Sunday, September 16, 2012

Author Chat: Ashley Fontainne

I’m happy to be talking to Ashley Fontainne, author of the thrilling, fast-paced novels about revenge, Accountable to None, and Zero Balance, books one and two of the Eviscerating the Snake series. Book three, Adjusting Journal Entries, is slated for release in mid-October.
First, the book blurbs:

Accountable to None:  

What if the unspeakable happened to you? Would you fantasize about seeking personal vengeance? How far would you go...and how much would you sacrifice to hold those responsible that believe they are accountable to none?

Welcome to the prestigious accounting firm of Winscott & Associates. Welcome to Audra Tanner's personal hell. She had heard rumors about her employer. The whispered secrets. But she had thrown herself into work to escape the pain of her miscarriage and demise of her marriage. Idealistic, she thought if she worked hard she would be rewarded. She thought wrong. 

Savagely initiated into the brutal underbelly of the firm, Audra learns too late that the rumors are true. Now after five years of careful plotting, Audra is ready to push the wheels of justice into motion. Her goal of retribution has turned into an obsession, and she will stop at nothing until everyone responsible pays. Will revenge set her free or is Audra's quest for personal justice only beginning?

Book trailer, Accountable to None: 

Zero Balance:
Nine months ago, I served my own personal brand of punishment on those that kept their silence when I was raped.
Nine months ago, I was the voice that found justice for a beautiful young life, viciously slain in her prime many years ago, and helped her grieving mother to finally find peace.

Nine months ago, my horrid nightmares were finally quieted after eviscerating the snake's body and crushing its evil head.

Two weeks before the trial of Olin Kemper was scheduled to begin, the dreams came back. Haunting, disturbing dreams that I can't escape nor understand.

A week ago, I realized that I didn't kill the snake, I just wounded it.

And it's back with a vengeance and after us all.

Book trailer for Zero Balance:

And now, let’s find out more about Ashley.

Welcome, Ashley, and thanks for being here. How did you come up with the title of your book, Accountable to None and the title of the series, Eviscerating the Snake?
Accountable to None is the first novel in the series. The setting is an accounting firm in Phoenix, Arizona by the name of Winscott & Associates. After suffering a violent rape, the heroine decides that she will now hold her rapist accountable for his actions. She vows to take him from being accountable to none to accountable to all. She refers to the firm, as well as her rapist, as a snake, thus the series title, Eviscerating the Snake.

Very intense. How would you describe your book in a tweet? (140 characters or less.)

Revenge might set her free, but at what cost?

For those who keep track, you did that in 45 characters. Good for you! How did you create the plot for this book?

My love for the classic revenge saga, The Count of Monte Cristo. I wanted to set classic revenge in modern time. Accountable to None is the first novel in my series, Eviscerating the Snake.  We meet the heroine, Audra Tanner, five years in the past while she contemplates which avenue she will follow after being violently raped by her boss, Olin Kemper.  Mind broken and spirit shattered, she opts to seek revenge on her own, rather than reporting him to authorities.  Part of her reasoning to choose this path stems from the fact that other high ranking partners knew what Olin had planned, and some even heard her screams for help, yet they did nothing. 

For the next five years, Audra plots and plans her revenge on all of them, biding her time until she has gathered enough information to take them all down. 

In the sequel, Zero Balance, Audra discovers that there is a very high price to pay for exacting revenge on others, especially if those marks were already evil to begin with.  Zero Balance picks up nine months after the ending of Accountable to None.

You’re about to release your third book in the series. Do you outline or write by the seat of your pants?

I see the story in my head, like a movie. I start with one scene, write it down, then contemplate what I would like to see on the movie screen happen next. Once the vision is set and flows well, I move on to the next scene.

What do you like best about writing? What’s your least favorite thing?

The best thing, and the most rewarding, is feedback from my fans. That makes every sleepless night spent typing until my eyes cross and fingers bleed, worth it. The worst thing? MARKETING!

I agree! Let’s talk about imaginary friends. Do you have them? Do they tell you what to write?

A tiny, whispering voice warned me not to answer that question….

That’s one of the perks of having imaginary friends—you can blame them for things. Which imaginary friend, or character, did you most enjoy writing?

That is almost impossible to say. Audra, of course, is near and dear to my heart. However, unleashing the evil in the form of Olin and Piper was deliciously fun as well.

Again, I have to agree with you. Writing bad guy characters is so much fun. What song would you pick to go with your book?

“Bring Me Back To Life,” by Evanescence.

I think that’s perfect. What’s one of your favorite quotes? 

“Revenge, at first though sweet,
Bitter ere long back on itself recoils.”
-John Milton, Paradise Lost

That, too, is perfect for your book. Okay…off the wall question: if you could live anywhere in the world, where would it be?

In a hut overlooking the ocean in Tahiti!

That sounds wonderful. Can I be your next-door neighbor? I think the ocean would be a wonderful cure for writer’s block. I’d at least like to test that theory. All kidding aside, thank you for being here. I hope you’ll come back when Adjusting Journal Entries is published. Best of luck with it and the whole series.

About Ashley:
International Best Selling author, Ashley Fontainne, is an avid reader of mostly the classics. Ashley became a fan of the written word in her youth, starting with the Nancy Drew mystery series. Stories that immerse the reader deep into the human psyche and the monsters that lurk within us are her favorite reads.
Her muse for penning this series was The Count of Monte Cristo by Alexander Dumas. The revenge on all those who hurt and betrayed Edmond Dantes and the incredible roller coaster ride his journey takes you on intrigued her. Ashley’s love for this book is what sparked her desire to write her debut novel, Accountable to None, the first book in the trilogy, Eviscerating the Snake. With a modern setting to the tale, Ashley delves into just what lengths a person is willing to go to as they attempt to seek justice on their own for heinous acts perpetrated upon them. The second novel in the series, Zero Balance focuses on the cost and reciprocal cycle that obtaining revenge has on the seeker. For once the cycle starts, where does it end? How far will the tendrils of revenge expand? Adjusting Journal Entries answers that question: far and wide.

Born in raised in California, Ashley now calls Arkansas home with her husband and four children. She also enjoys writing poetry and short stories and recently published Ramblings of a Mad Southern Woman: A Collection of Short Stories and Poetry on Life, Love, Loss and Longing, which is available on Amazon. Ashley is also a supporter of the Joyful Heart Foundation that assists victims of violent crime seek help and find healing, and donates 10% of all book sales yearly to the cause.

Where you can find Ashley: