICE OF VICTORY. If you want to be included in the
drawing be sure and add your email address if it isn't in your blogger
profile. Spell it out to avoid spam i.e. smith at dingdong dot com
Thanks for having me. Have a great day.